Into The Wild ... And Back Again - Painted Hunter's Blog

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Into The Wild ... And Back Again

Blog Posted:2/10/2014 11:09:00 AM
   Well, I'm back. All in all, I had a good time, but things didn't go exactly as I had planned. I wasn't able to leave until Saturday morning. Guess what happened Friday afternoon snowed. Yep, it's only snowed lightly once here all year(we had some sleet and ice a while back), but mother nature gave me the ole "screw you, Caleb", so I had to deal with that. My wife dropped me off on the south edge of Wattensaw(decided not to go to Dagmar), on Saturday morning. This way I could walk the 25 miles back north and right up to my house, and be there sometime Sunday afternoon. I took with me ... my Henry .22 rifle(as I had planned on hunting squirrels, but ended up not needing to), my backpack with a few extra clothes in case I fell in the water or something, a knife(my Buck),a little pan to boil water, a flint for fires, my phone, a pen and paper, and the clothes on my back.
  Sometime Saturday afternoon I came across a flock of Speckle Belly Geese in a field on the edge of a woodline. I took a picture before I shot one, but they were about 100 yards away so it's not the clearest picture. At that distance with a .22, you gotta arch your shot a little in order to make it. I got lucky and nailed one right in the neck on the first try. I took a couple of pictures of my goose after I'd got back in the woods. I tied it to my pack and continued my hike. Before I stopped that evening, I ran across the carcass of a wild boar, which I also took a picture of. He was just about to turn too ripe(rotten), but I could have eaten him in a pinch. Of course, I had my goose so I left him for the buzzards and coyotes. I don't know how he died, but I'm guessing he was wounded by a hunter, and eventually died of his wounds.
  I continued walking north with no problems until about an hour before dark. Then I decide to make camp. This was something I'd been a little concerned about all day. You see, it got warm enough Saturday that most of the snow melted. So that meant that most of the ground was soaking wet. It was pointless to build a shelter and lay on the wet ground or a pile of wet leaves, and it was a calm night anyway(no wind), so the best plan was just to find a dry spot next to the trunk of a big tree, keep a fire in front of me, and try to sleep reclined against the tree. But, I'm getting ahead of myself. Before I tried to sleep, I had to cook. I plucked my goose, removed the breasts, liver, and heart(which I also took a picture of) and cooked those over the fire.(oh yeah, I cheated and brought a little dab of spice that I sprinkled over the can see in the picture) While walking, I found a piece of stainless steel laying on the ground. It was just right to skewer some hunks of meat, so I drove it into the end of a stick and that's how I cooked. Goose is kind of gamey tasting but not bad. Canadian geese are the best. Snow geese are the worst. Speckled Bellies are somewhere in the middle. I roasted the legs later that night in between my rounds of sleep and ate those for breakfast...very tough to chew.
  So about my night ... it sucked. It got pretty cold. I'd say about 20 degrees F. I took a picture of myself somewhere around two in the morning, leaning up against my tree, and giving the situation the ole "thumbs down"...haha...told you there would be times when I'd regret this and my big mouth. I would sleep for 30 minutes or so at a time, get up and move around to get the blood flowing and wake up my butt-cheeks and legs, and then sleep some more. It got old, but I DID get quite a bit of sleep, and it was certainly better than laying in a pile of wet grass or leaves. And like I said, I wasn't worried about having walls because it wasn't windy at all.
   I left at daylight the next morning. Nothing spectacular happened that day. I just walked. I wasn't hungry so I didn't bother trying to hunt, though I had several chances to take out small game. Oh, and I forgot...I ended up not needing to boil water to drink because I just kept stuffing left-over hunks of snow into the water resevoir in my backpack, and drinking that once it melted. I stayed pretty much hydrated that way. I came out of Wattensaw sometime around 2pm Sunday afternoon. I took a picture of the last stretch of woods beyond the edge of a field...once I crossed those, I was home.
   Then I took a nap....;)

The pictures I took are posted in my blog photos(still having trouble pasting them here). Keep in mind, I was alone, and I'm not a photographer. And it's hard to get an action shot when you need both hands and one extra to take a picture...haha..but I did my best to capture some of my time in the wild. Also, some of the pictures are bloody and kinda keep that in mind before you look.
  Also, I wrote these poems. They aren't very good, but I was on the move a lot, and one of them I wrote half asleep at 1 am while the coyotes were running around making a bunch of noise and keeping me awake. One little guy was curious enough about me to get rather close. The picture of me crouched in the brush was that night when I was trying to get close enough to take his picture, but he wasn't having any of it. So, I took one of myself, and the flash really got him nervous...ha...he didn't stay long after that. He had bright eyes and I named him Fletch.

My only company
Is the coyote's call
Here in the dark of the wood
I can see him there
... green eyed stare
To watch the wisp of flames
Never did he invite me here
And I am just passing by
'Til come tomorrow
When no man will borrow
Here in the dark of the wood
Here's another little jag....

When i am hungry
I will eat
When I am thirsty
I will drink
When I am tired
I will rest
In the cradle
Of nature's arms

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Date: 2/15/2014 3:13:00 PM
Cool poems and adventure, Caleb! Classic rifle! Once grilled pheasant on a skewer camping...delish! keep yer powder dry...jimbo
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Date: 2/11/2014 7:18:00 PM
Caleb..that does NOT sound fun to me LOL go look at & write for the Inwood Indiana magazine [make sure to look at their photo albums!] They liked my country stuff and I'm sure they'd like yours & we can say YONDER and not git razzed!
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Debbie Guzzi
Date: 2/13/2014 7:18:00 PM
I reckon it is
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/12/2014 7:37:00 AM
Haha...will check it out. Is it over yonder?
Date: 2/11/2014 5:17:00 AM
- Pleased to take a part in your experience - welcome back :) - oxox // Anne-Lise :)
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:26:00 AM
Thanks Anne
Date: 2/11/2014 4:55:00 AM
must be another adventure in your book, caleb.. i can't believe you were alone, but in hindsight, this may have been good for the soul.. enjoyed your first poem!.. welcome back to this side of the world.. huggs
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:26:00 AM
Thanks Nette...and yes, things like this(uncomfortable at times) make for great stories and experience. It IS good for the soul..;)
Date: 2/10/2014 3:41:00 PM
Wow! Quite a hike! Good to be home, I'm sure. I lived for a year not too far away south of a little town called Mt. Ida when I was 14. Beautiful country.
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:24:00 AM
Mt. Ida...yeah, I know where that is. You're right, it's beautiful countryside
Date: 2/10/2014 3:31:00 PM
gosh, you were bundled up good!! Nice pics. I am so picky about meat. I can only eat beef and hardly any other kind of meat, not even chicken tastes very good to me. (unless it's by KFC!!) I think I will die of starvation if it ever comes to having to live off the land!!
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:23:00 AM
Never know, you might come to liike it. My wife used to refuse to eat most wild game, but she has a taste for it now...most of it..
Date: 2/10/2014 3:28:00 PM
Love that last little poem, Caleb! Good grief, to think this kind of weekend is your idea of fun!! Anyway, whatever rocks your boat, my friend. Does your wife ever join you? Or do you prefer mostly alone . I think you must enjoy being alone with nature!! I forgot to see the pics. I will post this and go see them.
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:22:00 AM
She likes to go camping, but she needs to be cozy and warm. But a trip like this one, I'd rather be alone anyway, and she wouldn't want to go even if I asked her's a little much for her...she calls me Wildman..haha
Date: 2/10/2014 2:20:00 PM
Game Winner.... Makes a good title for any poem :)
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/10/2014 2:28:00 PM
took me a mean my're right, it would make a good title.
Date: 2/10/2014 2:18:00 PM
Caleb, mighty wild:) Thank you for sharing the tranquilizing moment.... Wild enough. :) Amazing pic. Love Ya.... SKAT
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/10/2014 2:26:00 PM
Thank you very much, Skat!
Date: 2/10/2014 1:58:00 PM
Hey Caleb nice to see you survived, not that I doubted it, I hope you had the kidneys devilled...hhhmmmmm
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/11/2014 8:26:00 AM
I'll have to try that...
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David Williams
Date: 2/10/2014 4:21:00 PM
Caleb devilled kidneys on toast, now that is the way to eat them...heaven on a plate..
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/10/2014 2:25:00 PM
Hmmm...devilled kidneys? I've never tried them that way...never even heard of it. They've never been my favorite and I usually just fry them in a little butter and garlic...or in the case of the goose...raw(they're so tiny)
Date: 2/10/2014 11:29:00 AM
Well. Welcome back...glad you're safe...I enjoyed your adventure and pictures Caleb....and the poems are dear...
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Painted Hunter
Date: 2/10/2014 11:46:00 AM
Thanks sis!

My Past Blog Posts

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Date Posted: 5/28/2014 8:46:00 AM
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Date Posted: 4/15/2014 10:11:00 AM
Pictures. Me at 5 and others
Date Posted: 3/17/2014 11:32:00 AM
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Gone Fishin' Contest
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Into The Wild ... And Back Again
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In honor of the crown
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Re-telling of the naked hunter...and other stories
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Date Posted: 1/20/2014 2:32:00 PM
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Date Posted: 1/13/2014 11:22:00 AM
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Date Posted: 1/10/2014 2:13:00 PM
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Date Posted: 1/2/2014 12:46:00 PM
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Date Posted: 11/4/2013 2:17:00 PM
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Date Posted: 10/1/2013 11:43:00 AM
Contest Judged ... Finally
Date Posted: 9/30/2013 11:26:00 AM
New Contest Posted--In the Woods
Date Posted: 9/2/2013 8:46:00 AM
Poetry and Fishing
Date Posted: 6/25/2013 10:24:00 AM
No idea what I'm doing...
Date Posted: 6/17/2013 10:59:00 AM

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