|...And a partridge in a pear tree! (Don't freak out about the duck count - these aren't all mine.)|
Yesterday was our semi-annual mixed-bag extravaganza hunt in Amador County with our friend Evan, and the beauty of this hunt - aside from the fact that almost all small game is legal to hunt at this time of year - is that it's all snap shooting.
Loyal readers know that if I have more than two seconds to shoot, I will overthink my shot, every time. In light of how horribly I've been shooting in the marsh (see previous morose blog post), I really needed some serious snap shooting to shake me out of my slump.
The full story behind this photo will be my Jan. 1 Butt, Belly, Beak, Bang! column for Shotgun Life, but I wanted to share one piece of it today:
We were hunting pigeons at a barn on a cattle ranch and for some reason, birds kept coming back to the barn despite all the shooting and carnage (usually they're much smarter). At one point while Evan was off chasing pigeons down the hill, Hank and I were heading back to the barn, and a pigeon came flying in.
As Hank was uttering the words, "Look, there's one," I was already lifting my gun, pulling the trigger and watching that bird cartwheel out of the sky.
"Wow! Great shot!" Hank said. Words I can never hear enough. Especially considering Hank is the one who normally shoots before I can mount my gun.
I know the photo above is tasteless, and so is my smug satisfaction. But dammit, it feels good to shoot well and bring home bounty like this, so I have no apologies. Just gratitude.
© Holly A. Heyser 2011