The Young Wolf.

Last October (2010) I was on patrol doing a little radar on a construction site on the north-shore of the Saint Lawrence river. A Hydro project on the Romaine river. I parked the patrol car in a small clearance along side the road. Had been parked for about 10 minutes, when I noticed a young wolf 4 months old looking at me. He was about 30 to 40 feet away. He was skinny and looked not to much in good shape. He looked sick.

I watched him for a while and then noticed that the poor wolf had porcupine quilts stuck on his nose and even in his mouth. I said to myself that's why he's so skinny, he's not eating, he's starving. But I said to myself his mother is going to pull them out.

A couple of days went by and did not see the young wolf. I kept on checking every time I passed that small clearing. I decide to stop and park for a while. And as the other day he came out of the bush and towards the patrol car. Stopped looked at me and was only about 20 feet away. He looked pitiful. Those quilts were still there.

I drove the patrol car the the cafeteria and asked the cook if had any left over, things that were soft. Soup and bread was great. I went back to that parking spot. He was not there waited about 10 minutes. Then I decide to just give a short serene a call. A couple of minutes pasted and he was there. I got out of the car and set the pail of food beside the bushes. I moved away and waited. He went up to pail and started eating and he was hungry.

I did this for two complete weeks every day and a little click on the serene switch. I noticed that the wolf was getting stronger and putting on weight. Also less quilts in his mouth and nose. I stopped bring him food as he looked great. Let him be on his own now is what I said to myself.

Six months later: 21 April 2011 I was on patrol and at mileage 20 there's a wolf on the side of the road. I stopped an watched him for awhile. He stood there looking all around but not moving. I said no, it's not him. I gave the serene a short call. His ears went up, he looked and slowly moved towards the car. He walked around the patrol car with his head up and sniffing. He sat down beside the driver's door and looked at me for about and I say good two minutes. He looked like he was in great shape and healthy.
This was a great and good feeling. Did he remember me or the patrol car?


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (part 5)

We were well into the month of August. The night were getting a little cooler and the days shorter. This meant that yes moose hunting was on it's way.

So the moose calling practices started. I was even trying to get my wife Mado to practice with us. No, she was not interested at all.

We were exactly the 21st. of August and had been practicing for a good three days. The sound for me and the boys was excellent. I said we'll give it a good try to night just before dark. Which we did and the sound, echo was great. We could hear it hitting the mountains a good 2 to 3 miles away. It was about 9 pm.

The next morning on my way to work, on the bush road to the Hydro Dam. Yes there was fresh moose tracks. At work that morning Guy who camps just beside us said why were you calling moose so late last night? What time did you hear me calling. Well I went to bed after midnight. That can't be me I was in bed at 10 pm. Unless I did this in my sleep. Well it was the same call as you do. So it was a real moose that came on our call.

At dinner time back at the trailer I told the boys about this. They said Dad we should go out moose hunting on the week-end? I said moose season opens 12th. of September. That's in two weeks from this week-end. They said no, we can go and call but no rifle. They said that would be a good and real practice. Hey you guys are intelligent that we will do. The first day Saturday or Sunday that we have nice weather.

It was Saturday morning we were up at 2:00 am. It was calm, had a good breakfast. Grabbed our pack-sacs, my 12 gauge shot gun. We were dressed in warm clothes. I told the boys were gone for the day.

We had planned to go up to the seven lakes. We could cover more ground and less people around, than doing this along the road. There are a few good spots up there and maybe the cow and her calf that we saw this summer might still be around.

It was 3:30 am. and still dark as we got aboard the dore skiff, pulled the crank and on our way we were. It was pretty cool out. I told the boys before starting the motor, what do you say if we try Danny's lake, just up the creek about a mile. They said okay.

It was 4: am. when I stopped the motor in that small creek. We got out of the boat walked about 10 minutes, found a place to sit for about 15 minutes without making a sound. Listening and breathing only. We listened and nothing to be heard.

I asked the boys softly if they heard something. Both nodded their heads "no". I said I'm starting the moose show. I had my hip wader's on. Had picked up a few dry twigs. Day light had begone.

I walked towards the creek, brushing the willows and cracking the dry twigs. Stopped and listened for about a minute. Started walking into the water lifting my legs as high as I could. Moose have long legs. I was doing the exact sound the moose does when it walks in the water. Stopped and listened for a minute, looked at the boys and nothing heard. Walked back towards the shore, stopped, filled my birch bark caller with water. Lifted it to my shoulder height and started pouring it back into the water. Exactly like a cow moose urinating. Listened for about a minute. Walked up on shore, with few crick and cracks. Stopped, listened and gave two soft low
call of the cow moose in heat. Did this twice. Sat down and listened. Nothing to be heard. Looked at the boys and no.

I looked at my watch and it was 5:10 am. We looked at each other once in a while and no one heard nothing. I made a sign with my fingers in ten minutes I'll call again.

It was 5:35 am. and I gave the second call of the female in heat. This time it was loader and we did hear the echo. The boys confirmed with their hands that it was far and the good.

Nothing no answer it was 6:15 am and gave another call but a little loader this time. I did it in two directions, up and down the creek. Looked at the boys and they shook their heads, no.

6:45 am we all looked at each other and said theirs on interested. We all heard the owl call. It does not do it like the owl, three times. It does it just once. Both do it, the bull and the cow. The sound came from up the creek. I knew that about half a mile from where we were that there was a small lake. So probably it was there. We waited without calling. I told the boys listen for cracking sound.

6:55 yes a grunt and another grunt. It was a bull and he was coming down the creek we could hear him walking in the water. I said into the boat. Not trying to make to much noise. It stopped I think he heard us. I waited a couple of minutes. Then gave a small cow call. No answer. I said to the boys I think he heard us. We waited. Nothing, he was dead still. I said, who wants to give the bull cow? Gary said I will. Okay give it a shot. He gave two bulls calls and the bull moose answered immediately and was on his way towards us and not to far.

He was just around the corner about 500 yards. He came around the corner and stopped, looked at us for a good 2 to 3 minutes. Shook his head from side to side up and down. Gave another grunt sound and headed slowly into the bush. We could hear the crick and cracking as he walked away from us. My heart was pounding and the boys also. What a thrill and experience for all of us.

Yes we still remember this today like it was just yesterday.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (Part 4)

We were well into the month of August. Did some great fishing trips. Even explored a couple
of lakes that probably no one ever tried. One of them was a surprise.

It was the first week-end of August and the boys and I had been checking the map. We were looking for a lake that the only way in was to walk and also something on the top of a mountain. We wanted a lake that know float plane could land on. So, fairly small but not to small. We found one on the map. We could drive about 10 miles from here. Then, which looked like from the road maybe a hour, hour and half walk if there's no trail, we hoped that there was none. We wanted savage territory. Tomorrow that is where were going and wake will be early.

It was 6 am and it looks like a nice day, not much sun, but no rain. Each had our pack sac, lunch, fishing rods and our tackle lures worms and dry flies in the pack sac, fly dope. We had light clothes and running shoes on. We knew that it would a long walk and hard climb.

One hour later we were on our way through the bush, not to thick, a lot of fallen trees here and there. Big trees, the boys asked if a cyclone went through here? I said maybe a tornado. It was like something about 400 feet wide just past by and pushed all the trees down to the ground. I said lets move over to the side and maybe it will be easier to walk. Which we did. Had a 5 minute rest and then continued.

We had been walking for about an hour when we saw a big black bear. He was about 300 feet away and standing on his back legs. He was looking at us. We stopped and watch him, it was trying to smell us. We waited and watched and after a few minutes it went on to doing what it was doing, eating.

There's the lake just ahead, it's smaller than we thought. We were a bit disappointed, but you'll never know what's in there until you try. The lake was an oval shape, yes like an egg. About 800 maybe a 1000 feet in length and 400 to 500 feet wide. A lot of trees had fallen on the side of the lake and some in the water. It looked pretty deep and the water was a violet or light purple maybe darkish blue. This was the highest lake around and a small discharge at the other end.

Oh yes, we also did see fresh moose tracks near the lake.

The boys had their rods ready and had found a place that they could take a good cast. Casted a few times and not a touch. We moved along the side towards the discharge. Nothing not a bite. It was close to 10 am. We tried different lures and tried lure and fly on the same line and not a bite. Are you guys hungry? Yes.

We sat and had a couple of sandwiches and grape juice. We were beside the discharge a very small creek. Did you see that, where the rings are on the lake over there. What I saw was a big fish I saw it's tail. What ever kind it is it's a nice size. It was after those bugs that's on the water.

The boys were casting and nothing biting. I said let's try it with just a small hook and one inch of worm. I'm putting a small sinker so that I can cast a little farther. Exactly what we needed as my first cast I had one and what a fight. I'll take my time because we did not bring the net. It took about five minutes and I had it on shore, well in the bush. I beautiful speckle trout, a nice red belly and lots of colors. A quick look like that, I say about 3 pounds and 18 inches. The fishing went on and great it was. The boys had something on their lines and they were having fun. I can still hear them saying, why big ones like this on such a small lake. We had one with each cast. Small ones and big ones. They were biting like crazy.

We fished for a good three hours, we did not really count how many we caught. But did keep three nice ones each. This would be pretty heavy in our pack sacs going back. I did keep two more close by and this was for the bear if he was still close by and I know that he would be pretty hungry and they can smell fish from a great distance.

We arrived at the camping at 5 pm. sharp without seeing the bear. A few of our friends came over to see if we did catch something. When they saw what we had, they want to know where we went. Which lake, I said the name of the lake is the lake with "no name" and that's the name we still use today.

Eleven beautiful speckle trout weighing from 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 pounds. A beautiful day and wonderful, once again fishing trip.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (Part 3)

Yes a few weeks have gone by and everything is going well. The children are having fun. The boys have explored the surroundings at least 3 miles around. They also built a tree house and did lots of fishing, even brought an old age couple, in the seventies out fishing on the seven lakes. The madam did fish before but never caught anything. I guess they had good guides because they both caught their twenty speckle trout. They were more than happy, they both paid the boys $25.

Our camping site was getting more visitors, campers visiting the Manic 5 dam and deciding to camp for a few days at Doreen Lake. The permanent residents had also grown, we were up to eight trailers. Everyone was enjoying the summer. All was going well and we all helped each other, we had become a big family.

We were in the last week of July, it was the phase of the full moon, a Friday night. I said to the boys we should go fishing around 11 to-night, with a full moon like this it should be great. They asked were? The lake next to us, Louise Lake. Okay.

We hopped into the 16 foot Prince craft skiff and headed for the other side. I said we will give a try here, close to shore, they come and feed close to shore at night. We all had something bright in color as lures, like white or yellow even silver. The moon was full and we could see the trees the shore line even the moon reflecting on our lures.

The boys gave their cast towards shore. I had told them to reel fast, this would keep the lure up on the surface of the water. I heard the splash when the trout hit the lure. What a fight he's giving me Dad. Bob had a nice speckle. Take your time. Once aboard it was a nice one, a 2 1/2 pounds 16 inches long. We caught 6 beauties each and said that's okay for tomorrows lunch. They were all in the 14 to 16 inches.

We got back to camp it was 1 o'clock in the morning and Mom was not to happy. Were sorry.

I said hey do you guys want to go and try pike fishing, it's fun also. The boys never ever were out pike fishing. There's a place on the Manic 2 reservoir a big creek or small river that runs in the Manic 2 reservoir. I saw this when I was out Moose hunting. Pretty sure that there's some big pike there. The said okay and I replied, not before Sunday.

It was Sunday and another beautiful day. I asked do you guys still want to go for those big pike? We have to bring the big fishing rods with the stronger line and the big tackle box.

It was 1 in the afternoon and down we went on the Manic 2 reservoir. We had a good 2o minute ride with the 20 horse power. As we traveled I pointed out to the boys were we had been Moose hunting a few times and the place that we killed a big bull moose.

Here's the place, that big creek, we'll go up as far as we can and then let ourselves drift down. Okay lets cast. Gary said I got one a big one, take your time and give him some lose, if not he'll snap your line. It snapped the line. I gave a cast at about where it broke the line. I said I got one, what a fight, it was huge and it didn't want to come close to the boat. I worked it very slowly and finally brought it in. It started to jump and bounce in the boat. The boys were having a close look but not one of them decided to take the lure out of the fish's mouth. I said don't put your finger into their mouth. They have a lot of teeth and few rows of them. As I was taking the lure out, my daredevil I said look, another lure in it's mouth. Gary said that's mine the yellow lure with the black diamonds. The boys said these things are as bad as sharks. Well we call them fresh water sharks and when they decide to bite, they bite on anything. It was a nice size around 20 pounds.

We fished for a good 3 hours, caught real nice ones and kept them. Did put the smaller ones, less than fifteen pounds back into the water. We kept 10 big ones in the 20 pounds and no less.

I said okay time to back home. Boys said, oh no not now, we like this, it's more fun than fishing speckles. Home we went.