Monday, December 7, 2009

Deer Hunting and Thanksgiving

I have been trying to get on here while at work so I can update you all on the hunting trip to WV for Thanksgiving. To say the least, it was a blast and it was great to see some family.

I left here around midnight on Fri night/Sat morning and go to WV like I had predicted, in time for breakfast. The trip there was exciting, like all my road trips. I loaded down the truck with all my gear and the 120 pounds of hamburger that my family needed to add to the deer when it is ground up.

About an hour into my trip I noticed a camper with a trailer pulled over on the opposite side of the road. So, being the person I am, I went up the road and turned around and came back. For an hour we tried to put a larger trailer that had a blow out on a smaller trailer. We finally realized the smaller trailer was not going to handle it and we moved the gear to the smaller trailer, including a 17foot john boat. I never realized how heavy those things were.

So right off the bat I was an hour behind, but who cares, it is vacation afterall and there were no deadlines to meet. A few more hours up the road there was a very large buck in the middle of the road that was having a hard time walking. It appeared to have a broken leg and was walking in the middle of the road. I almost hit it, which woke me up and scared the crap out of me. I was not too sure where I was, or even what state I was in at the time, and did not care. I was just hoping that they had the same laws as Tennessee regarding roadkill. If you call it in, you can take it home. Well, this buck had a nice rack and look healthy other than the broken leg. I called it in, drove up the road and turned around once again. I got out looking for him once I got back to where he was and could not find him or signs of him, so I continued on my journey.

I arrived at the house in WV around 9am worn out and ready for a nap. We ate breakfast and i got my nap in.

Once I woke up, dad and I went up on the hill to place my treestand. We found a good spot, so we thought, and headed back to the house. We sat around the rest of the afternoon and waited for people to start showing up and watched some college football. Sun morning rolled around and we sat around discussing our plans for Mon morning while more family started arriving. Jeremy finally got there late afternoon. Finally everyone was there. We had a great dinner and all headed to bed early hoping we could sleep. The anticipation was killing us and we were all excited, no matter how little or how much we showed it.

Monday morning finally rolled around we were up, ate our breakfast of fried eggs, biscuits, and whatever meat we had that morning. For me it was a glass of milk to hold me over. By 530 about all of us were on the way to our stands waiting to see who would shoot first. Well, it wasn't me, Jeremy or Dad. Once the sun came up and we could see, you could hear the movement all around. Jeremy and I were pretty close, as was dad, although he was on the other side of the creek from us. It wasn't long that I realized I had faced my tree stand in the wrong direction. I had a few doe walk behind me and I could not get turned around to get a good shot and let them walk on to Jeremy thinking he was take one. We could both hear them between us, but could not see them. Then Jeremy came on the radio immediately after a shot was fired up the mountain from us and very close. He could see some one coming on to our property. He jumped out of the stand and headed towards them. To spare you all the drama, and make it short, some one shot a buck that was on the line and came onto our property. While Jeremy was running them off the property, the buck went back to the other side and the guy was able to claim his deer.

We never saw the deer again after that. Or any other deer the rest of the day. That afternoon we heard dad shoot. Dad called me and told me he shot one but could not find it. I went down to help him and we never found it.

Monday night we were all back the house with 2 deer killed and hanging in the smoke house cooling off. We all sat and enjoyed a nice dinner and told the stories of the day. We discussed our game plans for Tuesday. Once again, we were in bed early waiting for the second day and hoping for more luck.

Tuesday morning was like Monday. Up early, breakfast and hike up the mountain. Once again me and Jeremy could hear some deer between us on the hill, but could not see them. They headed down the hill towards dad and we let him know. It was not long after that we heard a shot. Then another. A few minutes later two more shots. We called dad on the radio and he told us he got two. Once again, dad shoots his two at the same time. Must be nice.

Come to find out, he shot a doe and when he was walking over to her, a spike buck was standing there looking at dad, so he shot that one too. This time we did not have to help him. He went and got the tractor, and took them to the house. Jeremy let a couple doe walk that day and one came over to me late that evening. I could not get a shot, and it was too small for me to shoot. Once again, me and Jeremy go home empty handed.

Wed morning was the same. Eat and hike. This time it was cooler and a little rainy. Everyone already had a deer except me and Jeremy. Around lunch time, Jeremy decided he was going to stalk a little and I was moving to Dad's stand. It was not long after that Jeremy shot. This time he did not shot 7 or 8 times like usual so I was concerned it was not Jeremy. But it was. He shot a very small doe. When I say small, my dog Buck is bigger. He took it to the house and returned a little later. He was stalking again and I was in dad's stand waiting. It was about the time for the deer to come past dad's stand and I heard Jeremy shoot again. This time he shot a big doe. At the same time, the deer were finally in front of dad's stand. It was my turn. This time we all had a deer. I ended up with one of dad's deer to take home.

I sat at home all day on Sat and Sun cleaning deer and packaging it. I now have several pounds of deer burger and some deer steaks in the freezer.

There was a lot more that happened on this trip. Like Buck going crazy every time he saw a deer and wanting to chase them. We let him one day and thought he would never come back. He was loving it.

We had a great time and I was blessed with getting to spend some great time with family in WV while mom was at home with Courtney. I was not able to make it to Tennessee to see Courtney like I had thought I would be able too. But this weekend I will be seeing her. I cannot wait either.

I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving and I am sorry this was delayed.

I am going to go ahead and write another one regarding Christmas and some of the things that are going on the world with that.

SGT John Strader

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice story bud...Sounds like the fellers had a great time.

I took my .50 out one weekend but never got a shot oh well that's how it goes.

See ya bud ........"Halli"
Ken Halliburton