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Of Duds And Deer



Another great day in the woods came to a close this evening. I went deer hunting... again, with my son Steve and a couple of friends. We started off in the middle of a mile section surrounded by cedar trees mostly. If you have ever hunted amongst the Cedars you'll know what I mean when I say it's the ultimate corn maze.

Steve and I spotted some deer in a cut bean field so we glassed them a bit ...from a hilltop. As daylight overcame them they began to mosey to the Cedars, but we were already there, waiting.

What grows wild, in the woods that would make a deer run in circles? Whatever it is she had a bunch of it. A single doe, obviously excited by the four smallish bucks nearby, ran in circles for about ten minutes in and out of the line of bucks. She jumped in the air and kicked to one side then the other. I'm guessing she had heard all the stories and wanted nothing to do with them, anyway the bucks seemed to shrug her off and continue their beeline to bedtime.

Steve picked out a deer and settled in for a shot. I covered my ears and waited...nothing. The deer trotted some and I burped at him (yes a big 'ol Diet Coke burp) and he stopped, I waited and, again nothing. The deer decided he'd had enough and sprinted for cover. I looked at Steve and said nothing as he held up a rifle round with a nice big dent in the primer and the bullet still in the other end.

He told me he pulled the trigger raised and lowered the bolt and and tried again but to no avail. He had to console me. I hate it when opportunity knocks for one of my kids then the door slams shut.

Anyway we decided to skirt the hillside to see if we could cut him off and fifty yards later as we rounded a rockpile I heard Steve say "Dad" then his rifle boomed. Another forty yards and high fives and back slapping ensued. Steve had not hunted or taken a deer in years and he did not care if it wasn't the bull of the woods. It was like that first one all over again.

We began the chore that always accompanies the taking of big game and after retrieving my deer hauler from the truck he rolled him off the hilltop and I followed, my camo coat suddenly seeming a size too small.


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