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Sunrise!

The weeklong 2022 muzzleloading season has come to a close. A properly licensed individual may hunt bear during this week, also. I usually refer to this week as the early flintlock season since I generally use my eighteenth-century style flintlock rifle. However, the Pennsylvania Game Commission allows percussion muzzleloaders, (Cap and ball) the modern in-line muzzleloaders as well as the flintlock rifle or smoothbores. As a senior I could use a modern center-fir rifle the last three days of the season. I still prefer my flinter.

OCTOBER 15

The first day of October 15 had twelve deer observed including two bucks. This muzzleloading season only permits antlerless deer to be harvested. One small doe came past me at twelve steps, and I decided I wasn’t going to take a small deer. I took photos of this deer instead.

The first day as well as much of the season was windy with several being terribly windy. In fact, I heard a large tree cracking and the thud after it succumbed to the conditions.

I had to get ready to play guitar with a band at Ford Cliff.

OCTOBER 17

I decide to go to a state game lands to try my hand at bear hunting on this day. I still-hunted at three locations but never saw a bear. I did see two deer. I could have shot the one at about thirty yards, but I could not see the animal’s head. remember I had to shoot only antlerless deer.

This very windy day howled through the trees. I heard some loud cracking of a falling tree. The sounds were not far ahead. As I followed the occasional cracking, I soon located a tree. The tree was leaning at about 75 degrees with the limbs entangled with neighboring trees. Every few seconds it would crack until the support trees could no longer bear the weight allowing the tree to crash. That was an interesting observation. I walked upon a flock of seven gobblers allowing for a few photos as they fed in the high grasses. I heard a Screech Owl in the dark hours. I became entangled in a very thick timbered area. That takes the fun out of hunting as each step allows for briars to dig into one’s flesh. I left early enough to prepare to do acoustic music at the Kittanning Free Methodist Church. An event is held there twice a month known as God’s Choice for those of special needs.

A bear could be bedded ten feet away and be completely hid.

OCTOBER 18

I sat up watching a field in the dark and windy morning. I would see one deer in the distance. I found myself very tired and decided this was going to be a short morning. I don’t sleep well usually. I still hunted my way back to the jeep seeing a Fisher twice. I only wished I could have gotten a photo. I heard a Great-horned Owl.

I went home and napped for company was coming.

OCTOBER 20

I stopped in the morning to take care of my mother’s garbage and enjoy breakfast. I did sneak around near to the homestead seeing two deer including one buck. I left early enough to prepare for my Thursday evening Bible study.

OCTOBER 21

This was another day to hunt bear and I went to State Game Lands 304 to still hunt. I would see seven deer this morning and a flock of turkeys two times. I walked right up on them the first time. I saw three pheasants.

OCTOBER 22.

This was the last day to hunt, and the temperatures were to reach into the seventies. I knew I would be quitting by noon for I prefer to not hunt in such temps. I stationed myself in the dark hours to wait.

I spotted a deer’s back and it appeared to be a doe. I positioned the rifle and as the deer approached, I thought I saw antler. I allowed the deer to come closer and I was correct for this deer was a spike buck, the spikes were about six inches long. That would be the only deer observed this morning. I walked off to where the spike came past, and it was eight steps.

I heard a Barred Owl.

Hunting deer by my preferred method known as still hunting can be very difficult during this early season. Multiflora Rose, Green Briars, our native briars and Spicebush form a dense canopy cancelling out any deer clarity.

Old Jacob, my fifty-caliber flintlock.

NOTE: The following study was recently completed at my Bible Study Class. Those of the study expressed concerns over the worldly deteriorations so a study of one of the prophecies from the Book of Daniel from the Bible.

Daniel 9                                                                    (The 490-year prophecy)

Daniel noticed, in a book, of a number of prophetic years from the words of Jeremiah the prophet. This prophet recorded of the seventy years being required before the end of the Jewish time of desolations. (See below.) Daniel discovered this book during the first year of King Darius, the Mede, the son of Ahasuerus. The Lord  told the prophet that seventy years were decreed upon the Jewish people.

NOTE: The Jews had been in captivity since Nebuchadnezzar’s third invasion of Judah in 586 B.C. See Jeremiah 25: 11-13 and Jeremiah 29:10 for the prophet’s words of the decreed seventy years. In brief, Israel would be desolate for seventy years after their capture by the Babylonians, but  the Lord would perform good  towards Israel after the allotted time. The reason for these years was because the Jews did not keep the sabbatical cycles commanded by the Lord found in Leviticus 25. The Jews were to NOT work the land every seventh year as a rest or sabbath for the land. The time span would equal to seventy years of the land being unplowed. See 2 Chronicles 36: 20-23, also.

An aged Daniel after reading the prophecy began to seek the Lord through much fasting, supplication, and prayer. He knew the seventy years were soon to be completed.

While Daniel was praying and confessing his sin and the sins of the people of Israel, the man Gabriel appeared. Daniel recognized him from a previous vision. Gabriel said to Daniel he had NOW COME to give wisdom and understanding. (In Chapter 8, Daniel wrote he had become ill with the vision event and did not understand. Gabriel was now returning to add additional insight. This same angel would announce the birth of John the Baptist and Christ in the future.) Daniel was told he was greatly beloved and was to hear and understand the vision.

The 490 Years to the End of the Age

Verse 24

Daniel was told in verse 24, “Seventy weeks of years are decreed concerning thy people and your holy city to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most Holy.”  (Seventy sets of seven years)

The best way to understand this prophecy of the seventieth week is to dissect each line with words of explanation.  Gabriel spoke to Daniel in verse 24 saying; Seventy weeks of years are decreed to his people. Seventy weeks of years equals a total of 490 years. (Seventy times seven. Some translations word this as seventy sevens.) Some Biblical translations record the seventy weeks of years as 490 years. Note Daniel was told this time frame was to be on HIS PEOPLE.” Daniel’s people were the Jews. Remember Daniel was one of the Jews captured from Jerusalem in 586 B.C. So, we know, now, that 490 years are determined to the Jewish people. This time frame of 490 years is a result of the Jews past sins, and iniquities against God, and was mandated by God, to reconcile these people prior to an everlasting righteousness, and to complete prophecy. Also, note the prophecy states those 490 years will be upon the Holy City as well. The Holy City in scripture is Jerusalem. The end result of those years will be an everlasting righteousness and faithfulness, and completion of prophecy with the coming of the Messiah and the forever kingdom. (The second coming of Christ will restore all things to everlasting righteousness and put in place the earthly kingdom as promised throughout the Old Testament Bible through to early Acts.)

Verse 25

Gabriel continued in verse 25, “Know and understand this: From the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the ruler comes, there will be seven sevens, and sixty-two sevens. It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. (The commandment to rebuild Jerusalem starts the time clock of the 490 years.)

The next part of the prophecy breaks down some of the years. Gabriel said seven weeks of years (Forty-nine years to complete the building of the city.) and includes another threescore and two weeks of years. (434 years.) One needs to add these years together and the answer equals 483 years. The rebuilding of Jerusalem had many issues to deal with causing very difficult times.

There are seven years left to complete the prophecy. The permission to rebuild Jerusalem can be found in Nehemiah 2: 1-8. Some confusion may occur since King Cyrus, much earlier, issued a decree to rebuild the temple.(538 B.C.) King Artaxerxes 1 issued a decree to restore Jerusalem. Artaxerxes did his decree in 445 B.C.

Verse 26

The prophecy continued with verse 26, After threescore and two weeks Messiah be cut off, but not for himself; and the people of the prince that shall

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come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be

with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.”

The breakdown continues, “After 483 years, the Anointed One will be cut off and will have nothing. Christ died on the cross. The people of the ruler (Prince) who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary.  War will continue to the end, and desolations have been decreed.

As stated, Christ, as the Messiah, was cut off, and crucified, 483 years from the decree to rebuild Jerusalem.

Now, one must read the one part of the prophecy closely. A prince shall come from the people who will destroy the city, and temple. So, we know from history the temple and Jerusalem were destroyed again in 70 A.D.  We need to ask who the people were who destroyed the city? Again, from history we know the Romans under Titus did the deed. (Gentiles) Also, of importance we now know something about the Antichrist of the latter days. We can know, of course, he will be a Gentile and, traditionally, it is believed he will come through a revised type of Roman empire. This has been speculated for years… European Common Market, NATO, United Nations, New World Order, global government, one world government… lots of theories.

Remember, the prophecy stated a total of 490 years to complete the fulfillment. This occurs during those seven years for the fulfillment of the prophecy.

Those seven years are the Seventieth week of Daniel.  (We need to subtract the 483 years from the 490 years. Of course, that equals 7.) Other terms used for these seven years are: The Tribulation and the Time of Jacob’s trouble. (Jacob’s name was changed to Israel.)

Verse 27

Verse 27 states:  “He will confirm a covenant with many for one seven. In the middle of the seven he will put an end to the sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.”

The “he” with this verse is the prince who shall come. This person will

sign a treaty for seven years with Israel. Other nations will be signing as

well, but the prophecy is dealing with Israel. Israel will suddenly realize peace. A

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temple will be erected since we can see from the prophecy the man will break the

treaty in three and half years and put an end to the Jews sacrificing, and their

offerings. A temple, of some sort, in Jerusalem needs to be present in order to have sacrifices as per Old Testament laws. I have read of a prefabricated temple in storage in Israel. The nation of Israel may look upon this antichrist individual as a political Messiah or, possibly, their promised Messiah who was in the prophecies generations ago. Either belief will be disastrous for the majority of the Jewish people. A remnant will survive and recognize Christ at his return.

The Anti-Christ will set up an abomination in the temple. This may be something in regard to sacrificing a pig at the altar. This was done under Titus. The Gentile antichrist will declare himself god and set in the temple as god. Any of these actions would be considered a defilement and abomination of the temple, as per Jewish law. This will last until the last three and a half years are completed. All hell will break upon the Jewish people during this time, as well as the world. This will end at the time of the decree, or the end of the final three and a half years.

Christ in Matthew 24: 15 stated the following: “So, when you see standing in the holy city the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel-let the reader understand.” Christ gives the book of Daniel credence. To deny Daniel’s accuracy is to be in unbelief.Christ’s words were prophecies for the 70 A.D. event and/ or the end of the age event.

NOTE: Daniel’s prophecies continue with the chapter twelve words concerning the tribulation period. At that end of that time the Jews will be delivered. GRACE!

4.

The morning produced a deep fog, and I knew once the sun began to burn its way through the fog some great photo opportunities could occur. Off I went to walk along the Allegheny River.

The autumn tree colors are intensifying, and I wanted to be there. My walk would be approximately five miles.

Birch leaves with the river being obscured by fog, but it is there!

One historic finding was the remnants of the old Monticello Furnace. The furnace was built by Robert E. Brown in 1859 to extract local iron. The iron was burned in the furnace. the resulting pig iron was sent to Kittanning and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The furnace was closed in 1875.

All that is left of the Monticello Furnace.

McConnell’s Mill

Covered bridge at McConnell’s Mill

October 10 was looking like a great day to get out and about. The leaves were turning into their autumn colors and the skies were blue and the temperatures perfect for hiking. Laurie and I asked her mother, Anne to go and she happily agreed for the day trip. Anne is eighty-four years old but does very well with hiking. The place to visit was, McConnell’s Mill State Park.

We stopped at Moraine Park for a brief time hoping to observe a Bald eagle or Osprey.

Looking from the old mill onto the falls of Slippery Rock

The McConnell’s Mill site was originally owned by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (1946) and handed over to the Commonwealth pf Pennsylvania in 1957. The lands are located in Lawrence County, Pennsylvania in the western part of the state. The park features the beautiful rock laden Slippery Rock Creek. Steep slopes are visible on both sides of the gorge. Huge rocks are viewed all about the parks land.

A couple of man-made features are located along and over the creek. The actual mill was built in 1852 and after being destroyed by fire was rebuilt in 1868. The mill was closed in 1928.

One additional feature is the one lane covered bridge. Few of these structures exist and this one is a beauty. The bright red colors contrast nicely among the foliage or snow in winter.

We visited another area of the park for I knew the trail would not be very difficult and that was the Hell’s Hollow site A watercourse flows down the hollow. It is called Hell Run. A couple of features of this trail are the Hell’s Run Falls and an old remnant of a limekiln. The kiln is barricaded off so one cannot get into the center anymore.

My Bible Study

PHOTO LET TO RIGHT GOING AROUND THE TABLE: Joyce, Beverly, Ron, Lorna, Jill, Dave, Jack, Velma, Deb (Hiding), Alice, Glenn and Denny. (Missing from the photo is Jim, Brenda, Wayne, Cindy and Laurie.)

I have been conducting a Bible study class for many years now. How this study came to be is an interesting story.

The pastor at the Free Methodist Church at the time brought up at a Sunday service of a desire to start small men and women groups. The groups were to be, in the original concept, a place where individuals could come and discuss anything and everything in confidentiality.

I am hesitant to state some of the following words because I am still to this day in awe as to what happened. When the pastor made this announcement, I felt a sensation! I immediately felt what I described as a palm of the hand between my shoulder blades with a nudge. However, I didn’t move along with the nudge. I said to my wife what had happened. I walked out that Sunday wondering but not dwelling on what had happened. I didn’t think a lot about it for a week until the following Sunday service.

The pastor, once again, brought up this idea of the small groups and the very same experience happened again. I told my wife again and we talked after the service just what this may be meaning.

I believed I was being nudged towards doing this small men’s group, but I did not want to do anything like this. With my anxiety issues, I have always been content to stay in the background, but something was about to change. I made contact with the pastor.

Eventually a meeting was planned with about seven people interested with this small group concept. I stated if I decided to proceed, I would like to incorporate the Book of Acts. I had been for years writing down notes on the Bible along with questions I had and so forth. It seemed I was about to utilize such notes in my group. (Many of these notes were typed into the computer.)

The group started off as with three men but would soon have another small men’s group join up. My plans quickly evolved into a Bible study beginning in Acts. This was not, and still is not, easy, at times, for me while dealing with anxiety issues.

A year or so later a women’s group joined the study and that is how it has been ever since.

Every study consists of reading a chapter or two along with the study sheets I have typed up. the group are very much part of the study with questions, discussions and laughter. We are not a politically correct group.

I have retyped the entire New Testament thus far. I have typed up about fourteen of the Old Testament into a study format. We have studied the entire New Testament and some parts twice before we moved into the Old Testament.

I have an average of twelve to fourteen people on any given Thursday evening. In the last year two had to leave due to changes in work schedules and two others have left because of the current high prices. All four still take the study guides via email.

We are currently on the Book of Judges as I type this.

Although I still have those nervous issues, I have become quite happy to be working with such a great group. I even look forward to each study and being with my friends. A have included a few studies on this site. Go to the right-hand column and search for “SPIRITUAL” and click on it. Some various additional studies are located here.

The Deer Are Moving!

Yes, one thing I noticed over the last two morning hikes is the fact of moving deer. I saw four buck and many doe and fawns. I lost count. The velvet has been removed and the antlers are strong ready to face the rigors of this upcoming rutting season. I haven’t seen any buck scrapes yet.

Does and her fawns are fattening up and will be soon finding the need to run from aggression in the males. Truth be known I suspect this is already happening but will increase in intensity very soon.

The deer all have their winter hair.

I managed a few photos of deer over these last two mornings.

Full speed ahead!

White Snakeroot

Garden Spider on a dewy web out for a quick breakfast.

Chestnuts

Some More Time Afield

Jack-in -the- Pulpit berries

I have managed to get in some walking despite encountering many demands on my being. A few photos from a couple of morning hikes are within this entry.

I have been playing lead guitar at a church for a few months now. The regular player developed an illness to be found out of his bladder cancer. he is taking treatments and has had some setbacks with infections and such. I am hoping Ray gets well enough to resume his position soon. Some Monday evenings I pay guitar at an event known as God’s Choice. This event is catered towards those with various handicaps. It is a rewarding venture to see them smile and sing along. Thursday evening, I have a Bible study class with ten to fourteen individuals interested in studying the Word. Other issues play a part in my life with serious health issues within the family.

Doe with her winter coat.

Button Bush Seed Pods

Monarch Butterfly

Spotted Jewelweed

Ironweed

Books on the Alamo

As a boy I had many influences on numerous on many subjects. One such influence was the three-night series of Davy Crocket. the series featured Fess Parker as Mr. Crockett. Another Alamo related movie featured John “the Duke” Wayne as the Tennessee frontiersman. Of course, much of both versions was strictly hollywood exaggerations. the latter shows Wayne as Crockett on the fort’s ledge swinging his flintlock rifle to take out as many Mexicans as he could before succumbing to his death. There was a report that David Crockett may have been executed, but there is no solid evidence to lead to that conclusion.

In recent months I have read two books about the Alamo and events leading up to the battle and some of men participating in the conflict. Three of which were, David Crockett, of course, William Travis and legendary man with the big knife, James Bowie.

I have heard a few various stories as to how these men died at the Alamo. The books dig deep into words of some of those survivors of the battle, and written accounts by the very same. I must clarify that last sentence. There were no survivors of those doing the fighting within the walls, but there were a few women and children and one slave named Joe who were allowed to leave.

The account of David Crockett states he was killed very early in the hour-long battle. Travis was killed by a shot to the head at the first onslaught of the push to enter the fort. Bowie was killed in his bed, but not the in the way most film depicts with flintlock pistols firing before using his famous Bowie knife. Bowie was so sick he couldn’t move to fight and was shot and bayoneted in his bed. All the fighters were burned after their deaths in huge fires.

How these men died is not the important issue, but the fact they did die for a cause they truly believed in… Texas! The legends live even to this day.

Carp

The fish did not bite very hard for a few moments. I was wondering what species could be working on my nightcrawler. I would soon find out.

I was holding the rod and feeling these light bites when all at once the bite was much harder, and I immediately set the hook! WOW! The fish took off in the Allegheny River and the reel was roaring. I glanced down at the reel and noticed I was seeing the metal of the reel’s spool. My line was almost to the “end of the line” and I realized I need quick action.

I began following along the shoreline reeling in whenever I could do so without too much fear of line breakage…or I hoped! I had walked close to sixty feet along the river’s edge when I first noticed what I had caught. I saw the yellow-orange tail of a Carp.

I was happy when I began to feel the fish tiring and I continued to reel whenever I could eventually bring the fish to the shoreline. I picked the golden fish out of the water and walked back to get some photos.

I released the carp back into the Allegheny River. The fish was twenty-six to twenty-eight inches in length.

The release!

Another interesting story from the morning fishing expedition was the surprise of having a dog suddenly appear to my left. I was glad to see she was a friendly dog and I petted and talked to her for a time before she disappeared again. In a short time, I could see the dog’s owner below me along the river.

One more interesting event of the morning. I went to cast, and the line had wrapped around my bail causing a backlash of sorts. The hook still entered the river about five feet out. Just as I was about to complete the line work, I felt the tugging of a fish. I set the hook and reeled in a Rock Bass.

Yes, I had an interesting few hours along the Allegheny River.

Notice the deer in the background. I didn’t see the deer until after I took the photo.

Hedge Bindweed…a wild Morning Glory

Dew-covered Foxtail

A specie of Warbler that I haven’t identified.