Sporting Classics Digital

Jan/Feb 2017

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248 • S P O R T I N G C L A S S I C S These then, are men who shoot. Whether or not they know each other, or love dogs, or even pursue the same game, they share one thing when they share their experiences—a quickening of the senses at the smell of powder. George Bird Evans, The Upland Shooting Life, 1964. Submtted by Jon Osborn II of Holland, Michigan. We went to the field for pleasure, all kinds of pleasure: The dog finding what couldn't be found; the clean, unexpected shot; the solid and welcome feel and smell of earth underfoot; the leafless winter trees backlit by a setting sun; the exquisite taste of a wild bird cooked to perfection. The day burned so vividly inside us. It felt like a distillation of forever, the words a fellow hunter found to describe indescribable moments, even those moments when a beloved dog died. Robert DeMott, Afield – American Writers on Bird Dogs, 2010. Submitted by Robert Norris of East Greenwich, Rhode Island. The assault on my nerves was unimaginable as the silvery baitfish leaped to escape from the copper-colored monsters (channel bass) below, only to fly into the beaks and claws of the ravenous seabirds that kept up an unearthly clamor. It was the story of the best and most exciting day's fishing in a lifetime. Paul Gallico in the February 1963 issue of True magazine. Submitted by Bernard T. Walker of Creswell, North Carolina. We watched the weather like wind-bit old farmers, checking the time-honored signals by which Nature announces her intentions. Our crop is dependant on it. Our crop is quail—birds to anyone who hunts them. "I'm a bird hunter," you say to strangers and if they also are bird hunters, they nod. If not, they ask what kinds of birds you hunt and you mark them down as questionable characters— perhaps IRS agents or Congressmen. Joel M. Vance, Upland Bird Hunting, 1981. Submitted by Roger A. Bradley of East Petersburg, Pennsylvania. We stood in silence, smelling the freshness of the prairie air, marveling at the brightness of the morning star. Unconsciously, almost, we waited in that world of utter silence for an old familiar sound too long unheard. Then suddenly from up there out in the darkness it came to us—a vague, soft rustling, at first less heard than felt—the sound of waterfowl a-wing in the night, cleaving the western sky in sturdy flight. And through me there rushed a wave of awe and wonder as acutely thrilling as when I first heard that sound— standing with my father—many years ago. I realized than what a host of adventures and what a world of happiness have come to me because of whistling wings. Martin Bovey, Whistling Wings, 1947. Submitted by Michael R. Miller of Spokane, Washington. Send us your favorite quotes from sporting literature and receive one free gift subscription for every quote that is published. Include the author, title of book, and date of publication. Send to: Quotes, Sporting Classics, PO Box 23707, Columbia, SC 29224 Quotes There is pleasure in taking a train across so beautiful and wild a country as that which lay on the threshold of our hunting grounds in the Shoshones. We went over mountain passes, with ranges of sculpted beaks on either hand; we skirted the edges of lovely lakes, and of streams with boulder-strewn beds; we plunged into depths of somber woodland broken by wet prairies. It was a picturesque sight to see the loaded pack-train stringing across one of these high mountain meadows, the motley line of ponies winding around the marshy spots . . . with lofty peaks towering in the background. Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893. Submitted by Barry Reiswig of Cody, Wyoming. If you get to thinking you're a person of some influence, try ordering somebody else's dog around. Will Rogers (1879-1935) Submitted by Bob Whitehead of Cloverdale, California.

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