by Art Champoux
Sitting in a row of cat-o-nine tales watching geese a couple hundred yards away circle a small field of hay, I wondered why I could not get them over my decoys. My Bear Kodiak clenched in my hand, and the Bear Broadheads beside me, I wondered what was wrong. Then another flock went over my head, e-onk, e-onk, e-onk my goose call reached out. The persuasion did not help!
Flight after flight did that, and I was dissapointed and also was going home empty. As I sat there I watched another hunter walk right up to me, he was someone I knew! "Hey Art, you are never going to get 'em that way, I could see you a hundred yards away".
'Well gall darn it', I thought, that's why they would not come in to the rag decoys. Walking home I decided I would do something about it. But, what and how I was not sure. Reaching into my pocket all I had was holes in my pants, not even a nickle. I knew, though, I would think of something.
My friend down the street, Jim, and I hunted, trapped and fished together. I knew that if we put our heads together we could make something. After talking about it we came up with a plan.
His father worked at a hardware store in Newburyport so we went to see if he might have any burlap bags, he did not, but he reccomended that we go to a local farm. Sure enough the farmer was glad to get rid of a half dozen burlap bags, after all he had a lot of them from the feed he used. A local wood working shop was just through the woods from my house and many times we would go down there to plunk at the rabbit's that sat under the piles of lumber. Jim with his Sheridan, and me with my bow.
We knew we could get some lumber scraps. after all Bartons Lumber always had a few scraps of oddball strapping in a discard pile. We asked the manager if we could take a few pieces, he pointed out some that he was unable to sell and said "Help yourselves", we did. In Jim's basement we laid out the burlap and proceeded to nail it to the 4' stakes, and cut a point on one end of each stake.(There is another story about the duck hunting float we put in his basement, refurbished, and then were unable to get through the bulkhead.)
The next day out in a local field we went, armed with any old black, brown and green paint we could find, and we painted stripes and blotches all over the burlap. Artistic we were not, effective...yes!
You can modify it for gunning or bowhunting deer by just cutting a few holes in the sides, and placing a few branches and vines on it to break up the smooth lines of the top. That was 1964, or 1965.
In 1999 some people still do not have much money, but that does not mean you cannot have a workable blind. Not everyone can afford a commercial hunting blind, but with a little ingenuity you can build one that is effective.
That is how I see it in my "view from the back of the string".