Fred's third moose hunting trip on the Romaine River

It was around the end of September 1968 and I guess my brother-in-law JM and I were still in the process of learning and experiencing. It was Friday and around supper time and we were on our way up the river to Iles des Officier or Officers Island. The canoe was pretty well loaded with our hunting and camping gear. We were out for 3 days and only going back tuesday morning if we did not kill anything big before.

The weather was nice and the weather forecast for the week-end was good, no storm.

It was 6:30 PM and everything was setup, we just sat down to have a light lunch, when I heard a cracking sound at the back of the tent, it was loud, like a big tree branch that snapped. We were both out of the tent in a flash and both rifles were ready. I when back into the tent and turned the naphtha stove off, back outside and listened, not a sound. We discussed to see if we should call right away, we decided with all that we’ve been reading, that it was better to wait for a good hour. That we did and heard not a sound, also the dark, night was setting in. We waited an other hour and decided not to call at all, if it was a moose it would probably scare him off or might come and try to smell us during the night. We finished our lunch with a good cup of hot tea, went and listened again, not a sound. It was time to hit the sack, which we did.

Next morning very very early, no breakfast, we were both outside beside the river. We listened for a good 15 minutes, not a sound. I started breaking little dry twigs about 5 to 6 twigs, listened, nothing, JM started walking into the water lifting his legs high step after step doing the sound of a moose walking in the water Filled the birch bark call with water and lifted it up over his head and started pouring it back into the water, like a cow moose urinating, making all the same sounds. Walked slowly back out of the water, I cracked a few more dry twigs. We listened and not a whisper, no sound. About 4 minutes, it was the time for the cow in heat call, nice and soft, JM really had this one. He let it go once and few seconds latter he let the second call go. We listened and nothing not a crack, not even a bird call, it was dead quiet. Half an hour later, JM gave the second call and a little louder. We listened again and again and not a sound.

I went into the tent and had a good cup of tea and a peanut butter sandwich, no toast or frying something. When I finished my sandwich, I went out and JMCame in to have breakfast, he said not a sound, if that was a moose last night that made the cracking noise, well I guess he far from us now. I went and listened for a good hour, then I heard this snoring noise, yes JM was sound a sleep in the tent.

I little wind from the west had started, but it was very nice no bad weather in sight. It was around 11 AM and I was sipping away on my cup of tea, when I heard soft sound, like a long and pulled out sound, like a mosquito flying close to my ears. I listened and nothing else. JM started to move around in the tent, I went and asked if heard the sound, He said what sound, so I explained it to him. He said it has to be the cow moose. He said look and get down, don’t move,I didn’t know what to do, but I turned and looked. Two moose on the right side of the river about half a mile from us and coming for us. I could not hear a thing all I could hear was my heart pounding in my ears. We jumped for the rifles and started crawling for the little bushes to hide. Then and I say it again then, a boat two guys aboard were coming up the river, oh no I said to myself, not now.

The moose, a big bull and a cow headed straight for the bush, the boat turned straight for them. The boat pulled a shore exactly where the two moose headed for the bush. We heard one shot two shots all up to 14 shots and then we heard the two guys yelling with joy.

We looked at each other and said yep, I guess they were not for us. We pulled the tent down packed our stuff, loaded the boat and headed for home.We stopped to have a look at he moose and to see if they got both and to find out who they were. The moose were both shot, the bull was big and had 16 points a very nice and equal rack. The cow was a far size and looked healthy. The two guys were the Cormier brothers who hunt like us on the river.
So we said to our selves going back home “ that’s part of a hunting trip “ maybe the next time.
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Until the next story. Fred



Mungo said...

I was beginning to wonder when your next story might arrive! Good reading...