Second Hunt, First Buck

So as we near this holiday season with Christmas and New Years closing in, I started reminiscing about my first hunting memories because it was this time of year when I went on my second hunt and killed my first buck almost 9 years ago. Some might say that starting to hunt at age 19 may seem a little late in the game, but my passion for the outdoors began at a much earlier age. As my bio indicates I grew up fishing with my mom and dad when I was 3 years old and that passion for fishing still exists. I also have many stories from my childhood of chasing and shooting squirrels with BB guns, spider hunting with the neighborhood kids, eating roly poly’s (yes I actually ate them haha) and just enjoying being outside all the time (not to mention my parents made sure we were outside as much as possible – Thank You Mom & Dad). Let me just take the time to state that it is NEVER too late to get anyone involved in the outdoors, hunting, bow hunting, or even conservation. Some people have the passion there but didn’t have the opportunities growing up, didn’t have parents that would entertain their outdoor interests, or maybe had an experience later in life that changed their views. Whatever the situation may be, never pass up an opportunity to take someone hunting, fishing, or into the outdoors if you can, regardless of age, gender, or capabilities.
Moving on to my first Christmas with my husband (then boyfriend) Donald; I knew he grew up hunting, fishing, and being outdoors so I had to get the perfect gift. He had recently taken me on my first hunt where I killed a doe with a rifle and I knew exactly what to get him. I purchased a Remington .270 rifle and as you can imagine he was a very happy man on Christmas to get a rifle from his new girlfriend! A couple weekends later we set off on another hunt with his new gun along for the ride.
We climbed up high into the box blind and got settled in ready for any action. We were hunting a feeder about 100 yards away (I know there are many debates on baiting but for the purpose of this blog, we were in Texas where baiting is legal, and the land owner was set up with them). I bring this up because it is important to the story…we sat together because I was still unsure of this whole “hunting” deal and needed some guidance. As the sun rose and the feeder went off I waited patiently and anxiously for any movement or signs of deer. We were in the hill country and the area contained some pretty steep and rocky hills that we were watching and glassing. About 15 minutes later we saw an 8 point buck atop the hill about 300 yards away. He was slowly starting to make his way towards us and the feeder staying pretty well hidden behind the thick brush and trees.
I was already starting to shake, my heart was beating so fast, my breathing started increasing, and my breath kept fogging up the scope as I watched him move so stealthy across the land. I know Donald kept looking at me with a little smile on his face knowing those exact emotions and what I was dealing with. For about 30 minutes we watched as this buck made his way around the trees and appeared to be coming in closer for me to get a clean shot. He stopped and then turned to walk away from us. My heart sank because this buck was no longer interested in coming any closer and I wasn’t confident shooting a buck that far away yet. I lowered the rifle as he headed back up the hill and looked at Donald with a slightly disappointed face. His exact words were “man, if only the feeder would go off again.” Well my heart sank because I knew there was no way that was going to happen so I just accepted he was gone and we would wait for something else.
Less than a minute later we heard the tinkling sound of corn spilling from the feeder! What just happened and how and why and WHAT?? We were so confused staring at each other, then at the feeder then back at each other. We weren’t sure what caused the feeder to go off again but we both looked back at the buck that was now standing at alert position appearing to listen to the same sound we had just heard. Could this really happen? Would it be enough to peak his interest to bring him in close? As the buck turned and started to make his way back down the rocky ledge I knew I was going to have to make a long shot and Donald told me to take deep breaths, calm myself down and get ready. My hands were shaking again and I was nervous as heck! Here I am with Donald’s new .270 that I had bought him; I knew it was sighted in but it hadn’t been used to kill anything yet, forcing myself to calm down and wait for the perfect shot.
As the buck made his way to approximately 200 yards he turned and stood broadside. We both knew that he might not come any further and would head back up the hill as he had already planned earlier and I had to take this shot. I placed the crosshairs on his shoulder, said a little prayer, took a deep breath, and pulled the trigger! I immediately looked up to Donald and asked if I got him (instead of continuing to look through the scope haha). I have never seen a bigger smile on someone’s face, his eyes lit up, and we both started celebrating in the blind. Hugs, kisses, and high fives were exchanged and I had tears running down my cheeks from pure adrenaline, joy, and excitement. I looked down at my hands and couldn’t believe how much they were shaking; how did I even make that shot with such shaky hands! I was beyond excited and knew at that moment I wanted to experience this feeling again as much as possible. I was hooked! (Now I am addicted!)
As we made our way out of the blind to my buck that was lying right where I shot him, we took a detour to the magical feeder to see what was going on. It appeared the battery was running low and was causing the timer to glitch and making the feeder go off at random times. I don’t know if this would ever happen to anyone again but I was grateful for a low battery and a spastic feeder! We recovered my buck and headed to his parents house to gut, clean, and take pictures. And at least we knew his new gun was working properly even if the feeder wasn’t!


Dec 11, 2012 | Category: Blog | Comments: none


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