COLUMN: Hunting isn’t over yet

By Ed Gilbert • Last Updated 11:43 pm on Friday, November 30, 2012

Yes, the regular firearms season is drawing to a close, but there is still much ado for those who wish to keep on hunting.

For example, the muzzleloading deer hunt is about to kick in, and if one likes other action, rabbits, squirrels and ruffed grouse are still likely candidates.

For me, I sort of slide over to small game this time of year, unless I tempt fate with the old smoke pole and it misfires  when I have a fine deer in my sight! Yes, perhaps I should consider buying a newer model, maybe an inline or something more dependable. Ah, but I guess I’m still the old fashioned type, and as we all know, us guys never learn.

No, we still need someone dependable nearby to mentor or advise us.

Speaking of such, perhaps this is a good time to interrupt this column in order to thank the many of you readers who have sent messages, cards and e-mails with regard to the loss of my wife, Gerri. You have no idea how much your messages have meant to me, and I thank you from the top and bottom of my heart!  Gerri was my outdoor companion for many hunting and fishing seasons, and I’ll never forget her.

Now let’s see, where was I? Oh yes, more hunting is afoot.

And when I say “hunting is afoot,” I really mean it. As one knows, we often deer hunt from a stand or blind this time of year, where we sit and freeze our bottoms off! But with the small game hunt we tend to move about, and this helps to keep us warmer.

And you know what? During my deer hunting this season I’ve seen more small game than in many a year. It seems that rabbits, squirrels and grouse are plentiful, at least up in Lake County where I’ve been hunting. I may have mentioned it before, but from my stand in the old pine tree one morning I saw three bouncing rabbits, two barking squirrels, and a partridge in a pear tree!

Ah, but sure enough, when I do go out to hunt those critters they will undoubtedly be over by Reed City, down by Baldwin, or in some other faraway location!  However, as some hunters are aware, many animals do get out and move about in cold weather. Sure, it seems as though a sunny day is best to bring rabbits out of their holes, but squirrels and partridge move about on a daily basis as they search and gather food.

So, as said, there is still much hunting going on. And even if one needs a change of pace, fishing is still in vogue and we can give that a try.

The real bottom line is that here in Michigan we have a great outdoor heritage and lifestyle to handle and promote. There is virtually something for everybody, and that everybody is you and I. Let’s keep it going.

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