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Hooray! Once again, a long wonderful summer is almost over. For me, the end of summer has long been marked by the beginning of bird hunting season. In less than a week you can swing a shotgun over your shoulder and head for the fields and mountains. Forest grouse and mourning dove season opens in Utah on Sept. 1. In Idaho, dove season opens on Sept. 1 but the forest grouse season gets a jumpstart and opens on Aug. 30.

My favorite gamebird to hunt in Northern Utah is the dusky grouse. Despite my affinity for this bird, if you search for articles on this species, there are few to be found. The lack of a following is due to the steepness of the terrain they inhabit and that the portions of states occupied by these grouse have few people. Local hunters often prefer ruffed grouse as these birds can be consistently found in the same wet draws every year. Dusky grouse are less predictable and are rarely found in the same places from one year to the next.

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