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Over on Gun Stories, I mentioned a hunting trailer deal that I thought I'd share with you guys. Don't know how long this one will be, but bear with me, as there is some history to this.

Ten years ago, a friend of a friend bought an old Cardinal camping trailer, sleeps 4 comfortably, has a head and a stove and a sink, an ice box, and an outside shower. Think he paid $800 for it. For a few years, a good number of us have used it while deer hunting. One season, the guy who owned it decided to use it for a night with his girlfriend. Nothing wrong with that, except he was married at the time (key word - WAS). there were one or two slight problems, however. He didn't tell the rest of us, who just happened to be coming up that same day, and because we didn't know, one of my buddies gave the owner's wife a ride up to deer camp. Well, wives and girlfriends mix about as well as Hilary Clinton and Nancy Reagan. Throw in a very drunk, naked, soon to be ex-husband and it was on! I had never seen a drunk naked man running through the forests of the Sierra Nevadas with his wife chasing him before, and I'll never forget it. She gave up chasing him, came back to camp, got in his truck and went home, taking all his gear, including his rifle and food, which was still in the truck. I guess he and his gal friend were in a bit of a hurry to "make camp" instead of setting up camp. Poor guy had to wait until we'd finished the morning hunt the next day before one of us gave him a ride home. Not only did he blow his marriage, but he ruined the hunt for the guy who had to drive him home early. Of course, things went downhill from there, once he got home.

But wait, it gets better. We stayed up there for another five days, except for a couple of guys that tagged out earlier. The rest of us would have stayed a while longer, but a storm came in and started dumping snow like it was the ice age. So we break camp and realize that none of us has a hitch to bring the trailer down. Well, that storm turned out to be just the beginning of a series of storms, and there was no way or time to get in touch with the owner, so the little trailer that could had to stay in the Sierras at 8500 feet for the entire winter. Poor guy couldn't even sleep in his trailer after his wife threw him out.

So now he's down and out and needs some cash, so he agrees to sell the trailer to "Jerry" for $1000. Jerry knows that he's overpaying a bit, but what the hell, the owner is a lifelong friend, and besides, it was Jerry who brought the guy's wife up to deer camp that fateful night, so he kind of feels like he owes him one. So Jerry pays him, they do the paperwork with the DMV, and the ex-owner moves to Ohio. Keep in mind that the trailer is still buried under who knows how much snow.

So along comes spring, but it's still not until late May before Jerry can get his jeep up to our deer camp to bring the little trailer that could home. Now, imagine Jerry's surprise when he pulls into deer camp and is greeted by a momma black bear and two cubs coming out of the trailer! Seems that in our rush to break camp back in October, we neglected to get all of the food out, and momma bear made the wise decision to use the trailer for her winter den. Moving on up, as they say. I don't know about the black bears in your neck of the woods, but California bears don't hibernate, per se. The trailer was pretty well thrashed. Jerry decided to leave it up there, and return later and do the repairs up there. Don't ask me why, to this day I still don't understand it.

So come the middle of July, Jerry decides to go up and get the little trailer that can't whipped back into shape for the opening of archery season in August. Well, it seems that somebody else had done a little remodeling for him, by painting "poacher" on all 4 sides with black spray paint. Apparently, they took offense to the trailer being there for almost a year. To add insult to injury, the local hillbillies that did the paint job didn't know how to spell - instead of "poacher", they painted "poocher". Jerry threw in the towel and hauled the little trailer that shouldn't back home, trying to ignore the stares from all those he passed on the way. Eventually, he got the interior redone and scrubbed the poocher tags off, along with the original paint, but not in time for deer season. As a matter of fact, the little trailer that didn't never left his property again, until much later.

Now fast forward to last year. I was updating my will, and as my son has his own collection of guns, and Jerry is like a brother to me (and you know how dearly I respect a brother) and my wife would most likely take $500 for the entire arsenal just to get rid of them, I put Jerry in my will as the heir to my guns, reloading equipment, hunting gear, the safes, everything relating to guns that my son doesn't want. Meanwhile, Jerry had mentioned that he was selling the little trailer that might, for $500. I told him that I'd take it. There was no hurry, and I didn't have the space to store it that was convenient at the time, so it just sat there at his place. A little later, I mentioned to him that he was named in my will as the heir to my guns and gear, and the man damn near cried. We are very close.

So now it's time to pay him for the little trailer that will, and get it ready for deer season. When I came to get it, Jerry refused my money, said it wouldn't be right for a brother to take money from a brother, that I could have the trailer, no strings attached, just take it. After much arguing about it, it was his way or no way, so I became the proud new owner of the little trailer that did. But wouldn't you know it, when it rains it pours - I came across a little Coleman pop up tent trailer that had a much lower profile, was a hell of a lot lighter and could be hauled in to higher, more remote areas, so I bought it for $200. Not as well appointed as the Cardinal, but, hey, it's deer camp, not a vacation in Hawaii.

So the little trailer that didn't went up for sale. I stuck a sign on it that said "deer hunter's special - $500". Same price as I would have paid, if Jerry would have accepted my money. Seems fair, right? Jerry agreed.

I got a phone call on the little trailer that isn't, and agreed to meet the interested buyer at the lot that the trailer was located on. It's a vacant lot that we own, which happens to be right next door to my daughter's house. Unbeknownst to me, there was another guy that kept stopping by my daughter's house, asking about the trailer. Well, I pull up at the agreed upon time, and up comes this little guy that reminded me of Popeye on crack, and he proceeds to troop right into the trailer with his wife and 4 kids, telling me that he'll take it. One little problem, though. He isn't the guy I had the appointment with. About this time, that guy does show up and introduces himself. He reminds me of Ichabod Crane on crank. So into the trailer he goes to check it out. He says he'll take it. Popeye goes ballistic, saying he was there first, and he's buying it. Next thing I know, I've got a bidding war going on. "I'll give you $600" says Popeye. "Bull sh*t" says Ichabod, "I'll give you $650". Popeye - "$700". Ichabod - $750". Eventually, Ichabod throws out "$1000"! Popeye pops Ichabod in the eye with his right fist, and it was on! I guess crank trumps crack, because Ichabod whipped ol' Popeye like Brutus used to. Crack ain't spinach, apparently. Popeye limped off with his wife and kids, Ichabod gave me $1000 cash, and I stood there with my cup of Starbucks, in total disbelief. You can't make this stuff up, may God strike me dead.

So ends the story of "Poocher" the little trailer that kept the weather off of many a tired hunter, provided a weekend get away for a wandering husband, broke up a marriage, survived an entire Sierra Nevada winter at 8500 feet while playing host to a family of bears, was unjustly labeled as an accessory to a crime, sat neglected for many years, caused a fist fight between Popeye and Ichabod Crane, and put a cool grand in my pocket. This is a story that will stand the test of time around the camp fire at deer camp for many years to come.

So, Sheepdog, the irony of this is that Jerry is the guy I beat to the second Alaskan .44, and he'll end up with all my guns anyway, if he outlives me. Trust me, I watch my back trail every time I hunt with Jerry now! :) And being the brother that he is to me, I'll sell him the .44 for what I paid, after I let him stew awhile. By the way, I did split the $500 "profit" from the sale of "Poocher" with him. It seemed like the right thing to do.

Peace and God bless, Wolfsong.
 

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What a great story, Wolfsong. Only thing that would have been better is if I had heard it while sitting around a camp fire...
 

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You are a true brother...hope he appreciates you...lots of guys can get vocal, but when it's a cash deal, most won't do the right thing...we're proud of you...and Jerry got probably the last strange...experience...that he'll ever want...it's sad to see grown men thinking with their plumbing instead of their heads....
 

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Reader's Digest might buy that story if you could condense it to within their word limit...I remember reading the $25 Porsche story back in the 70s....
 

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Thanks for the story wolfsong. Well worth the read and gave me a good laugh already this morning. Hope it's a long, long time before anybody has to consider splitting up your gun stash.
 

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wolfsong
Your experience and story about it is the real stuff. Makes a feller feel good to hear it.
thanks for sharing.
 

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Sheepdog, that's a good point. This seems like a publishable story. Change the names to protect the guilty and submit it to hunting and outdoor magazines!
 

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well that is a story alright, if that trailer could talk lol.
 

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That was a good read.
 
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