Caribou Gear

Finn from the Cascades, Season 4

JLS

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Hard to train in this heat, but we had a good session this morning. We hammered the water on Friday. Today we did a forest search and a blood track. We used pigeons from Friday for the search. This is the understory. Already 75 degrees at 6:30 AM.

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Bird distribution

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The spoils. Finn is absolutely 100% dependable on his retrieve.

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The blood track was tough. Finn was pretty heated up from his search. Also, the ground is unbelievably dry. I laid the track in the driest stuff I could find.

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It was still 92 degrees at 8:00 PM when I laid the track. Relative humidity is nonexistent. Here is the overlay. Blood is red. Track is blue. Wind from 2 o’clock.

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Sparse blood. It’s hard for me to be a lot of help in these dry conditions.

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It is getting easier to read Finn when he’s on the blood track vs tracking a deer. This was a 12 hour track, and fresh deer sign overnight.
 

JLS

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Got some good work in while on a family get together.

No pictures, but we worked on the “hunt close” command for hunting dense cover. Essentially, the dog has to hunt in gun range and check in regularly. To do this we just hunted a dense second growth stand, and when Finn got too far out I’d hit the whistle and give the command. Then, randomly shoot a blank and throw a piece of dead game out.

We did two blood tracks. I tried to find understory similar to where a wounded elk would go. This is one overlay. Blue was the blood trail and red is the dog track. Lots of deer in this area, which was why I chose it. Wind is from four o’clock.

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Today’s track was through some nasty deadfall. Both days really showed me how much wind direction can play a role. Cross winds can make it tough.
 

Jc2020

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Feb 10, 2020
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All told, this session took about three hours, plus 30 minutes round trip of drive time. For whatever reason, the blood track has always seemed daunting to me. 99% of the battle is simply understanding how to set this stuff up for your dog to learn. I bought a training DVD set and it made things 10x easier.
What training dvd did you go with?
 

Elmacho

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Oct 26, 2017
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Fullerton, CA
Its great watching Finn got thru the process. I have only gone up to the fall test....I live in the city and way to tough to get to the hills enough to do what you are doing. I will though, on one of my future dogs and when I leave the city for good.

Good work!
 
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JLS

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Its great watching Finn got thru the process. I have only gone up to the fall test....I live in the city and way to tough to get to the hills enough to do what you are doing. I will though, on one of my future dogs and when I leave the city for good.

Good work!
Yes, I am very fortunate on that there is the city park and state DNR land very close by where I can do the majority of my training. I just have to make sure I get out early, so the yoga pants ladies doing their hikes don’t see me dragging a dead raccoon in the woods and freak out LOL.
 

JLS

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This heat is brutal, but we’re training through it. Field work, steadiness to flush and shot work today early. We followed that with a 400m fur drag with a 10 lb raccoon (test minimum is 7 lbs).

Switched to water work after breakfast and coffee. Blind retrieves, gun sensitivity, and search with live duck.

All in all a good day. We have a homework list made up. 95 degrees when we wrapped up.

Bulliet on a blind retrieve.

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JLS

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It’s been a frustrating summer for training. No water, water with algae blooms, land closures and so on.

We did a blood track this morning. I have been so busy working on steadiness, we hadn’t done a blood track in a month. Laid one last night, aged it 9 hours. This was a test of Finn’s readiness, I was just along for the ride. I couldn’t see blood because I was trying to manage the lead and not spill coffee.

Blood trail is in red, track in yellow, wind from four o’clock.

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JLS

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Hard to believe test day(s) are only a couple weeks out. This morning felt very fallish, so we did an overnight blood track. On a steep downhill. It’s amazing how hard a 61 lb dog can pull.

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I don’t have any other dogs to compare to, but blood tracking might very well be Finn’s strongest skill.


We also did some blind retrieves on a steep downhill/ side hill. I’d still like him to push out in a more direct pattern, but he’s getting the job done. Just with a little more effort than is necessary

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stillkickin

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Upper Michigan
Enjoyed this thread as my old gal is failing faster than I want.
Thanks for bringing back some great memories and best of luck on the test!!!
 
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JLS

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We snuck out for a couple of days of blue grouse hunting in my happy place.

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It was hot. 0 bears to be found. It is unbelievably dry.

I’m trying to understand how a bird can in one moment stand in the road while you load a shotgun with the pickup doors open and wearing Chacos, and the next minute flush wild 50 yards ahead of a dog on point.

It was good. Training is showing. Shot two birds off point yesterday and nearly had a third. On to Boise later this week.

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