Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Outdoors with Big Mike: South Dakota Snow

Well, Outdoors with Big Mike has taken some weird turns lately. I went back to South Dakota to pheasant hunt again, and I think I have made my last trip to South Dakota in December. We left on Dec. 6th and like always, we drove instead of flying. When we were making the leg between St. Louis, Mo and Kansas City, Mo, we hit a snow Storm and I had some real bad driving conditions. In fact, we were in snow from there to Rapid City, SD where we met up with one of our friends from Cincinnati, Oh. We met him in a local gun shop, First Stop Guns, and enjoyed looking at all of the guns he had for sale. I had no intentions of buying a gun, however, when I was looking at his shop, I found a Winchester Mdl 12 in great condition with a solid rib barrel. I have not seen one of these for sale in my entire life in a gun store, and it was priced very low, so I bought it, and am glad that I did.

Well, the next day we drove back east to Presho, SD and got rooms at Hutch's there in Presho. Then we set out to go hunting pheasants. We drove out to the farm where we would be hunting,but there was only 3 of us, and the birds were very wild. In fact, they would not let you get within 200 yards of them before they flew. We did not kill a single bird the first day. That night, we went to Hutch's cafe, and had a real good steak dinner. There is not much in Presho, so dinning options were limited. One night there, a local church was having a soup dinner to raise money, and the next night, Hutch's was having a free Pita dinner to encourage the citizens to allow merchants to round purchases up to the next dollar to help support their town. Like most towns in the prairie the people are very friendly and honest. The motel even left keys out at night so that late arrivals could just check themselves in and the next day could come back and get straight with the front desk. When is the last time you have seen this kind of open trust? Crime does not seem to exist out there, but I am sure that there must be some.

The next day, the owner of 1st Stop Guns and one of his friends came out to Presho to hunt with us. That was a better day, and we actually killed some birds that day. We did not get out limit, but came close. That night, we drove about 10 miles east to a steak house and we were joined by the owner of the farm and his wife. We had a great time with these people and enjoyed getting to know them.

The third day of hunting was nothing to write home about. My shooting was very bad that day, and that just happens sometimes, but also the birds were very wild. I am used to seeing them early in the season, and then they are not so wild, but this time of the year, you really have to be quiet and sneak up on them. The entire trip was cold, very cold. At night the temp would dip to the shingle digits and would warm up to the mid twenties during the day. The snow never did leave.

The ride home was not fun either as we had icy roads all the way back to St. Louis. Other than the experience, this trip was a bust. I am so glad that I live in the South, and winter temps stay in the 70's.

Oh well, nothing ventured, nothing gained is what I always say.

Until the next adventure,



grizaham said...

Well that trip sounds very cold! We flew to Kansas City this past saturday during a snow storm! I cannot imagine the driving conditions! Glad you made it back to warm sunny southern alabama!!

Buck said...

Glad to hear you made it home ok
I can relate to that cold weather and like you I like it a little warmer. The mod. 12 is a good gun, had afew myself. I use a H&K Silver Lion for skeet shooting and bird hunting. Have a Happy New Year Mike you and your family.
Sincerely, Buck

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