“Finally got him”

Another early morning start from Auckland heading down to the Coromandel.

We had been chasing a particularly large pig for sometime but were still yet to capture it; we knew by the marks we’d seen previously that it was in excess of 80Lb.

Arriving at my mates place they’d already got the rip collars on and loaded the dogs onto the back of the truck, I quickly changed into my hunting clobber and off we headed.

We were hunting on a friend’s farm that backs into the heart of the Coromandel rangers, good pig country with very steep dirty gullies and plenty of cover for pigs. The problem was that this country also holds the odd Goat something that one of our dogs “Boomer” had a liking too. Boomer had previously spoiled a number of other hunts in this area by grabbing Goats instead of Pigs.

We headed off across the farm looking for any recent sign and down into the first river and started our ascent up the first of many steep ridges for the day. The dogs were keen and eventually took off as they got wind of something up a side creek, we climbed up to a better listening point and eventually heard a bark from one of the bitch’s, this looked promising as it was still early. Deciding to split up so that we could cover more listening ground we each made our way to different vantage points. One by one the dogs returned eventually we had all six back.

Bugger! Pigs 1 us none.

We sidled our way across a couple of gullies, seeing plenty of fresh sign along the way. The dogs took off again and we heard them bail just below where we were standing “Alrighty” Let the race begin! We took off in the direction of the bail and came to a grinding halt when we heard that all-familiar noise of a Goat in distress. Boomer at his old tricks again! After sorting that little problem out we decided to head down to the river for some well deserved lunch

Double bugger! Pigs 1, Goats 1, us none and “Boomer” in disgrace again.

After a cuppa the call was to head back up to the farm to call it a day.

We climbed out of the river and back into the bush heading for home, about 100mtrs up the ridge we came across a large mark that was very fresh. The dogs were instantly keen and headed off to our left at great speed, we tracked the dogs through several shitty gullies and side creaks and up on to a steep ridge. The dogs were working furiously above us, there was an almighty crash and with that a bloody big pig ran straight past us, just missing Stuart by a metre. “Boomer” was on his tail, the other dogs were somewhat behind.

Leon and I took off after the possession, we could occasionally here the dogs stopping the pig, a big scrap would occur and then the pig would break again. This went on for ½ an hour or so with us all following the battle from our different locations in the bush.

The 3 of us had split up and taken various routes through the bush and farmland to try and catch up with the dogs and pig.

I ran through the farm and could hear the dogs down in the valley below, cutting down the same ridge we had gone down earlier in the day, when I was about 70 metres above the river the dogs opened up directly below me. I yelled to Leon asking if he had the pig, he yelled back saying it was in the river. Turns out Leon being the grease lighting runner that he is, was across the other side of the river and also straight above the action.

I quickly made my way down the remainder of the ridge towards the river, my journey was somewhat speed up by the fact that Leon started yelling obscenities at the pig and was yelling that he needed some f-in help asap.

Getting to the river Leon was up a tree and the dogs were having an almighty battle with the pig. I could instantly see that a number of dogs had been badly ripped.

I grabbed the back leg of the pig whilst Leon drove the knife into it’s side – this had the desired affect and slowed the pig down long enough for us to tip it over and finish the job.

What a chase, what a battle.

The pig eventually went 122Lb gutted and had caused some major damage to the dogs.

The 3 bitch’s all ended up with stitches. We would have lost a dog for sure if it hadn’t of been for the rip collars that they wear.

As for Boomer, well he earned the title of top dog that day as he was in their hammer and all, if it weren’t for him and his shark like grip (more about that later) we would have lost that pig

We’re in for a couple of weeks enforced rest now while we wait for our battle weary dogs to heal.