Is hunting a sport?
The sport channels show hunting programs on them during the weekends, but does that constitute sport?
I don’t think of it as a sport per se, but as a form of fun. Whatever your thoughts are on the subject has no bearing on this article.
I have missed time on ACGM due to my hunting interests. Two weeks ago was a wild pig hunting trip, followed by a predator hunting trip yesterday. Yeah, that gives me two weeks that I could have been here, but I had to get other things to get done first.
Anyway, two weeks ago was the wild pig trip. I left my home in the early morning to meet up with my brother and a friend, Webb at his house. Also joining the hunting party was the Webb’s dog, Houdini. Houdini being a half Black Lab and half Pit Bull mix is one of the best pig hunting dogs that I have ever worked around. From there we went west into the California coastal mountains.
The day started off around freezing temperatures with a twenty mph constant wind. We headed out in one of the trucks to find the elusive pigs at sunrise. Everywhere we went, however, yielded many tracks and no animals. Around 0930, we exited the vehicle to brave the outdoors and get a bit of walking done to warm up.
The three of us were walking the road, line abreast and came around the corner to find a young boar rooting 30 yards to our right. Startled by the proximity of the pig and the subsequent barking and harassment by the dog, we all failed to get the immediate shot. From there, the hunt could only be described as chaotic chasing. We all took off running to get an angle on the pig. My brother ran left with Webb and myself taking the road, and the near vertical mountainside to our right. I was getting gassed and had to slow down, just as I came around the left hand corner, I heard a crack from my brother’s rifle off to my left and the Whack! of the bullet striking the pig to the right. Houdini grabbed the pig and brought it back down to the stream at the bottom of the mountain.
After the gutting and picture taking, we made out way out of the area to go home. We headed out one of the many dirt roads to get back to the paved section and out of the area. However, upon making a sweeping right-hand turn, we noticed seven pigs sitting out in a field some 400 ahead of us. Between us and the field were few trees and a big stream, with the bridge crossing behind our truck. We observed the animals for a short time until they started to bolt. So, we turned around and drove like mad to get back to the bridge and over to the field to find them again. We all piled out and ran again to find the pigs. I ended up at the top of a ridge looking for a direction of movement with the other two guys doing the same on other ridges. All to no avail, we somehow lost the pigs. My brother and walked back past the truck to find Webb and Houdini.
Coming out from behind a hill, we saw Webb waving and directing our butts to his location. So we jogged up to his location and he pointed out a family group of now eleven pigs in the field. We made a plan and I led the group out, kneeled in the clear and shot the largest boar in the group. Webb fired right after me and took down the #2 boar.
Now, our great day had turned into a fantastic day! Three hunters, three dead pigs. What more could you ask for in a hunting trip? Webb and I gutted our pigs and took some pictures then we headed out for real this time.
Side Note: The pig my brother shot was around 150 lbs, Webb's pig about 100 to 125 lbs, and my pig was somewhere around 225 lbs.
Update 28 May, 2008: I received 110 pounds of total meat from the butcher. 25 pounds of that was in the hams.