Sunday, March 23, 2008

Good Friday Coyote Hunt

We finally got out for a coyote hunt with two of Michael's school teachers.

We tried to get out about a month ago to take them coyote hunting, but the weather never cooperated. Well we looked at the forecast for Friday morning and it looked good. Besides that they didn't have school since it was Good Friday, so we planned to get after them that morning.
We met up with his teachers at school parking lot! I told Michael that this would be the only time he could ever say that he was at school with a firearm and with teachers to boot! They rode with us down to the Brighton State Rec Area, and on the way I had to ask them how Michael was doing in school! I asked them should he be allowed to go hunting with us or should he stay home and do his home work. They told me he was a pretty good boy and should be allowed to go with us. LOL.
We got to the parking area and got loaded up and ready to hit the woods. I had about 4 good spots to make a post on to try and call some yotes in. The plan was I would call and Michael and his teachers would shoot. They posted up on a high ridge about 75 yards apart, and I worked my way down into the hollow near the edge of a swamp to call. I couldn't see any of them due to the fact that the ridge was so steep. Normally I wouldn't put myself in front of the shooters, but I was below where they could shoot, there was no chance of being shot, I want to make that clear! This is the only way I would use this type of setup.
As I started to head down to my call spot we heard a coyote in the distance let out a howl, I told one of the guys, "this is going to be a good morning, let's get after them." I got to my spot and began to call. I started with my howler mouth call. I couldn't get it to roll over to hit the second note in the howl. After two tries I gave up and hit the e-caller. I worked the e-caller with some yote howls, varying the volume a bit and used a calling sequence about every 5 or 6 minutes. Each sequence lasted about 30 seconds to a minute. I also used a mouse squeaker every now and then, especially if I heard something scurrying in the distance. After about a half hour, we left that set up and headed to another location. On the way up the hillside to meet up with the guys I struggled to make it to the top. There was still some ice and snow on the hill side. Know I know why I wanted to get into shape this winter, I'm still feeling that climb today!
For the second set I went to a place I liked the looks of when Mike and I squirrel hunted back in January. As I approached my calling spot, I noticed coyote tracks all over the place, but they were old, still a good sign though. I got set up and got right to business. It was basically the same type of set up on a steep hill side. I was near the swamp tucked in behind a fallen oak tree that provided me with some nice cover. I could see across the swamp with no problem, so I began my series of calls again. After my second set of calls, I began to watch and no sooner than I had turned off the caller I saw a flash in the brush near an island in the swamp. I looked closer and strained to see movement, there in the brush, I caught a glimpse of what I thought was a yote! I strained to see more, with no luck. I waited about 5 minutes before I called again, I think that was a mistake. I should have called right away with my mouse squeaker. After about 5 more sets of calls we all met up at the top of the ridge and one of Mike's teachers saw the yote! He told me he saw it come from behind the island and head across the far side of the swamp! Why didn't you shoot it, I asked. He said it was too far away when he caught sight of it. At least we saw one, and he got a good look at it.
By this time we had enough time left to make one more stand. I took them to my deer hunting spot. We had seen signs of them there during deer season. As we walked to the area, we saw about seven turkey running up a far ridge. It was the same area I want to turkey hunt this spring, so that was a great sign to see them. This time we all set up on a ridge overlooking a swamp, with me right in the middle. I began to call with no luck. After a couple of series of calls, I heard a flight of geese coming. I looked at the horizon and saw them coming, there were at least fifty of them right at tree top level. I watched them coming towards me and tipped my head skyward to watch them. As they got right overhead I thought, I hope they don't poop on me! I tilted my head back down and then I heard PLOP, PLOP, PLOP, PLOP!!!! I couldn't believe it, they bombed me! But they missed me!

We didn't get to shoot anything, but we did have a good outing. We got to hear one yote in the distance at first light, and we called one in, but no shot! We also saw turkey, that gave me some encouragement for my spring turkey hunt. So all in all it was a great day out in the woods.

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