Naming a hunting spot? No problem

As long as I’ve been a hunter, I have hunted on areas that have special names. The “Cocklebur” stand? It’s located in the middle of a patch of – you guessed it – cockleburs.

One in particular is one I named myself because of my lack of skill in carpentry. I called it the “Shanty”. It was propped up on all sides to keep it from tumbling over.

On the adjoining hill, a buddy with expert skills at carpentry had constructed one that was plumb and square that totally put my stand to shame. We gave our approval when he named it the  “Chateau” stand.

It didn’t have to be a deer stand; it could be a certain patch of woods that when you mentioned that’s where you would be hunting, every club member knew exactly where you were talking about. Here’s how one such hunting spot earned its name.

It was a cool, clear October afternoon with little or no wind, a perfect time to be in the woods after squirrels. When I finished what I had to do at work for the day, I took the afternoon off with plans to head for my favorite squirrel hunting spot.

Changing into hunting clothes and gathering up my shotgun and gear, I jumped in my truck, turned off onto the dim little road that I had traveled many times that led to my squirrel woods a mile down the road.

Ordinarily, I drive up and around the little road to a hill where I park my truck only a couple hundred yards from the woods. This time, however, there was something blocking my way. There was a car parked in the middle of the road.

I thought it odd since I didn’t recognize the car as belonging to any of my hunting club member friends. The land was privately owned with only our group having permission to hunt there.

I was puzzled, not only at the presence of the strange vehicle but also frustrated by the fact that it was blocking the narrow woods road I had to travel to reach my hunting spot.

While pondering the problem, I noticed that there were some small pines on either side of the little road and if I could remove a few of them, I might be able to ease around the car and make it to my hunting spot in time for an afternoon hunt.

I always keep an axe behind the seat of my truck in case I might need it in such an emergency. In addition, I never head for the woods without my camera because you never know when a photo op might present itself.

Reaching behind the seat, I picked up the axe and with my camera hanging around my neck, it was my intension to remove enough of the small pines to allow me access. That’s when I noticed movement in the parked vehicle that was blocking the road. I realized that there were people in the car as I saw two faces appear in the side window.

The faces turned ashen in color with eyes wide as they watched a guy dressed in camo walk up behind them with a camera and an axe.

It was not rocket science to figure out that I had happened upon a secret venture of a couple who only wanted time alone and what better way to find such special times than to drive down a dim woods road in the middle of the day to insure their privacy.

Long story short, I backed my truck out of the way so the couple could drive away, shielding their faces as they passed me.

I was able to drive on in and enjoy my afternoon squirrel hunt. I don’t recall if I got any squirrels but I now had the name of my favorite hunting spot.

To this day, that fine scope of woods is known by a special name I gave it that day.

Hanky Panky Hill.

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