American Hunter - December 2013 - 80

bottom shifted to one side, further throwing off my shot.
So it was on-the-job training on how to
sit up, lift and swing my shotgun and fire, all
of it as close as possible to one fluid move.
It took practice, and a bunch of misses, but
within an hour I bagged out, a young eider
and four scooters, all drakes. I wasn't real
impressed with my shooting. There were
four or five shells left in what had been a
full box, but Rhodes was complimentary.
"Believe me," he said, "I've had guys
blast off two boxes of shells and have
nothing to show except a sore shoulder."
Sea duck hunting is just so unique, said
Rhodes, in year nine as a sea duck guide.
"I've had some really hardcore waterfowlers come out with me, guys who've
killed every kind of puddle duck there is,
pounded Canadas and snows for years,
too. But they've never bagged an eider."
"You want an eider," Rhodes continued,
"you have to come here, Massachusetts or
Maine. And you have to get out on the
ocean."
The next morning the ocean was like
glass again. But we only had a couple of
flights and I barely managed a pair of scoters.
"It'll be better tomorrow," Rhodes

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promised as we headed back. "They're
calling for weather tomorrow. That usually gets them feeding hard."
It was like hunting on a teeter-totter,
up and down on those rolling gray waves.
But the eiders-a lot of them-were on
the move, veering out over the water at
all sorts of crazy angles.
I took the first eider on a crossing shot
right-to-left as he cut over the decoys. Several flights of three and four birds came right
at my face and over me before I could react.
Then a hen and drake seesawed in from my
left, interested in the decoys and moving
slowly. Two shots and I had the drake.
Nothing else showed for about a half
hour and then several flights of eiders
came over, and a handful of shots later, I

had two more in the water. The limit was
five, but no more than four of a species, so
I'd have to wait for a scoter. "Or come back
to the boat, let Whitmier shoot?" Rhodes
asked over the radio.
I was done. My head hurt and my stomach felt like someone had punched me hard.
Seasick meds had done all they could.
After Whitmier shot his limit of eiders,
we pointed the boat toward the landing. I
felt like I'd accomplished something, like
I was a better hunter for the experience.
Sure, I was a little seasick. That was a small
price to pay for a morning on the ocean,
though-that and the sun and the salt, the
fast shooting, and eiders passing so near I
could hear the wind whistle through their
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American Hunter - December 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Hunter - December 2013

Contents
American Hunter - December 2013 - Cover1
American Hunter - December 2013 - Cover2
American Hunter - December 2013 - 1
American Hunter - December 2013 - Contents
American Hunter - December 2013 - 3
American Hunter - December 2013 - 4
American Hunter - December 2013 - 5
American Hunter - December 2013 - 6
American Hunter - December 2013 - 7
American Hunter - December 2013 - 8
American Hunter - December 2013 - 9
American Hunter - December 2013 - 10
American Hunter - December 2013 - 11
American Hunter - December 2013 - 12
American Hunter - December 2013 - 13
American Hunter - December 2013 - 14
American Hunter - December 2013 - 15
American Hunter - December 2013 - 16
American Hunter - December 2013 - 17
American Hunter - December 2013 - 18
American Hunter - December 2013 - 19
American Hunter - December 2013 - 20
American Hunter - December 2013 - 21
American Hunter - December 2013 - 22
American Hunter - December 2013 - 23
American Hunter - December 2013 - 24
American Hunter - December 2013 - 25
American Hunter - December 2013 - 26
American Hunter - December 2013 - 27
American Hunter - December 2013 - 28
American Hunter - December 2013 - 29
American Hunter - December 2013 - 30
American Hunter - December 2013 - 31
American Hunter - December 2013 - 32
American Hunter - December 2013 - 33
American Hunter - December 2013 - 34
American Hunter - December 2013 - 35
American Hunter - December 2013 - 36
American Hunter - December 2013 - 37
American Hunter - December 2013 - 38
American Hunter - December 2013 - 39
American Hunter - December 2013 - 40
American Hunter - December 2013 - 41
American Hunter - December 2013 - 42
American Hunter - December 2013 - 43
American Hunter - December 2013 - 44
American Hunter - December 2013 - 45
American Hunter - December 2013 - 46
American Hunter - December 2013 - 47
American Hunter - December 2013 - 48
American Hunter - December 2013 - 49
American Hunter - December 2013 - 50
American Hunter - December 2013 - 51
American Hunter - December 2013 - 52
American Hunter - December 2013 - 53
American Hunter - December 2013 - 54
American Hunter - December 2013 - 55
American Hunter - December 2013 - 56
American Hunter - December 2013 - 57
American Hunter - December 2013 - 58
American Hunter - December 2013 - 59
American Hunter - December 2013 - 60
American Hunter - December 2013 - 61
American Hunter - December 2013 - 62
American Hunter - December 2013 - 63
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 65
American Hunter - December 2013 - 66
American Hunter - December 2013 - 67
American Hunter - December 2013 - 68
American Hunter - December 2013 - 69
American Hunter - December 2013 - 70
American Hunter - December 2013 - 71
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 73
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 75
American Hunter - December 2013 - 76
American Hunter - December 2013 - 77
American Hunter - December 2013 - 78
American Hunter - December 2013 - 79
American Hunter - December 2013 - 80
American Hunter - December 2013 - 81
American Hunter - December 2013 - 82
American Hunter - December 2013 - 83
American Hunter - December 2013 - 84
American Hunter - December 2013 - 85
American Hunter - December 2013 - 86
American Hunter - December 2013 - 87
American Hunter - December 2013 - 88
American Hunter - December 2013 - 89
American Hunter - December 2013 - 90
American Hunter - December 2013 - 91
American Hunter - December 2013 - 92
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 94
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 96
American Hunter - December 2013 - 97
American Hunter - December 2013 - 98
American Hunter - December 2013 - 99
American Hunter - December 2013 - 100
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American Hunter - December 2013 - 110
American Hunter - December 2013 - 111
American Hunter - December 2013 - 112
American Hunter - December 2013 - Cover3
American Hunter - December 2013 - Cover4
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