Now into mid-November with fall flying by it’s time to glance back and learn by seeing where we’ve traveled.For me this brings a thankful and proud smile.Cabin life was great and now I have a T-shirt announcing that I’ll be a grandpa. Wow!I can’t imagine that small boy who sat in the boat as I rigged rods in preparation for the next bass tournament or who took a long shot at a fast-flying Redhead passing over dropping it dead or the boy who took 1 shot with his youth 20 gauge at a buck I had missed 5 times and dropped it in its’ skidding tracks or the young man who, one year caught the biggest bass in the Silverado Pro Am tournaments is now a married man well into his career, still loving the outdoors becoming a dad perhaps today.I can’t wait to assume my new title of “Grandpa” either.But there’s more because his younger brother, soon to be an uncle is loving his first gun dog, a Brittany out of my Snap.Not only does he have an awesome hunting partner but a 4-legged buddy who absolutely adores him and would run through fire for him.So proud of the team they’ve become.Watching and being a part of their lives in the years to come will be a personal journey of mine too.
Now time for my own look over the shoulder.For the last couple years I was feeling pretty good about my becoming a fairly competent walleye angler having caught a number of fish but this year gave me a serious dose of reality.I am a novice at best but enjoying the journey as my lunch was handed to me over and over again. However the bass still cooperated after a day of eating a piece of humble pie thankfully!
Spring turkey hunting was again awesome with unexpected successes but then isn’t that a major part of hunting?The positive was the 4 Mn tags in our family that were all filled with each having it’s own unique story already told multiple times around the fire on a cabin evening!
Fall began with a struggle to the duck season but no complaints were uttered only hunters thankful to be afield together for the beginning of another fall.Pheasants rolled around bringing with it another adventure in southwest Minnesota for the first time.The five dogs, Acea and Calla Erik’s Goldens and three Britts, Snap, Belle and Chevy did their jobs resulting in birds in game pouches along with a fair share of misses too. We’ve hit a brief pause in the bird season exchanging shotguns for rifles during the 2019 deer season.Here I get to puff my chest out a bit because on opening day on a piece of public land we had only scouted but never hunted Chad, sitting on a bucket heard crashing to his right.Suddenly a doe briefly appeared with enough time for a shot followed by a huge buck.His nose on her tail.His first shot went into a popple but the second connected and the big deer flinched before disappearing into the brush.Erik found a drop of blood where the two disappeared insisting they sit.After a painfully long two hour wait the search began.First to be found was the doe about twenty yards to the west then the buck about 10 yards further resulting in brother high-fives. Both dead!The buck measured 11 massive points and the doe just a bit smaller.Both trophies along with a very proud son and a proud dad.Next came the journey back to the truck about a half mile or so.No motors on public lands allowed so Erik’s cart was a lifesaver or I’d still be there!Back at the truck I’d swear the buck weighed a thousand pounds! LOL
Now we’ve hit pause again as we anxiously wait for Erik and Danielle’s first son to arrive.He will be named after my father, Jack who taught me to hunt and fish.I’m sure this loving tradition will be carried on and in fact if you can keep a secret I will be getting his lifetime license soon after arrival as a first step!
These stories and traditions will live on and on at family get-togethers hopefully for generations to come!Isn’t that really an important part of the enjoyment that comes from a lifetime outdoors?
Now for a crystal ball look ahead sketchy as it can be but the past is the most reliable indicator we have.The soon-to-be dad really can’t know how his life will change but I’m confident it will all be great and both mom and dad, who share a love of the outdoors will be awesome sharing in the wonderful journey called parenthood!So many lessons that dad taught me, I instilled in both Erik and Chad.Now it’s up to Erik to do the same for his son!That’s been the most important part of my life and I can’t wait to watch and be part of it continuing. Isn’t that what this life is about as it passes from generation to generation?