We headed to Sunday School and church on Sunday morning. After church we had lunch and Jared and the girls headed to hockey practice. He is coaching them this year since the baby makes his/her arrival in a few weeks.
Hudson and I took an hour nap and then I had to decide what to do. Should we just hang around the house get things organized and cleaned up? Should I head to an enclosed stand with Hudson? Should I head out to an open stand? Should we head to the field north of town. We are VERY fortunate to have so many generous friends that have opened up their hunting land to us. But it does make it a challenge when deciding where to go.
I decided to try a new spot. One of my girlfriends had offered at church that morning that I could head out to her field. Since Jared would be getting home with the girls, I told him to meet me at their house, in case I saw a doe to shoot. Since her two kids had each been successful in that field and my 37 week body was getting a bit tired of this whole head out into the woods every waking moment thing- I decided to head out with Hudson to hopefully get this taken care of. It was a beautiful, sunny, 58 degree afternoon and we arrived at her house at 3pm. She offered to play with Hudson in their house and on their playground while her husband led me and my 30-06 to the deer stand a few minutes walk from their house. As we neared the stand we noticed there were already 4 deer in the field! We headed up into the stand and the deer left the field. I thought to myself, darn it, I guess this isn’t going to happen- I thought this because whenever I had seen deer previously, they vanished into the woods to never return. He reassured me that they would be back within a half hour. Okay, if you say so.
Sure enough in about ten minutes, one fawn then another came out of the woods followed my their mom. Then another four deer leapt and bounded playfully into the sunshine.
They were all about 150 yards away, hugging the edge of the field. He asked me if I left comfortable with this shot. Uh, no. I have no idea if I can actually do this! This is not a “comfortable” situation for me! But yes, this was going to be it- that was going to be the time where I took my first shot.
The deer were heading toward our right and further away. It had to be now. I raised up my gun and realized that I hadn’t been breathing. He reminded me that I should probably breathe a bit before this shot. Oh yeah, right. Breathe. Yes breathe. I had the barrel of the gun resting on his coat and the ledge of the stand. Which deer to take? All the deer had passed into the shadows except for one that was still in the sun. There seemed to be a glowing spotlight on the deer that was the one for me. This was it. I aimed the crosshairs of the scope on this unsuspecting animal. It was facing the the left, perfectly horizontal to me. I took a deep breathe, got brave, aimed right behind it’s front left leg and fired the shot. The animal immediately dropped to the ground like a ton of bricks. The deer stand was smoky and smelled like fireworks. I kept staring a the deer, it was dead… right??? Nice shot he said! “Way to go” and gave me a high five. I had done it! It was over.
This was my first successful hunt. All that waiting and time and patience and I had a deer.
We headed across the field 120 yards to my deer. Yes, my deer. I had shot it straight through the lungs and nicked it’s heart. He noticed that the deer was not actually a doe but a button buck.
Hudson and the rest of our families headed out on foot and on the four-wheeler to see what had transpired since they had heard the shot.
They were almost as happy as I felt. It was very fun to be able to share this event with so many people who were excited for me.
Now I can sleep in, put away my hunting boots and wash my hunting clothes.
Although it would have been fun if my first deer was a monster buck that I shot after getting to an open deer stand at 5am, with temperatures in the teens. It would have been a better story if I was stalking this 12 point buck through the brambles etc, but to be perfectly honest- I am completely happy I had a successful hunt and got a deer. We will have meat in the freezer and I made it through hunting without inducing labor =) What a great way to start off my years of hunting challenges.
Thanks everyone for pulling for me. Now it is Jared’s turn to get his buck. Since my buck was just a button buck we had to use his doe tag. Thanks Jared for letting me use it. I hope you get to tell your story here soon.