Free Grass and No Fences

In September of 2007, I had my second back surgery to clean up scar tissue and arthritis from a previous operation a dozen years earlier for a herniated disk.  I was at my wits end and after coming home from a hunt in WY with a 70 something Alan Alderson, who had recently had a hip replaced, and Jim Smith.  I decided I could no longer put off surgery.  I have always had a fairly high pain thresh hold but a hand full of Percistat a day was no longer helping with the pain and I was beginning to fear addiction to the stuff.  On top of that, I couldn’t lift our very young son, Wyatt, or play with him.  The first surgery was a miserable experience but the second one really helped with the pain and allowed me to start walking, mildly exercising, and really enjoy hunting again.  As I told several people afterwards, the only thing I was comfortable doing for a few years was eating Dairy Queen Blizzards.  Dr. Jack Dunn in Tucson did a wonderful job and really changed my life for the better.

Four months after the surgery, Gary Kellar from MI was in town and we went for a hunt.  I was still pussy footing around, but all in all, moving better than I had for a few years.  Neither one of us is built for speed so we took our time and pecked through some beautiful South Western country.  Luck was with us that day and we pulled off an industry first.  We called, filmed and killed and Mountain Lion and were able to put it on our third DVD, Free Grass and No Fences.

While I was recovering on the couch a few weeks after surgery, I picked up a book on Charles ?, a western artist, and began reading it.  This book had been given to me as a gift almost 20 years earlier but I had never opened it up or read a word of it.  When I did, I found it fascinating and couldn’t put it down.  In it, was a passage about free grass and no fences, a time when life was much simpler and less materialistic than today’s world.  I really liked that phrase and used it as the title for our third DVD.

The subtiltle, Mohawk Village to the Navajo Reservation

Mohawk Village is a small, very rural “town” a half dozen miles outside of Warsaw, OH.  My brother Charlie and I, as kids, used to set traps and catch raccoons, muskrats and mink in the small creeks and culverts that ran close by.  It was the first place I saw true poverty as a kid, where families lived in dirt floor houses with outdoor plumbing.  When I see Hollywood types adopting kids from foreign countries, my mind always goes back to those early childhood memories and I wonder why they’re more concerned about folks in other countries than the great one we live in.  Mohawk Village has improved over the years, mostly due to work that my father was responsible for while building Treefine Hereford Farm.

The Navajo Reservation is a multi million acre Reservation and while driving through parts of it on hunting trips, I was reminded of the less fortunate people from my childhood.

In both of these places, Mohawk Village and the Navajo Reservation, I have shared some great moments with true friends.

I own and have watched a pile of predator hunting DVD’s over the years.  This one is perhaps my favorite and is definitely the one I am most proud of.  I hope you enjoy it.

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