maybe my best pheasant outing


M. Jager
January 10, 2003, 12:32 AM
Last week one of my best friends was home on leave and as he hadn't gotten to do any hunting we decided to go out for the last weekend of pheasant season. Bird numbers were down again in South East Iowa but we headed to our lucky spot figuring we would have to see at least see one bird.
We got to the spot and I must say we really looked the part. Me in my weathered Carharts and my Nova and buddy looking like GI Joe carrying a model 12. Buddy is the only guy I know who would hunt pheasants in marine cammo, a 2nd chance Kevlar vest, carrying a 9mm in a shoulder holster.
Anyway, we got hunting and things were looking so good for the home team. Walking our favorite ditch we found exactly 0 birds, which was ok cause neither of us was really worried about actually doing any shooting. I would guess we had walked maybe 1.5 miles before we kicked up the first bird, a rooster that got up close directly between us. The nova came up smoot, track the bird for an instant, recoiled, and the bird folded leaving some feathers in the air to emphasize the solid hit. Looked at buddy, "You shoot?" "yeah" As sometimes happens ours shots were close enough to the same time that there was but one report. We collected the bird, admired it for a moment and noted that it held tight for a late season bird.
The second bird came after another mile or so pasted behind us. A lone rooster which rose on my side presenting an easy straight away shot. We collected the bird noting again that it had held tight, unusual for this time of year. I guess we knocked on wood once to often as we hadn't gone half a mile when a dozen birds broke up at about the 100 yard mark. Of course they were pobably more spooked by the deer we jumped than us. So things went for the next 2 miles. Spooky birds that flushed wild in the distance or from the other side of thickets. In this time period we probably saw 30-35 birds, mostly hens, which was good to see.
Another mile into our ramblings we got into close birds. And close they were. Wading some waist high grass we suddenly had birds coming up all around us. Ended up being all hens, 12-15 total, but the rush as birds exploded all around you was simply great.
We piddled around in a large section of tall grass for awhile, kicking up a few more hens, some roosters that flushed wild, and a turkey that came up right under my feet. The last bird we saw came from the middle of a willow thicket of all places. I don't know who had more trouble, him trying to fly or me trying to swing. I guess the question was answered as I folded it right as it cleared the trees.
As buddy was on limited time, we decided to call it a day so he could spend time with his fiance. I haven't had more productive hunts. I once shoot a limit in lest that a minute. But for the sheer just happy to be there feeling this on takes the cake. To top it off, later that night buddy and fiance asked if I would be the best man in their wedding next fall. You can't ask for a better day than that.
Wow, that was long. Sorry about the lenght, I tend to ramble.

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January 10, 2003, 01:56 AM
Congrats Matt!

Nothing compares to a good time hunting out in a field, slew, tree, corn rows, etc., with a buddy! What do they say, that's what memories are made of? Well, maybe a 12lb Bass compares? No, definately a 12lb Bass compares! :D ;)


Dave McCracken
January 10, 2003, 05:40 AM
Good story, Mr Jager. It's the people that make the memories.

M. Jager
January 10, 2003, 05:45 PM
Thanks guys.
Dave, one thing. Lets stick to M. Jager or Matt........Mr. Jager is my father;)

January 10, 2003, 06:09 PM
Fantastic tale Matt.

Now I want to go pheasant hunting. :)

It's Friday and you pormpted me to call a few mates and we are going to flush some birds on Sunday.



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