White-Wing Dove Opener

When “back to school” signs return to storefronts for the masses, a silent reminder of “hunting season opens” is cast upon those same windows. In Texas, this first opportunity to return to the fields kicks off with White-Wing dove opening in the far southern corner of Texas known as “the valley.” A fertile region of agriculture situated along the border with our southern neighbor Mexico, dove saturate the sky, perching atop power lines and drifting over pastures, but when you can find a sunflower field, that will mark the epicenter of their existence. That field, is exactly where we set our sights for the opening weekend at a farm along the Rio Grande rightfully known as White Wing Fields. This farm served as my introduction to dove hunting before I could even drive, over 15 years ago and is only fitting that I return each year to keep a Texas tradition alive, now passing on to my friends and family. 

With our bags packed full of Ball and Buck including The Field Pant, The Hunters Shirt, Upland Edition, and Shell Carrier Bag we set out long before the sun rose to arrive in Port Isabel before lunch on Friday before the opener which officially opens at high noon on Saturday. This extra time allowed us to spend the day eating fresh ceviche and drinking cold beverages in the salt waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Luckily, Ball and Buck has the gear to cover everything from that sandy afternoon in the 6 Point Active Short on through to two days under the blistering South Texas sun, which happened to dump a fair share of rain on our parade the second day. Never the less, we were covered. 

Throughout the weekend, there was hardly a dull moment to be had as time in the field amongst friends and family should be. We fired off the grill right alongside the road to cook up lunch over hot coals and kept it burning through to our celebratory cold beverages at the completion of the afternoon. Birds flew plentiful both days with no shortage even for those whom may have been shooting a bit rusty. Bittersweet, we left the field Sunday covered in mud and coolers full of birds to clean up and end the incredible weekend once again over hot coals, cooking the fruits of an outdoorsman’s labor. 

Take your friends hunting, you won’t be disappointed in time spent outdoors.

See more from John Dunaway in our Over + Under Journal and on his website Abstract Conformity

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