Deer Drive

Steve (another classmate), Buzz (Pat’s dad) joined Pat and I deer hunting in the woods on the edge of town. Pat put us along the side of the hill, then went into the woods along the creek that runs adjacent to the school and athletic fields, as that’s where he said he knew the deer were. He didn’t take his gun or wear blaze orange, since hunting this close to the school would not be kosher nor probably legal. Pat guessed if he pushed any deer, they’d move, in broad daylight, up from the creek, across the road, between houses along the edge of the woods, and up into the woods, right by one or more of us.

I thought this was a longshot, but was out for the fun of it anyway. I went to my station, and waited. About an hour later, I saw Pat walking up the street back to where he’d left his truck. When I saw him drive back to the parking spot, I went down to meet him. He then walked over to where he’d stationed Steve, and I got warm in his truck.

Along came his dad, who, after five minutes or so of chatting, mentioned 5 deer had come by him. We saw when we later left, that, sure enough, the deer had come up out of the woods, crossed the street between the houses, and went right by Buzz. No bucks, but it sure is fun hunting with people who know practically every blade of grass on their land.

I got talking to Buzz, who is in his early 80s and like Pat, born and raised in Bolivar, about oil recovery. I asked if he thought they could economically recover more oil in the area with new technology. Our town was in the original oil boom area of the US in the late 1800’s, and where Rockefeller started his empire.

Buzz went to explain to me how they had used “water flooding” to extract the most oil. How he explained it, there were four wells drilled on the corners of a square plot, with the oil well (most about 1200 feet) in the center. Water was then pumped under pressure down the water wells, and this forced the oil up the center pipe. He said with all the water now in the formation from this, he doubted much more oil could be recovered economically.

We hunted later in the day, where I tried sitting for about 2 hours in the same spot, and nothing came by. I was happy to start walking again back down the hill to the truck, as I was near my limit for standing the cold.

Mark Stopha
Alaska Wild Salmon Company
4455 N. Douglas Hwy
Juneau, AK 99801

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