Yesterday Jim and I drove to Sussex County, New Jersey to go hunting with Bob Corsaro on some private farm land. Normally I would immediately come home and blog about it but I have been sick with food poisoning so I opted to wait and write about our adventure today. Who knows what I would have written yesterday....I wasn't fit for human exposure.
Jim and Bob leaving the field and heading into the woods after Cleo
Yesterday was a great experience for not only us but for Cleo. She got to hunt over various terrain and multiple species of bird. Which is exactly what we want for her. To be able to hunt in lots of different situations and circumstances. It was awesome to see her tracking through the thick brush. She has absolutely zero fear of sticker bushes, thick mud and tight quarters. She also does a really nice job of checking in and its apparent she hunts with us as a team rather than hunting for herself.
Cleo on point
Cleo turned on a dime and pointed a cock bird
Cleo had a pretty decent day. She found 7 pheasants and 1 chukar. 5 of those pheasants she popped in the thick brush and 2 she did not, so they were shot, brought home and grilled. It would have been great had she not popped the 5 birds but she was pretty amped up after not finding a bird for the first 40 minutes of our 3 hour hunt. On black friday she didn't pop 1 bird of the 12 she found but those were totally different conditions. That's one of the reasons Bob invited us to go hunting in New Jersey on his hunting land so we could further challenge her and for that we are grateful. I'm also grateful that Jim and Bob were so nice to me yesterday considering my awful condition. I'm sure Jim had his doubts when he had to pull over on the way to the hunt so I could throw up on the side of the road. But I never complained and kept up. I guess its the fighter in me.....I think I can always push through anything, even when I shouldn't. But they were nice enough at one point to chill out while I meandered away and puked in the bushes. To put things in perspective I normally take between 200 and 300 pictures on a three hour hunt. Yesterday I took only 36.
This is Jim and Bob cutting me a break while I get myself together
Bob and Cleo off into the thick stuff
Cleo pointing a chukar
Even though I felt awful yesterday it was a great day. Every time we get Cleo out hunting she grows and we do too. It never ceases to amaze me the drive and desire she has. She has this beauty to her the way she works a field or the woods. There is something that is so free and captivating about it that its really kind of indescribable. Whatever it is it makes you glad to be outside in the woods, away from the hustle and bustle and be with your dog. We all felt it yesterday and talked about it. The guys more than me but I was just trying not to puke. But I guess its one of the reasons I choose to baton death march through the woods rather than stay home. Its the same feeling I get on cool summer evenings when I run her in the field by our house at night. Peaceful and happy to watch her run and do what she loves the most.
The other fun thing about yesterday was that we got to go hunting with Bob. Other than us, no one knows Cleo better than him. He not only guided us but when she needed it gave her on the job training and us instruction on what we need to do with her in the future. That's a great resource for knowledge hungry newbies. It's also one of the reasons I always highly recommend Bob and Nobelles to anyone interested in a four legged hunting partner. His "after purchase" service and care is unparalleled.
So we are two trips into our hunting season this year and we couldn't be more excited. I'm loving the tasty bird meat and the time spent in the field. Be sure to check back for more hunting adventures in the coming weeks!