Why I hunt.

By Bret Amundson

Today is the early Canada goose opener in North Dakota.   It’s a date that had been penciled on my calendar since the date it was set.

Apparently, it was penciled on a number of calendars.

There is no question that waterfowl hunting in North Dakota can be exciting, but that can be a drawback with competition for the same fields becoming fierce last night.

Country back roads that normally get the dust kicked up once or twice an hour resembled I-94, as pickups pulling decoy haulers trekked their way across the prairie.

It’s still a little early for geese to be bunched in big groups.  Finding a suitable field to hunt was hard enough, let alone one that hadn’t been seen by another pair of binoculars.

Two trucks. 5 hours. Hundreds of miles on the wheels.  Hundreds of dollars in the tank.    And we decided to sleep in.

We found a handful of target fields and narrowed it down to two.  As we checked on them at dark, they both had freshly planted posted signs.  And they will both have someone else’s spread stretched across them this morning.

But that’s the way it goes.    They beat us there fair and square.

On the other hand, I did get to see a lot of other wildlife during the trip.  Including a pair of northern harriers who took time to rest on the upturned trunk of a former shelterbelt resident.     It offered a chance to test my shutter finger, even if I had to rest my trigger finger.

I hunt to get outside and enjoy what nature has to offer.  Sometimes it’s not always what you’re expecting.


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