Duck Hunting Memories
by Adam Brassfield
Do you remember the first time that you went duck hunting? Well I was thinking the other day about my first trip to the duck hole. It took me a minute but it started coming back to me, my duck hunting memories.
I was 9 years old growing up in Northeast Arkansas along the Mississippi River. My grandparents, Tommie and Nina James lived out in the country where it was a daily routine to go fishing in the summer, hunting in the fall, and winter. My first shotgun was given to me by my Uncle Barry when I was 7. It was a single shot 20 gauge. The first time I shot it at a squirrel it knocked me on my rear and I thought I saw stars there for a moment.
At Christmas one year my Dad bought me a 12 gauge pump that shot 2 ¾ inch shells and I was ready for duck hunting. My Uncles friend Randy had picked us up one cold sleeting morning at 3:30 in his old beat up Bronco. I distinctly remember getting to our duck blind before daylight and having breakfast with a bunch of old men that had been duck hunting for hundreds of years if you listen to them tell it. These were the type of men that if you blew your duck call the wrong way it was time to get a rope. I figured the best thing I could do is just pay attention and keep my gun on safety. As daylight broke I heard someone shout. “Its shootin’ time let them fly!” I actually shot the first duck that morning and it was my only duck that morning as all the adults begin to shoot their limits and mine. Lesson learned!
That is where this passion of mine began. How many times do we all go duck hunting and forget to savor the moment, capturing that special point in the hunt that can be shared with our grandkids. Now that I am all grown up and duck hunt for a living, it seems that every hunt of every season has its memory that will be etched into my mind forever.
Just the other day I shared a duck hunt with my three favorite friends. My beautiful lady Tasha and my two buddies Larry and Roy. We were hunting one a spot that we think a lot of. It was a flooded field that just seemed to be magical every time we were in it. We all limited on ducks that morning but it was the laughter and smiles that we had together over tall tales and missed shots that was the ticket to a great hunt.
As a Father, I hope and pray that our waterfowl community can come together and work on keeping this tradition alive for our kids. Duck hunting is a passion that a lot of us share and the common interest of our friends that we may never meet. It won’t be too long, before you know it, I will be that old man in the duck blind spattering off about how I have been hunting for 150 years and looking at that 9 year old in my duck hole with his new shotgun he got for Christmas. It will make you think. Who’s duck hunting memories will you help make?