My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Duck hunting for diver species like Canvasbacks, Redheads, Ringnecks, Eiders, Goldeneye and other diver ducks.

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My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby C Kerley » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:52 pm

I have wanted a Canvasback for many years now and cannot say for certain I've ever even seen one while hunting. About February I started making plans for a Pool 9 hunt as I'd read that was the place to be for one. But let me tell you, if you want to go, make reservations early as they will be filled up by February. I got lucky and a group had two of their party cancel, which gave me the opening to hunt with them. I booked with Hideaway Hollow Outfitters and my hunt days were Nov 24 and 25.

I left out of Springfield, MO at 4am on Saturday and it took me about 15 hours to get there adding in browsing time along the way. We met up Sunday morning and it was me, another guy, and the guide. Come to find out, the party I was to hunt with had cancelled altogether and we were both fill-ins. My vehicle thermometer said it was 9 degrees and the wind chill on the radio said 10 below. The guide, Jeremy, broke ice into the lake, but everthing was frozen solid. I really thought I had a wasted trip when the guide told me there usually would be 15 trucks/boats at the ramp, and we were the only ones there. The hunt was scheduled to end at 1pm, and I had written it off at daybreak as a wasted day and crossed my fingers for the next. About 9am the guide suggested we go in and eat lunch and meet back at 1pm to try it then. The wind had picked up and the temperature was supposed to break the freezing mark. Sure enough in the afternoon we found an open hole near a brushy spot and the hunting was phenomenal. The two of us could not look in enough directions to see all the birds buzzing us.

Long story short, I got my two Canvasbacks and cannot imagine how many Goldeneyes we could have shot with no limit. I shot my 4 Goldeneyes and 1 Canvasback in about 20 minutes. Then waited for about 20 min to collect that second Can.

We left the ramp about 1:30 and were back and driving out of the parking lot at 4:00. An hour of that was the guy with me filling his limit (he had a "few" misses).
Image

So comes the second day of the hunt. I expected one of two things, either exactly like the day before or zero ducks anywhere. The guy who had hunted with me the first day went home, so it was just me and the guide in a 21 foot boat. We went to a nearby spot thinking we could bust ice to make a hole, but it just didn't work. Finally about 9am the guide suggested we go back to where we were the day before and hunt beside his partner, who was there with 3 other clients. They had all already shot their 4 Goldeneyes and were holding out for Cans. I told the guide after the day before, I'd be happy shooting a limit of Goldeneyes and calling it. And, similar to the day before, we shot my six ducks in a little over an hour. On my 5th duck the guide took it from the dog at the front of the boat and this is what we found....
Image
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C Kerley
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Driven51387 » Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:59 pm

Awesome man! That's a stud GE on top of it all!
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby blackrock » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:51 pm

Wow, looks like great hunt. Congrats!
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Rhock19 » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:58 pm

Congrats! I was in Ferryville myself that week. Cans were no doubt in the area. Glad you had a good hunt!
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Rhock19 » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:59 pm

Were you hunting with Tony by any chance?
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby koonce727 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:23 pm

There were plenty of birds to be had. If you were launching from Ferry and not seeing anyone because of the ice its because most people switched to launches with current.

Glad you had a good hunt. Sun, mon and Tues were some damned good days to be out. Lots of birds moving.

Some of my best diver hunts this year were afternoon hunts, put a hurtin on some cans in that 1pm to 4pm range yall did good in.
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby C Kerley » Thu Dec 05, 2013 12:58 pm

Rhock, my guide was Jeremy and Matt is the owner. Those were the only two I met. While I have some of your attention, what's an appropriate tip for two days of this hunt? I haven't done a guided duck hunt before this one.
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Rhock19 » Thu Dec 05, 2013 3:46 pm

Honestly I dont know, ive never had a guided hunt either. But im guessing your bill was around 3-400? Id think a good tip would be 50-75 bucks
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby C Kerley » Fri Dec 06, 2013 10:10 am

Well I'll just say it and you all can tell me...the guided hunt was $200 a day, so $400. I tipped him $120. I had $100 set aside for him to start with, but grabbed the only other $20 I had as I felt he deserved it. And, the truth is, on Day #1 all he had to do was say "oh well, your hunt is over at 1pm, too bad, so sad", but he went back out for me at 1pm. So I guess $120 for two days was in the ballpark?
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Rhock19 » Fri Dec 06, 2013 12:57 pm

If you enjoyed yourself and he did extra work for you then its worth it!
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby koonce727 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 1:08 pm

Howd them goldeneyes eat?
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Flintknapper » Sun Jan 12, 2014 6:51 pm

Looks like a happy ending to a less than promising start. Congratulations on the canvasback and banded goldeneye!
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Re: My Mississippi River Pool 9 hunt

Postby Ducks&bucks14 » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:45 pm

That looks like a great hunt. We hunted about a few days before you and I live in LaCrosse and hunt the river pretty consistently. We ended up with a 4 person limit on our own by noon. The next day we went with a guide and had a flop of a hunt with only 7 birds.
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