Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Magic day

  1. #1
    Member akdodger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    South Central

    Default Magic day

    Thought we could share some of our own "magic waterfowling days". Mine begins 5 days ago when I was sicker than I have ever been in my adult life. So there I was, hacking and almost dying, but still wishing for a few more days at the blind. I was beginning to accept my fate and the usual "post waterfowl season depression", when through the marvels of modern pharaceuticals, I BEGAN TO FEEL BETTER! The next day, saturday the 23rd of oct, I was in my blind solo because my friend was sick and I was surprised and treated to the best day of hunting this season. Due to my illness, I felt I had lost touch with what was going on in the swamp and was very happy to have five fat beautiful greenheads and three hens in the blind by 10 am. The day was beautiful, the birds were willing, decoying, and answering the call as if they wanted to be on the stringer instead of flying south. I felt that the day was a gift and I certainly feel less depressed even though my area is most likely frozen now. With the exception of a few potential sea duck hunts, my season is most likely over but I can combat the "post waterfowl season blues" with memories of this "magic" hunt. Thanks for reading and I hope this thread inspires others to share their experiences. Sorry for the lack of pictures, my camera is kaput. Cheers
    Last edited by akdodger; 10-27-2010 at 22:44. Reason: typos

  2. #2
    Sponsor Duckhunter01's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Anchorage, Trapper Creek, Seward


    So many to think in Alaska though, I will have to say that October the 23rd was a magic day for us as well. My buddy, his kid and myself as most everyone does during the week, had watched the temps stay above freezing for the most part. We knew there could possibly be some ice to break in our area and hoped for the best. I love to hunt the ice as I have had incredible days over the years hunting it.
    We arrived at our spot to find most of the water open. As happy as we were that there was going to be open water.. I was a little discouraged knowing we would have had the birds in our face if the ice was present. We went through our normal individual responsibilities of placing decoys, putting up the blind and pouring a round of coffee as we waited for the marsh to come to life. 5 mins before shooting time...we were rewarded with the whistling of wings as five mallards landed among the decoys. My lab gets extremely excited at the sound of whistling wings...hence her registered name "Backwater Whistling Wings". She whines and jumps from the bow of the boat to end their presence...returns and looks skyward.

    Morning starts slow with a single drake harvested at the recoil of my old S/S Spanish 20..Nina completes a perfect 20yard retrieve...a few mins later 4 mallards lock up and sail in..3 fall and retrieved. 3 more lock up within the next hour and are taken under 10 falls and hits the boat, the remaining two buddy grabs one to the left with one shot and I grabbed the one to the right with one shot..we high five it..and his son remarks...." you guys are the duck slayers"...we laugh and reminisce the perfect 3 in 3 down.

    In a split second a flock of 6 GW teal buzz by... I reach for the S/S and make another double for the season...perfect retrieves again from Nina. Then, a loner hen quacks in the distance..we scan and find her at 40 yards and closing, sets her wings. I give her a few calls and she locks up...flares at the sign of us moving and heads off...30 yards..nothing..40 yards another miss...then at about 50 yards the 31/2 BBs finds their mark...she hits the water about 70-80 yards out....thin ice is present and Nina makes the retrieve, gets to within 5 ft and she dives..flattens out and for the next 15 mins..she is chasing this bird all of the lake...finally when she is around the 130yard mark, I start to get nervous and reach for the paddles…might have to take the muskrat and pick both of them up. Then the ol suzzy tires out, is retrieved and Nina returns to the blind. I allow her to get in close to the heater to warm up and congratulate her on a job well done. I witnessed many more retrieves over 50 yards from this incredible beloved friend of mine..her heart is as big as it gets when it come to everything we do..but chasing these feathered fowl is what she literally lives for.

    Then, out in the distance we here the faint sound of a Canada...up to this point this season, I have not had the pleasure of having one even come within are three heading straight to us about 500 yards out.. I hit the flag, continue to hit the call.....they lock up and head in on a 40 yards I call it, and three guns go off...due to an act of a higher power..only one was after my initial I am elated to see this Canada hit the water and start swimming...two more shots to finish her were unsuccessful, as she heads toward the middle of the lake with Nina in tow....another 150 yards out...many dives and it finally tires out...another great retrieve for the books.

    I love watching a lab work and do what we work so hard in training them to do...she is awesome...great job girl. Day’s total birds were 22 Ducks, 19 retrieves and a Goose. We talk about each experience for the remainder of the day, knowing we will savor the memories made on this day for many years to come.

    Having the pleasure to introduce a few to the waterfowling sport this year has been a pleasure. It has been a very rewarding experience and I have enjoyed every min of it......there is nothing outside of spending time with my family, that I enjoy more in life than being in the marsh when it comes to life, with good friends and a good dog.

    A thanks goes out to AKDuckman…over the years he has been great at lending a hand to my misfortunes in waterfowling.
    A great outdoorsman, a diehard waterfowler and a friend. Shoot straight, and keep your eyes skyward.

    My season might be coming to an end shortly….might have to move next summer…although when I retire in a few years. I will return to live my final days out among some of the finest people on earth. Alaskans.

    As Phil Robertson once said, “I am going to fear God, love thy neighbor, and kill ducks…let the chips fall where they may”

    Last edited by Duckhunter01; 10-28-2010 at 08:19. Reason: grammer
    President of Alaska Waterfowl Assoc.
    And God said, let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

  3. #3
    Member SkinnyD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010


    I hope this thread gets going because I love reading everyone's stories. I tried to start a similar thread with pictures earlier but it didn't work out. Maybe I'll post another one on it to bump it back up to the top... then folks might remember their pictures now that most of the season is over.

    My magical day was a few weeks ago, as the water got hard here quite a bit earlier than I might have liked for a ducks season. All of the potholes that held ducks in September were frozen by the second weekend in October, and the only open water in the river was in the middle of the channel. I hunt out of a 12' flat bottom with an 8 horse motor, so my rig is not exactly an icebreaker. However, I was able to pull into a slough that was deep enough to keep the motor running, and I drove in a big circle to break out a hole in the ice. I jumped out of the boat and slid the huge sheet of ice (now about three broken sheets) under the ice further down the slough. With an opening about 20 yards across in front of me, I was ready to hunt. Within minutes of throwing out a couple dozen decoys, I had ducks all around me, but the wind was wrong for them to land easily with my decoys. The ice prevented me from setting up with the wind in my favor, and in the spot I chose, the ducks were having to come in almost directly over my head. I quickly waded into the slough and picked up about 1/3 of my decoys and moved the others out farther from me, leaving a big "meat hole" directly in front of my blind in the grass.
    Changing the decoys really helped, and ducks came to my set with reckless abandon. If I wasn't actively directing my dog to a downed bird, I was chasing away buffleheads and goldeneyes. We ended the day with a full limit of 10 birds--9 mallards and a canvasback, but it would have been just as spectacular if we hadnt killed a single bird. At any time, I could look out over the frozen marsh and see literally thousands of ducks beginning their migration. Once, a flock of probably 200 heeded my calls and landed in the open river 50 yards from my decoys. I didn't have my camera ready, but the sight of hundreds of mallards landing in a tornado of feathers was a memory that I will keep.
    One other memorable event happened that day. I always take along my little Jack Russell when I hunt, but he only lays on a decoy bag and sleeps. He isn't very functional. However, as I was out in the slough helping my lab with a winged mallard, a beaver wandered into my blind where the little dog was sleeping. When he woke up there was, to put it into Biblical terms, crying and gnashing of teeth, but the beaver escaped and the dog survived. Even if he didn't retrieve any ducks, he proved to be an excellent guard dog.
    My lab Katy started the season without any experience beyond dummy training in the yard, but to date she has fetched 107 ducks, 1 goose, and several grouse. I don't know how I even managed to enjoy the outdoors before I got a dog. Watching her work is more fun than killing ten limits of ducks.
    Passing up shots on mergansers since 1992.


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts