This trip reminded us once more how our ranch is located in a wild and isolated area. Myself and wife Tracy along with Paul Kamps and Javin Mallery participated in this journey. We knew going down that it was going to be a wet experience but never fathomed that we would witness the transformation of a semi-arid brush country to an angry raging flood overnight. Our ranch is located at the foot hills of the San Madre mountains and is tremendously affected by what happens up in the mountains 100 miles away. Although when we arrived it was drizzling the river was full which told us it had rained in the mountains. The adventurers held out hope to be able to enjoy another few days of Dove hunting and prepare the ranch for the upcoming Deer season.
After two days of light intermittent rain we woke to a down pour and a rapidly rising river. We decided the smart move would be to cut our trip short and head for high ground. It would take a few hours to close up the house so Paul and Javin took a quick trip to try some predator calling and be back in a few hours. Unfortunately the river rose faster than we could move and we were suddenly caught in an flash flood situation. Knowing if we didn't get out today we might be here for a week. Off we went!! Paul was our point man and measured the depth (using his body as the yard stick) with the hopes of finding the best place to cross. Javin our communication expert relayed his report. The decision was made to give it a "shot" I was hoping for more reassurance but that was the best I could get, so on we went. Even with our human yard stick assuring us we could make it we still had water coming over the hood of the suburban!!! My wife got a tad miffed when I asked her to roll down the window and get a few pictures of this cause I never new the suburban was part submarine and where did our wheels go?:) Of course leaning out the window and snapping pictures while at any moment we could be swept downstream is not for the weak at heart. But boy did she get some great photos!! From a peaceful pool of crystal clear water to a wild and untamable torrent in a matter of hours was like witnessing a magic trick. You wonder how it happens. But it did spawn a full range of emotions in all of us. From the usually eagerness and excitement of just being on the ranch, to the awe of feeling nature's fury, to the intensity of fighting our way out, and eventually to the giddiness of the successful return to Del Rio. This is one of those few moments in life that will remain etched forever in the your mind. A time without all of us working together and encouraging each other the journey might have turned into a tragedy. Also the help of many friends such as Marco, Carlos, and our faithful cowboy Manuel played a huge part in enabling us to find our way around the river and through the back country. Thank you guys very much. God willing we will all be back again to enjoy Paradise Canyon again. This is one of those few moments in life that will remain etched forever in the your mind. A time without all of us working together and encouraging each other the journey might have turned into a tragedy. With God as our pilot and also the help of many friends such as Marco, Carlos, and our faithful cowboy Manuel played a huge part in enabling us to find our way around the river and through the back country. Thank you guys very much. God willing we will all be back again to enjoy Paradise Canyon again.
One of the best dove hunting trips we ever had. Killed over 500 of the winged bandits. Our dog Jamaica was in dog heaven the first couple days but eventually ran herself into exhaustion, she was one sore puppy. All of us had doubles with a single shot along with lots of furious action. One of the highlights was watching Jamaica retrieve one of my doubles at the same time. Yep two birds in her mouth at once. The last night we hunted our dog could barely move but when my wife Tracy shot her first bird of the night Jamaica rose from her bed and trotted out to retrieve her best friends dove.
As you can see by the pictures the ranch has received an abundance of rain. The sage brush was in full bloom and the brilliant purple flowers could be seen for miles. It was breathtaking! The beauty of the ranch never ceases to amaze me. Lots of rain over the past months has filled the San Rodrigous river and blesses us with scenery that humbles ones soul. The view from our hacienda never grows old and changes with the seasons into vistas that defy description. They are total body experiences, you actually feel the beauty with all your senses.
Sun rises are special times at the ranch. The prospects of a new day with new adventures to be experienced. Daylight brings the birth of a soft breeze, the awaking of our anticipations and the fragrance that is only found in wild and untamed lands. Many of our friends are mesmerized by the vastness of the ranch and its places of solitude that puts the world in proper order.