I have been somewhat busy of late with one thing or another and not been out anything like I usually am, so on Tuesday evening my wife hands me the telephone and says give one of your pals a call and get off out to play for a day or two.
So I telephoned Colin (Solwaystalker) and we arranged to meet, last night to see if we could find a buck, failing which we could sit out for an hour or so and see if any Boar turned up.
So I pondered over which rifle to take with me and thinking more about Boar than Roe decided to take my .308 Steyr Scout and Pulsar N750, I have to say, I have spent many hours at the range with this combo, I always take the scope off for storage as it otherwise refuses to go in the cabinet, with the QD it always sits back perfectly and remains spot on at 100 yards, perfect for night shooting from a high seat.
So I arrive on the Solway and after some discussion about my choice and the fact that I had left the rifle sling at home we set off, it didnt take to long before I realised the error of leaving my trusty Sako at home, these night time combos are much better for their intended use in high seats than as stalking rifles.
So having walked all over New Abbey and glassed every field and seen only does in the evening light, Colin said right lets go and see if we can find a Boar, we made our way back to the truck and set off, as we turned into the dirt track that headed out to the farm we saw a nice Buck in the middle of the field, he was a good weight but after watching him for a short while, with him constantly moving away from us, we decided to go on and see if we could spot a Boar.
We parked the truck and as quietly as possible closed the door and started slowly walking down the path that lead to open fields, Colin was slightly in front of me and as he reached the end of the lane started to glass the area, when he suddenly said "Pig", I turned to see where he was looking and there about 1600 yards away was a massive Boar trotting up the field Parallel to us, strange really the speed he was trotting up the field as though he knew where the good fed was to be had and was in a rush to get there.
So we quickly and quietly made our way back to where we had started and then turned to close the distance between us, stopping every few yards to check where the pig was, still he came on trotting up the field. We were now within 200 yards of him and clearly see this was indeed a monster, he must easily have been 300 pounds in weight with huge tusks, he stopped and started rooting about, flicking stuff into the air and then more slowly, set off again, still closer to where we were set up, my heart was pounding away like a freight train as I set the rifle on the sticks.
Colin whispered wait for him Guy he will come closer, dont rush, wait for him to turn broadside, he was now about 120 yards away still rooting about head bobbing up and down as I waited for that moment when he would stand perfectly still, then he lifted his head and started sniffing the air, and the red dot quickly came to rest on his ear,I nudged the safety off as I started wondering if he had caught our scent and gently squeezed the trigger, there was a thump and a cloud of dust burst directly behind where the Boars head had been a split second before, the Boar lurched to his right as though mortally wounded only to jump to his feet and set off running down the field like a racehorse, he collided with a steel five bar gate at the bottom of the field making a hell of clatter before disappearing into the field beyond.
As my heart rate started to slow and the rush started to ebb, we looked at one another with that silence that says "How the hell did you miss him?" (Because I really cant write here what I really thought) we waited for a few minutes then made our way across to where I had taken the shot, No Blood! we walked the full length of the field, No Blood! checked the gate, No Blood!
So we made our way back to the truck whilst the usual analysis took place "IF ONLY" I have waited a few seconds more or took my stalking rifle, wore my lucky socks or a myriad of other excuses for operator failing and the kind words from Colin, "Dont worry theres always another day"
What a rush!
Thanks for the opportunity Colin fabulous evening out, perhaps next time!
P.S I am reminded of that black Cat crossing in front of us which I thought was lucky and you thought put the mockers on the whole affair! seems we were both right!