Wednesday, November 28, 2012


This season it's long cold days in the woods. Back at the shack, I stoke the wood stove, turn on the TV, eat something, crack a cold one and fall asleep on the couch with Ray and Spooky on my belly. Many times I'll watch "Huntin' and Killin'" on the PURSUIT CHANNEL. Many of these shows have either a Christian slant or a bring home the troops and take them huntin' and killin' (with a Christian slant). I admit it. It's like hunter porn. I watch just for the bucks. I could give a shit what they think about God.
   Recently I watched some hunter shoot a monster stag in New Zealand. The first thing he did for the camera, after the kill, was thank God for placing that tree branch in just the right spot for a steady rest. So much for the stag's God. I know I've said many times how failure always seems to follow me in the woods. But that's not really true. Failure may be omnipresent, but it's that dirty little demon Murphy who always seems to be sitting on my shoulder. Case in point: yesterday's hunt.
   It was the first snow of the season and I was as excited as if Santa himself had appeared for coffee. The woods were dead quiet. A steady light snow piled on the hemlock branches, bending them into my clear view. I'd set up a blind on Diamond Dave's property specifically for this day. As soon as it was light enough my plan was to pussy-foot along the river and hole up the day in the blind. I had already stocked it with a stool, a sleeping bag (for warmth) and a pee bottle. I wasn't 100 yards in when i saw a doe. She was staring right at me. I didn't move. For some reason she didn't bolt and then I saw other deer. When she lowered her head I raised my gun and looked through the scope. All I saw was grey. I'd waited all this time for messy weather and went in that woods without scope covers. Then i saw horns. I frantically rubbed the lens with the knuckle of my glove, to no avail. All I did was make it worse. The deer (including the buck) passed within 30 yards, finally catching all the movement,  bolting towards the river. Thanks Murph.
   That's the way it's been going. I crept silently through the woods in the snow. My eye caught fresh shit on the ground. With the next step my right foot crushed a plastic bottle hidden in the snow. The horrible sound echoed through the woods. A doe snorted, tail high and disappeared in the thicket. Who put that bottle there? Murphy of course. By the end of the day my ass was cold and wet and with 15 mins. of shooting light left i got up. Two deer had silently been approaching me from above. As they crashed down the ridge I just caught a glimpse of the large dark body of the first one. I'm sure it was a buck. Outside of the car I unloaded the gun only to find I had never chambered a round. Don't say it.
   In case you think all my luck is bad. I've taken one doe with the bow and another, down at Mupp's, with the gun. I've got meat, but no horns. The season isn't over until mid- Dec. I've got time. Second rut is coming. I thank the Little Green Man for allowing me to live in such a wonderful and challenging world and be healthy enough to hunt as much as i do. As we all know he's on the deer's side. I wouldn't have it any other way. And it seems that little bastard Murphy is still clinging to my shoulder. Just can't shake him. Mental note: tomorrow remember to load the gun.    


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