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Started by Woolly Bugger, December 31, 2020, 11:05:14 AM
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I should have gone back the day before when the sun was out, but I had some other obligations. No need to get there in the frozen morning so I arrived at noon. The same Floridian father and son were having lunch at their truck. This was their third day hunting and they hadn't seen one. They had scouted and found fresh rubs and scrapes and had flagged some of them. I told them of my plans, I was going down to the lower boundary and fishing back up to the bridge, which I figured would take about an hour and then I'd be hiking out around 3. We wished each other luck and I headed on down the trail.
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I passed their stand on the trail.
Once over the bridge the old road is much more overgrown and then crosses the creek a short ways down. Then the trail moves above the creek with steep banks and large rock formations, sort of a mini gorge. As I approached to within 600 feet of the boundary I took what looked like the best natural line of drift down to the creek. The forest is more open down in this part of the creek and casting wasn't restricted to bow and arrow all of the time.
There were some great fishy looking pools here and I thought for sure that I would catch some fish right off the bat. That didn't happen and I had to work for them. I found them in the deeper slower pools, up against root wads and undercuts.
I turned away from the stream to look at a rock formation and saw the owl. It was at shoulder height and about 12 feet away. At first I thought it was just some leaves snagged on the branch, but the ears gave it away. Holding perfectly still they don't look alive and the mottled gray blended in with the rock. I only had my phone with me so I tried to get close enough for a good photo. I switched to video so I would get a shot if it flew away. As I approached to within 6 feet it decided that I was too close and flew away.
The stream is pretty shallow and I could see that it might be way more productive to fish it in the spring. It is remote and beautiful.
The hunters were waiting patiently in their stands as I walked out. It appeared that the younger one was glued to his phone and his head was down most of the time. I don't think he saw me passing by.
So that's it for 2020. Carp pond closure. Smith river floods and damn dam problems. Too much rain, high water in the smallie rivers and Tennessee tailwaters. I'm hoping for a return to normal sometime in 2021!
But for now it's sardines and beer.
Scouted another little creek to try in the future...
All y'all have a happy and safe new year's eve!
Seeing an owl during the day is some bad juju. But I believe the sardines for lunch were a counter omen, so all good.
I like this report!!!!!
@Mudwall Gatewood 3.0 I think it I was just lucky to see it all that omen crap is just a lot of horse manure!
Nice screech owl find. Hard little owls to spot.
Wow to the Owl. Lucky you. Happy New Year!
That was cool as heck.
I love Screech Qwls. I could listen to their call and repeat all night.
That stream looks exactly one J and I plundered a couple of summers ago.
Sigh. Lots of brookies, lots more than you would expect. And a rare plant that greatly exited me.
I've never seen a long eared owl. What a treat.
Quote from: Onslow on December 31, 2020, 18:17:51 PMI've never seen a long eared owl. What a treat.
Pretty sure it's a screech