Each year growing up I anxiously awaited the first snowfall on East Fork. It signaled it was time to go hunting for mule deer! Snow generally arrived a week or two before Thanksgiving and it was a family tradition, well at least I thought so, to go mulie hunting up East Fork. We, my brother and I, were seldom disappointed. Well, usually I more than he because he was a mule deer hunting expert. I was the elk hunting expert. Two different types of hunting, and we were two different types of persons.
Anyway, due to the fine 'game management' practices of the Idaho Fish & Game, mule deer hunting, stopped being open until Thanksgiving in the game unit where East Fork is located. Oh, I still look anxiously to the sky for the first snowflake, but it is not quite the same. This year, however, was different! Snow came to the mountains last weekend, and again this week! So, Jr. and I decided to go mulie hunting...Thanksgiving or not!
We agreed, finally, on the time...5:00 a.m. So it was wheels up at 5 and off we went. We reached the turnoff and headed the rig up the mountain. We had gone less than a mile and there it was...SNOW! Upon seeing this wonderous site, I immediately noticed something, however, that was different this year. You see mountain roads are notoriously sloped towards steep precipices. It has something to do with allowing the water, from the rain and snow melt in the spring, to run off the road and so as to not cause ruts to form in the travelway. Having experienced at least two wonderous near death experiences within the past 3-4 years involving rigs, snow, and precipices, I suddenly became aware of something new. I had developed an intriguing nervous twitch when the rig started across the first snow on the road. When I was finally able to stutter out that I was experiencing this new occurrence, I had immediately deduced that nervous twitches strangely affects one's abilitity to form words and speak, to Jr., he said something...after his own lengthy session of stuttering...that caught me off guard. He had too, at the same moment as I, had developed a nervous twitch of his own! HA!
Because of the cacophony of stuttering going on, we decided to stop the rig and pile onto his 4 wheeler; as sturdy a snow going machine as is known to mankind...well short of a snowmobile! We pulled off the road and, as we sat there in the dark twitching, one of us, I think it was Jr., finally stuttered out: "Well lets get ready." After about 7 or 8 minutes of arguing, which took about 5 minutes longer than the usual 2-3 minutes in which we are commonly able to 'discuss' hunting strategy and similar other important matters because of all the stuttering going on, I grabbed the door handle.. and threw the door open. It was at that very instant, as the whiteness and cold of the glistening snow cascaded into the rig, that I remembered something very important...something that I always seem to forget about hunting in the snow. You see, there is one thing, just one thing, that really causes me discomfort when hunting in the snow...SNOW!...Ha!