Friday, July 31, 2009
Late July at Long Ridge
It is the last day of July as I write, and feel the pressure begin to build relative to things undone for upcoming camps... I threw in a camp moon picture from last year, a view of my Lab Sidney from the Tall Stand, and the wood stacked for deer camp (last year's). Now you know how much there is to get done!
Bow season begins in exactly six weeks, and I have not yet pulled back my string. Last week I picked up my bow from the archery shop. He did a complete teardown, replacing cam pins and such, new peep tube, and bumped pull weight from 58 to 60 lbs. (this is what happens when you have factory strings, they DO stretch. Always replace them after two years with good aftermarket stuff) With that done I will begin dry pulling this week, and shooting next week. My method is to start out with three arrows at each range (10, 20, 30, and 40 yards. Begin with light practice for a week or two, build to a creschendo of shooting for two weeks after that, then shoot lightly perhaps five to ten shots a day, estimating ranges for the last week or so before season starts. The day before season, I take my sharpened Montec G5's off my six hunting shafts, and replace them with the dulled Montec practice heads. I shoot my hunting shafts just to make sure they are true and in good shape. Once that is done I screw back on the sharp Montecs and am ready to go. I carry a bow attached quiver with six arrows in it, so I practice with it loaded this way.
Because of the incessant rain for the last three months we are behind on our food plots. They are ready to lime, fertilize and plant, but I just can't get on them without making mud. Instead I have concentrated on clearing trees and unwanted branches from our various stands, so that there are good shooting lanes where we want them. I did dismantle a permanent ten year old stand called the Wide Stand. No deer has ever been taken from it, and it goes mostly unused. I dragged the ladder a half mile west and raised the twenty footer up at the new food plot in the Western area. Instead of mounting the permanent stand I put up a hanger there, because we may want to move it slightly, to find the best spot. But I can tell you, it will be a producer...
Other summer camp news is that my wife and I bought two new ATV's. Ours were 22 years old. They still run like a top, but I did need a bigger one for the work I require it to do. We bought Honda Rubicons, 500's. As usual I researched for two years before settling on the Hondas. Even without the research I'd have chosen them. Our old ones are Honda Fourtrax Foremans, one a 350 and the other a 300 with countless hours and miles on them. The 350 is mine and I once pulled a 685 lb. moose over a mile through woods with it. I had it in low gear, full throttle, all four wheels spinning the entire distance. I had two hunters on the front rack, one on the rear, and myself. Thats 600 lbs. plus the moose. Those machines in twenty years took a starter each, a couple of new plugs somewhere along the way, and a couple of batteries. If you knew the work we have made them do, from harrowing to hauling logs, you simply would not believe how they to this day start instantly and run flawlessly. I'm gonna miss them when they sell. Honda makes the only gear driven (as opposed to belts) driven ATV I know of. The two new Hondas will likely be the last ATV's we'll ever need to buy.
The last week of August I will unseal all my hunting clothes that are Scent-Loc and silver, and re-activate them in the dryer. I'll spray down my release, bow and boots and anything I wear for a hat with Scent Killer. It really does make a difference. Tell me what you all are doing these days to get ready! Jack