03 26 05 584 W, 3 I - + 92 - 81


I think we had 89 starters in the Open. 48 called back to the Land Blind. I got Ace and Mootsie back. Britt got three birds very cleanly (go bird, left hand retired, and flyer), but went in between the Momma and Poppa gun stations, then hooked right to the go bird. I handled immediately before she got into old fall.

Before we look at the blind, it might be useful to look at the marks. The blind was run from above the flyer station to the general direction of the line for the land marks. Here is the view from the line on the Open land marks.

Here is the view from the line for the Open land blind.

The bird planter is standing where the bird was planted intially. After the first test dog was lost out of sight to the left, the blind was moved approximately 20 yards to the right - on the ground at the right edge of the bright green tree to the right of the blind planter.

Here is a photo of the blind without the blind planter.

Note the bright green tree on the horizon. The line to the blind was close to the fence post in the foreground of the photo. Then downhill to the left of the bird crates. Skirt the pile of hay in the middle distance to the right. Then drive into the ravine past the tall tree in the center of the ravine on the left. Then up and out.

Blind was probably 350-400 yards.

Line to the blind took you through the old fall for the Momma retired bird and all the bird and dog scent from the marks. Line required that you drive through the thick cover that the dogs did not go through in the marks. Dogs disappeared in the ravine and would often reappear far off line to the right or left. You could not see dogs run, so I can only comment on my two dogs - Ace and Mootsie.

Ace had good initial line but wanted to climb side hill to the left. So I used 2-3 whistles to get him in the sweet spot of the blind. When he got to the ravine, he dove in slightly to the right. I stopped him. Used silent left back to get him on line. When he came to high spot in ravine, moving left once again (to certain death), I stopped him, cast with right straight back, followed by verbal to straighten the line. Then got great momentum and straight line. He then faded left again. I stopped him. And cast right. There was some background movement - I thought - and he cast (when I did not), which cost me some whistles. But overall good blind.

Mootsie had great initial line. I did not blow my whistle until she was approaching the ravine. She started to hunt the old fall. I tried to blow her out of there with right straight back with hard verbal back. But she was determined to hunt old scent. I got into a yo-yo and finally blew her out. But we were toast.

Still, not too bad for a two and a half year old in her first Open.

27 called back to Water Blind. Ace is among them, together with four dogs handled by Amateurs.

Thanks for the news and comments Ted. I have a feeling that the photo doesn’t do justice to the terrain.
Howard (Email) - 26 03 05 - 19:31


You are right on the money, there.

Ted (Email) - 26 03 05 - 19:35

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