Deerless

Went hunting this weekend with my college buddies Todd and Keith. Keith is a guide on the Kenai, and Todd and I dipnet with him on the Kenai River. Todd has been here twice before with his son Alec, and both times were monsoons. This weekend looked like more of the same. On Friday, we launched the boat and first checked the crab pot. A pile of legal crab were in there. I rebaited, and then we took off for Admiralty. We hunted some large muskegs I’d seen on the map but could not remember hunting. It rained. And blew. And rained some more. We saw no deer. But back at the cabin we settled in for the weekend in a nice warm, dry place.

The next morning when we headed out to the boat, it was gone. I looked down the channel and saw nothing. Then I saw the boat. About a 100 yards down the beach. Nestled above the big rocks, right in the small gravel, at the high tide mark. Luckily, the evening high tide was the lower of the two, and we saw that it would float again in the afternoon. I said we could take the kicker off the boat and use my skiff that lives on the beach there, but they were having none of it. Both were apparently wore out from the day before and voted to go back to the cabin and listen to football games. Mississippi State was playing Auburn, and could potentially go to number 2 in the polls, I thought, if they won. Oh, and by the way, the line from the boat to the pull out didn’t break. My know came undone. Yikes.

So back at the cabin, and football all day. Minnesota (where Keith is from) won. Then Mississippi State won. Even Ole Piss beat A and M. We went back to the boat about an hour before high tide and it floated easily and I putted back to the anchorage and put a better knot to hold it tight. Saw some real rain again on Sat. I managed to pick a coffee can of huckleberries still hanging on.

Yesterday, we went to my best known trail and up we went. We called at all my usual spots and it was a great day of weather. Todd and Keith got to see all the skunk cabbage uprooted by bears, and some fresh deer sign, but we could not call in a deer. I think they are still at higher elevations as it’s still so dang warm – about 50 here in the middle of October. And the fog was running just a few hundred feet up the ridge from the top muskeg so we didn’t try to climb the steep stuff.

This morning was another dry day, with little wind. I did the dishes and tidied up, then we headed out around low tide. We ran the beaches on Admiralty and Douglas and not a deer to be seen. I saw one humpback whale just as it dove.

A great weekend all the way around.