Best Books On Duck Hunting in 2023
Duck Hunting Made Simple: 21 Steps to Duck Hunting Success
Bury Me In My Waders: An Old Duck Hunter Recalls His Fowl Past
Duck, Duck, Moose
Hemingway on Hunting
The Greatest Hunting Stories Ever Told: Classic Tales of Hunting Grizzly, Moose, Cape Buffalo, and Much More
Wildfowl Magazine's Duck Hunting: Best of Wildfowl's Skills, Tactics, and Techniques from Top Experts
Duck Decoy Setup Made Simple: Diagrams & Tips for Duck Hunting
Good Call: Reflections on Faith, Family, and Fowl
The Orvis Guide to Beginning Wingshooting: Proven Techniques for Better Shotgunning (Orvis Guides)
Classic Hunting Tales: Timeless Stories about the Great Outdoors
It Pays to Be Sneaky
Thoughts of religion and life on a morning duck hunt.
It was a glorious morning - I had to go out. The temperature at the store was 37º; a bit warmer than yesterday. I decided to try the deleted ditch. I hadn't hunted it in a while - and even though frozen, mostly, I gave it a try. Some running water, but otherwise nothing.
So I headed over to the Flats. Passing the geese fields there were some, maybe a hundred, but hardly a tenth of what should be around. But the flow in the creek at the Flats was more open - good.
What a beautiful morning. I hunted stretch after stretch - nothing'. I was able to cross without getting as wet (as last time) and so I was warmer.
It looked perfect. Perfect for sneaking - soft earth, warmer weather (relatively), good light, regular background noise - except no quacks. Hmmm. It was looking somewhat grim. It would be okay to not come home with a quack, but...
And I was also thinking about some personal problems, and problems in marriage and family, with the feeling quite like totally caving in. How could I go on? These matters are hopeless, embedded, and so (seemingly) long-lasting.
But perhaps I could exercise FAITH. I could 'faith' some quacks. And maybe if it worked hunting, it would work in the rest of my life. I will 'faith' some quacks onto the ditch. You see, as western, secular Christians, we really don't understand faith. We think faith is something in our intellect...some kind of intellectual agreement with Christ, his dying for our sins, and other matters. And so we go to church, we try to be good, we call ourselves Christians, we may read our Bibles, and other stuff. But do we believe? Do we have faith?
Faith is a power, a muscle, a creative force. Sometimes we get a word from God, and we know, and so we have faith, and rightly so. But we can also exercise faith even when we don't have a word, a revelation. Other people do. Non-Christians do. Lots of people get things by faith.
You see a lot of people see, and obtain. And yet we as Christians often drift.
So, I will believe there are some quacks...even though most of the spots are behind me, and though there are pitifully few waterfowl in the area.
So, I was sneaky.
I was especially careful on a stretch where quacks have busted me more than once in the past. I spotted her...a hen, sleeping on a strip of grass in the middle of the creek. I pulled up the binos, carefully. She had mass, and maybe even color (so maybe more than one, and maybe a greenhead along with).
I snuck around to close the distance. It would still be a long shot and down.
As I got closer I shed my binos. I could gain a few more yards if I squatted, so I did. My camera fell out of my pocket, making a loud knock on the frozen ground. I may as well have said 'Hello'. I looked. The hen was (now) very much awake - looking this way and that for the source of the sound. It was irreversible, obviously. She swam out into the creek, her orange feet pumping as she made her way upstream. I wouldn't take her. She was probably the one I 'widowed' the day before - I had caused her enough grief.
But then another hen swam out...yum...that means maybe a green. (Things are now happening in much less time than it takes to tell.) Yes, a beautiful greenhead swam out into view - the iridescent colors in the mid-day sunshine. I'll rise for a green. So I rose up and they flushed. My first shot hit him but he didn't fall. On the second shot, now pretty far, he folded. And then I see another green flying out downstream. I still have a round left in the gun, and now chambered - I toppled him. Beautiful.