A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

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michaelcalvary
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A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

Post by michaelcalvary » Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:09 pm

Back about 25 years ago I was down south of Rio Vista backpacking in the cliffs along the Brazos; these hills are part of a mountain ridge sometimes called the goat neck mountains. It was late Spring and I was hiking up stream in Hamm creek when I noticed the sky was starting to turn dark, and within a few minutes I could hear thunder. I was nowhere near a man-made shelter, but having been in this area before I knew there were overhangs along the tops of these some of these short mountains. I was carrying a pack that weighed just around 35 pounds, but the nearest mountain ridge was about two-mile hike. Leaving the creek bottom quickly and weaving my way through the cedars I found a deer trail that pointed straight up the mountain range. The lightning and thunder grew with intensity and I could feel a sudden drop in the temperature. After a few minutes of fast paced running I begun to achieve some clearance above the tree line and I stopped and turned to see how close the storm was. To my shock, I could a heavy squall line approaching from the Southwest. Seeing this storm nearing encouraged me to run all the faster. Climbing the trail upward the soil was loose and rocky. Then it began to rain, you know the kind; at first it was these intermediate fat drops of rain, I could hear them slapping the brim of my bush hat and the rain cover of my back pack. Just as I reached the narrow lip of the rim that circled this ridge, I followed it around. With each step the overhang became deeper and deeper, eventually it opened into this deep hollow that pushed well past rain line; at that point I knew I was safe. The ground was covered in powered lime stone and small chunks of lime stone that had fallen from above. I walked up to the back of the overhang, out of breath, and damp from the rain. I knew this was going to be my camp for the evening, so I took my pack off and set it against this large flat rock. I sat down next to my pack and quietly watch the storm turn the sky dark as night. The lightening began to increase and then it started to hail. The hail was about nickel size and it made a loud noise coming through the cedars. Then to my left, up toward the exposed edge of the overhang I saw movement and remaining perfectly quiet I watched a large fox squeezed its way between two boulders as it entered the same overhang I was using for a shelter. It came in to the overhang quickly, as if it had used this place before as a trusty shelter. It didn't look back toward me, but kept its face toward the storm as if it was fascinated by the storm as much as I was. As it came in, it shook out its coat; shaking off the rain just like any average hound. It then sat down and it quietly watched the storm. I was about 15 feet from where this creature sat. When the lightening flashed I could see just how beautiful this creature was. I knew foxes were red, but this one had a hue of blue coloring to its fur. I remained still, afraid to make a sound and scare this creature away. After what seemed like 20 to 30 minutes the storm began to subside and the rain became soft and the thunder was now rumbling in the distant, I decided I would let this wild creature know I was sharing his trusty shelter. So, I gently and softly whistled like I was calling my dog at home. It's ears immediately perked up and it scanned the horizon out in front of the overhang, but did know where the whistle had come from. I whistled again, but this time the beautiful creature turned its head ever so slowly toward me and I saw it's flaming red eyes just a glistening. Its eyes widened and looked too big for its body. You could see the fox was suddenly terrified, and for a moment you could almost see the animal was deciding if it should remain in the comfort of this overhang with this human, or brave what was left of the storm in the wet woods. It was over in a flash, the stormy woods seemed much safer than a dry night with a human and as quietly as it appeared, it vanished into the darkness. I did not have a camera, nor did have a witness with me, but I did carry away with me awesomeness of God's grace spent with fox in a thunderstorm.
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Re: A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

Post by White Falcon » Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:25 pm

Had something like that with a fox on a winter camp out. We had a fire going and it was snowing. We sat in our shelter and he sat on the other side. Fox must be very curious. Where I live people feed them from their golf carts.
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BigJesse
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Re: A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

Post by BigJesse » Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:32 pm

Memorable for sure.
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Re: A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

Post by humblesmith » Tue Jan 12, 2021 12:29 pm

Great story. I was walking my dog a couple of years ago about 9:00 at night. I arrived in the woods after dark and knew if I didn't exercise him, he'd keep me up all night. We were walking near the edge of the woods and I suddenly heard a huge screech near me and a thump-thump-thump as something ran heavily away from me. I'd never heard the sound, but later learned it was a fox. Hugely memorable.
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Outdoorology01
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Re: A Fox in a Thurnderstorm

Post by Outdoorology01 » Wed Feb 03, 2021 10:04 pm

Awesome story!

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