On a groan

Hunting success. All three produced by Polish wood grouse and black grouse, and Bogdan, a team leader, shot a couple kryakovyh and drakes drake Garganey, dressed in bright spring holiday costumes. In Poland, he has his own taxidermy workshop, and he was very pleased, received so many wonderful trophies.

On the last night we gathered around the table, the main decoration of which was roast capercaillie, skillfully cooked director wife, Larissa.

Excitement Poles put on the table a few bottles of «Vyborova» packaging «Budweiser», we — «bison» and «pepper vodka,» and soon the table was noisy and fun. Memories of the funniest cases that occurred in the hunt, interspersed with songs, jokes — the wishes of health and success.

Richard, a large «black-browed, black-eyed,» the owner of a cable television channel, showed in the people, as relatives worried, seeing him hunting in Belarus.

— My wife is crying, children crying — he was trying to figure how they wept, but the laughter prevented this. — Where are you driving? There is a mafia! Money hide away!

— And I, and I said the same thing — with laughter comes a short, plump, balding Leon, deputy director of the coal mine. — I have the money to his wife sewed pocket, here, in batches.

Leon began to unbutton his pants to show where his wife sewed pocket, but Richard playfully slapped his hand:

— You’re the CO, whore, immediately Pani!

— Shows Leon, show! — Larissa screamed.

All laughed.

Leon tried to tuck the belt, but «Vyborova» made itself felt, and the belt was forgotten.

— Gay! Gay! Gay, Falcon! — The twentieth time dragged all your favorite song Richard, and for the twentieth time it was picked up.

Then he drank «For the Slavs!», «For friendship!» To «Poland has not zginela!» And «Let him Long live Belarus!», «For the hunt!», «For panenok Fine!» And again «for the hunt!»

They parted after midnight.

I shook his hand goodbye, Leon muttered:

— Sasha, I’ll come to you for moose.

The words attributed to me, not quite sober state guest by September were confirmed by several phone calls, and that the plane from Warsaw landed at the airport in Minsk.

Long, tedious procedure of customs clearance is finally over and we hugged each other with Leon like old friends.

— Richard hello!

— How is he?

— Firmed, I could not come to work.

— Bogdan?

— I flew to hunt in Africa.

— On the moose?

Leon laughing.

— At the rhino.

— Meet Sasha, my good friend Jaroslav. From the Czech Republic. It wants to get a moose.

Cech medium height, round-headed, with short hair. Friendly, smiling, confirms:

— Really want to!

We shake hands. I’m kidding:

— Dobudesh if St. Hubert will allow!

Everyone looks at the sky, watching us from the patron of European hunters.

I knock bent knuckles on the head:

— Touch wood!

— So you ought to wood!

— Sound the same!

We laugh.

Georgia in a minibus and … forward to the song!

«Gay! Gay! Gay, Falcon! «

In the evening at dinner telling guests about the features of moose hunting «to moan».

Groaning sounds of a bull during the rut, it can be called a very arbitrary. More like a loud croaking heard in calm weather to a kilometer.

I laughingly told how in his youth, after reading about this old and forgotten by way of hunting in hunting almanac, waited for the night in a remote plot to joining the family of moose and started loud groan selflessly, putting all the passion in his voice, he could muster.

To my deep disappointment and bewilderment, moose, standing a few minutes and listen to my moaning, I decided to keep away from sin unknown animal, tormented by pangs of love, alone and quietly disappeared into the night.

About a year later, in the early morning in September, creeping to pokryakivavshih flock of ducks in the drainage canals, I heard an unusual sound in the distance, something like: «I-oh,» «Do-o.» Animal, publish them to advance in my direction.

I waited, and soon in the woods, about fifty meters from me, went moose — the old bull with big horns shovels, as expressed by a friend of mine hunter: «On the head — like two harrow!»

Without standing on the edge of the forest, he went to the canal and began guzzling.

Being by nature very curious, and having a good ear for music, I decided to try to lure elk and turned away to the side, «he croaked»:

— Y-on.

Fortunately for me, the old pine trees, close to where I was standing, thick branches started quite low, in the range of my jump, and after a few moments I could from a height to watch the roaring excitement of the bull, which is due to the disappearance of an opponent has broken horns trunks of alder thick as my arm.

I was particularly struck when his bloodshot eyes.

— So, gentlemen hunters have to shoot safely, — I finished my story. — It is not always comfortable near the trees grow.

My interlocutors incredulous smile. I know that Leon wonderful shooter, but I do not like frivolous attitude to the hunt for the beast and tell another story.

— At the beginning of my career in the hunting management of one of the villages on the territory of our hunting area I lived old veteran poacher-losyatnik. The most striking thing is that it has almost the elbows of hands was not: young fish wanted to eat, but do not have time to charge Tolowa Language throw into the water. Shotgun clamped stumps, and the trigger was tied a rope, which he kept his teeth. Sights, jerked his head. Elks beat a lot and never got caught. Evisceration and meat relatives were engaged in that if the forest for firewood came unarmed. To him, police and rangers with the charges, and he shows the stump: «Which one is me, armless, hunter?» Yes seen angered God by dying, the poor fellow from elk. He came to inadvertently wounded game and got kicked in the stomach. So they lay side by side, as if embracing.

What force has a passion for hunting, which forced the armless man wandering through the woods with a gun!
«For hunting and hunters!» — We raised glasses and standing, drunk.

The weather was, as ordered: slightly froze, wind, cloud hijacked somewhere in the south subsided, as if determined to relax after a week of continuous labor, black bottomless sky friendly winked bright stars.

Leaving the «Field» on the edge of the swamp, we quietly on a paved causeway during the war moved to Leon to guerrilla island, where for several years I have heard a groan and found knackered moose antlers trees and shrubs.

The trail went uphill. Island.

Against the backdrop of graying sky began to vary the tops of centuries-old pine trees. During the war, on this hill, surrounded on all sides by an impassable swamp, located dug guerrilla group, why it got its name.

A hundred meters we reached the edge of the overgrown plot, which has managed to develop timber industry into one of the very harsh winters, frostbitten swamp, and I motioned Leon, we will wait and listen here.

Night Shift forest dwellers, represented mainly by predators, handed over the watch twilight-day.

Busily knocking on the trunks, zagnusavili woodpeckers. Overall flock of titmice and nuthatches, surveying bark next to us, noisy pereparhivaya, moved further along the edge of the swamp. He whistled a flock of ducks.

Somehow unnoticed darkness crawled deep into the thicket, freeing from captivity piercing the blue sky, lush brown pine trunks with flushed from the touch of the rising sun and gold canopy of foliage in a silvery fringe frost, which also lay a carpet over the graceful withered grass.

And finally:

— Y-oh-oh moment.

— Elk!!! Saint Hubert! I declare to you thanks! All actors on the spot! Let us now to a little luck!

My joy over the emergence groaning moose because, unlike deer, which gathered a harem of females, all rut roars, adhering to one place, moose wanders from one female to another, sometimes in the past month making the transition to thirty kilometers. Romance with a female bull short, three or four days, and then again the search for another favorite. In this regard, we had a few embarrassing failures.

Can you imagine the state of the huntsman, who for several days stalking, peeping, listening to the moaning elk brought in found the place the customer at a guaranteed hunting and already imagine what gift he would buy himself and relatives in received for extracted animal tip, but instead had to shame throw up your hands and unsuccessfully tried to justify that «yesterday this bull here moaning!»

After listening, I realized that the moose walking in a small bog, located almost in the middle of the island.

Brisk pace, trying not to make too much noise, we came to the edge. On the way I picked it up and took with him a piece of dry pine bitch. On puzzled look Leon playfully demonstrated how will the beast’s head beat.

Pole smiled.

Pinery ended at the curb narrow forest track, followed by a fairly thick grew frail aspen birch with surrounding swamp. In the depths of the thickets wandering moose, periodically «pokvakivaya», came the sound of broken tree trunks. Before the animal was about two hundred meters.

Stopping in front of the track, I whispered to Leon and ready to shoot only sure not to make a wounded animal. Pole patronizing smile and showed his thumb.

— Well, well, let’s see, how are you today povedesh when we go on a bull — I thought. — This is not a branch of wood grouse shoot.

He raised to his mouth mouthpiece folded hands, I loudly «croaked»:

— Y-on.

Then again:

— Y-on.

Elk was silent for a while, and then rushed to our side. Loud, raucous «croaking» could not close the crackle of breaking trees and the sound of the horns of bone branches. He ran fifty meters, the bull stopped. Picking up a pine bough, I turned to the next bush and rosshey «kvaknuv» started beating the branches, simulating an angry opponent. Roaring bull jerked back to us. Like the tank swept through the thicket, smashing and breaking everything in its path.

I looked at Leon. His rosy cheeks were white, smile froze on his face a grimace of horror, a hand holding a carbine, trembling.

Do not we run down to fifty meters, moose stopped again.

Enticing voice, I did not fear that the animal recognizes the falsity. Having chosen on the ground a few dry twigs lying together, I came to them with a loud crack broke. This sound like a string pulled!

Menacing roaring bull rushed back to us. Not having reached twenty meters to the edge, he has changed the direction of motion, and jumped on the track about forty meters to the right place where we stood, frozen.

It was a huge, almost black moose. On the big spade hung antlers caught on processes broken branches. Boca went to shake his. Bloodshot eyes looking at us angrily.

— Shoot! — Leon whisper, without turning his head. — Shoot, Leon! — Squinting, I see that the Pole aims at the beast, but for some reason, does not shoot.

— Shoot! — Menacing whisper — and then he will throw or leave.

The bull stood motionless, as if wondering what he should do.

— I do not see horns — whispers Leon. — What’s his trophy?

Here it is, unlike our hunter from European. Even in such a stressful time Leon was interested in the size of the trophy. Our shot would not hesitate — this mountain of meat!

— Excellent trophy! Shoot!

Deafeningly roared «Mannlicher». After standing for a few moments, moose fell to the ground. I took a deep breath. There is!
— Recharge carabiner — already loud I said Leon. — Suddenly podranok!

In my practice was a dozen cases where the animal fell dead in a few seconds, rising to his feet and was hidden in the forest. Others managed to reach not even in the snow. Most often this occurs because of the bullet hit the upper ends of the spinous vertebrae, which are especially long at the boar.

Carefully come to lie on the grass beast. Do not move. I turned to the nearest spruce twig broke off short, soak it in blood and attached to the moose hat Leon. I shake the hand of the Pole:
— Congratulations!

I want to shout for joy and sing.

Frankly, for some time I did not feel enthusiasm and pride from his successful shot. On whether that was their lot, or by reason of the age of pity for living beings, but is now I try to shoot only when absolutely necessary. I get much more satisfying, providing prey animal or bird customers, especially foreign. And it’s not in the tip. Rather, it is a professional pride in their ability to hunt down and outwit wild animal, demonstrated by a man who had come to hunt for thousands of kilometers. Such an original form of the exam on the professional skills. And the more difficult conditions of the exam, the more satisfaction you get in the event of successful completion.

After examining the carcass of a bull, I found a bullet hole in his neck. Shovels horns with five and six spikes were rich dark brown color and were pretty balanced. Constraining emotions Leon hugged me and did not let go:

— Thank you, Sasha!

He took out a backpack camera, and we, changing, take a few pictures on the background of the beast.

Gutted moose, I left guard Leon harvested animals, and he went to the car. Mobile telephony in our country was at that time still in its infancy, and to report on a successful hunt I can only personally. The joyful excitement over forty minutes, I almost ran overcome the distance that morning, took two and a half hours.

After driving from the parking, three hundred meters, I noticed a man standing near the edge of the track moose. He was a young bull with two spikes on each horn. I do not move, he was watching me intently.

Slowly passing by, I signaled. There was no response.

— Grow Big! — Mentally I wished moose and added speed.

Yaroslav the morning with no luck. Elk heard, but could not lure him. Beast Hunter walked out of the wind and smelled loudly ryavknuv disappeared in the thicket. Frustrated Czech enviously regarded extracted Leon bull.

Later in the afternoon we went with him to the great marsh, along the edges of which are actively hunted moose.

Slowly we crept Yaroslav under the old logging roads that ran along the marsh. The mood weather, fun, cheerful in the morning, the evening gave way to dull small tears for the departed summer. The sound of rain conceal our steps, but did not allow to hope for a quick and easy detection of the beast. Moose Tracks, different in size and freshness, has been set. Often met crumpled elk antlers trees, accidentally set foot on the path of an excited bull.

Sprawling on a deserted dense young aspen sluiced its contents have a cold shower. Soaked disgusting rustling sleeves Army Jacket, I envied thick woolen jacket Yaroslav, as his wide-brimmed hat. From time to time I tried vabit, but to no avail. Sounds dissolved in the rain, it seemed, a few meters from us.

Dusk. Suddenly there was a loud crash in front of broken trees and behind the moose vohkane:

— U-oh!

To the right of the road, in dense thickets, zachavkalo under the heavy hooves. Again:

— U-oh! — And closer to the right.

— U-oh! — And closer to the right.

— U-oh!

Bypasses, trying to catch the wind! It is seen as a stir treetops. Beast twenty meters away from us, but hidden intertwining trunks and branches, the rain and the gathering darkness. Jaroslav raises the shotgun and tries something to consider in the optical sight. Is vaunted «Zeiss» to cope with such a hassle?

Suddenly a deafening roar and a crash of breaking bull jerked trees fades away. Moose still smelled our scent. Ran into the depths of the thicket, he had several times loudly barked, as if calling us to battle in a place that he chose — owner. We did not take the call, and, wet, tired, returned to base.

In the morning at dawn we were back at the edge of the Big swamp. Rain ended. As if lulled by its soft noise sleeping forest, covered with a thick blanket of thick fog. Blinded and deafened in his shroud, we moved slowly, his feet feeling track road.

To the right, two meters away from us, suddenly startled grouse flapped his wings, trying to get off the ground, but tangled in the branches intertwining and after a few seconds of desperate attempts to break down in the leaf litter and ran ran away. We Yaroslav laughed.

According to change the color of the fog: a heavy, lead-gray in the air, milky white — I realized that the sun was up. We went to the edge of a large overgrown logging. Excited walking person touched the breeze. Perched on the edge of the forest set to open the tower, we settled back and froze in anticipation. Under the rays of the sun and light wind the fog began to dissipate. Zagolubelo sky.

Several times I provabil, but there was no answer. Twenty minutes later, I repeated the manna, and again to no avail.

Continuing periodically vabit, I thought through continued on our way, when Jaroslav touched my sleeve.

Looking through binoculars in the direction pointed out to me, I noticed on the edge of cutting nursing elk. She captured her lips thin branches of the aspens and abruptly cut short muzzle up leaves.

The distance to it was a hundred and fifty meters.

— Where’s the bull? — I thought, and almost immediately saw the bushes stir a little further for the elk.

After a few seconds seemed elk, on whose head adorned with a large shovel antlers. I have to Yaroslav zhivoetnoe. After watching the bull through binoculars, he fell to the eyepiece. I stood waiting for the shot. Distance guarantee the accuracy of hitting.

A minute passed, then another, but the shot did not come. Animals moved slowly through the cutting and soon it reached the opposite edge. Before them there were about two hundred meters. However, the stories of Yaroslav, he shot the deer at a much greater distance.

— Come on, Jaroslav! Come on, go! — I’m repeating myself, but the shot never sounded. Elk disappeared into the woods.
Jaroslav exhaled loudly and dropped carbine. Turning to me, he smiled:

— Sasha, it’s my first moose in life! I used them in the wild ever seen. I decided — let the bull lives!

Seeing my face ill-concealed disappointment Jaroslav slapped me on the shoulder and said cheerfully:

— Find a friend, you have a lot of moose!

— Your word used to God’s ears, — I thought. — Another chance may not be.

Aloud, of course, without saying anything, I smiled to Yaroslav, and we went in search of other moose.

The Poles taught me: «Gives Holy Hubert — take, and it might be offended!»

Offended Jaroslav Saint Hubert! How I have offended! For the remaining three days, I beckoned to a distance of five true shot moose, but at the last, decisive moment interfered with any unforeseen circumstance, which in no cramp our efforts. That wind nakinet smell of a man, he does not want to show the bull horns, to assess what’s on his mind, the moose shield him with his body, as if feeling that he could lose the «husband.» One moose I beckoned to a distance of no more than fifteen meters, but at first could not see the horns, and then, when they were reviewed and verified in a decent size, the body hidden in thick bushes and shoot and failed. We must pay tribute to Yaroslav, setbacks he endured bravely, did not lose heart, smiled, joked and believed that the animal will produce.

During this time, Leon had to shoot a good trophy tusker, saw the sights surrounding towns, was very pleased and continually kindly teased Czech.

On the last night, leaving all of the farewell dinner, we Yaroslav again went into the woods.

It ended with a warm sunny day in September. Leaving the «Field» on the edge of the swamp, we walked about two kilometers and settled on a tower on the edge of a large overgrown logging. I was a little sad. Over the five days of hunting, we are very good friends of Yaroslav, and I was sorry that he had not got a trophy.

The forest crackled, and soon the cutting, fifty meters from the tower, came a herd of wild boars, led a fairly large sow. They scattered before us, raising the sod turning rotten fallen trees in search of food.

Suddenly sow guard natopyrila and ears, noisy breathing and exhaling, began gazing out towards the opposite edge of the clearing. From there came the crack of a falling tree, and the open space fast trot ran stag-moose! The pig grunted in a special way, and the whole herd rushed shrieking in saving the forest.

To our amazement, elk, without slowing down, crossed cutting and disappeared among the trees. Yaroslav did not manage to catch him in sight. The reason for such behavior of the beast I still can not explain. After waiting a couple of hours in the hope that will return the same or a bull or another appears, we withdrew from the tower and walked toward the car.

Full moon had risen. Tall pines with black trunks of columns rose in a silver glow on the sides of our path, which was perfectly clear. Periodically, I beckoned moose, imitating the voice of the male, the female, but without result.

That’s the car. I got a driver’s seat and wanted to start the engine, but Jaroslav asked me to wait for five minutes until he said goodbye to the wood. Leaving guns in the cabin, he walked away into the darkness. I closed the door, «Niva» and … fell asleep. Many days fatigue took its toll. I woke up because Jaroslaw, to initiate something speaks Czech, climbed over me to get the shotgun. He grabbed his trunk, he finally remembered the words of Russian, loudly whispered:

— Sasha, mani! Elk! Elk!

I briskly out of the car, «zavohkal», but heard only the receding crackling twigs under the hooves of the heavy beast. As it turned out, five minutes after standing near the car, saying goodbye to the forest and moose, Jaroslav saw past him, twenty meters, step is a huge bull with tremendous horns. A shotgun — in the car!

Czech resentment almost cried! And somehow I imagined evil in the face of St. Hubert, with a smile watching us from heaven: «Give — take it!»

At the airport, saying goodbye, Jaroslav said to me, shaking his hand, «Sasha, I lost the battle, but lost the war! I’ll be back!»

And he did come back, but that’s another story.

Alexander Shestak19 September 2007 at 16:11

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