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Archive for November, 2019

Feather Art

I received a call from an individual wishing art on a turkey feather for her boyfriend. I told her I could do something and I had turkey feathers here at home.

Since the day was breezy and cool, I jumped onto the job and created  the feather art depicted here.

However, I went a little farther with the feather and placed a couple of smaller feathers along the quill. Also, I took a cone with deer hair and beads and tied them all together to give the feather an “Indian” appearance. The feather has a loop on the end to hang, however, the lady suggested she may have it placed within a shadow-box frame. Upon completion I sprayed some semi-gloss varnish to help seal the feather’s barbules and painted image all together.

I surprised her when she learned the art was already completed the same day she contacted me.

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Heavy frost looked like snow.

 

The first morning of Pennsylvania’s 2019 bear season would prove to be interesting. My friend, Terry W. and I left the jeep early and began the up hill trek to pursue the black bruin. We were approaching the top when two shots rang out in the general direction Terry had planned to go. We were surprised at the 6:45 A.M. shots  since the dark grays of predawn were still engulfing the woodlands. I commented that bear must have been on the shooter’s lap.

  While we pondering our next move a flock of turkeys began filtering from their roosting tree just ahead. Lots of noise!

We parted with our plans in mind and began to still hunt for bear. Terry was going to walk a grassy gas-line trail between two old highwalls. I went

Steep hollows

straight to another site. However, my plans were cut short when eight shots exploded from Terry’s direction. I began working the hillside towards Terry.

Another hunter had bagged a bear just ahead of Terry. The bear was a nice sized male approximately 230-250 pounds. The hunter said another bear went over the hill. However, Terry had seen a bear in the very thick Autumn Olive thickets prior to talking with the hunter. No shot was taken. The area and direction theses bear were, apparently, two different bear making for three separate bear in total.

We hunted until mid-afternoon before making plans for the next hunting day. It was an exciting morning.

 

 

 

 

Hickory hulls

 

Holder Run

 

Bittersweet

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Log Cabin Revival

The log cabin.

 

Many years ago this log cabin shown above was erected in Armstrong County. It is believed to have been originally built by Heinrich Schrecongost. The approximate size is eighteen by twenty-one feet. A friend has sated he remembered a second cabin at the same site, possibly of the dog-trot style of cabin.

At this time, I know the building was in existence in 1850. So when was this structure originally erected? I don’t know if that information will ever be discovered.

Fortunately, funds have been raised to dismantle the building and later reconstruct it in Kittanning, Pennsylvania. The new site is, hopefully, going to be on the property owned by the Armstrong County Historical and Genealogical Museum.

Re-erecting this building will prove to be a challenge for some of the logs are not in the best shape from years of weather and rain. Carpenter ants and/or termites, no doubt, have had a part in log destruction.

Any individual or group interested with helping with funding this dismantling and re-erection of this log cabin may do so by sending a check to:

Armstrong County Historical Museum 

300 North McKean Street, Kittanning, PA 16201 

(Checks can be made out to: ACHMGS

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Elk Were Everywhere!

My friend for years, Bob “Slim” Bowser, and I, needed to go to Potter County to retrieve some of the completed Wheatfield stones. (These stones are made at this county. The stones feature my painting called, The Wheatfield-Whirlpool Of Death. Prints of this painting are transferred to stones. They make a great addition to those interested in the Civil War.) We left in the dark hours to enjoy the trip and hopefully see some elk along the way. As per the title of this entry we were not disappointed for the Elk were everywhere! We estimated at least seventy elk were viewed, very possibly many more.

Deer were out and about everywhere as well.

   We saw turkeys and many squirrels. We lucked out seeing two Black Squirrels.

Two bald Eagles were spotted along the Sinnemahoning Creek perched in trees.

 

 

 

 

 

We stopped at the Marion Brooks area where there are 900 acres of White Birch.

 

 

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The day began with much colder temperatures than we usually expect at this time. I had a number of projects to deal with, but I decided to attack a Black Bear shoulder bone with a pen and ink illustration.

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Mid-morning  produced a lot of Crow cawing outside the house. I checked the source of the commotion to see a Red-tail Hawk setting in the tree above the site where I placed my deer rib cage. The Crows have been feasting and they didn’t appreciate the intruder so close to their food source.

I went out to try to get a photo but the hawk had flown the coup. However, I managed to get a Cardinal among some yellow oak leaves.

 

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Got ‘Er Done!

 

I actually pondered about hunting this morning. It was windy and I do not prefer to hunt on such days, but I always seem to end up going out to pursue those bronzed-back beauties. I guess it is an obsession of mine.

The temperatures were in the twenties this morning. A hint of snow covered the forest floor. I crossed a flat and dropped down the slope and began calling as I walked.  I had went about half a mile when I saw turkeys out ahead at approximately sixty yards or so. The race was on as I moved as fast as I could to bust the flock up.  I saw birds moving in three directions. I continued through and hiked two birds from the trees. The hunt was on!

  I set up and called periodically any time the wind subsided a little. A half an hour later I was getting cold, but I was determined to wait these birds out. I estimated ten to twelve birds but in the commotion I couldn’t get an accurate count.

I heard rapid yelping behind me and I readjusted my setting position. I continued calling and I heard a second bird to my left. Soon I could see the darkened body moving among the brush and Mountain Laurel. At twenty-two steps the Remington talked in a loud voice and a young gobbler was down. I uttered some thankful words of prayer.

The next phase is to clean the turkey. Any takers on this job? I didn’t think so!

 

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Turkeys Galore!

Notice the steep sides. Charging downhill in these conditions may end up with bone breakage for me.

Early on the second morning of the 2019 fall turkey season I heard an answer to my calls. Unfortunately, the answer was clear across a steep hollow. I knew I needed to get over to the side as quick as possible. However, I don’t do as well as I used to with going down hills and especially steep ones. I circled below and worked up the hill towards where the answering turkey came from.  As I moved along I could see turkeys feeding in a field. I eased back and set up hoping they may follow the field’s edge presenting a shot.

Things seldom go as one hopes with turkey season.  The flock exited the field back into the open woods to my left. They began answering my calls and I could hear them walking in the leaves! The bad luck factor was present. Between the birds and myself was a thick small gulley chocked with alders, spicebush, briars and vines. There would be one area where a shot could be had and the birds would stop at the brush’s edge and eventually walked away.

Buck rub

I moved into the field and started into the woods for a bust up only to find NO TURKEYS.  I moved around and didn’t find a single bird. Later I went up the hollow and moved low. I had answers ro my calls. The turkeys were either in the steepest part of the hollow and just up a little on the opposite side. WE carried on communications for fifteen or so minutes. I stopped calling and shortly, thereafter, the birds quit, too. About forty minutes later I found them about a hundred or so yards farther down this hollow. Again, we talked for a time and all would go silent. Both of these times the birds were not all that far, but they refused to move to my calling. And, unfortunately, the steepness of these slopes thwarted any attempts for me to charge down a hill to break them up.

I circled around to their side and the turkeys were gone. Eventually I went up and over onto the flats. I saw the flock of 12-18 birds about a hundred and twenty yards away. I moved as fast as I could only to watch them stay together and quickly move into posted property. I felt defeated. All of the above happened during a four hour time zone. I worked around and left the woods by two o’clock, tired and knees a hurting’.

This morning was a wet hunt. (November 5) I went to another area where I had seen turkeys and sign recently. The rain and wind made hearing very difficult.

I eased out to a cornfield’s edge and could see some turkeys in the corn. (The corn wasn’t high.) I circled around to try to call them. I saw some turkeys moving away from my right side. they didn’t seem to care about my calling. Perhaps they had seen me.

I circled again with some vegetation in my favor and soon saw them ahead at about a hundred yards. I believe there were, at least, fifteen birds in this flock.  I moved as quick as I could and hollered a couple of times, but the birds seemed to stay together. I decided to set and call loudly in case a couple of stragglers were close by. All I got was soaked even more and the shivers. Forty-five minutes later I was cold and wet and decided to head towards the jeep.

Later, I spotted a gobbler’s head at about 35 yards. I charged figuring a flock was on the back side of this terrain. Only one gobbler was present and I watched him move away.

Time to regroup for another time. I was very wet and cold and needed to get warmed-up quick.

I saw, these last two hunts, a lot of deer including a very nice buck. I saw a lot of squirrels, both gray and fox squirrels.

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