Pheasant Hunting at The Bluffs
On 3/23/14 we went out to a private hunting resort for some pheasant action. A few days before I had received a call and was asked if I wanted to do some bird hunting. Obviously I said yes and we all met around noon at The Bluffs resort. They provided us with some lunch and after a short safety brief/clay shoot we were on our way. At about 1:00 PM everyone loaded up in the trucks and drove to the beginning of the fields. In my group there were three of us shooters, the guide, and some photographers. This was all arranged by Freedom Hunters and The Bluffs who I appreciate very much for having me out there.
Note: I was using a Weatherby 12 gauge shotgun and 5 shot size 2.5” shells (it's what I had lying around).
When we got to the fields we got out of the trucks and took out our shotguns. There was a two track that went through the center of the field. On the East were some leaveless trees, fallen logs, and tall bushes. To the right was a mostly open field with a tree or bush here and there. We decided to start down the two track in the middle of a field and spread out online. The guide had a bird dog in training which is always great to hunt with, though this was a pup and had no formal training. Early into our hunt the dog pointed so we all moved into position. The guide moved up to flush the bird and then it took off and darted to the left of our line. The man on the left fired and connected earning him the first bird of the day. The birds were all a bit reluctant to fly this day, some of them would make you chase them until they felt cornered. After a high speed pursuit they would finally take flight and allow you a short window for an abrupt and winded shot.
We continued to work the field and found many more birds. The first bird I got was a chukar, I had to chase him a little ways before he flew, but he took off straight infront of me allowing me an easy shot. Throughout the day we collected more birds. At one point a couple of us started hunting in different areas and that's where we started to spot all the roosters. It was myself and one of the photographers at this point. We spotted one up ahead of us against a burm and in some fallen tree limbs. We walked up along the side cutting him off from his escape and when he realized he was trapped he tried to fly away over the burm. I pointed my shotgun and fired earning me another pheasant. Two of them made me really chase them for a while before they took to flight. I'm pretty sure I sprinted after another one for at least 40 yards, but it just would not fly.
After the hunt I had 5 birds and it was off to cleaning. I just took the breasts and legs; leaving the carcass intact otherwise. I also took the feathers (attached to skin) for fly tying and maybe even to put in a shadow box on the wall. The feathers all attached to the skins looks really impressive and eating wise it turned out to be a decent amount of meat.
Cooking pheasant can be a challenge, but we decided to wrap the legs in bacon and bake them in a glass pan at a 270 for about 3 hours (til juices were clear). We added some butter to the meat/pan half way through as well. It turned out very nicely. We baked the breasts with some cream of mushroom soup (condensed w/ no water added) added which turned out well also.
April 3rd, 2014← BackNext →
Winter Backpacking 2013
Glacier Gorge, Colorado - RMNP