Friday, November 14, 2008


Well it is 3:40 pm on the eve of Firearm Deer Season in Michigan. I am home with the car packed waiting on Arlene to get here. She said she'd be home at 4 PM. She is out at her sister Judy's where they are finally putting her new modular house on the foundation. This whole process has been slower than molasses! If any of these people worked for me, I'd of fired the whole bunch weeks ago. Poor Judy! She is so anxious to get into her new house and it seems to have taken forever.

I am so excited for deer camp that I can't hardly stand it and the minutes are ticking by so slowly I had to check three clocks to make sure that they didn't stop or something. Why is it that when you are waiting to do something you just love to do the time goes by so slowly? But it flies by when you are doing something you really love to do.

Arlene just called and they still don't have that thing on the foundation. What the heck.

Well, I'll be gone until Wednesday night and I'll hopefully have a "Big Buck" story to tell. To all our hunting friends out there, best wishes and if you are hunting in Michigan: Good Luck and Be Safe!

14 Hours 10 minutes and counting!!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Deer Season 2008 Preparation

Well, opening day is only SEVEN days away now and the countdown is on! It is raining and very cold here in the old U.P. this weekend. Arlene and I were going to go up to Camp to stay the weekend but the weather put a damper on that idea, literally.

So today we went out to Pickford and got the trailer from Camp and went to town for our load of sugar beets. We parked the trailer at camp and got out the "buggies" and loaded up our beets and some carrots for the deer.

We went to Skyview first and dropped off bait and picked up my deer cam from back there. It is really really wet back there and hard for my little buggie to negotiate the trail so I have decided to hunt with Arlene at Cadillac Shack opening day. Dan has a big 4-wheel drive 4-wheeler so the mud and water is no problem for him to get back to Skyview. I hate to abandon him but I don't want to take a chance on trying to get back there with my gun on my buggie and tipping over or something.

On our way back to Skyview, we surprised the little twin fawns who were at Cadillac shack having a snack. They are so used to us that the one fawn didn't even leave the feeding station. I talked to him as I went by and he just stood and looked at me. They are getting very independent and aren't always close to Mom.

Here they are with Mom three weeks ago. They were much smaller then. But they have been eating alot of corn since then and are really growing.

This photo was taken this past week and though you can't really tell from the picture, they are much bigger now.

We went back to Camp and got another load of beets and dumped it at Cadillac. We needed to take down the corn feeder and the camera. I also had to take down my doghouse blind and get it put away. Of course, the weather picked that moment to rain really hard and Arlene and I were soaked to the skin by the time we were done. Luckily, I had hooked up the battery, turned on the propane and started the furnace in our trailer so we had a warm place to go when we were done. I always keep extra clothes in the trailer so I was able to change into dry clothes for the ride home. Arlene wasn't as lucky and had to ride home in wet clothes.

I had to pack up my bow and bowhunting gear and take it home. I hate doing that because bowhunting is definitely my favorite over rifle hunting. We do have late bow season from Dec. 1 to Dec. 31 but usually there is so much snow that it isn't practical to bowhunt that late up here.

We just need to get our clothes ready, decide on our dinner menus, and most importantly of all, buy SNACKS. Good snacks for your deer shack are a must and great care must be taken to get just the right selection. They have to be easy to transport, not make alot of noise when you open them and taste really good.

I am starting to get excited now as I look forward to the opener next Saturday.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Bowhunting Success at Camp Chicken!

Congratulations to Dan, Arlene's son-in-law, who bagged his first deer with a bow on Saturday afternoon. He made a really great shot from about 40 yards away while just sitting on a milk crate on the ground. He was really excited and so were we.

We had an extremely busy weekend. We stayed home for Halloween and had a housefull of guests and had a great time. Saturday morning we left early for camp and while on the way up there saw 3 wolves right out in the open field about 100 yards from the road. They weren't very afraid of us and finally ran away. They were only about a mile from my parent's house. I won't tell you my opinion of the planting of wolves in our area by the DNR as I don't swear on my blog!

We got to camp and got unloaded and get the furnace going as it was 27 degrees. We went back to town and picked up corn and sugar beets and went back to camp. As we were unloading the stuff into our old red trailer, a very large spikehorn came walking right into camp. He could see us and knew we were there! He was only about 30 yards away. He walked down our cart path to the Taj Mahal feeding spot, looked around and walked back to the start of the path and then walked back to the feeding spot again. Finally, he walked back to the start of the path and looking right at us took a few steps toward us, stopped and switched his tail and walked away toward the road. We were just amazed at him.

We loaded up the 4-wheelers and went out to check out Arlene's spot. When we got back to camp, one of my student workers from work, Theresa and her boyfriend Chris, were at camp. I invited them out to hunt racoons later that night and they were getting the "lay of the land" at the spot they would be hunting.

Arlene's brother came out again and we helped him load a trailer load of downed and dead maple for his wood burner. After that we set up our target and sighted in our deer rifles. We then loaded my trailer full of wood for Mom and Dad's fireplace and took it down to their house. While I unloaded the wood and stacked it in the woodshed, Arlene and Dan climbed up on the garage roof to fix the leak around Dad's new stovepipe. They managed to dink around until I had most of the wood in the woodshed.

We rushed back to camp as we still had to pull a big tarp over Dan's motorhome and get ready for the afternoon hunt. Arlene had ordered her electronic deer call and wanted to try it out. It has the sounds of rattling horns, a doe bleat, a doe-in-heat bleat, a buck grunt, and a buck snort/wheeze. She drove me nuts with that thing until Dan called her to tell her he had a doe down with his bow and we called it a day to go help him load her up and bring her out.

Theresa and Chris came about 9:30 and went out to wait for the midnight racoon raiders and we played Phase 10 until about 11 and hit the hay.

It was a very full day.

Sunday, I slept in and didn't hunt as I went to church with my family. It was remembrance Sunday and we had lost my Aunt Flora, my Dad's sister-in-law this year. My aunt Mary Hessel(my Dad's only sister) was coming and my cousin Judy and her husband Bob. After church we all went to brunch.

While I was away, Dan and Arlene made their first attempt at butchering. Dan had ordered this DVD on the internet and they had watched it and decided that they could butcher Dan's doe themselves. I advised them to let her "season" for a few days but they figured they would go ahead and do it that day. Much to my amazement, they were all done with her by the time I got back at 1:00 PM.

The new shed is perfect for butchering and with the salamander Arlene's sister lent us, we can work out there in comfort. Hopefully, we will have another nice deer to butcher next weekend.