Saturday, November 25, 2006

Thanksgiving in Manhattan

So this past week was Thanksgiving, and we spent Monday evening through Thursday morning down in Manhattan with my brother Jacob and his family. Much fun was had by all, and we did quite a bit of hunting to boot [WARNING: if hunting grosses you out, you may want to stop reading now].

For those of you intrepid souls who would continue on unabashed, you can click here to jump to the bottom, and then scroll up to see the pictures in (more or less) chronological order. Total take over four and a half days: eight deer, two geese, one Hungarian partridge, and a little cottontail rabbit.

Food. For. The. Freezer. (Yummy!)

Parting shot as we pull out of Jake's driveway - five more deer for the freezer.

[Yes, I realize that some of you are probably completely grossed out by this - "Good grief, what's he doing putting pictures of DEAD animals up on his blog. Sheesh!" - well, sorry, but this is who we are, and it's something we do as a family, and its something our extended family is into as well (as are a lot of people in this state). So sorry, but if it bugs you you'll just have to get over it or go read some other blog instead. Until then, everyone in the Cryder family will continue to be ardent supporters of PETA (People Eating Tasty Animals).]

And that's pretty much it. (Well, actually, we DID go elk hunting on Friday, but I'll save that for a separate post, since it's quite a story in itself, and I didn't take any pictures of it). We hopped in the car and headed back up to Missoula, with a lot of game in tow and a lot of good memories from another eventful Thanksgiving with family... Posted by Picasa
Sam just looks cute! Posted by Picasa
Does Jake just look like a biker-dude in this photo, or what? Posted by Picasa
Jen and Hannah Posted by Picasa
And of course, my beautiful Marilyn! Posted by Picasa
Meanwhile inside, us adults are busy being thankful to just have a few minutes to hang out together. Here's Sam, Jake, Hannah, and Jen. Posted by Picasa
Hmmm... I'm not sure if Micah's convinced. Posted by Picasa
Of course, the down side to shooting geese is that you then have to pluck whatever you manage to get. And plucking geese is a lot of work. Of course, it'll all be worth it on Christmas day, when we get to partake of the fruit of our labors, right boys? Posted by Picasa
Guess what? They got a chance to hunt birds together to (well, jump a field full of geese together at least). And they did a darn good job of it too!

You see, when we were driving home with Malachi's buck, we noticed a cornfield full of geese, so we took mental note of the situation, went home and had breakfast, and then brought back reinforcements to take stock of the situation. Result? We shot 2 geese! I got one, and Malachi got the other. Micah came very, very close to getting one too. And we all smelled really ripe, because we had to crawl about 50 yards out into a freshly fertilized field (scent-du-steer anyone?) :-) Posted by Picasa
Black and white version of him, too. Those are some nice looking dogs! Posted by Picasa
And here's a nice shot of Strider, a little bit later on in the day. Posted by Picasa
Same thing, in black and white. Posted by Picasa
The dogs are just bummed that they're outside rather than in (especially since it's starting to snow!). I sure like this picture of Jack... Posted by Picasa
Everyone is quite impressed (and equally hungry). Posted by Picasa
...bringing home the bacon! (and the eggs!) Posted by Picasa
Jacob the heat miser... Posted by Picasa
Hey, looks like we're just in time for breakfast too! Woo hoo! Posted by Picasa
Even though it took a couple of hours to drag Malachi's deer back to the car, we were still home by 10 AM on Thanksgiving day, and who was there to great us, but Jack and Strider! Hey guys, did you miss us??? Posted by Picasa
And here's another shot of the same thing (the kids liked this photo, because the deer has his tongue hanging out - "Ok, I give up. You got me!" Nice little buck, eh? Posted by Picasa
So Wednesday came and went, and Malachi still didn't have his deer (even though he had had several chances). He was starting to get worried, but I assured him that he'd be fine - "Relax, buddy, we can go out Thanksgiving morning early and see if we can find you a buck."

And sure enough, we did. By 8 AM we had this fine fellow in the bag - nice clean lung shot, and he never even knew what hit him (way too busy chasing a couple of does - there's a lesson in that, boys!) Posted by Picasa
Since we're doing dog-in-the-rear-view-mirror shots, here's one more for the road. Posted by Picasa
And then there's this one, which I like too. I love mirror shots like this, because there is so much going on in the photo - three different images in one. Little tricky to shoot while racing down a gravel road though (at least when the photographer also happens to be the driver) Posted by Picasa
Later in the afternoon, with Jack riding in the back of Jake's truck while I'm going to pick them up. I've played with the darkness a bit, bringing out the colors a bit more (almost too much), but I really like this shot... Posted by Picasa
Micah, doing the first thing you're always supposed to do after shooting an animal - you tag it! Posted by Picasa
Did I mention Rebekah came along too? She was quite the trooper - even though she won't be able to shoot anything herself until she turns twelve next fall, she hiked over hill and dale to watch her brothers try and get their bucks. And she was pretty excited for Micah here... Posted by Picasa