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January 29, 2012

REDNECK QUAKER: Moose hunt in Quebec is sucessful

TERRE HAUTE — Bob Lynch was looking for a reason to spend more time with his dad. So after convincing his wife it was a bonding thing, the hunt was on.

Bob began to form his own mental picture of what this moose hunt will be like. My Quebec looks just like the Yukon or Newfoundland from watching hunting shows.

Bob’s choice of firearm is a Muzzeloading Thompson Center encore 50 caliber. That’s a sportsman going for such big game with one shot.

Bob said I began to realize that my Quebec looks nothing like the real Quebec. There are trees here, lots and lots of trees, but that’s OK. I didn’t really expect it to be exactly how I envisioned it.

As we pulled into camp after a 20-hour drive, I noticed several moose heads outside the butcher house and I remember thinking: “Welcome to Quebec, where the moose are plentiful and dumb.”

The weather turned hot and windy, bad for moose hunting. They can’t see so well and they really trust their ears so when it’s windy they can’t hear very well and they lay up until the wind dies down.

The day before our hunt, I told Yves I would go anywhere and do anything to take my 60-inch bull and boy did I get my wish. We crossed rivers, lakes, mountains and swamps. If you take one, how do you get it out over a straight up-and-down mountain?

We walked as one hunter, to the marsh. Every time my foot would land on the earth, Silvain would place his foot at the same time. This way to the moose, if we made any sounds, it would sound like another moose.

After reaching the marsh, Silvain turned to walk back down the path to start calling when I realized Silvain was only 10 yards away and trying to get my attention. As my eyes made their way to his face I could see him mouthing the word “moose” and casually pointing to my right.

I knelt on my right knee and raising the gun I rested my left elbow upon my left knee for support, steadied the cross hairs on her vitals and squeezed the trigger. The world disappeared in a cloud of white smoke. We tried to peer through the smoke to see if I hit my mark but to my surprise, she still stood! As I looked at Silvain in panic, he is readying his 7mm magnum and handing it to me.

Noticing a small pine tree 10 yards in front of us, we made our way so I could get a good support and again settle the cross hairs upon vitals and squeeze the trigger. The beast still stood. OK, I went from panic to state of utter chaos and retracted the bolt to the rear to chamber another round, accidentally ejecting the magazine and dropping all the shells to the ground. I calmly reached down and grabbed one single round, feeding it directly into the chamber and closing the bolt. The moose was leaving the marsh and with another round in the vitals she never went another step.

She is a beautiful fully matured moose who looks to weigh about 800 pounds.

All three rounds had found their mark and I did not have to shoot the last two.

So as you can tell, my Quebec does not exist and I am glad for it. In my Quebec, I did not allow for the true meaning of such an adventure.

• Mike Siddens with Quail Forever says the group is having a youth quail hunt at Prairie Grove Preserve at 10 a.m. Saturday. For more info, e-mail whitedoggrousin@att.net.

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