Big Bad Wolf Hunt

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Sunday Morning, October 25, 2009


There you have my javelina hunt... my first bow hunt... two shots, two javelina, per Curtis' rules... the one that was hit but not found, though obviously hurt badly, and the one that was a perfect hit. I will feel always feel badly about the first one. If only we could have gotten to it in daylight the first day. By morning, an entire night's worth of javelina trails had overlaid his. I could have easily shot another from closer that same afternoon, but I'm glad I didn't. It just wouldn't have been right and I wouldn't have appreciated it as much as I do this fellow, that I worked a couple of extra days for and ended up doing just right.

I went on this hunt because I wanted to see if I could be a bow hunter, and really use these tools I'm making, and I found I can. I'm proud of it. I'm not sure if I'll do it again. It's now Saturday and I could have kept hunting this morning and evening, and again tomorrow morning. However, I can't shoot any more javies, and I suddenly, and inexplicably, found that I had no interest in shooting the hogs here. Word is they are running very large. Several in the 200 to 300 plus range have been seen, though no one has gotten a shot yet. I'm not sure my lighter bow is a good choice for an animal this size, plus, they tend to first show up just at dark, when my vision is very poor. The little javies like the daylight and seem, all round, to be a better choice for me.

Sometimes, life offers you a perfect experience, something that meets all the expectations you had. When that happens, I think you should hang onto that feeling, not get greedy and try to duplicate it or exceed it right away. Savor the moment...

So, today, while Dan, Bill, Kirk and Doug are hunting the big hogs, I stayed in camp and processed photos and typed all day. There's no internet here on the ranch, but I will have this story ready to post when I get home. Curtis also stayed in camp, as he has several times, to keep tinkering on an old Toyota Landcruiser he found in one of the ranch buildings and bought cheap several years ago. It had been abandoned to the chickens and packrats and hadn't been run in 16 years! He's been cleaning it up and tinkering with it ever since. This turned out to be the day he got it running! It still needs a lot of work and he doesn't trust it to take out on the ranch yet, but it's obvious he's winning.

Early in the morning, barely an hour after leaving, Doug, our last hunter, who came in late last night, got a javie on this morning's hunt, at the spot where they busted me yesterday morning.

Right now, it's gotten dark and the hunters are due back any moment. I'm really hoping for success for Dan and Kirk. They are still looking for to get their first animal.

They all went out again for the evening hunt, everyone hoping for some luck for Kirk and Dan. One by one, they came back in, each later than the last, with bad news... Bill saw nothing, Kirk saw nothing, Doug saw nothing. But still no word from Curtis and Dan. Time passed and it got really late. The sun went down in a nice display, and we still had hunters out. We were holding "dinner" (two packs of really spicy sausages and tortillas, supplemented with American Ale) till they got back.

Finally, after 9, they pulled in, no shouting or waving, but Curtis swung the truck around and backed it up to the gambrel and we knew it was good! Sure enough, there in the bed was a 150 pound red boar that Dan had taken! Celebration time! The grill got fired up, the sausages laid out and the beers handed around. Kirk and I cooked and handed out food while the others turned to and butchered the hog, totally stripping the skeleton of every vestige of meat. Kirk broke out his Martin and entertained us with blues and rockabilly. It was a tired and happy group that finally settled into their tents at midnight.

Sunday morning saw one last hunt for Dan, Doug, Bill and Kirk. Bill got another javelina, but the others saw no game. We started breaking up camp and cleaning up. Many hearty goodbyes and good wishes were exchanged, as well as email addresses to send our photos back and forth to. Spending four days in hunting camp with the guys was a great time. We were all sorry that Kirk didn't get anything, but still, he was most interested in big hogs and did have one real hot evening when he saw several well over 200 pounds. In all, we got five animals total for five hunters and several additional shot chances. That's not a bad showing.

Dan and I are off to fly home. Some full group photos will be circulating and I'll add one, but this story is done. I hope you have enjoyed it.

Here are some final pictures from yesterday and this morning:



Doug's javie...


A very proud and pleased Curtis with a pretty spiffy looking Landcruiser that is actually driving around the compound.


The sun sets on the absent hunters. I'm the only one in camp and wondering how they're all doing.


Finally, a hog! Dan got this one, a 150 pound boar, right at dusk. It took him and Curtis to yard it out of the brush.


Multiple hands making lighter work of butchering the big hog.


Believe me, by the time Dan, Curtis and Bill were through, not a scrap of pork was wasted!


Doug contemplating the day while watching the hog dressing and listening to Kirk play.


Kirk entertaining us with nice old classics.


Some Last Minute Additions


Here's Bill with the javelina he got Sunday morning



One of the misadventures of the trip (every adventure has to include some misadventures) was that I was so extremely careful not to have any metal on my when I went to the airport that I forgot that the key to the lock on the duffle bag I shipped ahead was in my coin purse and left it home. So, we get to the camp on that cold, windy, rainy first night and my sleeping bag is locked in the duffle bag. Fortunately, Curtis had a key that fit...



Curtis took Herman's skull home and treated it, removing all flesh, bleaching and sending it back to me. This photo is during my mounting of it on a walnut board. The rubber band is holding the jaw in while epoxy dries to hold it in place.







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