ORRINGTON, Maine — Young hunters and their adult mentors did not have to wait until sunrise to figure out that Saturday’s Youth Turkey Day might be a bit soggy. All they had to do was lie awake in bed and listen to the rain pelt the windows and feel the wind shake their homes. But that did not dampen the enthusiasm for those who did head afield in heavy rain and chilly temps.
One reason: Many were going to spend their time hunting in relatively dry ground blinds, rather than sitting out in the open, leaning on a tree and waiting for birds to show up.
“Thank heaven for those covered blinds,” said Travis Pece of Orrington, who stopped by Bob’s Kozy Korner Store with his 14-year-old daughter, Josie, to tag the 18.2-pound bird she shot early Saturday morning. “I was home [Friday night], listening to it rain, and went, ‘Oh, man.’ We’d set [the blind] up yesterday, and luckily I staked it down good, because the wind was howling.”
Even though it was pouring rain, Josie Pece said bailing out on the day of hunting, which is set aside for junior hunters who haven’t reached their 16th birthday, wasn’t an option.
I really just like spending time with [my dad],” she said. “And shooting the gun and shooting a turkey is a thrill.”
That’s a thrill that neither of the Peces take for granted. Travis is a registered Maine guide who often works during the fall, when deer season takes place. And Josie is a busy athlete who participates in softball and basketball. Their conflicting schedules make outings like Saturday’s fairly rare, so the Peces have learned to cherish those opportunities.
“Sports start up in the fall [during deer season], and with all that stuff, we don’t get a chance to hunt together too often,” Travis Pece said. “Her schedule and my schedule don’t match up that well.”
But on Saturday, their schedules matched up perfectly, though they didn’t need much time to fill one tag. Josie’s turkey was the first tagged at Bob’s Kozy Korner, at about 7 a.m.
John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. Today, he's the Outdoors editor for the BDN, a job that allows him to meet up with Maine outdoors enthusiasts in their...
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