It started with a dream. Evolved into an idea, then a plan, and jumped into an action. Dealing with the yearly struggles of hunting state land, property belonging to friend’s of friends, family farms, and finding little to no time to scout. It became increasingly clear that in order to get the hunt he hoped for, and hoped to provide each year, we had to start thinking about something permanent.
Over a year of looking we would take weekend drives to scope out property. To view the terrain, the neighborhoods, to find a place we could call our own. All while trying to keep it within a budget. Some properties had a less than desireable mix of huntable land to wetland. Others had too much garbage to clean up, and one….well, we all but ran right off that property.
Once we started to find acreage we could comfortably afford, we would agree to an offer, and it would be sold, or even taken off the market the day before. The process was beginning to get frustrating. Then we found a little hamlet on 13 acres in a town a little over an hour away from home. After a breif message to the realtor to assure its availability, a couple day wait after a tornado went through the area to ensure it was still okay, we were on our way after work to check it out.
The property was perfect. A good distance from home, a manageable amount of acreage with a mix of wetland, a field with apple trees, pine tree cover, and a small 1 bedroom cabin, accompanied by many other appealing qualities. Which I must add includes one full of character, cute, entirely rustic, but almost completely useless crooked table that I love. Him? Let’s just say his opinion is much different.
So that Monday we submitted an offer. It wasn’t long until we heard the owners had accepted, and we were on our way through the process of the purchase. Better known as “the red tape of property ownership”. After weeks of acquiring the necessary information, including back and forth price negotiating, and finally settling on a sale, we had a closing date. A holiday in the middle of bow season. We were going to sign on a cabin, and with any luck, hunt the next day.
Truck and trailer loaded, we drive to the signing, get the keys, and arrive at our gate before 10am on a Friday. Much to our surprise, everything was left behind. Hide-a-bed couch, dishes, tools, hunting equipment, farming equipment, right down to the deer feed. That evening we enjoyed our first dinner watching a deer out of the kitchen window.
While there was no hunting that first weekend, we were surrounded by friends and family on our first of many warm and sunny crooked table jaunts. Tasks to be done after a year of sitting vacant included Cabin cleaning, firepit burn out, dead timber removal, and general yard clean up ( Many thanks to the volunteers that weekend ). Getting busy with all the maintenance and entertaining that first few days didn’t allow for property ownership to sink in yet.
As of right now, it’s still sinking in. We have been busy with work schedules, the purchase happening in the middle of hunting season, and learning all the ins and outs of an “off-grid” cabin. SOLAR POWER! UGH! So as we embark on this journey together, stay tuned. The adventures at Crooked Table are just beginning.