By: Bears Butt

After a relatively warm night in the swamps, I am expecting to see many traps filled with fur.  My hope is 12 and as always it is considered a necessity to catch 2 to pay for fuel.

I may even venture a bit farther West and start to set another line.  Lord knows I have a bunch of traps that are not in the water and they sure don’t do any good where they are right now.

Bears Butt

Feb. 23  A.M.

P.M. Report

Before I left the house this morning to head out and check traps, I told Winemaker I was going to be a little later because I wanted to set some traps on the West line.

A bit of background on my hip boots.  I have been having problems with both boots leaking but the leaks have been just “bothersome” of late.  Last night I decided to put a patch on the worst areas of both boots and I did that.  I also inspected the rest of both boots and decided they should last until my new boots arrive.

At the swamp, I donned all my stuff and headed off to check traps.  Three steps in the icy water and water came gushing up into my left boot!  Did any of you hear me cussing?  Water that has a thin layer of ice on top is about as cold a water as I ever want to play in.

I checked that trap and found it empty.  Back at the toy I found the large gaping rip and when I elevated my foot against the side of the toy, the water calmly drained out onto the ground.  My foot was numb.  I went to my second set and by now my foot was in “cold pain”, they type that causes you to hold your breath and let the tears roll down the face.

I ventured out into the water and checked those traps.  Two rats were waiting for me there, and I soon forgot about the frozen foot and leg.  Back at the toy I again drained the water from the hole.  I thought about taking my knife and cutting a hole in the side of the sole to let the water out faster, but I did not do it.

Long story short, I stuck with checking the rest of that line and decided if the pain was too much when I got back to the truck I would head for home.  As it turned out, my pain went from cold and numbing to just plain “I don’t feel a thing”.  So, off I went to check the rest of my traps.  Two hours later I am back at the truck ripping those “pieces of crap boots” off my person.  Both feet totally soaked and the left leg wet to my knee.

My plans to set more traps was ended.  No way could I venture out and put up with more of that cold miserable wet environment.

I pulled off my wool socks and wrung the water out of them both and then put on my shoes for the ride home.  Heater set to the floor setting and the fan on full blast.  By the time I arrived at home, my left foot was starting to have some feeling returning.

I talked to Winemaker about the situation and the need to check and set more traps soon.  Do I forgo checking the traps I have out and wait for those expensive boots I ordered earlier this week to arrive?  Do I go out and buy a cheap pair and hope they hold together until the expensive ones get here?

At this point it looks like I could have saved some money by having the company send those $130 boots by overnight delivery for the additional $50.  I would have had them by yesterday at the latest and would not have lost todays trap setting time.  But I chose to go with UPS Ground for $20 and I am hoping they arrive by tomorrow or Saturday at the latest.  Watch them show up on Monday…that would be ok too.  What kind of boots did I order that cost so very much?  “Godwins Muck Boots”, Guaranteed not to rip because of thorns or briars and guaranteed against snake bites!

I read about them on a forum used by houndsmen back east and south who run hounds through the swamps chasing raccoons and other critters.  All those guys were swearing by their Godwin boots.  And when I say “swearing by their boots”, it is a totally different type of “swearing” than I am doing at my holey boots right now!

So, I warn all of you and I hope the company that makes these boots reads this thread.  I bought them less than one year ago and they are pieces of real crap!  I can not find any name on them except “Caddis”…so take it from me folks  DO NOT BUY CADDIS HIP BOOTS!!!!!

Winemaker felt sorry for me and my situation and said that the price of rats just went up and we went to Cal Ranch and bought a pair of “Frog Tog” boots, for $59 plus tax…$64 total.  Hopefully they will see me through until the expensive boots get here and I can use them as my fishing boots later on.

Catch for the day:  8 rats with 3 other traps set off, one trap was caught open by the trigger catching on the jaw and keeping it from closing all the way…lucky rat.  By the way Wapiti, that trap we set yesterday paid off  with a nice big fat rat!

And so, you can see that life on the trapline is not always sunny, balmy and without problems!

By the way, for those keeping track, Bob had dog problems today and did not make it out to check his lines…so, Bob = zero.

Bears Butt

Written on February 23rd, 2012 , Hunting/Fishing/Trapping Stories

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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.