Sometimes you find the best spots and learn the most when you really aren’t trying. This seems to be the case with me quit often. When I go out shed hunting or scouting I don’t find anything. Then, when that isn’t the objective I seem to find gold! Similar I guess to when you are surrounded by turkeys when you’re deer hunting or the opposite, surrounded by deer during turkey season.
This past weekend I ran out with my 6 year old son to check cameras and with him in tow I try to take the path of least resistance so he can keep up with minimal obstacles. He really enjoys coming along to look for turkey feathers and hit stuff with sticks or whatever else he feels like doing in the woods. We look at rocks in the creek and I point out as much animal sign as I can whether it’s poop, prints, old scrapes or rubs on a tree. Unfortunately in our latest trip I checked a new trail camera and was ecstatic to find 1,700 pictures then at some point there after I dropped the SD Card somewhere in the woods.
Needless to say I was quite frustrated that I had dropped the SD Card somewhere. It was in my pocket with my cell phone and I figured that at some point I pulled it out to check the time and dropped the card. The next day I decided to make a quick trip alone to see if I could find the card. I wasn’t very optimistic but I had to try. So I made the walk over pretty quick and then followed the path I took after checking the camera to no avail. This time though without Mason following along I had the opportunity to take the path of most resistance which is often the one taken by big old deer. I had an area in mind based on the cover and went straight for it. I found two very distinct trails in heavy cover that led into an even thicker swamp. I found some big prints and some rubs in the middle of the thickest nastiest swamp I’ve ever seen. After crawling my way through briars and swamp I’m very confident I know where the two bucks that inhabit this area are hiding out.
This path also led me to a newly formed beaver pond that is pictured above. The pond has transformed what was just a nasty mud hole into a nice little pond which provides a great water source for deer and provides some cool scenery. I actually moved a camera to a small tree overlooking the pond to see if I could get some cool shots. I’m slightly worried that the tree may be cut down by the little suckers before I return!
I’m all for taking kids outdoors and keeping them involved but sometimes you have to get out and take the path of most resistance and six year olds with a knack for getting tangled in briars don’t make it easy. Plus, if you have kids sometimes you just need some peace. Mason will be with me next time so I can show him how I hung the camera over the pond and show him some of the cool stuff I found along the way but there will be plenty more solo trips to further explore the area.