We reached our hotel in Kentucky at 1:00 a.m., unloaded Hank, put him on charge, unloaded our bags, and secured the gear in the back of Clyde in record time. We were ready to go to bed so we could get up early on Monday morning to get started on the list of things we wanted to get done on this trip. I had the alarm set for 6:00 a.m.

Hank the HuntVe on charge and waiting to hit the woods. This electric cart shaved several hours from our pre-season routine.

When we woke up on Monday morning, the skies were gray and threatening thunderstorms. I could tell you all about how the hotel room did not have hot water, that we only had one full towel and two wash clothes between us and how the desk person was rude to me before I “professionally” told her that I’d be d*mn*d if I ever stepped foot in the establishment again; but I will spare you. Besides, I was not going to let that stand in the way of having an awesome day.

We loaded Hank onto the trailer and headed to the farm. We did not have any rain on our ride over but as we unloaded Hank and were loading up the flat-bed with Trophy Rock, various supplements, game cameras and the cooler, it started to drizzle. Since it was muggy I decided not to grab my rain coat….besides a little rain only cleanses the soul right?

Trophy Rock that was placed the last weekend of April needed a new rock.

We had just put out the first camera and added a Trophy Rock and supplements in front of the camera when the bottom fell out. The wind kicked up a little and was blowing rain in on us as we rode Hank to the next mineral spot; the only thing that we could keep from getting drenched was our heads.

The game camera is set up over a mineral sight on a good trail--we should be able to get an idea of what is lurking in these woods.

This would be where most people would get aggravated….but I wanted to dance in the rain, shake the water from me like a dog, sing out loud and ride Hank through the mud…WHAT A GREAT DAY TO BE ALIVE!! I was doing what I loved to do most–preparing for an outstanding season. I have always been a firm believer that if you want success, you prepare; if you don’t prepare, you will fail. Never leave anything to pure luck. You can wish in one hand and want in the other and you will still have nothing in either hand. So PRE-SEASON PREPARATION always brings excitement and anticipation.

The green fields that were planted earlier last month were looking good and the rain would surely help them. As we rode around to the locations we had planned to place cameras, we saw a doe and fawn on the North side of the property and 4 bucks on the South side of the property. It is really hard to tell much with bucks in velvet this early in the season but one of the bucks had main beams at his ears and still has a couple of months to grow. We also saw several turkeys.

The green fields were lush and were doing well with all this heat and humidity.

Green field with a variety of legumes.

Greenfield on the Kentucky farm.

Big green field on the North end of property.

Another green field on the property.

After posting the Posted signs we drove back to the truck and trailer in the pouring rain. At this point, I was pretty much drenched and chilled to the bone. Richard quickly loaded Hank onto the trailer as I dug into our bags for some dry clothes. We changed at the truck under an umbrella placed meticulously on the door and roof of the truck. It felt wonderful to be in dry clothes.

It was raining when we left Kentucky and raining when we arrived at home in Alabama.

We were on the road at 2:30 p.m. headed South, all the while looking for a place to eat a “meat and three” late lunch. Our drive home was pretty much in the rain the entire trip and we arrived at home by 9:30 p.m. We could not unload the truck because of the pouring rain so we decided to go straight to bed and get up earlier in the morning to unload.

We had such a great weekend and everything went as planned. We got everything done on the To-Do List on both farms and even had the opportunity to go to dinner with new friends. This time of year, the beginning of the new 2011/2012 fall/winter hunting season, is always exciting for us: making plans on the calendar, scheduling days off, preparing the grounds, re-baiting mineral sites, working game cameras, spending time with friends, spending time together, eating off the tailgate of Clyde, scouting and riding the property on Hank…Life is good when there is fertile soil, game sightings, plenty of food, lots of laughs and good old-fashioned brow-beating hard work.