Arizona Quail Hunter dot com is a log of hunting trips I've made throughout the years including hunts in Arizona & Idaho
Arizona Quail Hunting Log - November 2010
Hunts: 06 November, 27 November
06 November 2010 - Gambel's Quail Hunting - Eastern Arizona
Pistol Pointing Moving Gambel's Covey
I've mentioned before that I've never come home with a limit of Gambel's Quail. Mearn's, yes. Gambel's, no. On average I don't even think I break the halfway point. But, I've always told myself that it's not about how many birds you bring home, it's about how much fun you have trying. And as for fun...well...I have plenty of it. Today it was just me and the dogs so we did some exploring. The first spot just happened to be a place I'd been before but forgot about. It wasn't great and I remember why I have never been back since the first trip. Just too many steep hills for my liking. Pistol and I took a walk anyway and at first it didn't seem (or sound...birds were really quite today) that there was going to be any action. Then as we were nearing a small canyon I heard birds. They were quite a way's off and the call was pretty faint but we headed in the general direction of the call. Not long after that Pistol finally went on point. Nothing. After a few false points I could hear the birds calling again. Some...all...who knows how many...had made their way straight up a steep mountain side. Since these may be the only birds we'd find in this location, up we went. And up. And up. While I could hear them talking every now and than we never did catch up to them. I finally had enough climbing and we headed back down the mountain. After about another 30 minutes Pistol went on point at the edge of a wash. I moved in and up flew 3 lonely birds. I took a fast shot and saw feathers but that bird had no intentions of stopping. We headed back to the truck, packed up and got out of there fast. By now it was 8:30am and things were warming up!
YoYo Stopped to Flush
My next stop would take me to a totally new location. This one had a windmill (I love windmills) and plenty of water. Just as we were pulling into the spot I saw a bunch of birds scurrying in all directions to get out of our way. After I got everything ready, YoYo and I headed up after them. Yes. Most of them had gone up hill and I wasn't about to let them get away with that. As we moved up the hill I saw YoYo get birdie and in that same instant a bunch of birds flew up to the top of the hill. I was so proud of YoYo. She stopped and stared at them go and didn't move a muscle until I asked her to. Up at the top of the hill we walked for quite a way with out seeing any birds. Then all the sudden YoYo was on something. She moved up and about 20 yards out a covey of 25-30 birds flew out and scattered in front of us. This made for some good action as they had split up. The first flush landed me a double of which YoYo quickly grabbed the first but I didn't find the second. There were a few missed shots and then one flew out right at my feet, wildly spun around me and flew behind me. I spun, shot and dropped the bird. It was a fun shot. From there we moved off the top of the hill and down into the drainages below.
First Time With Cholla
Down in the drainages there was a fair amount (not too much...but more than enough) cholla. This was YoYo's first time with cholla and she did great! She only got hunt up twice. Once (as pictured above) when her "propeller" got stuck to her leg, and another time when she tried to chew a huge bunch of it off her front legs. Other than that she just fought it off or ignored it completely. Dogs really amaze me. They are out there having so much fun that the pain of rocks, cactus and every other sticky, poky thing doesn't seem to bother them. Anyway, we worked for about 10 minutes when a 15-20 bird covey flew up ahead of us. Once again they split up so we had some action with the singles and I got one more in the bag and sent another flying off with a few less tail feathers. I found out today that for some reason I am now shooting high. I need to work on that. Those were the last birds we saw until we got back to the truck. While YoYo was soaking in the trough I heard birds calling down in the wash. They were spooked by our noise and flew up the hill. There were about 20-25 birds. I let YoYo finish and as I was about to go up that hill I heard birds calling on the opposite side (where it was flatter) and there sounded like a lot more than 20-25 so we went after them. Good thing...there must have been 100 birds or more on that side and they were flushing all over the place (out of range). We chased them up the hill and after some hard walking, YoYo found one and I shot it! She made the down hill retrieve and we moved on. We bumped a bunch of birds, I shot and didn't find one more, and then we made our way back to the truck.
YoYo Making 1 of 4 Retrieves From Today
4 Male Gambel's Quail
Back at the truck I took Pistol out in the opposite direction and didn't find a thing. Once back at the water trough those birds from earlier (the covey of 20-25 that had been down in the wash) was back and we cased them up the hill. I had a few bad shots and finally Pistol pointed one. He flew out on the opposite side of the large tree & scrub, but I was able to move and get a quick shot. We found the feathers, but no bird. After that I called it a good day.
Chili Relleno & Green Chili Burro From Burger House
For the amount of time, energy and resources that I put into this sport some may wonder why on earth I do it. Well. It's not necessarily about how much food you can put on the table, but WHAT food is on the table at the end of a great hunt. For me, today, it was a Chili Relleno and a Green Chili Burrito from the Burger House in Miami. Man I love that place.
27 November 2010 - Mearns Quail Hunt - Southern Arizona
Pistol Pointing Cow?
We went out after Mearns Quail today. I'll tell you like I told my wife: It was as good as any Mearns hunt I've been on with TWO BIG EXCEPTIONS. #1 - I was in a bit too much of a hurry to get hunting and got a speeding ticket in Tucson. #2 - We didn't find any birds (well...by buddies each saw one, but I didn't see either one). Other than that I had a great time. Not sure where the birds were. We were in perfect Mearns Country but we saw very little, and I mean very little sign that there were any birds in any of the areas we hunted. Better luck next time.
2008 - Official Website of Arizona Quail Hunter dot com. Mesa, Arizona