Sunday I drove up to Baker City, Oregon to McGinnis Ranch Kennels - Mike and Nicky McGinnis' ranch and kennel operation, where Tommy will be worked on johnny house chukars and wild birds over the next few months. I also had in tow two promising pups from my friend, Tom Griffin, who asked me to take them to Mike and Nicky.
Tommy was whelped in August, and was not old enough for work in the Fall - being just a couple of months old. So he got no bird work. The following Summer I sent him to Randy Anderson and Tony Falley for their Summer camp in North Dakota, where he was run on wild birds from horseback. This did great deal for him, and I was able to hunt him a bit last Fall in Montana. When we returned to California, I ran him in one open derby event, and he placed second, and is thus qualified to run in AF championships. But he has not yet gotten enough bird work to be considered 'developed' and I am hoping that bird work this Spring with Mike will make a bold young dog that is ready for breaking.
Weather in Eastern Oregon in February is pretty variable, beautiful on Sunday during the drive up, snow on Sunday night, and cold and windy on Monday. Still we were able to work Tommy on some pigeons and he showed his usual enthusiasm and composure.