|A Great Hocking County Clearcut |
That Stretches Out Forever
The dogs were coming around the hill. I was standing in a great spot where three logging roads came together. The dogs were between the top two. They were getting closer and closer. I knew the rabbit had to be busting out any second. I stood perfectly still, waiting and waiting.
The dogs were at 50 yards, then 40, then 30. All four dogs were pounding. Where was the rabbit? Twenty yards, then fifteen, then ten, and they stopped. I still hadn't seen a rabbit. The dogs broke down. They looked up the hill and down. They looked ahead and then worked the line backwards.
There wasn't a single bark. I watched and waited. The dogs spread out, searching hard. They worked out farther and then came back to the checkpoint. I walked along the road looking into the briers. No hole that I could see. Anyway, they were working way too hard for the rabbit to have holed.
On the last chase, soon after it ended, Dennis and Chip walked out to the road so I knew it holed. On the chase after this, all four dogs came out soon after they quit barking, again showing the chase ended in a hole.
This was a lost rabbit. No excuses and I really couldn't make sense of it. Why after 15 minutes of a good chase did it end like that? How could they have just blown up the chase? They couldn't even find enough of a track for one bark. Three hours later I am still wondering, what happened to that rabbit?