Met Eric at 8:00 AM, who said Mike had called. Asked if we could wait till around 10 to pick him up.
Eric said we could do that, so Eric and I went back thru his fields to a fence line and set up a couple hundred yards from the woods about 15 acres of thick stuff.
Erics weather station said 15F but felt like 6 with the wind chill. There is about 2 /12 inches of snow down and still falling.
We waited a full 45 minutes and saw nothing. Back at the house Eric said he had heard a pack singing Tuesday morning so we should have seen some thing.
We put all the gear in my truck and drive a couple miles down the road to a hobby beef farm that belongs to a good friend of Erics. Walk back to a stone pile on a hill side over looking a swampy area full of brush and grasses. 45 minutes there with several sounds and again a dry hole.
Back at the truck still snowing but the fine misty type.we decide we are close enough to 10:00 AM to go and roust Mike from his beauty sleep.
We get to mikes and he is awake and putting gear in his truck. Says we can double drive so when he needs to leave and get a bit of rest before work we will not have to bring him back home.
We decided to stay with in 25 miles of his place and that way he wonít have to spend a hour or so driving back home.
We hit up Mikes neighbor where we had hunted 3 weeks ago.
Work back close to the woods and set the decoys out then the callers.
Do a challenge sound and got a return bark. Things are sounding better all ready. Worked the female in heat and the challenge for 20 minutes and we would get return barks but the sound didnít sound as if the coyote was moving. Stayed silent for 10 more minutes and did one more challenge. We got a bark back sounded closer so we sat longer and silent. Was about 5 minutes and a lone coyote finally shows its nose then the whole head. Mikes zone so signed he was gonna do it, fired and we have our first coyote down. We had spent nearly a hour for that big male.
We go about 10 miles to a sheep farm owned by a good friend of ours Leo Abotford, we been hunting the place for 19 years one of our very first places.
Work back thru the lane to a hay field and set up in a bunch of round bales stacked in the fence line. 200 yards off is the woods about 20 acres. We set the decoys out at about 150 yards and back off a little to set the callers out.
Run the challenge call do not hear a thing in return and Eric and I gave each other the look another dry hole?
Switch to a female coyote in heat sound calling come hither big boy I am needing you.
We got a answer to that one very quick. Still for a short we try for 2 minutes then have the Horney female call again. This time a couple of replies sound.
Then there are two coyotes poking from behind a bush at the edge of the woods. They turn to angle at a 45 from the decoys and come about 50 yards closer, then stop.
Guess the decoys didnít look like a female coyote in heat to them. Eric changed his sound to a piglet in distress and that did the trick they were coming again.
My zone I signed Mike should take Number 2 and I would go for number 1.
Settled the cross hairs of the 243 on the leader and gave the fire sign and squeezed the round off. My coyote was down and only the tail was wiggling for a short minute or two. I look and see Mikeís coyote is also turning the fresh snow red.
Walk out and get out get the decoys and callers, go to the coyotes and we have two young males.
Back at the trucks we decided we will run to another sheep farm around 30 miles away.
Owned by Bruce Zimmerman also a long time ago farm, looked it up and we have been able to hunt coyotes there for 14 years.
We have been doing this for 20 years come April 20th. Started with John and I as we had worked together for 15 years, then Eric also his daughter and mine went to MTU together and we had met moving them into their dorm rooms. We had became friends living about 10 miles apart him on the east side and I on the west side of town. Eric got Dean to join us as he told his customers about Erics insurance business when they were buying a home and needed insurance to close.
We get to the fence line by a big Oak tree to set up. You just do not find over grown fence lines or stone piles on sheep farms.
We spend 40 minutes with out hearing or seeing a thing. The place hasnít been hunted by our group in 4 months.
Mike says he will leave us at this point and go take a nap before work.
Eric and I drive another 20 miles to Snover. Decide we should eat dinner at the Country bulk foods. Yes they sell bulk food there but also have a dinning room. With a mid day Buffet, or order off the menu.
We chose the hot turkey sandwiches with home made bread mashed potatoes and lots of turkey gravy. What I like beside the good prices and neatness is I gan get hot black TEA and refills.
Just out of town a bit is a dairy farm owned by Terry Rangette a 3d generation farmer.
Work our way back to a bunch of round bales about 100 yards from the wood lot set the decoys about half way then angle off and back 25 yards for the callers.
Again we do the challenge with both callers. Hear no return calls and try The female in heat sound, still nothing. It is on the windy side so I let loose with a bit higher volume with a pack having a party and hear a challenge call in return.
We are spending a lot more time per set today than we normally do but the wind on and off snow flurries is not helping things.
We wait 45 minutes and see nothing so just set still for another 10 minutes then leave.
Back at the truck it is 1:30 PM and we decided to wrap it up for the day. Things just doesnít look very productive.
Sunday is the meeting and we do not know who we will draw or who draws us.