President George W. Bush

“Bigotry in any form is blasphemy against the American creed and it means the very identity of our nation depends on the passing of civic ideals to the next generation. We need a renewed emphasis on civic learning in schools,”

“And our young people need positive role models. Bullying and prejudice in our public life sets a national tone, provides permission for cruelty and bigotry, and compromises the moral education of children.”

“The only way to pass along civic values is to first live up to them.”


A new beer

Saranac Brewery (FX Matt, Utica Club) just released its Winter seasonal twelve pack.  One of the new beers is the 4059′ Porter.  It is named after one of the 46 high peaks over 4,000 feet high–Porter Mountain, which is 4059 feet high.

I prefer Porters, and this one is quite good.

I think I am somewhat biased, though, as one of my Goldens– the dog of a lifetime, was born in the Adirondacks. And we named him Porter, after the high peak.

First Grouse

I am solo at camp this week, for the opening of early duck season.  I usually hunt pretty solid the first couple of days. I throw some grouse hunting as well.

Paula is back in Albany, helping with the two new grandkids.

The weather today is beautiful.  Cool and sunny, with a slight wind.

Porter and I went out mid day for Grouse.  We flushed one immediately– I heard it, but did not see it.  We were in my favorite stretch of woods.  It was logged about ten years ago– fairly easy walking on the old logging traces.  I like this spot, as it is bounded on three sides by a pond, powerline and old Railroad ROW.  Hard for even me to get lost, so I can relax and focus on hunting.

We walked for about two hours, and were approaching  the powerline.  I was stopping every ten steps or so, which supposedly will spook the grouse into flying.  Porter had been quartering in front of me, but I had called him to heel, as we were about to get onto the powerline ROW.  I stopped.  After about 5 seconds, a grouse exploded off the ground, literally inches in front of me.  My shot was pure instinct.  I do not even remember it.  I hit the grouse.  Porter was just looking at me.  I told him to fetch, and he did.  Took him a minute to find the bird.  His first grouse retrieve.

Grouse on the grill for dinner.Porterwithhisfirstgrouse.jpg

Columbus Day

It is Columbus Day, and it is pouring here at the Lake.  It is warm—about 60, with little wind.

I overslept, because of the rain, but made it to the duck blind with Porter just in time to get the decoys out.  Lots of ducks flew early.  Got a pair to circle back, but they wouldn’t decoy.

Porter has learned to snuggle into his blind when it is raining, while I stand there and get soaked.

We watched an Osprey fish.  Simply awesome.  Backpedaled with its wings, to hang still in the air, then dropped like a stone into the water.  Huge splash.  Came up with a fish.

Paula made two loaves of sourdough bread this morning.  One for us, and the other for our oldest granddaughter, Gianna.  She does not share it with her family.

If this rain lets up, I may take the Whaler in to Winterize and store.  So it just started raining harder.

At least we have all the wood in, and under cover.  Ordered up propane for the generator, and made an appointment to have the furnace serviced.  Outside water is off.

We still have two kayaks and the jon boat down on the water.  No idea what the weather will do over the next several weeks.

Nice lazy day at the lake.  Had planned to grouse hunt today (like, planned all year….) but the rain aborted those plans.

Time to cut that loaf of bread.


Opening Day, early duck season

One of my favorite days of the year.  Up early, to get the non-hunting dogs settled.  I had pit the decoys, dog tether and blind in the duck blind, last week.  Clothes laid out last night.  Gun oiled, ammo packed.

Rebuilt the blind last month.  Put out a small spread of decoys– similar to the grouping you would see on the pond– 4 Mallards, 2 wood ducks, and 1 comfort Canada Goose.

No one else on the pond this year. Five flights came by, none decoyed.  Except for the four Canada Geese, currently out of season.

Taking the canoe out later; maybe we will jumps some ducks on another pond.


A Fall Weekend at Camp

Slight drizzle this morning. Forty degrees.  I need to finish getting my wood in (for next season), and get it under cover.  We are making pizza later in the outdoor wood-fired pizza oven; Paula is also planning on baking a couple loaves of sourdough bread outside.  Last weekend, we roasted a turkey outside.  I think I still have one serving of turkey soup left. I have been eating well.

Porter and I will head out midday for grouse.  We flew one yesterday.  It is hard to see anything with the majority of the leaves still on the trees.  The grouse are smart; they pretty much do not move as they blend in perfectly with the leaves/pine needles on the ground.

At some point I need to check my duck blinds.  Early season opens next weekend.

The lake is quite warm– around 71 degrees.  The dogs love the late season swimming.  Fishing should pick up over the next several weeks.

We had a great run of Summer weather over the last three weeks.  The drizzle this morning is the first rain we have seen.  Yesterday was the first time I reached for a sweatshirt since August. Not complaining.