Yeti

Do you remember your first time?

Western Traveler1

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Joined
Aug 18, 2017
Messages
824
Location
The Front Montana
1959 at the age of 12 in San Diego County on National Forest.
Savage (might be a model 99 but there is no model # on it) iron sights in .303 savage. It was the last doe I killed up till a couple of years ago (I finally discovered how good they taste).
Took hunters Ed when I was 8yo and had to pass a range test along with classroom. Had hunted rabbits and birds up till then.
 

Jbotto

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Joined
Apr 12, 2019
Messages
501
Location
Big Horn Basin, WY
Age 12 hunting a wood lot between crop fields in central MN. Didn’t grow up in a hunting family, but a family friend got me hooked. It was a shotgun zone but could use a muzzleloader too so he set me up with a .45 that I shot two or three times before the season. Last night of the season he made a push towards me and a doe and fawn come through at about 30 yards. I shot the doe and she dropped. Didn’t reload the muzzleloader and waited for my mentor to come by after his instructions of not to get out of my tree. He came and saw she was spined. Used his muzzleloader to put one in the ribs and we gave her a few minutes. Dressed her out in the dark and dragged her to the field road.

Lots of things from that experience I hope to not redo ever. He gave me instructions to not wear my gloves as I wouldn’t have time to pull them off if I saw a deer. Froze my hands and I feel like still to this day my hands freeze at the smallest chill. I don’t think I can shoot a doe with a fawn either as her fawn hung around even after we started dressing her. The bad parts of this experience really didn’t hit me until later, but that day got me hooked.
 

wa_archer

Active member
Joined
Jan 30, 2013
Messages
209
Location
E. WA
Man some great stories on here...

I was 12 or 13 with a doe tag and a snow storm. We were in deer like crazy being a late season hunt but with the blizzard they were always just in or out of sight. My dad and I kept on the group hoping the weather would clear when we started seeing blood by one of the tracks. We figured out which deer was injured and over the coarse of a mile and few hours were able to separate her from the group when she took a side drainage up. After another mile or more I came around the corner where it got too steep for her to keep limping and shot her at about 80yds off hand. Was a mature doe which had been poorly shot, I cant remember how I seem to recall in a lower leg. Made for a long drag out in the snow. We later found out a middle age guy in poor shape had made the bad shot and couldn't or didn't decide to put in the work for another shot and since hundreds of deer around just shoot another doe. It was a great way to get introduced into hunting and doing it the right way. My dad could have easily had me shoot another doe much closer. I wouldn't change it for anything.
 

devon deer

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Joined
Aug 25, 2011
Messages
2,444
Location
Devon, England
Some great memories and stories people, I though it would make an interesting read and some of the photo's really must jog some feelings.

What has come through very strongly, family and Dads.
I was not in a hunting family, but my mother was a farmers daughter and she encouraged me to hunt, home made bow and arrow, air rifle and shotgun, only rabbits but it grew slowly, bought my first rifle when I was 32 (in those days in the UK gun ownership was strictly limited) and never looked back.
So for me I did miss out on many of your experiences but it didn't stop me.
This is my most recent deer, yesterday, a Roe Doe, now in the hands of an old couple in my village, we are in full lockdown again so they appreciated the meat.
20210105_170307.jpg

Cheers

Richard
 

rebekahschultz

New member
Joined
Jan 6, 2021
Messages
2
Location
New York
Ground blind chair

Well I am getting old and its getting harder to get motivated when it gets cold. Decided to try a ground blind with a small heater for the month of winter bow. I ordered the 3 man blind but I'm having trouble spending money on a swivel chair. Wondering what you ground hunters are using ?
 

kwyeewyk

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Joined
Feb 22, 2019
Messages
629
Location
Washington
1993, my 3rd year of hunting, was 14. Had a few chances my first 2 years, but too slow on the trigger. I had a cast on my good arm from HS football. My dad had been seeing some bucks cross the highway on his drive to work in the mornings so our plan was to get above them and wait for them to come to us.

We went to the homecoming game the night before opening day and then hiked up the mountain that night and camped out so we'd be in position in the morning. Just as planned two fork horn mulies crossed the road at dawn and came right to us.

We had to move a bit to get the shot, got a good rest on a rock a squeezed one off on the bigger one broadside at about 100 yards. He humped up then bolted, sprinted at top speed in a big circle and piled up after about 100 yards. My dad said "so that's why they call it a dead run..."

Fun learning to gut it with a cast on my arm.
 

SRW

Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
24
Early December 2007, Tennessee, 12 years old. Hunting with my grandfather from a shooting house by a pond in the middle of a large crop field on the family farm. Not long after daylight, out struts a 7 pointer in full rut. Boom went the .50 caliber muzzleloader. When the smoke cleared, he was belly-up right where he had been standing. Been hooked ever since...I'll never forget it!
 

Reed

New member
Joined
May 8, 2020
Messages
12
Been archery & rifle deer hunting seriously for about 5 years and still haven’t shot one. I’ve missed a few due to deer fever and impatience and Accidentally passed on a few from being too patient. Deer fever is no joke, My ankles start shaking, mind goes blank and arms start quaking lol.

Thankfully I’ve been able to Harvest most everything else that can be found in PA (Bear, Turkey, small game).
 

Dougfirtree

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Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
1,367
Location
Adirondacks
It was late October in northern Minnesota. I was in my 20's and hunting my 4th deer season. I didn't grow up hunting. My brother and I picked it up out of thin air and it was mostly grouse, squirrells, etc. at first. My parents were supportive, but neither had ever really hunted themselves.

At this point, I was hunting with an ash self-bow that I'd finished the year before. It was a cold morning and I'd been sitting in a woodlot for a couple of hours, freezing my butt off. When I couldn't stand it any longer, I got up and started walking around a bit. I found myself in an area with 6 or 8 rubs all around me. I was just thinking to myself that this would be a good spot, when I heard a crash. A doe was running toward me. I knocked an arrow and crouched, but she angled off to my left and passed out of range.

My adrenaline was just returning to normal when I heard the sound of footfalls in the leaves. A young buck (looked to be a fork horn) was walking down the doe's path and heading my way. For some reason, this one didn't veer and was coming right at me. Finally, at 10 yards, he veered a bit to my right. There were saplings in front of him, but there was an opening coming up at about 6 yards. When he was almost there, I drew the bow. Of course, he stopped with his head in the opening and his vitals covered by trees. He turned and looked right at me. I was pretty nervous to begin with and trying to hold the longbow at full draw was making me start to shake. Thankfully, after 6 hours or so (10 seconds), the deer decided it was ok and he took a step into the opening. I concentrated on that spot right behind his leg and released. At the shot, he bolted. I wasn't sure I'd even hit him and I watched him run 40 yards, then stop and look around. Just as I started to worry that I'd missed, he started to sway and then went down.

I was shaking pretty hard, but I was also really excited. I was just trying to get my breathing back to normal, when I heard a deep, guttural grunt. I looked up to see a huge, wide-racked buck coming down the same trail, grunting as he came. He looked serious and was coming directly towards me. When he was about 10 yards away, I decided I'd better let him know I was there, so I stood up. He didn't seem to care and kept coming. At about 6 or 7 yards, I started waving my arms and yelling at him. He stopped, looked me over for a few seconds and decided to split.

He ended up being a basket-racked 8 pointer and after working hard for four seasons, it felt pretty great. Still makes me happy and grateful to think about it.
 

Otto Matic

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Joined
Jan 3, 2021
Messages
503
Age 17. Gramps Marlin 336 in .30-30.
Me and two high school football teammates on a week end hunt.
My lease, so I spotted the other two on stand then found my own.
About 8:00AM, one lone five point comes walking by at about 15 yards.
One round and down!
Got the memory. No photos.
Jim Reeves and Ed Coleman were my buds!
Jim's gone. Don't know about Ed.
 

gradeAchuck

New member
Joined
Feb 2, 2021
Messages
7
Location
Western PA
First deer was a little 5 point (3x2) whitetail buck in the Allegheny National Forest near Warren PA, opening day of the 1998 deer season. I was 16 and grew up in a hunting family with a long hunting tradition. All my cousins and even younger brother had taken deer in the previous seasons so I was starting to feel like I had somehow offended the deer-gods.

In the previous seasons I had been hunting with a Winchester 94 chambered in 30/30 on "loan" from my Pap but the morning of opening day Pap pulls me aside and hands me his Savage 99 chambered in 300 Savage. He loved that ol' 99 but said he wanted me to hunt with his good-luck charm that year. I remember being over-the-moon happy and bragged to my cousins that I was going to have a deer back at camp before lunch.

As it turned out the deer-gods don't like hubris so they made me wait till near dark before my little 5 point came by. I was pretty dejected and almost missed him creeping along the ridgeline below me at 60 yards. I was so surprised I forgot to take the safety off then spent another second and a half trying to remember how to aim. Fortunately I got my act together in time and made a clean heart shot (probably more by luck than skill) and the buck piled up after stumbling 20 yards. I was a mile and a half back in the woods so it was well past dark by the time I got the buck back to camp.

I will never forget how I felt that evening, finally achieving a hard earned goal, listening to Pap telling me how proud he was that I never gave up and he wished he was hiding behind a tree just to see the look on my face when I came up on the downed-deer. I even remember all the ribbing I got from my cousins about how I was late for lunch and my Dad saying he could hear my whooping and hollering clear on the other side of the ridge after my shot went off.

Over the years the deer-gods and I have made peace and I've harvested my share of deer. I even managed to take a few with that Win94 just to balance the books. Pap passed in 2009 and his beloved 99 and Win94 now belong to my father. In the near future my son will be old enough to hunt and on the fateful day he goes into the woods for the first time he's either gonna be carrying the Win94 or ol' 99. I'm sure Pap will be watching.
 

blueridge

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Joined
Jan 10, 2019
Messages
629
Location
Blue Ridge Mtns, VA
1987, 10 years old, Christian Country, KY, opening day, borrowed 12ga with slugs, sitting in a tree stand freezing my butt off down in a bottom beside my dad. About 8:30 a 4 point buck comes trotting down the hillside right for us. I shoot and he runs under us. Get down and find him about 40 yards. Right through the heart. Up to that point, the best 10 seconds of my life.

14, the girl next door named Jennifer, Garth Brooks' "What She's Doing Now," up to that point, the best 15 seconds of my life. :ROFLMAO:
 
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tzone

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Joined
Aug 6, 2018
Messages
919
Location
MN for now
I remember it like it was yesterday. November 10th 1991. Helped my cousin track a deer he hit behind their house. We found his doe standing in a group of popples. He dropped it and there was another deer behind it. I shot and saw a small popple fall. I put another round in and shot again and watch the other deer fall. I can't remember ever being as excited as that.
 

AndyPOW

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Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
170
Location
Alaska
It is 1977 and I'm 16. My dad didn't hunt, and I had been hunting on my own for three years with no luck. My older brother was always off hunting with his pals and didn't want me tagging along. We got up that morning to 8" of fresh snow, and a delayed school opening. After doing our farm chores what are my older brother and I to do? Off we go, him with his .32 Special, me with my Marlin 336C 30-30 with the Williams peep site. Up through the back 40, through the patch of woods, across a couple of the neighbors hayfields, and we look down across the harvested cornfield to the brook snaking through the woods in the bottom. My brother elects to stay up high, so I go down to the creek bottom. I work upstream a few yards, and stop to look around. Across the brook there is a hillside that had had some trees cut off it, and the maples had sprouted back forming 10' high clumps of saplings. Then down the hill come two deer. . . a doe in front, and a few feet back a buck. The doe passes behind one of the sapling clumps. . . and I raise the rifle. She steps out, I put the peep site on her shoulder and pull the trigger. She drops in her tracks. The buck hops behind the clump of saplings and stops. I jack another round in and put the sights on the saplings. The buck wisely decides to reverse course and walks directly away from me, keeping the saplings between us until he is out of sight. My brother comes down the hill, we gut the deer, then we pull that doe the mile home, hang it in the barn, and still get to school on time.
 

Boarmaster

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Joined
Aug 24, 2016
Messages
404
Location
Southwest Florida
I sure do. They dumped me off in the cold dark on a road at the bottom of a ridge In the federal forest. I started up the ridge through the briars tearing at my skin and my old surplus camo and cotton waffle longjohns. I got about 100 yards in and the shooting started. A shot every half minute. I got down behind a big beech tree and I stayed there as I could hear the slugs hitting the tree limbs up above me. A deer came off the top of the ridge and ran down the other side of the drainage. I coukdnt get a clean shot and watched what I reckoned was my one chance pass by.
i set down there until about 11 am when the shooting sort of calmed down. I went up the ridge to the top. By that time I was turned around and lost.
About noon I set down and got out my cheese and trail bologna and started eating lunch. about that time a nice 8 point came around the bend in the ridge across from me and ran right by me. I let the air out of him and he piled up about twenty yards away.
So there I was lost with a buck down and nothing but a short piece of rope to drag him out with. I field dressed him the best I new how at the time and started dragging. I dragged that buck until I dang near collapsed. A distant cousin of mine came walking by and told me I needed to drag that deer down the ridge to the road instead of along the road.
I took his advice and dragged that buck right down to the road about 100 yards from where they had the truck parked. I was never so glad to see a road in my life. I come a long way from them days 35 years ago. But I still think of that day and laugh at myself.
 

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