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Magna Anno, a Big Year by any other name, or hunting without a gun

Magna Anno, a Big Year by any other name, or hunting without a gun

Step one, watch The Big Year movie with Steve Martin, Owen Wilson, and Jack Black. Step two, get a couple of your friends together to hold your own (very little) Big Year birding competition. Step three, have at it for bragging rights…and it is a pretty healthy diversion. First, we should define a Big Year. A Big Year, according to Wikipedia (which contains the sum total of all human knowledge), “is an informal competition among birders to see who can see or hear the…

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Bearly Thanksgiving

Bearly Thanksgiving

My family and I spent a lovely Thanksgiving at my brother Jim’s house in Woodbury, Connecticut. We were outside setting up for our annual archery tournament and the kids and I discovered some interesting tracks in the backyard. Being trained scouts, they started following the tracks by carefully walking directly in the tracks. I managed to take this picture with my iPhone before it was stomped out. My nephew, Jack, was the lead tracker. He followed the tracks under the…

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Keeping New Year’s Resolutions . . . Hiking, Birding, and Photography

Keeping New Year’s Resolutions . . . Hiking, Birding, and Photography

      Back in January 2013, before my work life went crazy, I wrote about New Year’s resolutions for the Mountain Gazette. I outline some suggested resolutions that I thought would make the sporting world a better place and sportsmen better people – if that is possible.  Among the resolutions I suggested was “Take up a new and complimentary ‘hobby’; something to get you out in the woods during the off season. Take up photography, bird watching, hiking, canoeing…

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Whose woods these are I think I know.

Whose woods these are I think I know.

His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping here; To watch his woods fill up with snow.  (Stopping by Woods on a Snow Evening, by Robert Frost) “Whose woods these are I think I know” is a fitting title to my first blog entry since July 2013. It is the feeling I get when I’m driving home from the Burlington airport; driving up our road, looking through the trees, across the meadow to our house. For more…

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Jericho Wildlife

Jericho Wildlife

…or wild wife. I’m back in Vermont for a few days from Babylon on the Potomac, as Fr. Rick refers to DC. Back home, time to check my Bushnell® HD Trophy Cam game camera to see what exotic wildlife it captured. The rarely seen Vermont wife The camera took 22 photos since the second week of July. Twelve of the photos are of some nut dog named Cabot racing through the woods after, most likely, squirrels. Squirrels were the stars in…

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“Every dog must have his day”

“Every dog must have his day”

(as published in the Mountain Gazette, July 18, 2013, p. 1) (Quote by Jonathan Swift) Every once and a while a story comes along that just warms your heart. You see the good in the world and forget, at least for a time, all that is so troublesome. I heard such a story the other day from my wife, which led me to call the people involved, and to put “pen to paper” as it is. Back in mid-June, Priscilla Emerling…

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Beer Tie Night in Arlington

Beer Tie Night in Arlington

Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We will go with you.” They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.  John 21:3 The fact is that sometime you go fishing and you catch nothing.  It happened to Peter and his friends and it happens to us as well.  So what is a guy, or gal, to do if Jesus doesn’t come and help you out?  Well, if it is…

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Black Flies and Trout Fishing

Black Flies and Trout Fishing

(as published in the Mountain Gazette, June 20, 2013, p. 10) Like baseball and football, fly fishing has its own season. The forest browns turn into green. The days grow longer. Your senses know the trout will soon be rising for the fly. An annual May fishing trip only adds to this normal level of seasonal anticipation. Snowmelt in May on the West Branch of the Ausable Once again, my dad, brother, and cousin met at the end of May…

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Old man vs. Stony Man

Old man vs. Stony Man

Last weekend I decided to take a drive out to Shenandoah National Park to do some hiking.  My goal was to hike to the summit of Stony Man mountain, then continue hiking along the Appalachian Trail (“AT”).  I saw a beautiful photo taken from Stony Man in Backpacker magazine and was hoping to get a picture or two using my iPhone. The signs are right “Watch for Deer” I won’t bore you with stories of DC-area traffic…coming and going, but…

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A Quick Spring, Family Fishing, Hiking, and Bullwinkle (the moose) Permits

A Quick Spring, Family Fishing, Hiking, and Bullwinkle (the moose) Permits

(as published in the Mountain Gazette, June 6, 2013) I saw spring come to Jericho all in a couple of minutes. While my statement is true, it was with the help of my Bushnell Game Camera. This past Monday I retrieved the memory card from my game camera. There were only about 500 photos on the card, but I was able to see the trees leaf out and the ferns come up right before my eyes. It was pretty neat to…

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