Thursday and Friday the temperatures were in the 40s here in Northern New Hampshire and Tony and I got out and ran dogs. There is about six inches of corn snow that was soft enough to let the dogs run. We even moved some birds. Jack had a find in some hardwood whips where three grouse got up in front of him. We heard another grouse flush wild to give us four birds on the course for the first brace. The rest of the dogs ran over the same ground (snow) and did not have any birds. We ran a total of seven dogs and Jack was dog of the day. Among the seven were our three puppies — Wild Apple LJ and Tony’s two setters Frankie and Trash. All three put down nice ground efforts with the edge going to Trash on this day. She is by Quail Trap Tom out Stokely’s Ginger B and will hopefully follow in her parents’ rather large paw prints. Frankie is by Stokely’s Al-B who may have been the best grouse dog (until I got Jack) that I ever hunted over. He had the advantage of being born during the last time our grouse population peaked here in NH. We didn’t have tracking equipment then and I can remember many memorable hunts when we spent lots of time looking for Al-B on point and then getting a crack at a grouse when we finally found him. LJ, Frankie, and Trash had a great start last fall with all three having numerous grouse and woodcock finds and rarely were put on the ground without having multiple finds. You can read all the training books you can get your hands on, do countless hours of bird field and yard work, but there is no substitute for lots of wild birds. These three puppies all hunt hard, find birds, and gave us the chance to flush and shoot at many of them. We even shot a few and there’s nothing better then warm feathers in the mouth to kick puppies up into an even higher gear.
Posted in Current News.