Took a friend hunting with me this last tuesday. Young guy, hunted his whole life, but not particular good at 'hunting'. We hunted my ranch, obviously I know it better than he does.
We came home with a 3 pointer. I have a private ranch and I don't allow the taking of forkies... that's another topic.
Great day... we went up late morning and hunted through the evening. Most of the day we looked for sign, ate burritos, enjoyed the pines, the sage, and the abundant wildlife... pigs, bobcats, raccoons, etc.
Different conditions on my ranch this year... like I've never seen before, so I'm trying to read how it's affecting the deer. Spent the morning doing that then decided where we should probably be when the 'prime' time for hunting began.
About 7pm I spotted a deer at about 400yds. My friend wanted to open fire but I asked, "why"? I asked that because for one thing, the most important thing, because I'm a "one shot" type of hunter... if you're in doubt don't take the shot. But also... the deer was positioned perfectly for a 'hunt'... IOW... we could get close.
Took some convincing but I eventually got through to my friend. Then I laid out the 'plan'.. which involved him stalking, in a precise manner... location, and time, and me staying put to send hand signals. We put the plan into effect...
I had no intention of 'shooting'... brought my friend to get a deer, that was my goal.
As it turns out, and so as not to get lengthy with this post... the plan worked to perfection, or nearly so... he missed his first shot, about 150yds, but the deer did not bolt so he got it with his second shot. But the "Plan"... worked perfectly.
After the quite rigorous retrieval of the buck, then the field dressing, and during the drive back home I couldn't help thinking... "Nice hunt, went according to plan". According to plan in reading the early day signs, postioning ourselves at the right place at the right time, then forgoing the 'jump out and throw lead in the air' strategy to a plan a bit more cerebral.
I didn't shoot the deer... I've taken many in my lifetime, (I'm old ), but in MY mind... it was another 'personal' success. I don't 'keep count', that's for the youngsters, (nothing wrong with that by the way). But I do remember successes, especially the ones I feel are 'earned'.
So the way I chaulked this one, in memory, is that I got a deer. You may not agree, and that's fine... I can understand that.
But the BIG thing is: Next weekend I'm taking grandson for the second time this season and I think I have a 'plan'. I'm a good hunter, not great, but good... and if I can lead my grandson to his first 'buck'... then, wellllllll, another success, BUT... my grandson's deer. I'm not afraid to be hypocritical. - JamesJM