|Hi J. Allen,
This is an interesting and engaging piece. I really like your writing style.
Look over your first paragraph. It is one long sentence. You can break it up into two or three sentences and won't leave your readers breathless.
,the one I've had since I was seventeen hunting with my dad.
This doesn't read right and does run on.
Though nothing was actually *broke,
I grabbed for my compass to check the storm's direction........it was gone.
First, you only need three dots. There are several places where you used so many.
Second, this sounds funny when read. What is gone? The storm's direction? That is how it came across to me.
But let's not go there again, it's a sore subject with me.
The pain in my elbow and shoulder *is worse/About here, you start switching verb tense from past to present and back. Go back and make sure your tenses match up.
The description of Stoli is great!
"You guys made it through okay?" he asked *suprisingly.
How about ", suprised."
Your descriptions and style bring your readers along on this adventure. Being, ahem, 40ish myself, I could relate to your plight.