Tuesday, January 30, 2007

They Must Have Been Chows...

Apparently, size does matter.

Over There.

Put on your wooden shoes, pop your favorite tobacco in your clay pipe, put down the Zondervan bible, (you know how it ends), and click here , and here to see lure coursing like they do it in Holland. No windmills were damaged in the making of this video. If you read Dutch, (the language, not the author of Gazehounds & Coursing who I've written about often), the source website is: http://www.coursing.nl:80/alg_info.htm

HT to Richard Hawkins.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Hunting With Dutch: The Album.

Just click on the image.

From Hunting with ...

All images Copyright Shot On Site Photography, 2007.

The Picture You Get...

...is not always the picture you thought you were taking! Here's an excellent case in point. When we were out with Fanny and Rally earlier last week, I spotted a hawk coasting just above the ground at a little bit of distance; the typical behavior of the Harrier. So I snapped a series of images to see if that's what it was.

It was. But what I couldn't see through the viewfinder were the smaller birds... fleeing for their lives! When I got home and cropped in to the subject I realized this hawk was hunting.

You can't always plan the great shot. Luck has a lot to do with it.
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Hunting With Dutch, Take II

It's a big desert out there.
Dutch and his pack can get far away in a hurry when you stop to pee.

Rally (Blue blanket) in the early lead, followed by Phyllis and Mona. Check out the clods of mud flying! All life forms present had a hard time moving with the mud on feet and boots.

Mona, "running cunning". Dutch says she does this a lot... sometimes it works in her favor, sometimes not. This chase went all the way into the brush at the base of the mountains at the 3 minute mark, so we don't know if it worked this time or not.

It was a beautiful day.. the best we've had since we got into New Mexico (the mud notwithstanding!)

More coursing images in album form will follow soon.
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Sunday, January 28, 2007

PETA Piper Picked A Peck Of Dead Kittens

If you're regular readers here, this is just more "preaching to the choir", but occasionally strangers drop in, so this is for them.

There is no doubt that the nazis at PETA are just bad, bad people. And this news item from the United States Sportsmen's Alliance does nothing to dispell that notion.

Two PETA employees went on trial last week for taking dogs and cats from shelters, promising that they would have no problems finding great homes for them. That home would seem to be in heaven.

"The Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) has issued reports from the trial this week. The reports detail how Ms. Tonya Northcott, an employee at the Ahoskie Animal Hospital, on June 15 sent a mother cat and her two kittens with the defendants who claimed that they would have no problem finding homes for the cats. Northcott explained that the cats had been socialized, played with, and had their shots.

Those cats ended up in a trash dumpster less than an hour later."

Nice folks.

Steve Bodio has had a number of recent posts about this and other AR nonsense. Very good reading... will raise your blood pressure.

A note about the US Sportsmen Association. If you do serious work with your dog, it would be in your best interest to support their efforts by joining. These are the folks who played a major role in the defeat of AB2110 in California. Check them out.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Mountain Album

From Mountains of ...

Here's a few more shots from my adventure the other day, including a slightly different view of the hawk in front of the mountain.. Full Disclosure Notice: I actually took the mountain hawk picture out the passenger window, one-handed, while driving 45 miles per hour. Light traffic on the highway, fortunately.

I may add more as I take more.

Remember that all these images are protected by copyright, so try and leave them on the website. We are working on a new website for nature and landscape and other art images. They will be available for sale, mounted, framed, matted, etc. and in a variety of sizes. Watch this space for updates

Geezer Dog? Not So Fast My Friend!

Yes. That's Randir. As in ten-and-a-half-year-old Scottish Deerhound, Randir. And yes, that's a blacktailed jackrabbit, who is in no peril whatsoever. But who cares?

I was hoping for a shot like this. Now I'll have to do what I stupidly shot off my mouth to too many people and promised... the unthinkable: I will take him into a show ring in April at the Deerhound National Specialty. I'd say his chances are good in the Veteran classes.
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Wednesday, January 24, 2007


A concept utterly foreign to Buffy.

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John Crean, 1925 - 2007

Surprisingly, I actually knew who John Crean was before I saw the news on the Fleetwood website this morning. He was probably the most important, influential person in the history of the recreational vehicle industry. Because we love our Bounder home, I thought I'd post the link to the eulogy by Eldon Smith, the current President and CEO of Fleetwood Industries.
Here's an excerpt:
As an inventor and innovator John was unparalleled: a Venetian blind mechanism in the 1940s, an innovative manufactured home in the 1970s and the Bounder motor home in the 1980s.
The Bounder motor home revolutionized the design of motor homes throughout the industry. Put very simply, what John did was raise the floor of the motor home. This provided bus-like storage below the floor, and allowed for more functional floor plans and operational features. John developed this motor home with the help of a drafter, and one of our prototype assemblers, in his workshop at home. Within a few years the Bounder motor home was the best selling motor home in the country . . . 90% of the motor homes sold in the country today contain most of the unique features John put in that first Bounder unit.
I feel like I should put a black stripe around the Express. RTWT
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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

And That's Why They Call Them Long Billed Curlews.

Today's image is a roundabout way of saying the hunt pictures were pretty unremarkable. Fanny and Rally did, however, get a decent workout on the single jack we flushed. They were out of position from the get-go, and it was a tail chase all the way. Got a good 60 second run in, though.

When we pulled up to the field I saw this flock of Long Billed Curlews. Biggest flock I've ever seen- probably 25-30 or more. Suckers can get at the good stuff down deep. Strange place for so-called "shorebirds", but it's not the first time I've seen them on this ranch.

Pretty much all the snow is off the mountains, so it was a good thing I made the effort to get out there yesterday. Tomorrow they'll look like they did all last year when we were here.
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Told You...

...to be ready for more mountain images. When the sun came out yesterday afternoon, I threw the camera in the car and took a short drive to be closer to the Floridas. Got a bonus with this beautiful Harlan's Red Tailed Hawk. (A melanistic hawk that doesn't have a red tail... go figure.) The large rock in the background is called "Capital Dome".

Going hunting today, and maybe tomorrow, so get ready for some different subject matter!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Cold, Blustery Morning.

Here we go again. Woke up to blowing snow, as our record-breaking Winter continues. The dogs loved it.

This will put more snow on the mountains, so watch for more dramatic images.

Took Randir and Buffy out to the field yesterday... took the camera too, but I forgot to take a card for it. Sometimes it's hard to believe I'm a professional. Missed out on a good shot of a small herd of pronghorn. We'll be here for a month, so there will be more opportunities. We did jump a couple of jacks very quickly. Randir's good for about a hundred yards, and Buffy, her best years apparently behind her, was good for about a hundred more. In a couple of days, when the weather clears, we'll get the good dogs out. More then.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

A New Album

Some images from our first 24 hours at Escapee's Dreamcatcher RV Park in Deming. From the rain when we arrived last night, accompanied by a huge flock of Yellow Headed Blackbirds, to the brooding presence of the cloud shrouded Florida Mountains. And the old car next door.

The previously broken image links have been repaired. Check it out.

Image Of The Day.

Proof that we made it to Deming, NM without any further delays. The Florida Mountains (Flor-EE-dah). Looking like we never saw them last Winter- snow covered. Florida Peak dominates, at nearly 7500 feet. The Floridas are typical of the desert mountains of the Southwest.. rising out of the desert, unattached to any major mountain ranges, and made more dramatic by their isolation.

I'm not sure what's going on with the previous images. They were there when the page was published, then mysteriously disappeared. If they're not back tomorrow, I'll take the posts down and re-edit. You all have to see the RV picture!
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Friday, January 19, 2007

Absolutely Last Ice Image. We Promise.

Lest you all think I exaggerate how thickly Mother Nature laid it on. This from the picnic table outside the Express when we were in Bourne.

Pictures From the Righthand Seat.

Margaret caught this latest feature in recreational vehicles: The Slide-In. I don't see it as a big selling point.

We did mention that the roads in Texas were hazardous, didn't we? Yeah, we did.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Today's Image.

Who says they all have to be my photos? Bet you can guess which end of the black line we're on.
Interesting tidbit: I-10 is 880 miles across Texas. (It's like crossing Nebraska twice; only more interesting.) That's a pretty big chunk that's closed.

Icy Photo Album.

For those who want to see more of the icy landscape, I've uploaded a web album. Click on the image.

The Worst.

We think it's official. In nearly 4 years on the road, this is the absolutely worst weather we have endured. Since Interstate 10 is still closed, we had to pony up for another night at the Alamo Fiesta RV Resort. (That's I-10 above; if you look in the upper right-hand corner, you will see the arrow directing all traffic to the exit ramp, where last night and tonight you will find the world's larges truck stop. Every available spot at Wal Mart, Home Depot, the Park and Ride lot, and even a church with the bad luck to be too close to the exit, occupied by a big rig.) Surreal.

It rained all last night, leaving every exposed surface, (even vertical ones!) with a 1/2 inch layer of ice. Further on on our route, up in the hill country, the problem was snow. Lots of snow, which is why over 200 miles of the Interstate are closed. They're now saying tomorrow afternoon at the earliest. That's putting the Pack Hunt out of reach, unless it gets moved to Sunday. Good thing we'll be there for a month- so it's not like the "pack" is going to miss out on hunting... just the opportunity to try and win us some cold, hard cash doing it.
There is an upside. Ice storms sure are pretty.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Today's Picture...

Lemme just say if we wanted to live through crap like this, we would have stayed up north. Looks like "up north", doesn't it? But it's the Fiesta RV resort, in Boerne, TX- just a few miles northwest of San Antonio. We took refuge here when the freezing rain was replaced by heavy sleet... coming sideways. Hopefully, things will clear up by tomorrow, but it's not looking good right now. In fact it's raining hard and the temp is right around 30 degrees. I'll try to get some more pictures up.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Image of the Day.

Still life, by Katrina.

This was a piece of barn roof, still wrapped around a large tree 16 months after the fact. Hopefully, tomorrow's image won't be of a mass of twisted metal, including the Express caused by the ice/sleet/wintry mix/snow/North Wind that lies dead in our path to New Mexico.

Internet access will be spotty for the next 4-5 weeks, so keep checking.

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Picture of the Day

Busking, outside Cafe Du Monde. French Quarter, New Orleans, LA.
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Pizza Hut It Ain't!

We've made our first pilgrimage into New Orleans in two years. To say that things look a little different, would be understating the obvious.

For the most part, this trip was pretty business-like. We spent a couple of hours on about a quarter-mile section of N. Peters Street.. the French Market area. We needed to restock on our- Oops! I almost let it slip.. a secret ingredient for my famous Bloody Marys, (available only at the French Marketplace Seafood Co.).

Then it was time for lunch. Prior to our visit I'd asked for recommendations for cheap eats in the Quarter. The recommendation was for the Louisiana Pizza Kitchen, located in this building on the corner of Decatur and Barracks St., right at the end of the French Market.

Now, when I think of New Orleans, pizza (or Italian food in general) is not the thing that first jumps into my mind. After I thought about it a bit, though, I figured we'd get some local flavor even in a pizza joint. Was I right. The boys at PepsiCo just haven't got a clue when it comes to a "sausage-lover's pizza". Check out the Salciccia Marinara pizza on this menu. Now, that's a sausage lover's pizza! Margaret had the Crawfish Etouffe pizza.. actually, we shared. Washed down with a Turbo Dog. We will be back. And a HUGE Hat Tip to Matthew Mullenix for this recommendation!

We passed on the dessert at the Pizza Kitchen, and opted instead for a more "touristy" treat: Coffee and Beignets at Cafe du Monde. Picked up a couple of cool new T-Shirts at Jester's, some Mardi Gras masks to send to Margaret's grandkids, and we were ready to head back across Ponchartrain to Fountainbleu State Park.

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Daily Optimism

We've added a little something to the blog. Once you find it you, too, will feel a little more optimistic with each passing second...

Pic of the Day

Or, why I stayed ashore for four years in the Navy.
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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

What Sighthounds Do.

Watch this. Don't forget to breathe.

HT to Steven K. in New Mexico.

Picture of the Day

(Not that there will be one every day, but I was having trouble uploading photos lately, and this was actually a test. Still can't get them loaded from Picasa).

A foggy late afternoon at Forth Yargo State Park, Winder, GA a few days before Christmas '06.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

We Eat, Therefore We Are... Sated.

We're in the midst of 10 more days in the Gulf Coast area. One thing that has been reinforced to us while here, is that this is where the food lives! Mostly seafood, but we also had to try out a place that kept turning up everywhere we looked, from the Stern's Road Food book, to Chowhound.com.

Doesn 't look like much, does it? But then, barbecue, more than any other cuisine, is immune to the glitz and glamour. In barbecure, rundown is good. When was the last time you heard of food that was transcendental?

"The Brick Pit was transcendental, Food Network worthy and them some in every respect. In a classic old fashioned building, slightly rundown and the bbq aroma permeating the air. Friendly service, a banana pudding that made me gasp, and then the bbq, and the sauce. It takes cajones to put out a sign that says best bbq in Alabama on your front door like the Brick Pit does. After eating there, I believe the sign."

That was "Big Milwaukee", writing in Chowhound. The Sterns were equally effusive in their praise.

We'll now add our voices to the chorus. Ambience, sch-mambience.. it's just like it looks in the pictures. Inside, the ceilings are low, the floor uneven. The walls are covered with graffiti.. mostly praising the food. The restrooms? Don't go there. Literally. The menu is sparse: Pulled pork, ribs, chicken. We didn't try the chicken... who the hell comes down here to eat chicken? I had the ribs plate, and Margaret had the pulled pork plate. Can we say "exquisite" about a joint like this? We will. I can't quite call this the best barbecue I've ever had... but I can't remember where I had any better. This was great. Terrific beans, and cole slaw with real bite. A great lunch, capped off by "Mrs. Waits's Banana Pudding". They couldn't tell us if she's Tom's mom. See the menu here.

That was Saturday, and that was the highlight of our week in Southwest Alabama, but we do want to mention a couple of other places worth visiting... Fish Camp, on State Hwy 59 right here in Summerdale was quite good for lunch, and they apparently have a seafood buffet for dinner. Sorry, no website that I could find.

Yesterday, we went to visit the USS Alabama battleship, which sits on Mobile Bay. I spent 4 years in the Navy; yesterday was the most time I spent on a ship in my life. On the information board showing a lot of Navy slang, I would qualify as a "landlubber". I'll post some pictures on another post, especially one showing a very scary room!

Following the tour of the ship, and the attached submarine, we had a late lunch at Felix's Fish Camp and Grill. This one had it all: Ambience, and good food. We had a sampler of the gumbo, crab, and turtle soups- all very tasty; a "camp salad", consisting of greens, artichoke, and hearts of palm in a homemade Italian dressing. This was followed by a couple of Po'Boys- one fried crawfish tails, and one half-n-half shrimp and oyster. All while sitting in the upper deck bar overlooking Mobile Bay, watching the gliding pelicans.

Ah... food. Tomorrow, we move on to New Orleans. There's no quit in us.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Letting Cats Out of the Bag

This is the type of story that makes blogs so danged valuable. I read something that I think will benefit a bunch of people, and I post it here. Other people read the blog, or the original source, and they pass it on, and suddenly, something that's supposed to be "secret" becomes general knowledge. Anyone who shops on Amazon.com will love this!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A Modest Proposal.

This guy on Fox Sports dot com puts the Boise State - Oklahoma Fiesta Bowl game last Monday as only the 4th "Greatest Bowl Game of All Time". But what does he know? The game featured a great comeback from Oklahoma; an even greater comeback from Boise State, featuring ballsy calls on 4th down, a hook & ladder pass play, a halfback pass in overtime, and a "Statue of Liberty" play to win the game in overtime with a 2-point conversion. For god's sake, these two teams scored 22 points in the last 86 seconds of regulation.

That would be enough, but this one had one thing that none of the other games on the list had, regardless of position:

Watch this. (The part I'm talking about starts around 2:40; but watch the rest of the highlights, too!)

For me this was, at least, the most entertaining game I've ever seen. Much more entertaining than the Rose Bowl.

Hire Me!

Home Depot? Any other big box businesses? I'm as capable as anybody of driving stock prices down and losing money, and I could sure use a couple hundred million dollar "parachute". I'm waiting for your call.