Sunday, November 3, 2013

Teepee Lake Cabins Hunting

Tom and I loaded up Thursday night heading out to the wilderness.  Sonny and Luke would be joining us Friday night.  Leaving the zombies and vampires in the city, we stopped in Abbotsford for ammunition.  I had a sling put on the 20 gauge at the great Hub Sports (
There were all sorts of kids in Abbotsford in costumes, lots of princesses and fairies and even a little turnip.
I was glad to get out of town before they found out we didn't have any candy.  Deprived of candy on Halloween little children turn to cannibalism. Lord of the Flies wasn't fiction.
We'd thought Teepee Lakes Cabins (  would be some hunters cabin with leaky roof and old mattresses.  Maybe there would be a wood stove if we were lucky.  We weren't prepared for wilderness luxury.  Great log cabin, 4 beds, electric heat, microwave, electric drip coffee, satellite television.  Flush toilets, showers and laundry at main lodge. The next day we'd find out the main lodge as well had a store and great restaurant with down home wonderful women, Terry and Nancy.  We met the man of the resort later.  He was serving noon hour breakfast and said his "serving" name was Brumhilde. He only had long pants on because he'd refused to shave his legs.
The whole fire department, health department, half the town of Bankier,  plus a dozen hunters and fishermen passed through the lodge while we were there.
That first night Tom and I went to bed early and slept till the alarm woke us at 6 am.  Dressed for hunting, with Gilbert the most enthusiastic grouse master cockapoo, we headed out with a thermos of coffee, the F350 truck full of guns and ammo. I had my Ruger stainless steel 30:06 rifle empty between my legs, Tom driving and Gilbert sitting upright between us.  We came upon the moose at dawn.  I shouted at Tom to stop and was out of the truck with cartridge in the barrel before I scoped the beast in the woods. No horns.  She was 100 yards away.  She then walked down to the road, ambled  along the road, stood broadside a bit, then walked back into the woods.  If she could have got her hoof up to her ears I swear she would have wagged her ears at us.   If she'd have been a spike fork immature bull, the only moose legal there, it would have been a very easy shot.
We drove all over the Trout and Peach land trails after that. Great time. Gilbert and Tom were fine company.  Around 11 am, I shot a ruffed grouse with the 20 gauge walking up an overgrown side road.  Gilbert was on the grouse in a flash and a fight to the death ensued.  The grouse was trying to peck his eyes out and he was trying to grab the wounded bird by the throat.  I came along just in time to grab the grouse and wring its neck in a manner I'd practiced well raising chickens on the farm.  That's when Tom named Gilbert "Master Grouse Hound."  He's a courageous little trooper who we've seen jump on fleeing chickens with a belly flop trying to hold them down till I got there.
We came upon the logging company burning off fires. We'd driven up to ensure it wasn't a wild fire.
At dusk I saw a two point and a doe coming down the mountain.  I had the sights on the two point trying to see an extra couple horns, the buck standing broadside no more than 50 yards from me.  Only 4 point bucks were legal.  I almost cried.
We'd had eggs and sausages at the Teepee Lakes Restaurant but it closed at 5 pm.  We drove about an hour away to Princeton to have a terrific meal at Billy's Restaurant.  Tom had veal and I had roast beef.  The waitress was a delight.  Gilbertt later loved the beef paddy they'd prepared for him.
That night Luke and Sonny rolled in to add volume to our snores.  I'm surprised Gilbert got any sleep.
Sonny has a side by side ATV which he and Luke took up into the mountains. It had snowed all night and the weather was cold in the dark before dawn.  Tom and I and Gilbert headed out in my truck.  (My quad had been stolen by a silly little psychopath and his family with no help from the police because of 'technicalities' -  theft locally is widespread ,generally a lack of family values, a multi billion dollar drug industry, declining morality and rampant corruption)
If we'd had the ATV we could have gone along with Luke and Sonny but with the truck had to go elsewhere.  Even then we almost got stuck on the logging road. The conditions were dangerous for a truck with stories of others sliding over mountain cliffs.  The snow  made the road slick and treacherous.  We opted to go no further,  turning around and barely got back up a hill in 4x4 only to have our way blocked by  on a fallen tree that must have fallen less than 10 minutes after we'd passed.  I'd forgotten the chains, the weather report saying rain, and my axe had been stolen with my ATV.  I didn't have the chainsaw either but luckily had a hatchet which Tom handled masterfully.
I used the stop to do a job the hot coffee we'd drunk on the way up, brought to mind.  Gilbert thought the snow was marvellous.  It doesn't take much at all to entertain Gilbett.  He was soon digging everywhere in the snow, no doubt looking for yellow tennis balls.
I headed up the hill  in the sleet and snow.. I was soon warm and I had all my layers open when I'd made it to the top of the slash and sheltered in the woods waiting.  It wasn't long though before I realized that I'd be an idiot to shoot a moose or deer this far from the road.  At that  thought I climbed back down the mountain and took up a place in the woods along a deer trail at the edge of the slash only a few hundred yards above the road.
The snow was coming down thick but there were mosquitos buzzing about my head defying all logic.  I didn't   have insect repellant so just sat tight ignoring them till I was covered in snow and they stopped bothering me.  An hour or so later I was too cold to sit any longer.  No deer or moose had deigned to pass my way.
I climbed down the rest of the hill stumbling over logs hidden by snow and joined Tom and Gilbert in the warm truck.  I really enjoyed the hot coffee from the thermos with a Coffee Crisp chocolate bar. Tom commented that he figured Luke and Sonny would probably be pretty cold in the open driving in the high country. I could attest just how cold it was not moving.
We headed down to the river and drove along there. I got out and did some more stalking with Gilbert at my heels but no animals were out in the sleet.
Back at the Teepee Lake Cabins we found Luke and Sonny enjoying the warmth of the restaurant.  "It was so cold," Luke said.  They'd seen doe but no bucks.  Teepee Lake Restaurant had a full service menu but we stuck to the late day breakfast of sausages and eggs with a beef paddy on the side for Gilbert.
We discussed various options for getting deer, like shooting two two points and duct taping the horns together.  We considered drones while discussing weather and animal movements. Other hunters joined us and the discussions moved on to comparing various quads and then talking about  rifles and ammo calibre.  Luke had the best ammo, new silver tipped bullets. That got us talking about zombie killing and vampires.  I'd just seen Z Wars with Brad Pitt.  Luke had seen it too. Now there was a zombie movies.  "You only need silver tipped bullets for vampires," Sonny said.  That got us talking about dracula.  It was Halloween.  But then we got talking about Daiwilli, the festival of lights. Which of course lead to discussion of meterology, the  Stonehenge, the Mayan and Egyptian temples.
After that we got back in our vehicles and headed out to the woods.
I found a great road and hiked to the top of another hill with Gilbert behind me. I found a game highway and sat nearby camouflaged,   hoping deer would come down before dark. This didn't happen.  But I was doing everything by the cook, stalking silently up wind and then sitting hidden in bushes.  Everything about this area was excellent except there was no game that night.
I returned to Tom and the we linked up with Luke and Sonny after dark.  We headed out to Princeton There we had a great meal at the pub.  Nobody drank every thuugh the sign outside had advertised "Free beer, Topless Waitreses, False Advertising."  Our fully clothed waitress joked with us.  I had great halibut only to find later that Gilbert didn't want the halibut piece I saved for him.  Tom had irish stew, Luke a burger and Sonny beef dip. Everyone loved the food.
The Canucks were beating the Toronto Maple Leaf hockey team on the big screen.
We swapped hunting stories. Sonny has a place out by the Teepee Lakes and we learned how he and his wife found this place.  His wife is expecting their third baby. Luke has a beautiful girlfriend and I told him if he didn't get a moose he'd have to have a baby. Sonny told him we were running out of time.
Compared to these young guys Tom and I were the old guys, a couple of grey beard bachelors.  I told Tom that as he'd had a cat he was due for a dog before he could move on to actually dating women.  Since I had Gilbert I could date but couldn't afford any more loss.  I was still paying dearly for the thefts. We all liked the waitresses we met though.  These country girls talked of hunting and shooting and liking boyfriends who 4x4'd.
Back in the cabin the snoring shook the foundations but  the building survived.  We were up again at 6 am. Tom made a mighty fine pot of coffee.  Luke  made us porridge, this time instant in the microwave.  We stumbled about while Gilbert ran to each of us offering encouragement.   The morning  was cold and the roads crisp.  With a thick layer of noisy crust stalking was completely out.
Tom and I got the truck up into the high country. It was white everywhere but not a trail did we see. I glassed everything but couldn't guess where the deer would be.  Back down below we found a great logging road that ran through a variety of marsh and moosey terrain. Everything  spoke of grouse and moose except none appeared. Tom and I talked KGB, mining and Jesus.  It's not the first time we've spent a weekend driving about in the wilderness. We don't seem to have a lot of common themes, never exhausting the ones we have though.  He's pretty sure the world's going to hell in a handbasket and I try to encourage him to have faith.
Luke says he and Sonny talk a lot too.
Gilbert listens.
Another great lunch at Teepee Lakes Cabins before we cleaned everything out and loaded up our trucks for the trip home.  All we'd shot was  one grouse. The other hunters at the lodge had shot a grouse too.  We'd all have liked to have shot a moose or deer.  Guys do thereabouts.  But we didn't.  Nonetheless we'd  had a great hunt   I drew lots of pictures on napkins describing the way to field dress a deer and how I get the bladder out in tact. We discussed various ways of coring the asshole too. It's not a discussion most people would have over eggs and sausage.
Luke and Sonny were awesome. Lots of good humor and stories. I liked their determination and enthusiasm.  They're both overdue for moose.  We're all wanting meat for the winter freezer.
The trip back to Vancouver over Sunday Summit on highway 3 was a picturesque winter wonderland.
Back to work tomorrow.
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