Friday, 26 November 2010

We Could Be in for a Long Winter

After my last blog, the weather just went from bad to worse. You'll see from the pics that our river was in full spate. What you dont see is a similar torrent of water coming out of my clothes and boots each evening.

Ironically, I had a (long overdue) pair of waterproof leggings 'in the post' while all this was going on. And what happened when they arrived? It snowed.

Not just a dusting as you would expect for this time of year but a level fall of nearly a foot. And there's more afoot.

The stalking has not been going smoothly for me. Sure, I'm bringing home beasts every day but I just don't seem to be getting right in amongst them. And I've been hampered by mist,rain,sheep (they're like an Early Warning System for deer), farmers gathering said sheep....need I go on?

Last Friday was one of those rare days of no perceptable wind at all. And it stayed like that all day. I had a guest stalking and we got into an early stalk. We could have had a longish shot but I opted to be sure and get a bit closer. We'd done all the hard work and just had to find a bump to shoot from when the deer all jumped up and ran away. An eddy of wind had taken our scent right to them. Curses.

An hour later and the same thing happened again with a different group and an approach from a different direction.

And an hour after that (and after a BIG climb forbye) we cautiously peeked over a ridge to find that yet another group had skinned out- again after trying an approach from a different direction.

We eventually got a beast at last knockings after a 500 yard belly-crawl. (There's desperation for you.) And even then we were 'stretching the barrel'. I reckon it was our 6th attempt. It was a day of much gnashing of teeth.

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