Spring 2017 Feature: The One-Eyed Grouse

By on January 5, 2017

Story by S.T. Hammond
Illustration by Glenn Wolff

An excerpt from The One-Eyed Grouse of Maple Run…Some years ago we penned the following article, which we reproduce here in order to give our readers some idea of the pleasures and perils which so endear to us the pursuit of “that best of all game birds, the lordly Ruffed Grouse.”

First allow me to introduce to you my companion – old Tom Rood, as thorough a sportsman as it has ever fallen to my lot to encounter – a perfect gentleman, a first-rate shot and well skilled in all that pertains to woodcraft. Tom is possessed of an abundance of this world’s goods, and spends most of his time in the forest, as his nut-brown phiz and wiry frame attest. When he is not shooting or fishing he is abroad communing with nature. There is a vein of poetry and also a slight tinge of superstition in his make-up that with his overflowing cheerfulness make him one of the most entertaining companions I have ever met. Our present trip originated with him, as he had the day before, while resting on the bank of the river, at the mouth of the brook, seen, to use his words, a “spectre patridge.”

While lying at full length on the grass, this bird had flown across the river and alighted within a few feet of him. As he looked up, at the slight noise she made, she walked up within two yards of his head. Examining her closely, he discovered that on the side toward him her eye was gone. Just as he had noticed this, she turned her head, and Tom solemnly averred that her good eye was as large as that of an ox…

Read more in the Spring 2017 Issue of Upland Almanac.<Buy the Upland Almanac Spring 2017 Issue> or <Subscribe to Upland Almanac>