The year was tense. In engineering plants, there was a broad introduction and development of new technology — industry rearming. The latest equipment is created by our factory and delivered to clients, required avtorskogo oversight of its implementation. And I was once again in charge of the team of experts arrived at one of the engineering plants of the Middle Urals.
We worked without regard to time. When all issues have been resolved, I was approached by a few leading specialists, headed by the chief engineer. Satisfied with the work done, they invited me to go hunting. I gladly agreed, and on Friday we went into the forest.
Stood Golden September. In the hunting I was greeted like an old friend: a year ago I was here. I showed my last year’s trophy moose head with huge antlers hanging in the fireplace room, and new trophies that appeared during this time. Offered a choice go for hazel or try to take the elk on a roar. Since I already had to go on such hunting in the Tver region, then asked if it was possible to organize a hunt for the autumn grouse. In the spring I was not able to visit the capercaillie-current and to play with mosnikos hide-and-seek very much.
It is hard to imagine Russian hunting without hunting for grouse. I have not met a single hunter who did not care to this bird. Take the grouse in his hands, carefully pick up and then a long time to enjoy them — what could be more desirable! “The wood-grouse, a wood grouse! — said my friend the gamekeeper. Early morning come up the river to Knyazh’i Gory. Hunt will be there. The mountain is gentle, the area is large and all covered with larch. You’ve never hunted grouse on larch? Very interesting hunt, and now is her time. A long way, but the place is lousy with grouse.”
The next morning we pushed off from shore and went under the “Whirlwind” against the current. The river then spread widely and calmly flowed between sandy spits, then narrowed and foamed in the rapids, wedged high hills. And all around, wherever you looked, was painted in the fall of centuries-old taiga. Motorboat was khodka, swallowing mile after mile, and almost at every turn of the river we saw on the coastal shallows of the local inhabitants. The elk, sniffing, slowly left our eyes into the forest, with the river gravel hard it broke the wood grouse, bear, without moving, watched us with the eyes. Seasoned, seen in its time husky with dignity was lying on the bow of the boat is solid and silent. She only turned her head immediately after the game, met at the next sandbar.
In the afternoon we arrived. The river was up a gentle hill, completely covered with yellowing larch. “Here, look,’ said the huntsman, arrived just in time. Larch is already sour. Now here is the chain feed. And if the berries had been grown enough (and it happens), the entire grouse here at the larches, enjoy, said hunters soured needles. Tomorrow we will check. Well, now to heat the hut and ready for a morning hunt. If today’s gloomy weather continues, even the old grouse will admit to themselves for a good shot, that is not always in bright, Sunny weather. Yes, and the dog will be easier to find grouse, which in this weather is not so strict and fearful. I specifically took the most experienced husky, who went more than once with me on capercaillie. She knows how to behave under the tree, so it was off to the hunter”.
Approaching the hut, the huntsman took away a log, underpinning a low door and we went inside. In the house it was dark — a small window almost missed the light. When his eyes adjusted to the darkness, I saw the Jaeger mansion. Chunky table, a couple of wide benches along the walls and a new iron stove. Rich! “I bring friends here, hunters, — said the master. It with my own family live here in the berry and mushroom seasons. For life here is all there: the wood under a canopy, salt, grits, corned beef. So now the stove will melt, and dinner”. With these words the huntsman started to host, and soon we were sitting in the warmth, by the light of smoky kerosene lamps. The dog already had supper and fed lay at the door, silently participating in the conversation. Our leisurely conversation revolved around hunting, forest — for life. “This is my plot in the forest, said the huntsman, is rich in animal and bird. The cabin was set when fishers were. But now for fishing power are not the same, and
hunter service interesting — always on the hunt. Winter here to fish the sons arrive, so the cabin year round is not empty, serve the people.” Slowly the conversation died down. I got comfortable on the bench and listened…
The hut was full of all kinds of sounds — a murmuring, a rustling. Taiga outside the window, too, were not silent: the wind howled in the branches of the trees creaked, the dead wood, someone had crashed in the night, someone screamed. Quietly squealed, jerking in sleep, paws, husky. For Moscow the hunter to be in such a place — a great success. Wilderness! Bear’s corner!
Woke me the owner still in the dark. Quickly got up and went into the forest. Ranger handed me a small-caliber carbine with open sights, saying that the capercaillie hunting better. “And the guns we have in case of meeting a bear” — pointedly he said.
The husky immediately took off into the thicket, and we quietly went down the path, looking through binoculars crown the largest of the larches. It turns out that grouse does not sit down to fatten on the young, low trees. For bills he chooses only old larch with a dense crown and thick branches, where it is easier to hide. He is perfectly camouflaged in a dense red pine needles. Listening to the silence of the taiga, we have carefully considered each big tree on all sides. Finally heard the near bark. The huntsman quickly determined the direction and bent waist, almost on all fours, slowly went to the barking dog. I followed his example: from childhood, so didn’t move, and even with the rifle dangling around his neck. When the dog was quite a bit, we stopped. “Come very quietly. Husky’s nose will indicate where the hidden grouse. Go down on one knee and, slowly, find a tree-top bird. Move without sudden movements. With a shot long pull. If the first attempt misses, grouse, especially the young, can not fly — is wholly absorbed in the dog. Beat again. It happens that the second mistake doesn’t, so beat, while sitting” — admonished me huntsman. On all fours I hobbled over to bark and, probably, for the grouse looked like a small bear. Came to a clearing and stopped. Can not go on — could startle the bird. Laika was sitting in front of “polite” yapping, looking up. I strained my eyes. Anyone. Got a pair of binoculars. He began to inspect every twig. Ah, that’s where he hides the beard! Great disguise! So he moved his head — dog “eyes made”. Slowly, carefully I brought at target. In his hands was someone else’s gun, the butt did not want to go to the shoulder, it was awkward. We must, of course, was yesterday put to practice. OK, I got the goal, brought the front sight, held my breath and shoot. Grouse twitched, waved his wings, it flew away. Miss! Kidskin even the mouth opened from surprise.
Came a huntsman, with a smile: “Well I cartridges took a few packs. Come to the hollow, we’ll train. From there, the sound of gunfire will not spread, and that all the grouse on the mountain perepoloshit”. We went down into the gully. Huntsman put it on a stump providently grasped with itself an empty jar from-under tushenki. Moving on eighty meters, put the rifle to my shoulder and firmly said, “okay. While you confidently three times in a row will not get in a jar, shoot and scare the grouse won’t be.” In Bank I got only from the third shot, but I understood, or rather felt the carbine, his character.
After a test we went further, especially since the husky has long been invited us to a new candidate trophies. Professionally I almost stood up to “position approach” and immediately caught the cheerful glance of the hunter. It did not bother me — captured the excitement. I had whatever was the take of grouse, and I slowly moved in the direction of barking. Went to the old tall larch. My handsome man was standing on a thick horizontal branch, crossed, and winked at the husky. Boyfriend! A beard like a goat. Saving hunting ammo, I brought Monica the first attempt. One shot — one trophy.
Congratulating me, huntsman announced that we just got dinner and trophy I have yet to come, and we went on a wonderful autumn larch taiga. Feet walked on the soft, springy carpet of larch needles Packed. A dog somewhere hunted independently and to communicate with us did not go. The berries we raised numerous broods of black grouse. Here and there were fly away and disappear brisk grouse. Suddenly taking off with a thunderous crash the grouse startled me, and regret that there is in the hands of my shotgun. Soon the husky spoke up. Approaching her, I again only through binoculars could see a grouse. He so skillfully disappeared in yellow needles, that without a dog I would not have discovered. The rest — a trick and acquired for capercaillie hunting in the larch experience.
Now I had a nice shoulder the burden, and we turned back. Typing on the way back, Mature, slightly touched by the frost of the night cranberries, we joyous feeling of a successful hunt crossed the high threshold of the hut. One grouse was initially processed, Packed needles with garlic and suspended to clear my head and to ripen under cover. The other, younger, was subjected to culinary treatment. We made a delicious dish of grouse in berry syrup. I must say that grouse I tasted many times, but its gastronomic qualities had a low opinion. Huntsman also proved to me that there are no tasteless game — there are simply inept hands. Hunting game not a pet or a bird, it must be able to cook.
Sweet sleep after a difficult suspension of hunting, we went on the river in the opposite direction. Drift is always nice. Laika was resting on the nose with a sense of accomplishment. Along the way we saw a bear bathing bear cubs, a moose with her calf, in river backwaters have raised numerous flocks of ducks.
Meeting with factory fellow hunters after returning from the taiga was, as always, fun at the festive table, where we celebrated the successful end of our trip. Hunt all turned out well: was taken a couple of elk and a great variety of upland game. The table was Laden with gifts from the taiga, taiga delicacies. Stories about just the hunt flowed freely.
From everything that happened, I learned my guide to action: before going on any rifle hunting should be required to train with weapons, especially strangers, imitating the leash, aiming to feel it. It is very important adjust the weapon the ammo that will be used on the hunt. Then your best shot you will please himself and the members of the hunting team.
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