I’m not making this up

old school bus converted to deer camp

You are looking at a rededicated school bus now serving as a cabin at a deer camp in LA (lower Arkansas). The veranda is floored with a blue tarp. Though the bus is showing its age, the members of the club keep the place clean. From the looks of it, they’ve been working on the project for a while.

old school bus at deer camp

Click on the bus for more pictures and a story.

Returning from seeing my oldest granddaughter graduate from high school in May, 2009 at Bossier City, Louisiana, I meandered through north Louisiana and eventually entered L.A. (lower Arkansas) where you can’t get much lower.

After a short map recon, I found a likely gravel road which led to the inner sanctum of the boondocks, a desirable place. All of what I saw was unexpected, even for LA, beginning with this field-expedient deer camp. See how the story started with more pictures of the deer camp bus on the Photo of the Week Page at Corndancer dot-com.

The deer camp has been there a while. They have a well-established camp fire location, an unwritten but well understood requirement of any self-respecting deer camp. Otherwise there would be no fire to sit around while spinning tall tales and “tellin’ lies.” There is also a weathered but sturdy station for dressing the kill; Dressing being the nice words for stringing up, gutting, skinning, and butchering the kill into palatable venison.

dressing station at deer camp

The well used and weathered dressing station at the deer camp is sturdy and is a respectable distance from the living quarters.

old school bus at deer camp in south arkansas

The bus from the back. If you look carefully at the sign on the side of the bus, you can see that it had several lives before it wound up as a shelter for good ol’ boys in the LA boondocks.

Not far from the deer camp, I spotted some “grave-yard chickens,” my late Uncle Ralph’s term for buzzards. All but one scattered as I brought my camera to bear. He was not spooked by my actions and posed nicely. They will not win any beauty contests on the ground but they serve a noble purpose and do it well.

buzzard on the ground

This buzzard looked up from his munching after his comrades had taken wings. I was grateful that he stuck around. As mother nature’s clean-up crew, they do an admirable job.

Deeper into the boondocks, I happened across what appears to be redneck voodoo, if there is such a thing. At the end of a bridge over a small stream, (AKA “brainch” in LA), I saw the head and some connecting body parts of a large fish nailed to a tree. Birds, critters, and bugs have picked it clean. I am not making this up. You can see it with your own eyes.

dead fish nailed to tree

I am more or less flabbergasted by the fish head and body parts nailed to a tree. This is a first. It could be redneck voodoo. Who knows? It is on the same road as the school bus deer camp.

The fish appears to have been a largemouth bass. Maybe the ol’ boy caught it cleaned it and could not afford the taxidermist so he nailed it where he could see it. Alternatively, it could be some sort of nefarious curse. If it is, so far I have avoided any untoward vengeance it may spawn. Unless you count occasional indigestion and moderate dandruff.

See higher resolution pictures of all of this week’s Corndancer and Weekly Grist pictures in our Weekly Grist Gallery.

Thanks for dropping by,

Joe Dempsey,
Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind


4 Responses

  1. My friend and outdoorsman extraordinaire, Bob Purvis, tells me that nailing a big fish to a tree to clean it is not necessarily unusual.

  2. Hoo-eee! Takeit from a chimney technician’s wife (and retired Nurse Practitioner) that stove pipe is a bunch of carbon monoxide deaths looking for a time to happen! One can only suppose that the bus is drafty enough to somewhat compensate with enough oxygen to keep cellular respiration going. Bet they think the headaches they have are from drinking too much beer around the campfire at night.

  3. In my time here, you have taken me on quite a journey. This find gets a prize – not sure what – but a prize.

  4. Frank, you just never know what will pop up next! :o)

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