It was a typical, pre-dawn February morning in North Carolina’s Piedmont — completely dark and extremely cold. Rolling along, hoarfrost painted feathery patterns on the windshield of Sandy Brady’s SUV, and minutes later, the ground crunched under his feat as he walked the edge of a cornfield, loaded down with bags of decoys and shotguns.
Growing up in eastern North Carolina can have a profound effect upon a young outdoorsman. The culture and heritage that’s passed along, combined with the ample experience of seeing and experiencing the area’s wildlife help shape and mold lives.
Strong harvests of wood ducks and green-winged teal led to WMA hunters taking an average of 2.2-ducks per hunter, and a respectable number of Northern Pintail kept some anticipation in the blind.
Hunting and fishing parallel one another on a number of levels. People who enjoy fishing often times enjoy the shooting sports as well and vice versa. The thrill of the pursuit, the unpredictable events that occur during a trip, and the beautiful environs in which these sports take place are what attract people to them.
The dashboard clock clicked over to 2 a.m. as a weary-eyed waterfowler exited onto the east-bound ramp of Interstate 26. “Hour and a half,” he thought as he eased his rig onto the road that would take him to South Carolina’s Lowcountry. This late in the season he had high hopes for some good shooting, even though it just didn’t seem like the ducks flew like they used to.
Leggett Lump is hardly even that. While nobody really knows where the name originated, the “lump” is a slight rise in the bottom of a couple of inches in height above the surrounding expanse of Pamlico Sound.
While suppertime at a duck camp is always a loud and rowdy affair, breakfasts are usually subdued. Not only do the revels of the night prior to a hunt tend to tire happy hunters, the wake-up call in the morning is the time to begin a meditation, the mental preparation for approaching the peaceful sanctity of a well-built duck blind after a sloshing walk through the water.