Daily Check in!

  • First night in my ranch house in a year! The rusty pipes are gone! The central heat is on! I forgot the new fill valve for the master bathroom at home! Los Vatos are almost finished with the right of way fence! I have at least six black Brangus roaming around loose in the pasture with no fence! I’m out of money! Taxes and winter feed bills are coming soon! It’s such fun being a rancher.

  • I've been processing some brass this week some I picked up at the range and some from my rifles. I had already sorted through this stuff before moving so it's been inspected pretty good I still found a couple of split necks and bulged pieces though. The survivors all got full length sized and double tumbled before bagging and going into containers for future use. Here's some advice when handling brass especially old stuff wear your glasses and gloves and keep your grubby fingers out of your eyes. There's something in the oxidation of the brass that is bad for tear ducts and eyes in general. Might be powder residue and primer residue also but keep your hands away from your eyeballs. Ask me how I know. I ruined my Wilson case trimmer cutter trying to trim some Nickel plated Winchester brass I should have left that stuff alone lucky I have a brand new cutter for a spare. I might do a little pistol brass later but I have about had enough fun for a while. I volunteered to cut firewood today so I better find my snake boots and gloves I put fresh gas in the chainsaw last week and ran it a little. Got to love a Stihl saw:)

  • Well, drinking two cups of coffee before the match did NOT help the shakeyhand! ;)
    (but it did taste good on a cool morning!)
    There is always next month!

  • No one north of the Lower Colorado River will understand this, but it was just too cold to hunt this morning in Tow; the weather station said it was 38 degrees at the Granite Point station and there was FROST on the grass. The Missus and I earned me some brownie points by cooking her breakfast and then what started out as washing the dishes turned into 5 hours of cleaning the house while she “test napped” her new quilt.

    I discovered that the reason the water pump wouldn’t pump was because one of the transmission poles was missing 15 feet of its top! Lightning must have struck it. It sure pays to know the local boys: I placed an automated service request about 1330 and by 1430 there was a bucket truck with parts and two repair guys here to get my water well going! Almost had to put my phone on airplane mode because the COOP supervisor kept calling to make sure the crew found me and had everything they needed, then he called again to tell me the pump was running water into my cow trough! Refreshing change from Pecker Lectric who might take three work days to show up to see what they might need for the job. Pecker Lectric IS proper; LBJ was a founder. Y’all remember Jumbo, right?

    Pulled my rifle out of the case mid-morning thinking I’d sneak up on some hogs at the watering hole. Crosshairs were about 10/4. Definitely had not been that way yesterday afternoon. Removed the ring caps to find some kind of liquid between the caps and the inserts. Amazingly, all four insert halves were “0”s so I cleaned everything off and for lack of anything appropriate, like bakers rosin, little strips of table napkin were inserted for supplemental grip. Almost couldn’t believe the first test shot was right back on zero! Shot a square to see how far off level I was and it shot a damned nice square too! Not half bad for dining table gunsmithing with nothing but a Craftsman bit driver and a paper napkin.

    Hoping that big spike stag is hungry in the morning. It’s forecast to be 50 degrees at sunrise. If bundle up in my Carhart overalls I think I can last until the sun hits the blind.

  • @rr2241tx Had to laugh out loud when I finally figured out Pecker Lectric = Perdenales Electric!
    I also remember Jumbo but I know him as Landslide Lyndon...
    Good luck on your buck - wish you could thin out the herd here!

  • Hunting trip called off because we ran out of groceries. Not only were no deer harmed, they weren’t even seen! Nice cool spell headed this way Thursday. Think I’ll brave the mobs and hit the H‑E‑B Wednesday morning, taking enough food to stay through the weekend. All the grocery stores there are sold out to the walls. Deer hunting is hungry (and thirsty) work.

    The fence is almost done! One water gap and one recessed gate then capping all the drill stem posts on the last mile and a half. Kathleen allows as how the new fence is so pretty it even looks good at night! Those cows better start having twins to help pay for this.

  • Got my eyes on some real good prospects here. Couple nice mule deer and whitetail too. Not sure which one I want to shoot yet. Almost smacked one last night at 750yds... but I got my firing solution into the rifle about 1 second too late and he stepped across a boundary.

    Plenty of time left in season... and the relentless 35-60mph wind we've had lately is enough to drive a guy inside.

  • @orkan I was just going to say that the forum has gone a little quiet with hunting season now here. I saw a really nice 8 point right next to the ranch road at 4:30 PM yesterday. Never would have happened 2 months ago. I don't know where the bucks go the rest of the year but I never see them right by the road.

  • Not much hunting in my neighborhood we have hunters but they are mostly hanging out with their buddies. The northers have been making nice weather but mid eighties don't make animals move much and the gnats drive you nuts sitting in a blind. We're waiting on the cool spell rr2241 is speaking of I bought all the makings for a big pot of Caldo de Res or beef soup. We made it to the HEB on interstate 35 yesterday and you can spot the out of towners in their camo and pushing empty shopping carts until they figure out where everything is in the store. I was getting a dozen tamales and a guy struck up a conversation with me enquiring about the tamales I told him not like home made but they will do. Turned out he was from Lake Jackson Texas out here on a hunting lease. Lake Jackson is a tangled mess of residential homes that are endless reaching almost to Houston one neighborhood after another and not cheap houses either I have seen signs at these places advertising houses that start in the mid 600's. We shot the breeze for about ten minutes I guess and we went on our separate ways. I saw him later still pushing his cart with a dozen tamales sitting in it.

  • Packing up the brass from last weeks processing. Some .243, 7x57 Mauser and 30-30 Winchester. It got cloudy overnight and not as cool as it was yesterday and the deer have really started moving. This morning it was foggy but when it cleared we had a field full of them still grazing from last night. Still not much pressure from hunters I imagine after Thanksgiving it will get busy around here.

  • Last chance to get the ingredients for tomorrow but we're going to risk the grocery store anyway. We left the turkey in the freezer and I'm frying shrimp and catfish tomorrow the bird will come out for Christmas. I'm still processing brass I found some .223 that was packed away that had been fired it will mostly be reloaded for my AR I have new brass for my bolt rifle I have been keeping separate when I shoot it. Time to get moving before the store gets packed.

  • @bigfoot Brave Man!

    I'm going to be smoking a turkey today and roasting another turkey tomorrow on the grill. Both my brothers and my daughter and family are coming "over the hills and through the woods" tomorrow. My wife has been baking cornbread, making stuffing, baking yams, and baking pies all week. The house smells great!

    Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!

  • @shakeyhand I thought about putting the turkey on the smoker I have never done one. I figured it needed to be brined but these Butterball's are already injected with something a fresh bird might be better. I remember going to a farm close to here with my grandmother and getting a live turkey when I was pretty young. We stuffed it in a feed sack still alive and its head was poking out riding back in their old Dodge Coronet car with me holding it. Boy was it in for a surprise. Turkeys have a lot of feathers but easier to pluck than a chicken. I had all kinds of big feathers to decorate stuff with after that.

  • Happy Thanksgiving to one and all! Before Hallmark, Thanksgiving was a day set aside to give thanks, to God and to friends and neighbors for the good fortune to have made it through another year alive. Perhaps it would be good to return to those roots and remember that time is the only thing that cannot be replaced and we have no idea how much of it we have left. Share time with those you love, everyday.

  • Front is blowing in right now. A little spattering of rain and the temperature is dropping back to a more realistic December level. The Gulf of Mexico is still relatively warm and when the wind blows from the south-east, we can get back to shirt sleeve weather quickly.

    The North wind is blowing a fresh crop of post oak and cedar elm leaves into the yard and porch so the broom will make another appearance this afternoon. We are finally over half-way through the leaf season...

  • Now the wind is blowing hard out of the south-east and the leaves are flying again! We are about 3/4 through with them finally! Warm then cold: repeat, repeat, and repeat again...

    Steel challenge match again tomorrow: move from the waist, both eyes open, squeeze, don't slap the trigger, but most of all, don't shake that hand!

  • Wind straight out of the north since around midnight. Temperature has dropped 50 degrees but humidity is much lower than yesterday. Don’t think I’m going to get any rain out of this.

    Off to meet the new landlord of the muzzleloader range in a bit. I need to negotiate a sublease with him for Texas Single Shot Rifle Association match dates or go get Travis lined up to move our equipment off the range with his tilt bed wreckers. Our old landlord has had that range leased since 1971. There was a succession plan in place, we thought, but he ignored it and turned the range back to the landowner unexpectedly a couple of months ago. The guy leasing the range beside ours was nearby and snagged it on the spot. The windy weather today pretty well precludes hunting in brush country so might as well get this out of the way.

  • @rr2241tx good luck on the negotiations! We got .38 inch last night and I slept well with the storm pounding on the roof.

  • What a glorious day! This is the weather that makes that long, hot summer worth it! The sun was warm and comforting as I sat propped up on the bricks that were bathed in bright mid-winter sunlight with my faithful dog sitting beside me. Such a change from yesterday with low clouds and wind gusting out of the North. I was surprised that the shakey hand behaved even though the rest of me was shivering at the match.

    To top it all off, one of the shooters who is also a gunsmith and FFL dealer told me that a package from Primal Rights for me was delivered on Friday!

    What a glorious day indeed!

  • Range use negotiations started off poorly and quickly got worse. New guy wants his annual lease back for each weekend of use. I’d have to charge $200 range fee to pay him. I’m good with the old guy until 31Dec. so will begin vacating the range Wednesday.

    TSSRA Spring Match is 21-22 APR, so finding a new home range is my immediate priority. I have a feeling this is a turning point; whether for better or worse remains to be seen.

  • @rr2241tx Sorry to hear that! Maybe you can find something even better now - I sure hope so.

  • @rr2241tx Go buy a chunk of property on your own and do your own thing. :)

  • @orkan Man, I wish that was possible. There are so many people moving here that the grass hasn’t even sprouted on the graves when the developers start cutting roads in the old ranches. Texas has laws that protect shooting ranges. The trick is that you have to defend even frivolous suits alleging noise, stray bullets, etc. and they can quickly run you broke and tie you up for years with TROs while the court gets around to holding a hearing. I watched that happen to a neighbor who built a 4-H range on his 400 acres. He had NRA advisors and the highest berms I’ve ever seen. All out in the middle of his land for kids to shoot 22LR. The construction company was still loading out their dozers when a sleazy lawyer slapped a TRO on him based on a corroded, unfired .375 bullet that allegedly was heard hitting a neighbor’s roof nearly a mile behind his firing line. His kids graduated high school before he could get a hearing on the merits. Land off in the boonies here runs about $16K/acre. It takes 11-12 acres to set up a 200 meter range and berms. I’d be looking for land beside the landfill if I had the money and was 40 years old again. But I’m 69, have survived cancer the doctors told me I had a 30% chance of living another 90 days, six years ago; this is a fight for a younger man.

    I’m moving our range gear to the New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein where a manageable amount of work may buy us a few more years.

  • @rr2241tx Yikes. Sorry to hear about all of that.

  • 1/1/22 - The year of the rimfire! Hope it is a great one for everyone!