Saturday, October 9, 2010

Autumn Silence

The opening day of squirrel season has arrived ; in the hills of West Virginia. Until a few years ago, this was a highly anticipated day for me. I could always be found on a hardwood ridge; twenty-two in hand and squirrels in the game bag.

Gunshots were steadily heard until Halloween. Now, the woods around home are still. Trees are gone, squirrels are gone. The hickory ridges are now covered in blackberries and saplings. Coyote heaven.
I sold my .22's in 2004, after realizing that it wasn't feasible to drive 50 miles when you only have a couple of hours to spend hunting. The rewards do not justify the time and expense involved.

I spent all morning outside and a beautiful morning it was. I never heard on shot fired from the hillsides. Areas which are still blessed to have their mast producing trees, have an abundance of foods available to the critters of the woodlands. But, when the trees are gone; so is life. From here in the orange water, clear-cut wastelands of northwest Randolph County. Enjoy your Autumn if you still can.

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