Best Shoot You've Ever Had?

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Best Shoot You've Ever Had?

Postby po' refugee » Tue Oct 18, 2005 8:33 pm

Hey fellas,
I thought it would be fun to post our memories of hunts past before the weekend gets here. You kow, something to get the blood boiling :thumbsup: Doesn't have to be a novel if ya don't want --just some gory details :yes:
My most memorable hunt was out at Sutter NWA. It was Christmas eve and my dad and I got on in the sweat line, and made the long walk out to where we normally shoot. It's a pretty popular spot and sweat liners never get it, but this morning we had the whole pond to ourselves. We were shocked to say the least. We set up and listened to the birds as the time drew near. Prior to this time the shooting had been marginal --nothing to get excited about--so we weren't expecting much, but we did seem to see and hear ALOT of ducks. As it grew lighter the sky literally filled up with birds. I have never seen that many birds on a refuge before (on a shoot day). Even after shoot time they would not leave. There was no one in the check next to us and 2 hours after shoot time we guessed that there were at least 2,000 sprig and widgeon resting there. Phenomenal!! This was a few years ago when you could shoot 2 bulls, and we limited with 11 mallards and 3 bull sprig. After we were done we just sat there. A cold north wind was blowing, and the greenies just kept coming to us. Never forget it.
If, by chance, anyone reading this was hunting Sutter that day you will instantly remember that morning. Everybody killed em. A huge flight had come in during the night. A duck hunters dream :salude:
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Postby Russell » Tue Oct 18, 2005 11:02 pm

There was Volta back on opening day in '86....50 thousand + sprig jammed into 2500 acres. The pin limit was 5 that year...it was ugly! :hammering: Too bad the place sucks now.

Then there was the day of the second opener in 1991 when the north wind blew at 45 MPH+.....every duck in the grasslands blowin around 10 feet over the tules...

Another time in '95 in a screamin south wind storm on Brannon Island in fresh floooded corn....groups of 50 green at a time. Unbelievable.

... in spite of all that ...in recent years my fondest memories are "surprise" hunts where I stumble into an overlooked hole somewhere that produces. In January 2004, I came out late to a crowded refuge in the grasslands and couldn't hunt my first choice so I settled for a new spot on a hunch...hour and a half later I set up and instantly had a group of 5 green looking and coming down NOW. Shot an easy double. Dog comes back with the second drake...banded! Turns out the bird was TWELVE years old!!

I still hunt that spot ... :yes:
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Postby PinTeal » Wed Oct 19, 2005 12:27 am

Well..we can go one of two ways....

1 being shooting a case of shells (me, dad, brother) in a little over 2 hours....in a 10 yard by 10 yard pot hole in flooded timber....


Or the same three of us shooting a flight of 7 widgeon dead in 7 shots..


Both were awesome, but the first was unbelievable!


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Postby #1wingnut » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:01 am

Oh SOOO many

How about the after noon on secrete honey when 100+ woodies
droped in our hole..... we had time to re-load. :mrgreen:

Or............
#5 resi at LDC 2001 me and my bro. 20 birds - 1 hour
14 green heads - 6 Geese :mrgreen:

Or............
Secrete honey hole. 2003
10 am : no shots fired. 10:15 a group of 8 mallards cup on top of us
we drop 6 and my buddy missed his 1st shot. 5 min later the last 2 came back for a look..... there mistake :thumbsup:
gota love those slow days. :mrgreen:

Or..........
last year blind 14 delivan.
me and my bro (other bro - newbe)
Me - 5 green heads and a bull sprig
him - 3 green heads and a hen mallard
10 am
"his first duck hunt"

Or...............
This could go on for a long time :yes:
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Postby worknem » Wed Oct 19, 2005 4:42 pm

Every one of em have had at least 1 thing that made each the best ever. Even the crummiest of crummy ones had somethign positive.

It's not bird numbers that make em for me. It's stuff like remembering when I fiinally got old enough to have input on hunt location, spread etc, and call shots - then watching my son go throught the same process a lot of years later. Hunting the rice in the south wind raining flat and have grind after grind all day long right on top of you, every type of duck in the inventory. Hitting that call just right and having 1 greenhead do a quick spin in place lock and turn the whole bunch. Waiting and waiting as those honkers that'r locked up get bigger and bigger but every time you glance at your reference marker they still have a ways to go. Watching your son do his firsts at it all, including taking over working the dog. Having the dog do that one icredible retrieve on that crip that refused to die. The day you can finally, after a lifetime in the marsh, go out and identify every plant seen and know the uses of them. Being able to say a litlle thanks to my dad and grandpa while looking over to The Buttes where they're in the ground. On and on. Too big of paragraph. I know. LOL!

Thinking about the birds and everthing surrounding them has kept me going through many a tight or trying time over the years. Be it hospitalized, family troubles, or even using em as escape for a bit during Boot Camp.

Great Thread! :thumbsup:

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Postby Mattquack » Wed Oct 19, 2005 5:31 pm

Thinking about the birds and everthing surrounding them has kept me going through many a tight or trying time over the years. Be it hospitalized, family troubles, or even using em as escape for a bit during Boot Camp.

Great Thread! :thumbsup:

Rel Atwood[/quote]

What branch of the service were you in, Rel?
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Postby po' refugee » Wed Oct 19, 2005 6:15 pm

That was a great post Rel. I think that what you said is so true for most of us. It is not the duck killing, it's the duck hunting; and all the sights, sounds, smells (nothing smells as God as a CA marsh) and feelings that go along with it. People who don't hunt can't understand that aspect. Anyways, nice words :thumbsup:
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Postby #1wingnut » Wed Oct 19, 2005 6:38 pm

I'm with these guys Rel,
Your words have a way of touching the hart of a true waterfowler.

keep'em comin

Thanks, Dan
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Postby hunt Chessies » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:31 pm

It seems like I have a best hunt every year. My favorite all time was my dad and I up in tule lake. We got to run our boat for the first time with both dogs. colder than anyother hunt. Shooting time comes around and it starts snowing like crazy. boat was white, tules were white and the dekes were snow mounds! Birds were easy picken's. Damn near froze to death but my first hunt in the snow. Something I will always remember.

Second, my dad and I again hunting the flood out of the boat. Clear day, didnt shoot a bird all morning decided to pack it up and drive the boat around a little. Drove threw some flooded willows and kicked up several thousand mallards. Parked the boat, within hour and half we had our 10 greenheads as they worked in to 10 yards!!! I love hunting the trees.
Its my new favorite spot and I can't wait for the flood this year. Theres nothing better than limits of green!

Im sure I will add a few memories again this year!
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Postby puddlehunter » Wed Oct 19, 2005 9:06 pm

me birthday 2 yrs ago at Colusa 6 greenies in 20 min! and a neck collar speck! A special dy for sure!
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Postby worknem » Thu Oct 20, 2005 7:48 am

Mattquack wrote:Thinking about the birds and everthing surrounding them has kept me going through many a tight or trying time over the years. Be it hospitalized, family troubles, or even using em as escape for a bit during Boot Camp.

Great Thread! :thumbsup:

Rel Atwood


What branch of the service were you in, Rel?[/quote]

I should have said summer camp. LOL! AF 10 years. I did Lackland in January and in the AM before chow when we were squaring up the dorm I could catcha look out the window and there was a daily flight of several bunches of mallards that went by. Kept me going most days.

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Postby Mattquack » Thu Oct 20, 2005 1:57 pm

That's awesome, Rel. I wish I would've had that to look at. I was in San Diego for boot camp, and the thing that kept me going was the billboard sign on the side of the freeway off in the distance that had the Marlboro man smoking a cigarette. lol. After 8 years, I called it quits, about 5 years ago. Just in time to keep ducks my target, and not people. :thumbsup:
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Postby WCWN » Thu Oct 20, 2005 9:43 pm

It's all good!!! Even the bad days are better than a good day at work!
We went to Oregon one year and layed on our backs in a cow pasture with burlap & barley hay over us . The guide called in a flock and told us not to shoot. They landed right on us! I was lookin throught the burlap right into the beak of a Honker :eek: . Then the second flight came. The sound was like a helicopter landing and right before they hit the ground the guide called it. All four of us threw off the burlap and started pulling the triger. Geese were trying to land, geese were trying to take off, geese were falling out of the sky. It was all over in about a minute. 12 geese lay on the ground one crip that the dog went after and the guide was just sitting there smiling. Welcome to Oregon
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Postby buriani » Thu Oct 20, 2005 10:10 pm

I was fortunate to be in on the very first public hunt of LDC. My partner, who had the GL ressi, saw the little sign that said there was a new unit, Little Dry Creek, available on request. Not knowing anything about it at all, we decided to give it a try anyway. We randomly chose a parking lot and proceeded to scout for water before shot time. We found a beautiful pond and set out the dekes. It was obvious that getting a limit, four at the time, would be no problem since we were among thousands of birds. We spread out just before shoot time and I was in awe at the number of birds. I had never been surprised so badly and so many times by big flocks of teal attempting to knock my hat off. I nestled my gun onto the tules and just absorbed the pleasure of being in what would normally been a closed zone experience. I did not shot at shoot time nor for the next 5 minutes, or so, as I was enthralled by the unbelievable numbers of birds. During that once in a lifetime experience, I elected to take a bull sprig, followed by a big drake mallard since my partner was wildly blazing away. In just a few minutes, he came over and said that he had his limit. I asked "what birds?" He quickly answered-- 4 teal. I was disappointed that he wasn't more selective but in 5 more minutes we were out of there with 2 more drake mallards. I can honestly say I know how it feels to hunt the X in the closed zone.
Of the people, By the people and For the people
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Postby po' refugee » Fri Oct 21, 2005 10:49 am

Buriani,
That sounds like an awesome hunt! Just the fact that you were hunting LDC on the first public shoot day is something special. My dad and brother and I used to shoot there all the time with Gray Lodge Ressis, before there was a checkstation of any sort, and it was a first come first serve parking lot. It took most hunters a couple of seasons to catch on to the fact that LDC was the place to be, but in the meantime we had some phenomemal shoots. When you said "once in a lifetime" you were right, except that place was "once in a lifetime" for like 2 years in a row :cool: !Getting a ressi for LDC now is like winning the lotto.....ahh, the good old days.
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Postby ducky911 » Fri Oct 21, 2005 11:26 am

Hi,

Some years back a good buddy of mine and a junior hunter went to little dry creek. Hunted all day wasnt a bored moment. Anyway with a hour left in the day we were 7 bird short of our 3 limits when 6 gads came into the deeks and we had them in a cross fire---only one got away--then with only mins left a pair of mallards came in and I got them both. Wow what a day I had three doubles on mallerds.

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Pulled a LDC opening Sunday

Postby winchester of tracy » Fri Oct 21, 2005 1:45 pm

This was my first expierence At LDC :getdown: . I was number 21. So no chance at a blind So My buddy and I slept in the parking lot and decided to try to figure it out with out asking anyone for help . This was a very bad move :thumbsdown: . According to the map there were what looked like 3 parking lots :thumbsup: . We decided to go to the I believe it was the second parking lot. We parked and gave each other high fives because we were the first people in the parking lot. :salude: It seemed to be to good to be true we were passing people while we were driving down the levee. I remember it now" Hey Brad hurry and grab the crap we have got to go before the people who were taking the long way got there. Brad And I jumped in the first available tules and started lookin for a big enough spot to put out all of our decoys. We decided on this spot not knowing how close to the blinds we were :eek: . Man brad and I slayed the birds one after the other all big birds and the elusive woodrow which died from dead eye brads doing :pissed: . all morning long, well it seemed like along time probably only ahour or so, all were were hearing was cusing and swearing We could of swore that there was going to be a fight. OK TO THE GOOD PART We were not parked in a parking lot, we were parked in a turnout that was being used for equiment storage and yes the warden found us and yes Brad enjoyed a long walk form the check station after he relocated the car. The great news is we found the Honey hole!!!!!!!
And I mean HONEY HOLE the space we hunted in was I kid you not 50 yds wide. Man the birds wanted in BAD. JUST A LITTLE REMINDER dont forget the OFF man the first weekend is a Killer. The mosquitoes were so bad we hadto spray the dog.
QUACK KILLS
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