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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

April at Long Ridge Deer Camp

April is my least favorite month, always has been. March, hey, that month is honest. 40 degrees one day, 5 below the next. Roaring streams and melting snowpack this week, a 20 inch blizzard and freezing temperatures the next. You expect it. But April, you know, 'April showers bring Mayflowers' is supposed to be a bit genteel. Sun, and spring, and Easter, and all the joys those things bring ought to make April a great month. But April lies. Sixty degrees today, and tomorrow and the next, and then POW! Six inches of snow. Ice. Two feet of mud on our dirt road. This afternoon I took Sid, our Lab for a good walk across fields and woods. At the top of the fields is a sliver of snow left - we've had rain and warmth. But this evening - freezing,28 degrees, our walk was windy and cold out of the Northwest. The brooks and rivers are at crest from the melting snowpack, and snowdrops have bloomed. And now snow expected tonight. Once snowmobile season is over, I am done with snow. May is welcome to come.
On the other hand, the deer are back in the fields, and have browsed the maples I dropped during the winter months. Their tracks are in the mud, and yesterday morning on my way to work I stopped to let a herd of eight or so cross our road..they looked reasonably healthy after this harsh winter. If most of them twin out, we'll have a banner season once again.
Getting ready for May chores...I have sent away for some Slay and Arrest to kill the grass and broadleaf in my plots and will spray at the earliest good conditions. We'll have some good frosts still to come so I'll frost seed with clover where needed, and spread a little 0-20-20. The deep woods plots I will not touch until mid/late summer when I will spray them, turn them a bit and re-seed with Secret Spot. The camera will go up soon. I only have one, so I have to move it around on our land. Next, before full summer growth I will have to loosen the bolts of our permanent tree stands, and move them a bit up or down, adjust ladders, and do rough work. I love it. Also this month is the time of year when so many in the country go shed hunting. I shed hunt every year and rarely find anything at all. But there are so many miles of woods here, that you could never find them all. A treasure I do have is a huge moose shed that I hit one March while snowmobiling. It was so fresh that it was still bloody at the base. It sits in deer camp now.
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