Del and his "monster" 9 pointer
Today is the most important unofficial holiday in Michigan, opening day of firearm's deer season, the Orange Day, when we are supposed to see hunter's clad in orange perched in tree stands all across the state.
Well, this was a very strange opening day.
Although I could not hunt the morning I was up quite early, and there was a dense fog covering Grand Traverse Bay, and maybe a lot of our northern lower peninsula, that could have come from one of the best Sherlock Holmes adventures, perhaps the Hound of the Baskervilles.
Sometime during early morning Del texted me BBD, which he translated as Big Buck Down. I told him I would help him drag it out later in the morning. When I drove from my home at Old Mission Peninsula to Neverland I could not see any activity in the new constructions and renovations, which would be an indication that people were out deer hunting.
After meeting Del he told me that according to Neverland tradition he shot his buck three times, the first shot at well under forty yards, and that apart from that deer and those shots he heard very little activity and saw nothing else.
We dragged the heavy monster through remains of last's year August storm, and eventually got back to our cars. Buck loaded Del drove home and went to my tree stand by the powerline. And then it started, or should I say, never started.
Initially the day was unseasonably warm, and even the sun showed up threatening to cook me inside my camouflage clothes, but eventually the wind turned one hundred eighty degrees, from a south to a north wind, and clouds obscured the sun and the temperature started dropping.
The only action I saw was when the crows discovered the gut pile, but at about 250 yards, it was a bit far away to partake in any details, and apparently they left rather soon.
And I waited, and waited, and waited, until the light gave away to darkness, when the clear shapes of the day are replaced by eerie and uncertain forms that shadows present us during twilight.
During the five or six hours that I afield I don't remember hearing a single shot or seeing another orange clad hunter perching from another tree. Since my first opening day in 2002, this is a first for me!
Maybe the fog combined with the on going Super Moon could explain some of today's almost unnatural weirdness.