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Short Morning Long Afternoon

Updated: Sep 21, 2022

River and Jess and myself set out this morning in pursuit of the Huns that have eluded us for the past two days. The Huns won this battle again but not before we scratched out another early morning Sharptail. River and Jess did a great job and we cut it short so we could head to town to fuel up the Van and fill water tanks before we head Southwest to explore some new country and hunt some Block Management Areas. When we arrived at the new spot mid day it looked very promising with large breaks surrounded by wheat stubble and not a sign of civilization anywhere. So I wasted no time. Parked the rig, signed into the Block Management Box turned out a couple dogs and off we went. Unfortunately this spot turned out to be the only area we hunted on this entire trip that did not produce a single game bird. So further south we went...

I do realize that these Blog posts would be a much better read if I was including geographical information about my whereabouts. But I made that mistake years ago while producing a TV show that ended up ruining some of my favorite places to hunt ducks. Seems the general public treats any amount of information as a direct invitation to help themselves to other peoples hunting and fishing spots. Which sucks because I love to pay forward my knowledge and experience. But out of respect and appreciation for the the people who shared their knowledge with me, there must be a limit to the details in my stories. So all you need to know is that I am in Montana and it is an incredibly desolate, wild and extraordinary place.

With a couple hours of daylight left as we pulled into our 3rd spot of the day I was overcome with excitement and anticipation as I had finally found the first real untouched terrain. This BLM was green and plush and I just knew I was going to enjoy my evening hunt. I set out with Oly the Pudelpointer and a young enthusiastic Shorthair named Major. After just an hour exploring the brush filled bottoms of this vast country, the boys produced a good sized covey of Sharptails. Oly has displayed a good nose, stamina and a desire to find and point birds. Major on the other hand still has a desire to run that outweighs his ability to think. But both these young dogs gained valuable experience and I took 3 birds from that convey to finish my daily bag limit of Sharptail Grouse for the second time on this trip. Both Oly and Major each found a dead bird and made good retrieves. After a short morning with River and Jess and a long afternoon with Cash and Deuce, this evening run with Oly and Major was a great way to finish the day. Nothing left to do but feed and air the dogs and prepare a meal of Sharptial Grouse, Green Beans and Potatoes and go to bed.

Ryan Fortier

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