The Source

There’s a gorgeous but reviled magpie out the window scarfing up birdseed. A Eurasian dove just landed 5 yards away. Peat and Angus are snoozing after today’s opener, dreaming of getting skunked because their idiotic “master” took them to a parched desert landscape to look, duh, in vain, for the first chukar of the season. Crucified arrowleaf balsamroot made me wish I’d installed earplugs before heading out. It doesn’t matter. Robins, blackbirds, more doves, some house finches, a Say’s Phoebe. Leslie has the tummy flu, my Camelback bladder leaked all over the back of the rig, I threw a tantrum, spoiling the excitement and the anticipation. Everything’s relative. Maybe not as bad as a few years ago when we thought we’d “show ’em” by camping in the boat and getting a jump on everyone, only to discover they drop the reservoir level at night, causing us to unload the whole vessel at 3 a.m. so we could get it back on water (this after relocating to a spot that wasn’t occupied by a sow black bear and her two cubs); we woke to the realization I’d forgotten to pack the stove so we could make coffee. Cold water coffee doesn’t begin to approach the “cowboy” style. We love sleeping with our dogs. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It takes a toll on them and us, but it’s worth it, I think.

It started out nice
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The source taking a break
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Dry as a bone

Peat met his dad the other day. Angus met his birth facilitators. We’d finally found time to visit Gabe and Katie Mouritsen of Sunburst Brittanys with our two dogs they produced.

It’s weird to think about the process. You can’t conceive of it in human terms without thinking of kidnapping, or the slave trade, or child trafficking, or maybe prostitution. Thank goodness we’re talking about dogs, though, and the process of purchasing a dog from a breeder is older than dirt so I’d guess it’s not something those involved question much. It works. It’s worked for us rather well. Some things might be better left unthunk.

Despite the process and its required interactions with Sunburst in obtaining our two treasures, we’d never taken the time to get to know Gabe and Katie. We swung by their new setup in New Plymouth, and they introduced us to their stock. Peat’s mom (Candy) passed in January, but his father, Sioux, was there, and so were lots of new Brittanys they’ve acquired from several places around the country. Despite working full-time, Gabe and Katie have built their program into an impressive operation with new options on pairs coming down the pike. We’re in for another some time but that brings up a painful thought of life without Angus. After all, all this is because of him. He’s the source. He’s why I’m here, we’re here. What can you do with that?

Peat meet your pops
Next generation

4 Replies to “The Source”

  1. Perspective. Been there sir. If it’s any consolation Bob, my wife suggested I wear my tattered chukar culture shirt for good luck today. Despite 81 degrees by 1100 am, we got into a couple of coveys, and scratched out a bird. The shirt came through! Thanks sir.

  2. You would think things would get better as we learn and years wind away. Our opener was quite tiring physiologically. After spending $1800 on mechanic work on our truck we headed to Riddle idaho to incorporate sage grouse with hun, and possibly chukar. It went fine but the last 35 miles north of riddle the roads were horrible. As we pulled in to our destination the truck was boiling coolant out. Not a pleasant sight in the middle of vast desolation. Long story short we filled the res. With water and drove the 400 mi. circuit back home, getting in around midnight. Now to contend with the mechanic monday about the temp guage he said he fixed. On a brighter note it was a pleasure to have Leslie and you come out to our place. Thanks again. Today I will go close and stick to water for a hunt, and try to not look foolish.

  3. Good to hear from you & Leslie over the last few days. Without dogs, many of us would never bother with this foolishness, although I admit to doing a fair amount of armed hiking when circumstances prevented having a four-legged companion. And that said, an overdeveloped and irrational fear of finding a rattlesnake ensures that I never starting chasing chukars until early November. I’d imagine the high ridges might have a little more moisture and some blue grouse to entertain your dogs, and help with perspective.

Chirp away

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