When Holt started
up, his irons sank into the soft trunk with an ominous hollow sound. Powell
shook his head. "How is it, Jack?" he called. "It's dead" Holt
replied, with a touch of annoyance.
tested each step and each branch. Still no wind. At the nest, which protruded
far out over the tree, he hung for a long moment with his back parallel to the
ground, straining to get past the lip. Once on top, he tied himself in, grabbed
the eagle stick and went for the bird. A little while later there was a loud
click when the rivet popped into the band, and that part of the job was done.
Now for the descent. About halfway down, one of Holt's irons hit a soft spot,
slipped, then grabbed and held. He paused, shaking his head, and then descended
again, cursing softly the rest of the way down.
Back in the boat,
Holt sat with his head in his hands for several long moments. Then, grinning,
he turned to Postupalsky. "Well, chief," he said nonchalantly,
"where's the next tree?"