It's cutting them loose and having the pack run the rabbit until it gives up and goes in a hole or gets caught. And although the dogs usually don't catch it, they run like they want to. Just me and my pack of hounds, in any condition, on any day, in the roughest places I can find . . .

Monday, December 16, 2013

S'No Day Like a Snow Day

Got a call. No work today. What's a guy to do? Guess I didn't have much choice but to load the dogs. We had two inches of new snow and it was still coming down pretty good. Probably every rabbit in the state was in a hole, but I sure wasn't going to sit around the house.

When we pulled up to the clearcut, I wondered about just calling it a day. Surely there wouldn't be a rabbit out today. Everyone knows that cottontails hate new snow. Give them a couple of days and they will run, but fresh snow means no running. But we were already there, so why not go for a walk in the snow?

We collared up the dogs and headed out. Within a couple of minutes, Butcher busted out with a rabbit. A quick look at the Garmin showed that he was 168 yards and headed out. The pack quickly joined in and the chase was on. For the next 40 minutes the dogs pounded. All the sudden, today was a great day to be hunting.

Over the next 3 & 1/2 hours we worked our way past one clearcut, along a big pine thicket, and back to a second clearcut. Each spot had rabbits and they wanted to run. The dogs were hopping, like they enjoyed being out in the fresh snow. Most chases lasted a while, with a slight pause, and right into a another chase. Several dogs jumped rabbits which always helps.

We had covered most of the area where we were at and decided to move down the road. We cut loose and it took about 15 minutes to get a rabbit up. I had almost given up, when Butcher busted out with a jump. He moved towards an open woods on the other side of the holler. I watched as the rabbit crossed through the woods and out of sight. The dogs pounded after him. 

I watched on the Garmin as the rabbit headed out over 670 yards. If I hadn't seen him cross the open woods I would have wondered what was going on. He obviously knew where he was going though. Once he got over the hill, he circled from 330 yards to almost 700 yards several times. He was a great rabbit and gave us a great chase. He finally holed to end the day.

The dogs started back to the truck. As they worked their way back, I couldn't help but smile. There's just s'no day like a snow day. 

I ran Butcher, Ob, Jed, Cole, and Dilly. The Old Man ran Hot Head, Village Girl, Lim, and Tony.

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