Showing posts with label hjournal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hjournal. Show all posts

Rifle Season Antlerless Portion Another Trip To The Woods

December 3rd, 2016

Waking up at three in the morning is justifiable as long as it results in heading to the outdoors for some type of adventure.  Todays adventure took place with my son while freezing our rumps off in the deer stand.

Deer Stand, Whitetail Hunting
My son and I in the deer stand
With everything packed into the truck my son and I hit the road at about 3:30 AM for the two hour journey to our hunting spot.
Hunting From A Deer Stand, Deer Stand Hunting, Deer Hunting
A View From the Stand
After sitting in the stand for many hours we climbed down and headed into town to warm up and grab something to eat.  Once we had regained some of the feeling in our fingers it was back to the stand to sit for the afternoon and evening.
Deer Stand Hunting, Hunting From A Deer Stand, Deer Hunting
Another View From the Stand
We stayed in the stand until it was almost dark when three does came wandering in between our stand and the road.  The terrain is uphill from the stand to the road so I may have been able to take a shot safely; however, I decided to pass and use this as a teaching moment for my son.  As the deer walked out of sight my son asked why I didn't shoot.  I then told him that "you should never shoot your gun towards any road because you never know when a vehicle may drive by and accidentally shooting someone would not be a good situation."

At this point in the season I am extremely glad that my family is not dependent on my killing a deer in order to eat throughout this next year as it looks like I may not get one..... If it wasn't for fishing our freezer might be  Time will tell, but thankfully September 15th will be here again before we know it, and once again we will be hitting the woods in pursuit of the seemingly elusive whitetail deer.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day

A Daddy Daughter Date In The Deer Stand

Having spent most of my children's lives on the road as both a regional and over-the-road truck driver I haven't been able to spend nearly enough time with them in the outdoors.  Until the last couple of years circumstances have made it nearly impossible to get in much hunting and fishing at all.  As this situation started changing in my favor, I began to ease them into these activities.  I don't ever force them to go; I simply give them the option of joining me on each adventure.  

This year in Missouri the last of the youth rifle season landed on the weekend after Thanksgiving making things a little difficult.  However, where there's a will there's a way.  At least that is what I've always heard other people tell me when they couldn't figure out how to achieve something they wanted to accomplish.  

After finishing work for the day on Saturday the 26th I picked up the rifle my daughter wanted to use and took her out to get in a little practice.  She has been shooting guns since she was about six, but this was her first time shooting a larger sized rifle.  To my surprise, she handled the gun quite well and was able to hit the target without any issues.  She did tell me "this gun gets heavy after a while" to which I replied "tomorrow you will have something to rest it on while you are aiming."  We finished up our practice session (I wish I had taken pictures of the target after she was done shooting) and headed in for dinner and an early bed time.

At 3:00 AM on Sunday the 27th we crawled out of bed and prepared for the two-hour journey to our hunting spot.  Climbing into the stand just before daylight, we settled in for a daddy daughter date in the deer stand.
Weather, Weather Conditions
Weather Conditions Sunday November 27th
Hunting Blinds, Deer Stand, Hunting Stand
Our Little Hunting Blind

After a few hours of calling and spraying a cover scent, a year old doe finally wandered in.  I instructed my daughter to take her time as the deer seemed to be looking right at us on high alert.  I then heard a twig break behind us and turned around to notice that a much bigger doe was making her way through the woods towards our location.  As the bigger doe stopped, the little one blew and took off running out of sight, but returned shortly to the side of the bigger animal.  At this point they both began to move around to settle in front of us again.  Slowly my daughter attempted to get into position, but before she could manage to get a shot a third deer which neither of us had noticed busted us and ran off causing the other two to evacuate the area.

Yearling Doe, Little Deer, Young Doe
The Little Doe Headed For the Hills

I wish I could say my daughter was able to kill her first deer that day, but I can't.  We sat in the stand for a few more hours until it began to rain on us and decided to call it a day.  As we headed back home my daughter turned to me and said:  "It's ok that I didn't get a deer today.  At least I got to see some, and they were really close!  That's more than a lot of people can say about their first deer hunting trip.  A lot of people only dream of seeing even one deer the first time they go hunting."  I told her that I was really proud of her attitude towards the whole situation and that she was absolutely right about seeing deer on her first trip to the woods with a gun.

Whenever you are out hunting or fishing with your children remember that success isn't always about catching and killing; it's about teaching them to learn from and enjoy every moment they spend in the great outdoors.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day

Never Give Up

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October 29th, 2016

I'm sure most anyone who has been hunting very long has had the experience of sitting in the blind or stand and hearing that all too familiar sound of a deer "blowing" after sensing an intruder in their domain.  Most new hunters and some who have been hunting for quite some time will simply get up and walk away thinking their hunt is over once they experience this.  However, this is not always the case.  

Sometimes a deer will "blow" and run off never to be heard from again (or at least not again that same day), but often a deer will sound the alarm only to run off a short distance and take another   smell while trying to identify where the stranger is located.  

Today it was my turn to experience this.  While sitting in my blind which is made up of mostly natural materials I sat working the call and spraying an occasional mist of that days chosen deer attractant.  After repeating this routine every 15 to 20 minutes over the course of a couple of hours I heard the sound we all know and dread.  The wind was carrying a scent trail to the south as I sat on the northern side of a small spring fed pond.  With the thick cover of evergreens between myself and this pond, I was unable to get a good view of any nearby activity to the south;  however, after paying careful attention I noticed him running to the top of a nearby hill.  I texted my brother to tell him that I had just been discovered by a deer when an idea popped into my head.

By now I had lost sight of my prey and figured I had nothing to lose so I blew a few times on the deer call and sprayed another little mist of scent.  It didn't take long before I heard that buck off in the distance blowing once again.  With that I began repeating the process of calling and spraying each time I heard him.  After a while I regained sight of the buck and was able to watch his reaction to our conversation.  For half an hour we played our little game - he would blow and I would call and spray the scent again.  During this time he worked a full circle around my blind never quite able to spot that elusive doe.  I was unable to convince him to come in for a closer look that day, but I had a wonderful  experience learning to speak the language of a whitetail.

Next time you are hunting and you hear that sound, just remember it is not the end of the world.  Most of the time when a deer blows like that, they are actually clearing any remaining scent from their nostrils in order to get a better smell of what is around them.  Simply give a little shout out with your call and spray a little "deer pee" into the wind to make it more convincing that another deer is nearby.  Be careful not to spray too much urine at once as this can work against you by alarming the deer.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day

What To Do When Your Hunting Trip Is A Washout?

Any links to merchants in this post are affiliate links.  If you click on a link and purchase a product mentioned in this post I may earn a commission.  This will not add to the price you pay for that product.

September 24, 2016

I decided to cancel my planned actual hunting trip to the woods this afternoon because of an impending storm.  It makes no sense to travel forty to fifty miles from home when you will most likely end up turning around and heading back home as soon as you arrive.  

Having made the decision to skip the woods in fear of drowning, I decided a father-daughter date was in order.  If you can't be in the outdoors, the next best thing for any sportsman is a store with all the outdoor gear you could care to see..... So we headed to the Bass Pro.

We entered the store and what else would my daughter want to do other than head straight over to the laser shooting gallery.  She gave me no choice but to show her that daddy can win at this game.  After checking out everything the hunting section had to offer.....and I mean everything, we decided to give the fudge a whirl (the salted caramel is a pretty tasty choice).

Fun At Bass Pro, Bass Pro Shops, Bass Pro
Having fun at Bass Pro Shops
Next it was off to make a loop around the lower level.  Of course we had to make a stop at the top of the stairs to check out the waterfall and catch some water to throw on dad (probably a pay back for beating her at the shooting gallery earlier in the evening).
Bass Pro Shops, Water Fall, Bobcat
Bass Pro has some interesting things to look at
While making the rounds on the lower floor we checked out all there was to see from the taxidermy to the boats to the four wheelers and everything in between.
ATV, Green ATV, Arctic Cat
Emilee checking out a 4-wheeler
Of course we couldn't pass up the ATV section.  We had to check out every one of them before making our way to the boats. 

Pontoon, Boats, Pontoon Boat
A couple of boats that Emilee had to see
In the boat section Emilee found two boats that she really liked (she has some expensive taste).  As you can see in the pictures the two she admired were nearly $40,000.

Upon finishing up our tour of the Bass Pro Shop we headed back home; of course, we had to make a pit stop by Quick Trip and get a frappe along the way.  I may not have been in the woods, but I did have a wonderful time spending the evening with my daughter.  I wouldn't have missed this opportunity for the world!

Next time your hunting plans get foiled by mother nature try spending some quality time with your children.  The memories from these experiences will not be forgotten.

- Any day in the outdoors (or an outdoor store) is a good day

My First Trip To The Woods During The 2016 Missouri Archery Deer Season

September 18th 2016

Today I was able to make it to one of my favorite hunting spots for the first time this season.  I guess getting out there three days after opening day for Missouri archery season isn't too bad.  I wasn't particularly out there to hunt so much as to check out my favorite hiding spot and see if there was any activity from either deer or people.

Hunting on public lands can bring many challenges with it - the biggest being other hunters pressuring your chosen honey hole.  I have been expecting a much greater occurrence of this problem as a result of Missouri opening up archery season to crossbow hunters.  I guess time will tell.  As for now however, I seem to be wrong.

After spending a bit of time in the woods I headed back home with high hopes for this years archery season.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day