Hunting Nebraska’s Platte River – December 2016
This past summer I was presented with an incredible opportunity to take a trip to Nebraska on a 3 day waterfowl hunt. I knew right away there was a great time to be had but I didn’t realize just how much fun it would end up being.
After a full day of getting on and off planes Billy McOwen and I had found ourselves in Denver, only three hours from our hunting camp in Nebraska. Billy was familiar with the area and what to expect as he had hunted this area last year with the same guide, who is a dear friend of his and a great all-around guy. I could tell from the minute we walked in the lodge that we were going to have a great time.
Not long after legal shooting time on the first morning’s hunt, a lone goose was spotted flying low down the Platte River. A few calls was all it took to entice the large bird to cup and glide into the decoy spread. I took the shot when I received the go-ahead. The temperature was -10 with a wind chill of -22. There was quite a bit of ice floating down the Platte’s waters which made the memory even more photogenic. The goose fell on a small island not 30 yards from the blind. We ended the first day with a few ducks and about 10 geese. The second day was the slowest of the three but great times were still had and most everyone was presented a shot at a fair amount of waterfowl. The third and last day was the most action-packed as we tallied up another 10 geese and 18 ducks. From mergansers, to mallards, to widgeons, we had a great day and it was an excellent way to top off an amazing trip. There were a few other guys and a couple of well trained dogs hunting with us as well. There’s something about watching a good dog work that is good for the soul.
Billy and I both have a pair of drake and hen mallards at the taxidermist and are already looking forward to getting them back. I’m incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to work and hunt with a great group of guys. We all enjoy the outdoors and find time to hunt together when possible. There’s a lot to be said for that. You’ve probably heard the Mossy Oak tagline “It’s not a passion, it’s an obsession” but I don’t think many realize just how true that is. It’s easy to get caught up with work and everything else going on. Sometimes we need to slow it down and take a look around. Every day in the field is a blessing, don’t take it for granted.