Dear MAHA Staff,
I thought I would drop a note and tell you about my archery hunt. Dad and I drew tags and were excited about finally getting to hunt [location deleted]. We hunted a total of 10 days since the beginning of the season. It was great hunt on some truly fantastic ground. Frustrating at times but it is hunting and not shooting.
My first several days I spent "scout hunting." I love to use my climbing stand to climb up the highest "telephone pole" tree to get a great view of the property. This also leaves minimal scent and is very unobtrusive. I saw many deer those first few days but no "shooters" were close enough. Took plenty of pictures. I noticed that most deer traveled from this woodlot through a wash-out area in the cornfield. I decided to move my stand.
I placed my stand on the corner of 2 fences in an area of very thick brush. This represents an "easy in and easy out" stand site without disturbing deer and leaving much scent. Perfect! The only problem is that I will have to wait for a NW wind. Back to Minnesota so I can finance my hunting trips. Work is highly overrated!
Three weeks later I was now in the new stand site. I saw many quality bucks. In fact, I saw a buck bigger than 130 on all but 1 day I hunted this farm and most of those days I could have killed. I pardoned 1 10 pointer in the mid 130's 5 times over the course of my hunting.
On the second day, I saw a limping buck that was approximately 145 sneak out of the woods and into the corn. He slowly made his way to me and at 23 yards broadside I released. I don't really know where that arrow went but surely it wasn't into the buck. He walked off and went back into the woods. The jerk!
On day 3, a rather irate farmer told me I was trespassing. I showed him my map and I still feel I was on MAHA property. However, I moved my stand 50 yards up the wood line to avoid anymore confrontations. This was my last day on this trip and the new stand set-up will prove to be fortuitous.
Two weeks later Dad and I are back in [location deleted]. He did his game management duty and arrowed a doe-a-saur-us at 10 yards. He hasn't shot a buck yet but he waits for the real big ones.
This trip was filled with terrible weather. Winds in the 30 to 40 MPH range for most of the 4 days and periods of rain. I still managed to see plenty of deer. On day 3, I saw a large buck working a scrape line north of me but heading away.
The weather was terrible the next morning so we slept in. We headed out to our stands at 10 am. At noon, I had a 125 incher rubbing on the cedar below me for 30 minutes.
I then spotted him about 100 yards away eating corn. He slowly and methodically worked toward me. When he was about 50 yards, he saw my doe silhouette decoy and he locked on her. He stopped 3 feet from the decoy and started sensing that something was amiss. I was already at full draw and the arrow was on its way. Twelve yard shot. He scored 164 and had a broken right G4. I would love to see the buck that broke his antler!
Overall, we had a fantastic hunt and overcame some adversity. We will be back in late December and perhaps my Dad will get a crack at a big one. If not, I will take home some more tasty doe. Thanks again MAHA for providing outstanding farms for us to hunt and enjoy.
I have attached several pictures of the area and my decoy.
Always good to see the terrain where a harvest actually occures, thanks.
Thank you Chris for a great hunting account of details we all like to read about in"real" rather than caretaker magazine article hunts, the story makes the great pictures all the better. Thank you to your dad for harvesting a doe, we always like to hear about that.
For the rest of us that think we are too busy for a hunt or one more trip to hunt during the season understand that Chris is an ER doctor, travels thousands of miles to scout and hunt, shows us that life is about not working to work more. For me, I like a doctor that has a hunting background to work on me rather than one that seeks stress relief from other sources.
CRP and Water Quality
The water issue in the central mid-west is larger than CRP filtering farm chemical and farm animal waste runoff from entering our drinking water supply. The water issues includes a lack of water for all the agricultural demands placed on available surface and subsurface water sources as well other agricultural related toxins.
Colorado's state supreme court ordered 4,000 irrigation wells closed as Colorado was drawing too much water from the Platte River system denying water to the states of Nebraska and Missouri (News Leader, Springfield Missouri, November 30, 2008, Greg Hobbs). While the state court ordered this closure, enforcement is quite another task as Colorado State officials admit they do not know for sure how many wells are operating in Colorado. The effects of this well draining subsurface water is lowering the water table and drying up the head waters of rivers flowing out of Colorado shortening their average yearly length by miles.
Oklahoma is in a fight to deny its water resources to Texas. Part of the problem is salt contamination of Texas surface streams making its processing for drinking too costly (Star Telegram, Fort Worth, November 29, 2008, by Max Baker).
In terms of quality, this discussion has gone on for so long that toxins such as nitrite and lead, two substances no one needs in their water, are common knowledge to the point of acceptance of their presence in drinking water is the norm. What is changing are the increasing amounts of toxins such as uranium having been found above federal limits in the drinking water of nine Kansas communities, one of which MAHA members are well familiar with, Norton.
"The Arkansas River corridor in southwestern Kansas (water supply for Oklahoma and east) is especially susceptible to levels of uranium above EPA standards due to water-consuming agricultural practices in eastern Colorado," said Whittemore, (Environment News Service, Lawrence, Kansas, November 28, 2008).
As long as CRP is viewed as a Kansas quail hunter issue, the contributions CRP have made and could make to sustain drinking water will be ignored. How much of an issue is this can be judged by the dates of the cited reports above. In just one short 3 day window we have multiple types of problems in multiple interconnected regions.