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Author Topic: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)  (Read 71943 times)

Offline thinkingman

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #120 on: July 31, 2012, 10:16:00 PM »
That's good news!
I hope you bought doggie health insurance.
“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser men so full of doubts.”
― Bertrand Russell

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #121 on: August 01, 2012, 07:08:24 AM »
Thankfully, we've had insurance since he was a pup. The policy has paid for itself ten-fold in coverage not to mention the peace of mind.

Offline Stilly bay

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #122 on: August 01, 2012, 12:48:54 PM »
Thankfully, we've had insurance since he was a pup. The policy has paid for itself ten-fold in coverage not to mention the peace of mind.
thank god for pet insurance! its saved me some bank over the years.
"Love the dogs before loving the hunt; love the hunt for the dogs." - Ben O. Williams

“It is easy to forget that in the main we die only seven times more slowly than our dogs.”
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Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #123 on: August 09, 2012, 09:25:00 AM »
August 8, 2012:

We started PT yesterday, basically had a consult on what exercises to perform based on our timeline to full recovery. The goal is to get his shoulder (both front) super strong by mid-September and get his endurance back. The plan is to use home exercises and walking/hiking, supplemented with a weekly visit to have laser treatment on the sprained tendon.

We've kept him cooped up for the duration (almost for 5 weeks) that he is so out of shape all he does is sleep it seems...can't wait to get him running again. We will be hitting the field this weekend for some all-terrain hiking.

Hopefully we can resume "WHOA" training in the near future...Quail season will be here before we know it!

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #124 on: August 13, 2012, 04:45:32 PM »
August 10-12, 2012:

We hit the road and were able to get to the field this past weekend. Here is Chukar beating the heat Friday afternoon:



The plan was to keep Chukar reined in and for the most part, that is what we did. Saturday morning we headed to the hills for a hike, Chukar was leashed about half the way up our 2 mile hike and the entire time on the way down...Of course when water was near the leash came off and I got to fish:



I have mentioned and I will mention it again...dog goes APE SH*T CRAZY when the fishing gear comes out. As you see above, he is chasing my line in hopes of getting to a fish before me...No fish in this lake for us.

Sunday morning we hit a small creek in hopes of hooking a few cutties/rainbows. I landed one dink and lost two others that we 12"+. Here is the crazy mutt waiting to rob my catch:



Overall Chukar did well, stretching his legs for the first time in 6 weeks, no griping at all from him...But his endurance is way down, as is mine :) We expected him to wake up today feeling it, but he is doing well. A bit tired, but no visible signs of being sore. PT exercises continue tonight.

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #125 on: October 14, 2012, 12:50:56 PM »
October 13, 2012:

The wife, who is 38 weeks pregnant made Chukar and I get out for the first real hunting trip of the year. I wasn't too gung-ho as Chukar is still not in game shape, nor am I :) Well, we decided to hit up central WA to a large area we have yet to explore, judging by the sunrise on our way over, I thought we were in for a real treat.



We made it to the area and had to drive around for more than an hour to get the lay of the land. The first spot we decided to hunt was down by the river, the spot had a creek bottom and some nice looking vegetation that I thought would hold birds. By the time we stepped out of the truck, it was after 10:30 and in the upper 60s...A little warm for Chukar's liking. And of course, for the third year in a row, we encountered a rattler. this time right off the bat. I was looking down into the creek bottom and something caught my eye, it was a coiled up buzz-worm. Immediately I got Chukar's attention and we go the heck out of there. We got closer to the river and hunted the shoreline area for about 2 hours. Not a single rise, but we did scare up more than a few ducks off the big river. Thank goodness for the river, as the dog was heating up quickly and he was showing his lack of stamina right away...as was I. We loaded up and decided to get away from the river and back into the sage brush flats, near a creek bottom we scoped out earlier. It took us more than an hour to get there as it was slow going on the rough and tumble roads. We made it finally, time for a snack. I threw down some grub and I watered the dog and gave him a venison treat or two.

It was almost 2pm, hot and windy...Not ideal conditions, but we both needed to put some more miles on even if the chance of encountering birds was minimal. We got out gear and began hunting this creek bottom. We went up steam with me following the upper edge and Chukar buzzing the bottom and the sage flat up above. We didn't see any bird sign, but I did see plenty of fresh deer sign. Chukar's nose got excited a few times, but in all honesty, I think he was getting deer and 'yote scent. Luckily there was still some running water in the bottom, as Chukar heated up very quickly. I called it a day after a mile or so and we headed back to the truck, me beat down and Chukar on fire. It was good to get out and explore a new area, maybe we will find some birds next time. Here is a shot of Chukar, finding the only piece of shade in the truck bed before we loaded up and headed west.



« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 09:23:50 PM by 10Key »

Offline thinkingman

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #126 on: October 17, 2012, 01:15:45 PM »
You going to try again this weekend?
“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser men so full of doubts.”
― Bertrand Russell

Offline Atroxus

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #127 on: October 17, 2012, 01:40:18 PM »
Very cool I am tagging this for when I get a hunting dog. :)

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #128 on: October 17, 2012, 04:54:53 PM »
thinkingman: We are undecided on this weekend, knowing rattlers are still out may keep us out of their territory. A mountain grouse trip may be in order, unless we see a significant drop in temps before then

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #129 on: October 21, 2012, 09:21:14 PM »
October 18, 2012:

HAPPY 3rd BIRTHDAY CHUKAR!!!

October 20, 2012:

We watched the weather this week to make sure we were going to see a drop in temps, which we hoped would lead to the buzz worms taking a long winter nap. Well, the weather cooperated and we had a window to hunt Saturday morning. We had to be back in town by 3pm for a bday, so that limited our options, but I pulled out an oldie from a couple years ago, we hadn't been back since 2010. It's the canyon that Chukar and I connected on our first wild bird together. I knew we could be at the canyon and hunting within in two hours, so that worked out great and would allow for 4 hours of hunting.

We arrived at the grounds and we began our decent into the creek bottom. The area is prime habitat with a year-around creek, wild apples and several berries as well as some great looking alders in fall color. We started on the east bank of the creek, it has a nice flat that spans about 100 yards and leads up to a steep hillside. Nothing doing in the first bit, so we crossed the creek and kept moving down the canyon/creek. Chukar was moving pretty good, using the wind ti his advantage as it swirled. Now on the west side of the creek, there were several basalt scree fields   we had to navigate, which wasn't a lot of fun for either of us...Even thought it was in the 40s, I still had rattlers in the back of my mind. We were now a good half mile from where we crossed and the canyon was beginning to choke down, the vegetation was super thick as well. I made the call to cross back over and head back up towards the truck. It had been about an hour and fifteen minutes with no sign of life. Maybe we can go do a bit of exploring for some grouse up high is what I was thinking. We crossed through some thick stuff and finally began out accent.

Chukar was now working about 75 yards in front of me, a bit far in this tight of cover. As I am about to reel him in, I spotted a 5 gallon bucket and my first thought was a bait station...As I approached to take a peek, I heard the tell-tail sound of quail wings-flapping. A covey of quail had busted off the hillside, right across my face, between Chukar and I, towards the creek. From what I could see, there were at least 20 birds...I called Chukar back to me and allowed him to "hunt" them. As soon as he got close, they flushed. i was able to drop one and I located got an idea where the rest went. We left the one bird I downed and were in hot pursuit of the covey. We crossed the creek again, now on the west side again and Chukar locked up on a loan, dwarf apple tree. I threw up my gun, I am shooting left handed this year and it was a bit awkward...I approached and ziiing! I shot once, nothing, I lined it up for my final shot and slam! Dropped it at 35 yards with #7 steel. Chukar went nuts and was off. He tracked the bird as I stood where I shot. He found the downed bird and I yelled out "FETCH". He grabbed the bird and was on his way...dropped the nice looking female right at my feet. The sessions in the back yard playing fetch seemed to have paid off :) We then worked our way down creek to hunt the rest of the covey. We ended up flushing a few more and was able to connect on one more. The bird fell into some really thick stuff and off Chukar went...Here is returning with my prize:



We circled back around to find the first bird I dropped and Chukar came through again, like a champ.

After having several more encounters, we couldn't seal the deal on anymore, but we sure had fun. We left the creek and headed out exploring...As we did, the weather shifted and snow-flurries came in. I called in Chukar for our hike back to the truck. Chukar exploring a good looking bottom...I didn't head down...too lazy:



On our final ascent back to the truck, I was about 40 yards from the truck, so I emptied the chamber and started reminiscing. Of course, right then I heard some rustling in the bushes, it turns out Chukar had been on the trail of a grouse off to my to my left. The bird flushed within 20 yards, too bad I was empty handed.

Back at the truck for a glory shot:


Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #130 on: October 23, 2012, 12:48:57 PM »
October 22, 2012:

Bacon maple syrup quail...yummy



Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #131 on: November 13, 2012, 05:53:41 PM »
October 31st, 2012:

Chukar's little brother arrived on Halloween, he is stoked to take him out hunting!



We couldn't be more pleased with Chukar's reaction to our first born. One of the reasons we selected a Brittany was for their reputation with kids, that reputation has rang true! Chukar has accepted Griffin as one of us and loves to give him kisses whenever possible. It won't be long before us four will be in the field hunting 'em up

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #132 on: November 25, 2012, 10:29:05 AM »
November 24, 2012:

Met my brother over in the desert for some quail action. We started at a spot that I have had success finding birds in the past. The spot did not disappoint. I released Chukar from the truck and off he went. He hasn't even been to the dog park for weeks, to say he was excited is an understatement. He started working a dried up pond edge and got birdy. We caught up with him and five quail flushed. Three of them didn't offer a shot, the other two went straight out, my bro and I knocked a single down and Chukar retrieved it. It was great to get out to a fast start.

I am going to add that Chukar and I haven't hunted with another gun along for he ride for some time. I dont't think we ever got in a groove the entire day, but it is something that I am sure we will figure out.

We continued working, concentrating on the thick cover by the water's edge or the dried up pond edges. Chukar consistently was finding birds for the first two hours. Our shooting was sub par, but it seemed that the cover the birds were in today was tall and thick, which made shooting even more difficult (excuse). We circled back to the truck in hopes of finding some of the singles that broke away from the covies we encountered previously. We found a single that flushed wild and that was it. Off to get lunch and prepare for an afternoon hunt.

We switched locations, the new spot had more sporadic ponds and is in general more open than the first. We got out of the truck and headed towards a raspy rooster we heard off in the distance. We walked and we walked, Chukar got onto pheasant scent right away, but they were not holding on this day. We were about an hour and a half into it and a single busted out to our side, Chukar didn't even smell it. That quail lived to see another day. Shooting hours were drawing to a close, so we made a loop and started back for the truck. Just as we did, Chukar locked up on an isolated sage, we knew immediately there were quail in there. We were about 40 yards out, so we scurried over to make the flush. We got within 10 feet and tried to locate the birds, as one appeared deep within the sage, it busted out right at me. It narrowly missed my face and made a great flush into the Russian olives. Another flushed right after, we didn't connect on either (limited shooting window), but it was a great way to end the day. It never gets old watching your dog lock up and hold intently. The only pic I got on this day was of the sunset:


Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #133 on: January 09, 2013, 04:43:16 PM »
December 30th, 2012:

We were in Plain for a New Year's celebration, I took advantage and hunted a couple hours up a canyon off the Columbia for the first time. We encountered snow 6-12" deep, the deepest we've ever hunted. The good part was there was no crust to tear up pads! Oh and did I mention it was steep?!?!?! Craziest hunt we have ever had for quail, tons of fun. Birds were buried in the snow in the thick brush. This made for tough shooting, but we had a blast in the two solid hours we slithered up and down the hillside:



We are heading to the desert for a weekend hunt and will get out once more on closing weekend. See you all out there!!!

Offline bracer40

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #134 on: January 10, 2013, 04:19:37 PM »
Great pics! I just noticed Chukar's birthdate which is the same as my Brit's. AND they have a striking similarity in appearance. You didn't happen to get him out of a breeder down in Portland did you? (actually East of Portland, can't remember the community).
“Just give me a comfortable couch, a dog, a good book, and a woman. Then if you can get the dog to go somewhere and read the book, I might have a little fun.”
― Groucho Marx

 


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