The First Eagle Huntress?

However admirable Ashiolpan seems (and she is), and however fine the movie the Eagle Huntress is (and I suspect it is, and I want to see it), SHE IS NOT THE FIRST EAGLE HUNTRESS. This mistaken belief is particularly promulgated by American reviewers and I know I shouldn’t expect much of them; I should only be happy they’re saying a form of hunting is good.

But for the record, with leaving out dubious semi-contenders like Princess Nirgigma in the 20s, who I very much doubt trained her own eagles, or Frances Flint Hamerstrom, who as far as I know never hunted with her eagle or participated in Asian culture, the FIRST eagle huntress is Lauren McGough, originally of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, who I originally helped achieve her dreams when she was 16, when she went over and hunted with the late Aralbai. She was so taken with this that she won a Fulbright Scholarship and spent a year in remotest Bayaan Olgii Aimag in the westernmost point of Mongolia learning both the Kazakh and Mongol languages while training her first eagle, Alema (“Milky Way”) which she trapped herself. She subsequently caught 30-odd foxes with her, plus other game. She has not yet written up her experiences, but everyone who knows her knows that she is the real thing. She’s hunting right now with her eagle…

Lauren at 16 with Aralbai
With Alema soon after capture

Flyover Country- Who Knew?

Reading the WSJ, I was startled to encounter two old friends in an unusual context. The relevant passage:

 I called Russsell, who is in California and recovering from a shoulder operation ( casting lead- core steelhead lines in deep water for 60 years has got  to have SOME effect!) and he was as bemused as I was.