Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Buck Found, Lessons Learned

When I was ten my father lost a hundred dollar bet to my mother.

In 1983, that was a lot of money.

She was going to let him off.  I will let you keep the hundred dollars if you will just say, "Honey, you were right.  I was wrong.  I will try to keep that in mind in the future."

Dad thought for a few seconds, "I think I'd rather give you the hundred bucks."

Out of Sunday's three tracks, the first not-found buck bothered me the most.

Something did not add up.
Something just wasn't right.
The still quiet voice said "It is here if you would see."

I was ready to blame the dog for not being capable.  Maybe.  She's still green.  She's going through a bit of "pup-a-lescence," but I am the big ape with a little bit of poetry in him.  It is my job to bring the value-added problem solving.

Regardless,  I am thrilled to say the buck has been found.

The landowner found the buck and called the game warden.
The game warden called the hunter and asked him to describe the rack.
After passing the description test the warden invited the hunter to come out and collect his deer.

Junior collects his buck

The meat was past saving, but the hunter was still ready to throw his tag on it.

What I got wrong:

  • It was not a brisket shot.  He shot it in the hind quarter and the arrow went out through the belly.  That is why we had such a great blood trail.
  • At one time I walked within 20 yards of clear line of sight of that dead deer.  No brush, no saplings, nothing but mature canopy.  My head was down looking for blood.  He'd bled that much, it was open forest, I should have walked through another time with head up.

What I got right:

  • It had lost enough blood to die.  I doubted myself by the end of the trail but that deer was dead.
  • After we loss the trail, my best guess was that the deer went into the near-by treeline.  To be fair, after one restart, that is where Sparta took me too.  A better handler might have let her lead him farther despite the absence of confirmation.
  • I asked Junior to drop me a note if the deer showed up.  I am so glad he did.

What was awesome:

  • The landowner made an effort to find who had killed the deer.  A lot of people would have just cut off the head, saved the skull, or cut the antlers.
  • That buck went about seventy yards after it stopped bleeding.  Imagine you've lost enough blood that you're no longer bleeding, then walk 70 more yards.  "'Dem deer are tough."

Biggest Lessons:

  • Under similar circumstances, walk through one more time with your head up.
  • Remember how much blood that deer loss.  Next time add another 70 - 100 yards.
  • Remember, there are some awesome people in the world who go beyond fair chase.

Always be ready to say "I was wrong and I will try to keep that in mind in the future."

No comments:

Post a Comment