After a long and exciting football season I was finally able to gear up for deer hunting. Granted, I had been biding my time, hunting weekends thought the year, but now that football is done I could hunt every day. It was the first Friday I was able to hunt by myself and the weather seemed to be taking a turn for the cold.
Finally, it seemed like it could be time for the rut to begin.When I arrived in the woods to check my camera I discovered quickly that my phone did not have enough battery to see what had come in on my viewer. I put the card in my pocket, sat for the night, and forgot all about it until late Saturday night. We were at home as I went for my card reader and crazily tried to get the card into my computer to see if I may have missed anything by not hunting on the stand that night.
What I discovered took my breath away. As I went through the pictures I found out that I had indeed missed some deer, only they were all coming in right before it got light outside in the morning. I asked Dad with excitement if he would take me and he said, “You can just go now that you have your driver’s license, you can take yourself.” So I went to bed knowing that I would have to be up quite early in the morning. I set my alarm for 4:30 a.m. and drifted off to thoughts of shooting a monster in the morning.
“Quack, Quack, Quack” my alarm rang as I sprung awake. Sprung may be an exaggeration more like I slowly dragged myself out of bed, got my clothes ready, and took a scent-free shower with some Scent Killer Gold. After layering up much heavier than I would probably need, I loaded up my crossbow into my truck and was on the road.
Upon arriving at our land it was quite a strange feeling to be hunting all alone. This will be the first time that I deer hunted without anyone by the land. I got on my Scentlok suit, put the camera on my bow and set off into the night searching with my light in order to find the trail to my stand. As soon as I found the trail I shut off my flashlight (I knew the trail like the back of my hand and would have no problem getting to the stand). When I had almost reached the stand I went into stealth mode, being very slow and quite just like my dad had taught me in order not to scare off any potential deer that could already be near the stand.
It was still 30 minutes until it got light by the time I reached my stand and I could smell a buck in the air. I sat and waited and as it got light I could see that there was nothing around me for the time being, but if the camera was correct, then I should be seeing some deer within the next hour.
After waiting for over an hour I began to get discouraged, maybe I had just picked the wrong day to hunt. Then, out of the corner of my eye I caught a glimpse of brown, my heart jumped with excitement. It was a doe and a fawn, but as my dad said, “Where there are does there are bucks.” I waited patiently and sure enough five minutes later I heard a grunt in the brush.
I picked my crossbow up off of the bow holder while trying not to spook the doe and fawn in the food plot. As soon as I got the crossbow down and ready a nice eight pointer showed its face not even 40 yards away. As he came in I started to get very excited, but there Dad was again, in my head telling me to calm down and take a deep breath just like he always has.
The buck got to 15 yards, bumped off the doe, and opened its shoulder for a shot. I wasted no time as I took my aim undid the safety took a breath and squeezed the trigger. The shot hit directly where I had aimed, and the deer took off, not sprinting but at a fast jog. He was going up a hill when suddenly, 50 yards away he stopped and fell over! I had just harvested my first deer without my father and I was on cloud nine!
I immediately called my dad, told him that I had shot a nice buck, and asked what I should do with it. He said to drag it out to the field and then gut it out in order to not mess up the spot where there still where other bucks on camera. After a grueling half mile drag I gutted the deer out and decided that I wanted to just load my deer up and drive it home. It took some finessing to get the deer into the back of my Chevy blazer but I finally figured it out and got on the road. We got home and hung up the deer and I could not have been happier.