Friday, September 2, 2011

Second Day of Grouse Season in Montana

My favorite Aspen grove on the Clark Fork River.
 Day 2 of Grouse Season, by Dan:

Michael and I woke up early and had dogs and gear at the local cafe/store for breakfast when they opened. After a quick breakfast and cup of coffee, we were at the Aspen Grove just as the sun came up over Government Mtn. I put Michael and his dogs, Sugar and Gus, out at the top of the hill so they could hunt a strip of timber down to the grove. I drove on down the hill and enjoyed the beautiful morning and a cheap cigar.

Dan and "Blackie"

 Sugar and Gus showed up a minute before Michael and when he gets to me I am told he put up 2 birds 10 seconds after I left. We ran Blackie through the grove and found nothing. Not even a hot spot.

As we were heading up towards the area where Michael flushed the birds he noticed the fore end of his shotgun was missing. It must have got caught on some brush and pulled loose. We looked all around the area and back tracked into chest deep Bracken Fern with slim hopes of locating the tiny splinter fore end. Michael hung his hat where he noticed it missing and after about a 45 minute search he spotted a glint of light reflecting off a piece of metal and actually found it.  Great relief!!! Where do you find a splinter fore end for a 1909 L.C. Smith in 16 ga? In the woods of course!

We had a sandwich made at the local Deli and moved up Bull River.  Sugar and Gus worked the brush and thickets and turned up nothing in covers that had never failed us. The historic ranger station has a brand new deluxe government out house and I thought I'd give them back a little of what they've been giving me!

Michael took his dogs down the brushy edge of a small creek. I was just settling in when I heard a shot. A minute later I heard Gus doing his "treed" bark and seconds later another shot. When I caught up to Michael his grin told me he had connected. two young birds were in the game bag.

Michael with Gus (the Gordon) & Sugar (the lab)

Two for the game bag! Way to go, Mikey!

Cabinet Wilderness Area from Bull River.
We cruised over Snake Creek Pass in search of a Blue Grouse and went up Dry Creek in search of Ruffed but never found another bird all day. Micheal found 2 bird seconds after I dropped him off and the 2 others literally caught me with my pants down.  4 grouse flushed by Michael and his dogs and 2 in his game bag.

I never saw a bird all day but a day in the woods with Michael is always soooo much fun.  DWT


  1. oh, this was fun! laughing at the outhouse 'give back' remark, then the 'caught with the pants down'. ha ha! perfect!

  2. Congrats on the bag! That is some beautiful country - and to walk behind beautiful dogs. Heaven on earth. Thank you for sharing.

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