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Old December 6, 2018, 12:33 AM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: January 7, 2008
Posts: 3,015
About hunting and being successful at it.....

At this point, I am successful at hunting if I even get to go hunting...
You know, it's a different sort of a game: There you are, and you are out to kill a deer. Yet it is very unlikely that your life depends on you making that kill; think about that.
Now consider this: Your Quarry is also playing this game with you, but the stakes are higher for him; he's all in and, while you are just trying to entertain yourself, his life is on the line. Those of you that strictly hunt at long range may be taking an animal completely unawares, that never knew what hit him as you gut him out.
But if you have a few of the kind of deep-woods encounters I'm thinking about, it's a whole 'nuther thing: There you are in an older clear-cut, partially re-grown with pole thickets and brush. You've got a buck in there, in this pole-thicket island with clearings all around.... It's a couple of hours before dark.... He's been snorting at you from 15 yards away in a thicket so dense that you cant even see him. He knows you are gonna kill him, if you can, though he plans otherwise.... You kinda have him trapped, because it's a thicket that's isolated from the big timber by at least 35 yards or so.... If he makes a break for it, you've got him and he knows it. If you go in after him, he'll make a break for it to the big timber and get away, and you both know it! But he's a smart Son-of-a-Buck, and knows he's just gotta keep his nerve, as he snorts at you again, this time maybe just ten yards away, and you still can't see him. So you move around the perimeter of the thicket, never losing sight of the gap between the timber and the thicket, 'cuz that's where he's gonna make a break for it if he get's a chance....
He's movin' around in there and I'm movin' around outside, both of us trying to out manoeuver the other, and it was challenging to keep him trapped, even if he was untouchable. At last, there was a change in fortune... the sun went down; it got too dark to shoot, so I spoke out loud to him, "You win, Buddy; I salute you, and I'll never forget you.". Others might have cursed him, but I'd rather bless him. I went home to my dinner and he went on to sire more of his kind. I don't know what football games I might have missed and couldn't care less.
So who won? I think we both did. I've forgotten how many deer I've killed over the years; certainly not nearly as many as some of the folks here. But I consider that one of my more successful hunts.
West-slope, Oregon Cascades, Mt. Hood National Forest, Land of Volcanoes and big timber.
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