> Ptarmigan hunting with pointing dogs in Colorado is a wonderful foray…but short on tradition. The season opens during the month of September and extends into October brilliance. These wonderful birds are found at or above the treeline where sub alpine tundra is present…11,500 to > 14,000 ft. An outing in search of the chukar sized birds can make a person wonder if they really exist…or is this boy scout snipe hunting with a flash light and a burlap sack? One out of 5 or 6 trips is what it’s taken me to find them. I’ve seen evidence of them being there (feathers/droppings)…ghosts of the sub alpine tundra. Did I mention that there is no oxygen up there? White-tailed ptarmigan here in Colorado are migratory. They can be on one peak today and several hundred miles away the next. This year my dogs and I hiked miles upon miles in search of these sub alpine ghosts. I often wondered if they were extinct and the season ought to be closed. We did get into great shape for the up coming quail season. Finally, in the last week of the October season, I was at 13,500 ft with a storm rolling down on me. Suddenly, my heart flipped over in my chest when I found Gep (my Elhew pointer) on point near a large boulder field. The eruption of 30 birds was unbelievable! My new English Setter pup delivered the first bird directly to my hand. We headed back down to the safety of my car before the weather really got angry!

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