By: Ted Nugent
HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDSON JACK
Today is my wonderful grandson Jack’s 19th birthday, and on this very special November 5 fall day during this very special time of year, this here old grandpa celebrates his grandson’s birthday in a very special way.
It was many years ago on this fine November 5th that I erected a tall ladderstand way up high hidden in the dying coniferous boughs of a towering tamarack tree, deep in the puckerbrush hellzone of my winding riverine sacred Michigan swamplands.
I had for many years eyeballed this beautiful river intersection of hardwoods, marshgrasses, and flooded dogwoods and alders, where the black muck clearly highlighted the historical deer movement in this special hidden place.
Whenever I can hide in the silhouette breaking cover of coniferous tree limbs, I take advantage of this perfect ambush setup and up goes my ladderstand.
Waiting for the right northerly wind, I finally picked a cold, crisp morning on Jack’s birthday many years ago, and super Michigan Out of Doors TV vidbabe Jenny Olsen and I climbed aboard for our baptismal bowhunt in this new setup.
The elevated view from this little chunk of wildlife paradise was exciting throughout the entire morning, when after taking in all the bird activity and overhead skeins of migrating wildfowl the first few hours, the telltale crunch crunch crunch of approaching hoovesteps brought us both to red alert.
And as if on a mission from God, came a gallivanting buckaroo from the depths of deerheaven straight for us!
Well, the typical nerve scorching standoff went on for a short while till I finally got to fulldraw and sent a beautiful arrow into his heart-thumping crease, and all that was left to do was rejoice in the tracking, recovery and backstrap wardance celebration.
Jack was a just a little boy back then, but has grown into a fine, strong, smart, gifted young man who took Michigan State Champ Golf trophy home last year, and I continue to celebrate his birthdays nestled in Jack’s Tamarack every November 5th each year.
I have many ambush setups named after special family and friends. There’s Uncle John’s saddle, brother Jeff’s Knee Surgery coop, George’s gravelpit, Shemane’s boxblind, Sasha’s boxblind, the infamous Father-Son ladder, Jenny’s 5point, The Maple, The 14-point coop, the MidGrove, Bryan’s BigBuckNob, The HogBack, The Peninsula, and so many more!
Every hunt is thrilling and special, but when a stand is named after someone special, the stimuli and fun factors increases exponentially and makes that sit all the more exciting and interesting.
I wrote this here NugeBlog in advance of my November 5 hunt this year in Jack’s Tamarack, but my hopes and expectations run crazy hot just knowing the goodluck charm that Jack’s birthday represents in my deerhunting past.
There are no guarantees for a kill when bowhunting, but there is an inescapable guarantee that the morning will be fascinating and ultra-fun in my grandson’s namesake treestand, where the world is at least temporarily perfect and peaceful and where the mighty Spirit of the Wild runs strong and free.
Happy birthday Jack, we all love you and are very proud of you. I will be at your side this day in a beautiful tall Tamarack tree, thinking of you and the hopeful backstrapper that should appear for your special day.