Last night I went down the road to share a steak and taters with GNJohn and Pigpen. I hadn't seen anybody since I'd been back from SF and it felt good to be resting in the fold. Between my new kitten Cheeky, a visit with Teehoo, and being out at WSSP, I hadn't been around the hood much. Pigpen worked the ipod and GNJ whipped up a great meal. I watched the sun set, as two does grazed, just across Ray Gilkey's (Fran's) fence line. Because this is a bad year for apples the orchard stand would be relatively worthless. My plan was to hunt Majestic in the morning. Then Kandy showed up and we cracked open the Wild Turkey. There was no way I'd make it into a tree at dawn.
Early bow season starts slow. I usually have some sort of manic carpentry project going, but this year all's quiet on the front. I can't say i mind. So, if I wanted I could get obsessive and throw myself into it. But, I'm not feeling it. It's too warm. The woods are still thick. The deer feel no need to move. Yet, as my hangover subsided I felt the pull. I could sit here on the couch, hand wrestling the kitten and watching bad TV, or I could get in the stand. I chose the later.
The woods are incredible, vibrant, a splendiforously resplendent glorious explosion of autumnal release. A light rain had soften the bed of leaves, allowing me to silently deposit my ass above the pavilion, in the stand I gut shot the big 7 out of last year. I jumped one going in. All I saw was a flag. I took a watch with me. I was in the stand by 4:30 pm. The first sit is never easy. I fidget. I space out. I get bored. But at least I wasn't cold. And the rain had stopped. When i finally settled in, all the smells and sounds and the wind out of the ENE, light and variable, reminded me why I do this. At 6:20 I climbed down. I hadn't seen a deer.
Just as I neared the pavilion, where there now lays a big blow down across the path, a deer jumped up. It was nice sized buck. He'd been bedded just the other side of the blow down. His horns weren't much, but he had a big body. I never had a shot with the bow, but a few years back I would've taken a crack with the gun. Ahhhhhhhhh. That made the afternoon. It was dark by the time I got home and Cheeky met me at the door. The season has begun.