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Photo A

Today, I hunted for five hours. We discussed and everyone encouraged me to go to the deer woods. I still felt somewhat guilty. However, my step-father, Bob Miller is stable currently since the tree-falling incident on December 3. Bob is currently taking meds to help with his pain issues. His ankle is in a plastic cast and wrapped tight in elastic bandages. His left side is badly bruised. Next week the current plans are to x-ray and decide is surgery is to happen.

The other issue that has yet to be decided upon deals with his back fractures. One doctor even went as far as to say his back is broken. The debate as to how to handle these fractures is, also, being debated. Bob is, however, doing some physical therapy exercises.

Photo A shows the Poplar tree. The tree was dead and I walked off the length and the broken top at around sixty feet in length. Notice the snow-covered log with the text printed. You can see the root ball that stopped the tree from crushing Bob. His head was against the snow-covered log and his legs were stretched out beyond the Poplar tree.

Photo B

 

Photo B shows the Polar tree stopped within the root ball. My rifle is placed to show the size of the logs.  Imagine a body under that Poplar tree. There was a gap of about three or four inches between the underside of the Poplar tree and Bob’s lower chest and abdomen area. His legs were extended towards my rifle’s stock.

I did hunt some today and had a great time, although I didn’t fire a shot. I saw fifteen deer and a turkey.

Doe in posted property.

 

Cherry Run

 

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BAD DAY!

 

The day started off in a great way. I was in the hunter mode and told my wife I was going to bring home a deer today to fill the fodders for winter is coming. I met my step father, Bob and told him I was going to hunt along a bottom area and would be back on top later.

Around nine o’clock I met up with Bob and we planned a drive. Bob has been successful at this spot a couple of times in past hunts.

I circled a field and spotted a small buck and two does. the two does dropped over a ridgeline heading towards where Bob was to be. No shots! I didn’t think anything of that fact for deer do not always present a perfect shot.

I continued out a ridge and dropped over heading towards Bob. The cell phone rang and I heard weak words…Larry, I need help. A tree fell on me. I was not far and hurried through the woods. At first I couldn’t see anything until I spotted orange. Bob was holding his arm into the air.

I hollered and ran to him. I quickly assessed him and circled below the tree and immediately saw his foot wasn’t facing the right way. I called 911. My next step was to reassure him and headed off in a run up over the hill and across a field to the landowner’s home. I inquired about a gate at the field where a grassy-farming road was located. She said it wasn’t locked. I ran up hill to the gate just as the first ambulance arrived. Issues with mud became real.

Two EMT people and I began hurrying down the road along the field before a Humvee-style vehicle followed behind. Others followed. Chainsaws were out trying to clear tree debris along a gas-well lane near to where Bob was waiting.

The landowner’s grandson arrived with his 4-wheel drive pick up and drove down to the gas well.

The workers worked to clear some vines and limbs around Bob and checking his vitals. He was in much pain. Eventually a stabilizing plastic board was placed under him and his leg was straightened and splinted. They didn’t cut the big tree that had fallen for fear it might collapse onto Bob. He was slid out from under the tree.

We carried him on in a basket onto the pick up bed. The mud caused issues and the Humvee-style vehicle had to back down and chain the truck out. I remember saying keep it steady for that vehicle was spinning and swaying as well, but we made it to the field.

Bob was taken to a local hospital where they put him under and straightened the ankle. He, also, had great pains in his right chest and stomach area. Bruising was visible. He is scheduled for surgery to repair fractures in the ankle area.

UPDATE: AS OF TODAY: DECEMBER 4 WE HAVE LEARNED OF FRACTURES IN SPINAL BONES, BUT NOT AT AREAS OF THE SPINAL CORD.

THE INCIDENT MIRACLES:

The tree that fell was around forty or more feet and up to twelve or so inches in diameter. It was either a poplar or aspen tree. The tree uprooted and fell hitting Bob at his shoulder’s edge knocking him backwards and down. The tree, apparently, slid along his chest and abdomen area. An inch or so would have been a direct hit crushing his shoulder and, quit likely, his head killing him instantly.

Interestingly, another tree had fallen in the past for it was moss-covered. This tree’s root ball was immediately on Bob’s right. The falling tree landed on that root ball stopping it from completing the fall to ground level. This allowed for a several inch gap between Bob’s body and the underside of the tree. If that root ball hadn’t had been there to stop the falling tree this trunk would fallen across Bob’s chest and abdomen crushing him.

I told Bob while the people were working on him, “Bob, you may not realize it now, but you are a very lucky man.”

Yes, it was a bad day!

Teea Goans

A short time ago I had an opportunity to play lead guitar with a lovely young lady named Teea Goans. Although we tried to organize a band quickly and rehearse a lot that didn’t happen. We eventually had some musicians together like a week before the concert with Teea. I was very nervous for I knew we didn’t have the time needed to learn various styles and practice like we needed. Oh well, we did our best for her and for the most part the show went rather well.

Over the weekend, Laurie and I and took along a mutual friend Danna Vernon went to the Wheeling Jamboree in Wheeling, west Virginia to see a concert including Teea. Danna’s husband, Dick Vernon had played as a staff band member many years ago for a time. Dick expectantly passed last February. This has been a sad time for all of us. This would prove to be good therapy for Danna.

L-R me; laurie; Teea and Danna

I met Teea through the actions of the Vernons. I hesitantly agreed to play guitar knowing the problems we had musically to deal with. We pulled that show off. So, in a way, this was a great reunion to see Teea and visit a little.

Several other groups and musicians were present to perform that evening in Wheeling, but we were anxious to see Teea. She did her usual great singing covering various types of music. She did swing, country, gospel all with true professionalism. Even when the staff band had some playing issues she carried the day.

Teea is often seen on country music stations on RFD TV. She has been often on Country family reunion Shows; Larry’s Country Diner and the Dailey and Vincent Show.

The three of us really enjoyed the show.

Teea and Danna

 

 

 

I met Dolly, too!

I chose to stay home on Pennsylvania’s 2018 opening day of buck season. Weather stations were all calling for lots of rain and wind. One station made claims of possible 40 MPH wind gusts. I had no regrets.

This morning, however, we had an inch or so of snow on the ground. The winds were still out there, in fact they were howling! I stationed myself downslope where the winds were not as powerful, but I could hear the racket across the hollow and behind me. Like I said the winds were howling!

  I didn’t know what to expect as I ventured into the snow-laden woodlands. many trees and lower canopy trees were covered with snow. it was a   winter wonderland to behold. Little bird life was very absent this day. I only saw one squirrel, however, I was surprised to see a Chipmunk move across the snow. As I worked to get my camera in position the little striped critter went into a hole.

The first deer I saw cooperated greatly. Few deer do that in the wild. This deer came directly upslope to me feeding along the way. I managed close to fifteen or so photos.

The next doe I saw came past me at about twelve steps in a full run. If that deer would have sported a thirty-inch rack I still would not have been able to get a shot. My best option would have been to throw the gun at the feet to knock it over. Ha Ha! I saw three more deer, but no buck.

I quit around 1:00 and headed home.

 

Barberry- I planted this years ago.

 

 

 

 

 

Witch Hazel blossom under snow.

A Bearded Hen

The bearded hen

On a recent post here I mentioned the old adage. The old saying often heard is the “third time’s the charm.” That third time for this fall’s turkey season came true this morning as I pursed the big birds.

  I walked to a listening point early this morning to hopefully hear some roosted birds. That plan failed so I began a walk and call style hunt.  I did not

Milkweed seeds

find any turkeys so I went a couple of hills over to repeat. Again I didn’t find any turkeys. This fall season has been exceptionally difficult for me. Sure, I had two chances that I left slide by believing a better shot would be the result. Neither opportunity resulted in any shots. Other birds were seen in leased land so I couldn’t go after them. Mostly I was simply having a rough time finding birds. I put on many miles trying to locate and break up a flock of turkeys in order to call one back in.

The third area I was searching found a change in luck for me.  I was walking along calling. At one point I called and heard nothing. I walked about ten feet more and I heard it! I heard yelps and not at any great distance. I hurried set up between two big oaks and the calling began.

About fifteen minutes later I first saw the turkey. I leveled the shotgun once an opportunity to do so presented itself.  A few minutes more the turkey moved into an open position and the shot was fired. The twenty yard shot was true and I had a turkey. Those many windy and rainy days with lots of miles walked and, suddenly, and in a short time I received an answer and had a turkey. That is the way the hunts happen at times.

I was surprised to realize the adult turkey had a five inch beard. I was surprised she was alone, too.

I took some various photos before heading home. It was a good day with a bagged turkey and a lot of deer sightings. One buck I saw had close to a twenty-inch spread.

 

 

Fog, Snow and Rain

This second day of the 2018 Pennsylvania bear season proved to be another interesting day. My friend, Terry and I went to another area to check out  for bear.

A light rain could be viewed on the windshield between wiper blade activity However, rain was even lighter as I we traveled through the wee moments of the morning towards a clear-cut destination. I need to change the terminology to “old clear cut” for the trees have grown much since I first began hunting this area over twenty years ago.

Interestingly, the highest point of this area still had some snow cover in the woodlands. Enough snow was present to help with seeing, but not enough to effectively track any bear if we would have seen any bear. Approximately at seven thirty in the morning the snow began to fall. The white stuff fell all morning.

Also, dense fog was common for much of the morning. Between the fog and heavy falling snow we found visibility was greatly lessened.

At one pint I was moving down over a steep highwall to gain access to a big timber area with plenty of logs. I found out I wished I hadn’t made the decision to go down for a leaf-covered flat rock with wet slushy snow sent me off like a sled. My left knee caught on a tree trunk to stop me. Needless to say I had some pain issues.

  I eventually worked along the side of the hill and met up with Terry. We were ready to call the hunt a day. I was very wet and I didn’t realize how wet I was until I returned home. As I removed my coat and clothing I felt the heavy weight of water-logged attire.

I saw one deer and two ringneck pheasants throughout the morning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The mile long walk to where we were going was done in mostly dark moments. My friend, Terry Williams and I decided to hunt this area after finding plenty of bear sign last Monday. This morning was much different than Monday with snow cover. One might think having snow cover was a good thing and mostly that would be true. However, this morning found everything covered with a layer of ice with snow on top. Visibility in many areas was ten or twelve feet so, unless one was in big timber areas minus a lot of low canopy trees.

  Trees were down everywhere within the area we were hunting. Gas well roads had numerous trees across the roads. Trees of many sizes were

Hard to see!

uprooted or broken from the weight of heavy snow and ice adding strong recent winds.  Trees and honeysuckle and Autumn Olive bent to the ground with heavy snow.

We heard trees cracking all morning. We saw limbs crashing to the forest floor. We saw trees coming down. Several times I took evasive actions upon hearing the snaps and crash of limbs. I was not in immediate danger for the closest limbs were twenty feet or so away.

I, personally, saw five deer. Most fresh deer sign was of beds with the deer sneaking out ahead of me. I saw one turkey and a rabbit.

Around 7:30 or so I head three distant shots. The shots were several hills over, but I wondered if Terry had shot. I was about a mile away and the shots seemed to be in his direction. I moved towards him.

We found where two bear had walked around, probably, sometime in the wee hours of Friday morning. We decided to follow them for the bear may be in brush close by. We, both, felt the shots may have been directed at the bear. I followed the tracks to a predicted corn field. We did not have access of this property. We soon saw a hunter watching the corn fields and we circled back around the hunter. I found additional old tracks and tried to unravel them, however, I believed the tracks were those of the same two bear. The tracks had melted, by this time, to hard to distinguish wet and gray slush areas. One needs to study many tracks to find the toe marks.

 

Bear track

Conditions had worsened with rising temperatures and the tress were raining water and snow all over us soaking into our clothes. By the time we   reached the entrance road we were getting wet and tired. We quit around one in the afternoon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bittersweet berries