Monday, February 1, 2010

The Buzzer Beater with Kevin

I guess I can write about this now that Kevin is gone.
In basketball hitting a shot with the clock running down is exilerating.... When hunting, watching a flock of geese approach with 90 seconds left in the hunting season is even more pressure packed; especially when you are leaving the country for a two year mission only days later.
Kevin and I went out on January 31st to get him his first goose right before he left to Mexico.

We didn't have a great chance of getting one because we didn't do any scouting nor did we have a trusted hunting spot to go to. However, I try to keep my eyes and ears open at all times, at school, work, or home. I had noticed that right before sundown a large flock of honkers would fly over BYU's campus in the general direction of Utah Lake, more specifically Provo Bay.

From doing some field work for my civil engineering classes I know a few public spots in what I hoped was the flight path of those geese. Kevin showed up to my apartment at 3, and we drove 5 minutes to Provo Bay.

I didn't carry my shotgun, mainly because I still have a goose in my freezer and Johanna doesn't really support the stockpiling of waterfowl meat in the freezer. So I was out there with my camera instead. Too bad the duck season had already closed, because we had hundreds of ducks right on us for two hours straight. It was certainly a temptation.
My camera battery died right as the sun was setting so I wasn't able to document this part of the story. The geese were flying around, and they knew hunting season hadn't quite closed yet. We had two flocks of honkers (flying silent) come near our blind, but not close enough. Anyways the season was 5 minutes from closing, and we started talking about leaving. We figured we might as well stay the whole time, being that we had already been there for 2 hours. Just then we saw a line of geese off in the distance, and it seemed like they were headed our way.

They seemed to be a mile away, but they were getting larger and larger as the seconds ticked off the clock. They certainly were headed right for us, and at the pace they were flying they would be over us with one minute to spare. We waited patiently, hunkered down behind our blind, and the geese didn't change their course at all, they were headed right over us.
Kev kept asking how he should take the shot, he was definitely getting birdy. I told him to pick a single goose, step backwards and shoot it right as it was straight above us. I bet this flock was 50 yards up, so it was no easy shot. I told Kev to choose his bird, lead it, pull the trigger, and then repeat until he was out of shells. I thought he was going to nail one last buzzer beater before his 2 years without hunting.
The time came, geese silently gliding over our heads, the sky a navy blue above them. Kev stepped backwards and shattered the silence over Provo Bay. Kev, just got a new gun that shoots 3 1/2 shells. This was the first goose load he had thrown into a flock of birds, and he definitely wasn't ready for it. After his first shot, he looked like he just took a jab from Mike Tyson, I thought he was going to fall over. I was laughing as Kev regained his balance and blasted a few more canon shells well behind the flock. The geese continued calmly off to some field, winning this game, at least until 2012. We were disappointed, but I was glad that I didn't have to clean three honkers that night, and the scenery was definitely worth our time.

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