Wednesday, November 30, 2011

PA Hunting: Day 3

Much cooler (can't say "cold" since Rev. Paul would die laughing) today. The day started at 32 degrees and pretty much stayed there all day long. The sky cleared last night and the wind shifted to come from the west.The shift brought the temperature change along with a cloudy sky. I headed out anyway.

I got to the area of the tree stand as light arrived. I stayed out of the tee stand because some of the rain from yesterday was forming ice on the deck of the Aerie and I thought the same might be true of the steps and platform of the tree stand. No sense taking chances. Instead, I sat on the ground. And waited.

And waited. Around 9 AM the cloudy sky started spitting snow. It would continue to spit snow all day. Nothing accumulated because the temperature was just at or above the freezing mark. More troubling was the steady winds which were blowing right in my face. I had (nearly) dressed appropriately. When the snow began, I put on my rain jacket which served as a wind breaker as well. One more layer on the legs would have been better but I had left that part of the rain suit in the house.

And I waited. It was pretty quiet out there. Very, very few shots were fired anywhere in the area. Not unusual as the bulk of deer are taken on opening day and those that have to take time off from work to go hunting usually are in the field only on the first two days. But my friend the turkey didn't show this morning either. Nor did the pileated woodpecker. Or wood frogs. A couple of gray squirrels wandered by but not much else.

But I waited in the spitting snow and wind. And as I waited I got chilly. And wet. When a snow squall--not just a little spitting--arrived at a little after 3 PM, I decided I had had enough for the day and headed back to the Aerie.

Some hot chocolate and a big helping of shrimp gumbo helped restore my core temperature. But my spirit is struggling. Getting up at 5 AM, out in the woods at 6:15 AM, and sitting in the wet, fresh air--and seeing nothing--is taking its toll. I believe I'll sleep in tomorrow. Or at least as long as the cats--who have gotten used to being fed at 5 AM--will let me.

It will be slightly warmer and lots drier the next few days. I'll be back out either Thursday afternoon or early Friday morning. I'll definitely be out there on Saturday when some of the other unsuccessful hunters will be back in the woods and when it's permissible to shoot does in this area.


Rev. Paul said...

Raw, damp air at those temps is awful - and I wouldn't handle it any better than you. I applaud you for sticking it out as long as you did.

threecollie said...

Are you having tick troubles down there this season? We are seeing an incredible and very unwelcome increase in the darned things.

joated said...

I haven't seen any ticks at all. If there's any on the deer, I haven't been close enough to tell. Certainly, there didn't seem to be any on the few pictures I got last month or ont he does that walked past me earlier this week.

JDP said...

Good luck Joated!