A friend called me a few weeks back from the road. “I thought you were elk hunting,” I asked.

“I was,” He said. “Until I climbed out of my sleeping bag, got dressed, unzipped my gun case and found a 20ga instead of a 30-06. So, I’m headed home.”

I laughed. Then tried to console him. I told him that it happens to all of us. I told him about the time I left my gun in the field and a whole host of other things, lost or forgotten.

Truth is, I’ve forgotten all kinds of things. I’ve had to backtrack to some obscure gas station to buy a hunting license. Twice. Last winter, on a week-long trip to hunt desert quail, I forgot my sleeping bag and had to share the dog’s sleeping bag.

I’ve brought the wrong gauge shells. I’ve forgotten my vest and hunted with a handful of shotgun shells in my jeans pocket and a sharptail held by its feet in my left hand.

Once, I drove 30 miles to get to an early morning rooster spot. I stopped a mile or so beforehand to get myself together, planning to drive up ready to go at legal shooting light. I put the collar on the dog, put my vest on, took off my house slippers and reached for my boots. But they weren’t there. No boots. 

So, I put my house slippers back on and manage to kill a rooster and miss some huns. But I did ruin a perfectly good pair of socks.



3 thoughts on “Forgotten”

  1. Forgot my vest. Shot two prairie chickens. Removed boot lace. Cut it in two. Tied the birds’ feet to my belt with one half, and re-laced the top of the boot with the other half. Blistered foot, blood-soaked pants. Back at the motel, the Over the Hill Gang asked, “What the hell happened to you?” “”Got my period,” I told them. “And a mood to match, so don’t mess with me.”

  2. Glad to know I’m not the only one. Forgot my vest one time but dug up some shells and used the cargo pockets in my pants for dead chukar. Forgot my boots one time and hunted in my driving sneakers and gaiters in the snow. Got birds but it wasn’t pretty. My main hunting partner forgot his shotgun one time and had to walk around with me. I shot 4 chukar then handed him my 2 shooter that he’d never swung and he shot 4 birds with 6 shots in 2 hours. Told him he should retire his meat gun and be sporting but he didn’t take my advice. All these trips were over 100 miles one way so there wasn’t much of an option except to hunt anyway. I haven’t forgotten my dogs yet…

  3. i have a mantra I repeat every time I back the truck out of the lane way to go hunting. It was taught to me by an old hunting buddy. Boots/gun/dog. If you have these things with you will not have to turn around and go home without hunting. Forget any of them and it will be a foreshortened day.

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