It's that time of year. Time to put on the back-pack containing the hammer and nails, heavy duty stapler and extra staples, permanent marker, and "posted" signs. Time to walk around 165 acres to replace old signs, fill in faded names and addresses, and put up signs that fell down. Signs to remind hunters that they are really on someone else's property and that that someone doesn't want them there unless they asked permission. The reality is that over 95% of hunters are courteous, smart and GOOD hunters. They'd never take a shot where they wouldn't bring down a deer with one bullet. They verify their target and anything that might be behind it. They follow the laws. It is the other 1-5% that make land (and animal) owners worry. Worry that despite the fact that the horses have on bright neon orange halters and they are in pastures directly behind buildings that they may be shot. We stay off all our trails with the horses during deer rifle season. The saying "what's brown comes down" unfortunately does happen. We have bullet holes in our fencing to prove that hunters shoot towards the barn. Not cool. We really love the sign that says "what part of no trespassing don't you understand?" There are some days during deer hunting season we'd like to put that sign all along our fence line!
On a fun note, getting out in the forest has a real element of fun. We walk areas with no trails so we get a different view of the property and a different perspective. We get reminded how big 165 acres is and how steep our property is in places. We fall down a lot - swearing and/or laughing depending how hurt we are. Thorn bushes tear at our clothes and yank hats off our heads. We see beautiful birds popping out to tell us that we are on THEIR turf! A pair of hawks circled us to remind us that we were in THEIR domain! How nice it is for the bank to let us live in this wonderful place. ;)
On the way to our (well, OK - the bank's) "back forty", we noticed nuts all over the place at the base of a number of very large trees. We couldn't get over the number of nuts! I hope this is not an omen of a bad winter ahead! I'm certain one of the old time farmers would tell us what it means. We were trying to figure out if the critters were too lazy to carry the nuts up the tree or were just doing it in "shifts": first, get the nuts to the bottom - then haul them in. It just looked rather funny! I was just waiting for Chip and Dale to pop out of the opening at the base of the tree and start their: "apple core...tell me more...who's your friend...HE is...WHAP!"