Blasts from the Previous: A season spent hunting with vintage gear brings back treasured memories from the author’s youth

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DUCKS.ORG From the Archives – When the Model 12 spoke, the mallards fell silent. Two, anyway.

Most
squalled their way up via the falling snow, hightailing it downwind. The
initial drake had dropped to a snap shot just as it cleared the cattails in the
curve of the creek. The second 1, fortunately, was late to rise, and I took
him immediately after ultimately remembering to shuck the empty shell and pump a new load into
the chamber. That occurs when you are employing a pump gun immediately after shooting semiautos
for decades. 

On
command, Bella piled more than the bow of my father’s 1946 Old Town square-ender and
created quick operate of the retrieves, splashing down the sandy, shallow stream to
exactly where the birds had fallen. The content old dog brought the drakes to the content
old hunter with her usual tail-higher flair.

I hadn’t planned to jump-shoot the creek that morning. That was strategy B. Program A was laid the evening ahead of, when I had watched a cold front bring waves of diving ducks into the location. By dark, more than a thousand bluebills, ringers, and redheads have been resting on the lake. I would sneak out ahead of initial light, silently set up, and then fall upon them like a heron on a frog.  [full article]

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