Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 5

places were still sharp in the sand and clay. Grainy soil stood crisp around the voids, as if the rocks had been turned just minutes earlier. But what had turned them? The oddity’s extent was too great for a human author. A person would have tired quickly of the rock-flipping game. And there was no pattern, the flipped stones “wandered” all over the road. A bear? But what was its hoped-for reward? I turned other rocks but found no insects, grubs or any such morsels, and I could see no marks left by claws in the soil. Turkeys? The random arrangement matched how a flock might forage but some stones seemed too heavy to have been turned by even a 20-pound tom. Raccoons? I still don’t know, but have puzzled over it often. Such finds represent one of the lasting but less obvious values of being outdoors. Despite all the technological “advances” in hunting and fishing equipment, and despite the gadgets, inventions and distractions that intrude today on the essential outdoor experience, we still encounter things that are not, on the surface, clearly apparent. Some situations still test not only our knowledge of wildlife and place, but our imagination in speculating on the evidence. When I returned to the stream’s main stem, I hunted with more determined intent. I stopped often in encouraging spots, sought concealment and called, but only the stream and the season’s early-canopy songbirds broke the quiet. I followed another fragment of log track back downstream toward where the grouse and the gobbler had dueled in the moon’s waning luster. Rounding a turn around a boulder I saw, about 80 yards away and squarely in the middle of the trail, the backside of a gobbler’s broad fan, blocking its owner’s view from my careless intrusion. I stepped off the trail and crept to a place where I could sit and lean in shadow against a big rock, yet where I could see well into the woods in the bird’s direction. I waited until any immediate alarm
MAY 2011

caused by my arrival might have passed, and then stroked the slate. A gobble rolled back through the woods and I settled the gun atop my left knee. The tom gobbled once more at my calls then fell silent. Guessing he was moving in, I watched the trail I’d abandoned most closely, but occasionally scanned the woods to my left, along the creek where I’d caught brook trout a few weeks before. My last scan to the left brought with it that moment that pulls you always back to the woods, time and again, in hopes of recreating that ageless thrill. A gobbler in full strut display was stepping toward me along the creek, already in gun range. As he paced nearer, his red throat and bronze back aflame in the sun, another strutter appeared behind him, following his course. The leading gobbler proved a heavy one, even after his winter travails. His awkward weight tired my arms on the long hike down the hollow. I laid him on the creekside moss, found a piece of stout cord in my pack, stashed there for tagging deer, and bound the turkey’s legs at the spurs. With his legs hung on my shotgun barrel, I hefted the gun to my back. The sling across my chest bore the gobbler’s bulk and the rest of the walk was an exercise in ease and satisfaction. The hunt offered much to ponder in the coming weeks. I’d been fortunate to take home a fine gobbler from the Laurel Ridge, one that had thrived amid the deepest snows in half a century. The little trout that still grace our narrow brooks, high above all our mines, wells, towns and farms, had led me to his haunt. And the territorial claim of a ruffed grouse, under a morning full moon, had moved him to proclaim his own reign in the hollow. I knew I would go back again, in some other season, for more. 
5



Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011

Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011
Myths & Legends of the Whitetail
Contents
Long Hollow Gobbler
Oh What a Summer
Grandpa’s Last Hunt
Become an HTE Instructor?
Ready for Reds
The Memory That Will Never Be Forgotten
Overcoming a Jinx
The 28th Class
The Last Day
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
The Naturalist’s Eye
Fun Game
Straight from the Bowstring
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Myths & Legends of the Whitetail
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Long Hollow Gobbler
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Oh What a Summer
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Grandpa’s Last Hunt
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Become an HTE Instructor?
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Ready for Reds
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - The Memory That Will Never Be Forgotten
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Overcoming a Jinx
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - The 28th Class
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - The Last Day
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - BB1
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - BB2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2011 - Cover4
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