Good Morning

How can a man spend his morning getting eaten alive by mosquitoes, getting wet to his waist, and falling off a rock have a good morning?

Here’s how: I carried in two pieces of the tree stand that is going on Buck Knob.

In the process, the mosquitoes took advantage of the fact that I didn’t have a free hand, and I was rushing to beat the oncoming rain.

When I got there, I couldn’t make out the exact tree that I want to use, so I looked for a place to hide the ladder parts.

I saw this large log that would do the job. I walked over to it, started to put the parts down, and there looking at me was a moose shed!

A Shed Moose Antler

A Shed Moose Antler

It was heavy, but the tip and brow tine were chewed off.

I set the camera up in a slightly different spot in hopes of not spooking the buck.

I then headed for Tony’s lot to check the camera I put out there on the 9th.

There was a ton of fresh track, and the eight apples I put out were all gone.

Two big surprises.

First, I got several videos of an opossum.

Opossum

Opossum

I have never seen a possum in Washington.

The closest was a road kill in Antrim.

Second, and far more important, was a huge 8-pointer that was the reincarnation of my Kingsbury buck.

His antlers were still in velvet, but were perfectly shaped and balanced.

Because of the apples, I got a tremendous look at him. He was there three times in four days, BUT always at night between 10 and 1.

This is another wall-hanger.

8-Pointer on Tony's Lot

8-Pointer on Tony’s Lot

I can’t wait to start scouting him further and look for a stand site there.

WLAGS

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Lucky

Sometimes it is more important to be lucky than good! The problem with the camera has been on my mind since I set it up on 7/25. I got there and the light was on. So I knew I had battery power. Now the question was, “Is it working?”

So I pulled the whole thing (rather than just the SD card) in case I needed to deal with a problem.

The first video was taken yesterday. It was a nice doe at 6:30 AM looking very nervous. The next one was her spotted fawn stepping out directly in front of the camera. Both were very nervous focusing their stare towards Stand #1. The next video they are gone! There was all kinds of room and area to see them if they walked off, so I guessed they bolted.

Doe and Spotted Fawn

Doe and Spotted Fawn

An hour and a half later, out steps our big buck! His rack covered in velvet, VERY WIDE, he trots off towards Stand #3–where I guessed the other two went.

The next video, 5 minutes later, he is standing in the scrape sight. He starts thrashing his antlers in the overhanging evergreen that last year’s buck, and every other buck, uses as a licking branch.

Buck at Buck Knob Licking Branch

Buck at Buck Knob Licking Branch

He moved so much and so fast that I’m going to have to look closely to determine the number of points. He is at least an 8 and probably more. I guess this proves the need for a stand on Buck Knob.

Wow! Now that will get your juices flowing.

The rest of the trip observations were:

  • Lots of water, not even considering it was August, which gives us a bumper crop of mosquitos.
  • The biggest, if not the most, low bush blueberries I ever saw.
Low Bush Blueberries

Low Bush Blueberries

  • Consequently two steaming fresh piles of bear droppings.
  • Saw red efts, the juvenile eastern red-spotted newts, for the first time this year.
Red Eft Stage of Red-Spotted Newt

Red Eft Stage of Red-Spotted Newt

 

  • Blackberry crop looks good.
  • Still too early to get a good indication on the acorn and beechnut crop.

WLAGS