Just got back from a trip to California and met up with my cousin down there for some duck hunting. This was my first trip there and wow are we isolated from the rest of the world.
The first morning out we hunted with a friend of my cousins that has some big areas of private land in flooded rice fields. As soon as we got to the blind you could hear through the darkness ducks and geese everywhere. Sitting there waiting for shooting light I felt like a little kid listing to the wings of passing ducks and the smell of the flooded field. When shooting time finally arrived I couldn't believe the amount of shooting coming from all over the place it sounded like all out combat. And the amount of ducks and geese that were in the sky was amazing nothing like i had ever seen up here. There were thousands of them going all different directions and stacked as high as you could see.
We had a great shoot that first morning and shot, teal, sprigs, spoonies, scaup, and specs. We finished the day by moving to a different area that afternoon called the Bute sink there we picked up some more widgen and even pulled out a big honker. Day two found us back in the Bute sink and with whistling wings over head I knew we were in for another good day. Just after shooting time the wind picked up and the rain came after that the birds came in as if on a string. That day we shot some more sprigs, widgen, and I even picked up a banded sprig. I finally got my first band. Turns out he was banded in the Minto flats back in august.
Day three at 4:30 we were in a driving rain pushed by about a 20mph wind setting up deeks for the days goose hunt we would be hunting specks and snows. We set up around 650 deeks in what was supposed to be a dry field hunt but it was sloppy with all the rain, but no problem bad weather means better hunting. Daylight broke and geese were already in the air the first flock to come by was about a thousand strong and worked right in. When the command to take em came the birds fell like the rain that was already coming down. After that we had a bout another 3000 birds come by throuout the rest of the morning but we had trouble getting them to finish. Still got some shooting but if we could have gotten them to commit just 30 feet closer it would have been fast limits for all.
Coming back home was a little sad realizing it will be another year till I can go back and I will be back... Now I hope to have a good spring snow goose hunt in March, that is if my shoulder will hold out that long. I am trying to push off surgery till I can get in one more hunt.....
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