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Archive for December, 2016

A Hurried Shot!

 

My powder horn and possibles bag. I made my horn.

My powder horn and possibles bag. I made my horn.

My step-father, Bob, and I began walking to the area we hoped to score on flintlock deer. (December 28) While traveling I noticed some gray that looked I reached an area I like to hunt. Shortly, I saw a deer below me. Through the brush I could see

An economical one-seater!

An economical one-seater!

“horns.” I glassed it and discovered the deer was illegal. However, a deer following this buck was a doe. The deer were busy feeding and were already within a good range. However, lots of tree tops and briars were present. Eventually the little buck came into open view. He continued feeding to my right. The doe wasn’t in any hurry.

A probable issue was at hand.  That buck was surely about to wind me. He stopped with his head behind a tree. Was he smelling my stench at times? I began wondering about the shot!  I aligned Old Jacob (My flintlock named in honor of Captain Jacobs, the Delaware war chief in Kit-Han-Ne in 1756. (Present – day Kittanning, Pennsylvania.) I picked the best shot and the gun fired! I hurried the shot and missed!

This same doe walked to six feet of Bob before he saw it! He had his flintlock leaning against a log and all of the movement scared the doe off without any shots!

Later, I crept up and over a hill’s side to see four bedded deer. Three ran. One stood and offered me a great shot, however, off about 250 yards there is a house. I elected not to shoot! In the afternoon, I spotted four bedded deer at over 100 yards away. They would not allow me to get close as they ran down the hollow. I would see ten deer while hunting this day. I quit around 2:00.

 

Close-up of my powder horn.

Close-up of my powder horn.

Today, December 29, I went to the same area but late in the morning. (I arrived at 10:30. The family was together for breakfast.) I hunted to about 3:30 seeing nine deer, but no shots were granted to me.

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Three Bucks!

dsc_0003  My friend, Terry Williams and I pursued the deer this day. terry has limited hunting days so I was working a lot and being hopeful to have him connect. That didn’t happen!

We parted early in the morning while the woods were still gray and gloomy. I saw a deer about seventy yards out. I couldn’t determine what the sex of the two deer were. They eventually had enough of my presence and removed themselves.

I edged along quietly until I reached an area that allows me to peer over the to search for deer. I was standing along a tree when I saw a deer’s back already within flintlock range. Soon, I saw two more deer. They were all bucks! All three male deer were about 25-30 yards from me feeding, however, not a one had a legal set of antlers. I later saw another deer that exited along the side of a hill. I quickly went around hoping to head the deer off. That didn’t happen.

I decided to work along a creek bottom to chase deer up and over towards where Terry might be. Later, I worked up the side of the hill only to see four deer..and close. Two ran up and over, one ran and stopped and one just stood up at about thirty yards. I couldn’t shoot safely for there is a home about 250 yards in that same direction. The angle of the shot would have been a 99.999% sure and safe shot.  I never raised the flinter as I watched the deer follow the others. They were heading in the general direction of Terry. He never saw any of them. I believe they must have edged towards the creek bottom.

Red Salamander

Red Salamander

I saw a bout 6-7 Gray Squirrels and one Fox Squirrel. I found a Red Salamander.

Terry saw two deer, one being a buck. Step-father Bob came late and left early. He saw one doe.

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The beginning of Pennsylvania’s Primitive Deer season proved to be a warmer than usual day. temperatures climbed to the low sixties in some areas.

I wasn’t sure how I would do this time afield. A bad cold and asthma conditions have been keeping me coughing a lot. I did very well this day for I only coughed  maybe a dozen times all day. (That changed once I got home!)

I consider the day very successful although I never managed to get a good shot on any deer. My hunting style consisted of sneaking around and looking intently for deer. I had seventeen deer sightings from dawn to about three o’clock. However, none allowed me the shot I desired.

I saw around 15 Gray Squirrels and three Fox Squirrels. I saw turkeys and a coyote. My step-father Bob hunted to close noon and he didn’t see any deer all morning. I had to describe, once again, that deer don’t have bushy gray tails!

Tomorrow I will be out again  enjoying nature and making up for lost time.

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Cold Walk

dsc_0004  I haven’t been out much and missed almost the entire two week deer season. I felt a walk would be good  dsc_0002for the soul on December 21. Once I had decided to go I asked the wife if she would be interested in walking. Surprisingly, she said yes!

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We prepared for this cold walk. We left the house around eight in the morning at eleven degrees. The sky was bright and blue at this time.

Upon arriving at our destination we could see the results of the cold night and morning. there was a frost covering everything. The sight was beautiful as the sun’s rays trickled through the woodland areas to make for some shiny diamond like sparkles on the ice.

dsc_0011 Various birdlife was abundant. The birds were feeding heavily attempting to include a high calorie count to   dsc_0006help them survive the cold. Blue jays and Cardinals were all over. Other species viewed were White-crowned and White-throated Sparrows, and Juncos. We saw a couple of hawks, too. Mammals were apparently “holed-up”. We saw a couple of Red squirrels.

Laurie would pull her scarf across her mouth occasionally. This action caused her blonde hair to be as white as snow. Her breath escaping along the sides of her cheeks caused immediate freezing to her hair. She was surprised to see her hair in the mirror.

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To say my buck/ doe season was short would be an understatement. The first day I elected to watch for a trophy buck. I saw one, but I failed to get an accurate “Horn” count. (Pennsylvania law in my area demands three points on the main beam to be considered legal. I saw fifteen deer this day. However, in the afternoon I began noticing an occasional cough. No big deal since I have asthma so coughs can happen at anytime.

I quit before the legal ending time for a daily hunt to head for home. I knew, but this time, something might be happening. (I saw a legal buck after I began the drive home. He was feeding over an embankment.)

The second day I decided to not hunt for the temperatures were to get into the upper sixties. I process most of my deer and I don’t like to hunt if the weather gets to warm. However, I had a raspy throat when I woke up. By evening I had a full-fledged sore throat along with shivering. From this point it was down bill!

Later, I would feel as if I was getting well, but by evening the dreaded symptoms returned with a vengeance. I had to finally call a doc!

This morning, December 8, I had breakfast with family and was hiking the woods by 10:00. I soon noticed the one issue that was still happening within my lungs…a cough! I seemed to have a one-syllable cough about every 12-15 minutes. Oh well, I thought I was out and enjoying being in the woods. ALl total in the four hours I spent carrying my flintlock I saw eleven deer.

I spotted a deer’s back at one point in a heavy brush area. I stopped and moved to a tree to hide behind. Two deer showed up. One deer began to walk towards me. Something gave my presence away to the deer. She would stare and walk towards me. Soon she was well within range and offering a great shot. Big problem was my flinter was not in position to shoot.

I thought she will look away at some point allowing for the rifle to get aligned. Problem comes to reality! I felt a cough. I suppressed it. Cough number two come to be and I suppressed it, too. Cough number three irritated my inner being to the point suppressing wouldn’t work. All of sudden a lung cough exploded from deep within my lungs as I watched two white flags bounce away. More coughs followed. I guess I was being told to not mess with those coughs. I was a little upset because most everything was going well. I thought I knew this could happen and continued to look for deer.

I saw about fifteen turkeys at various times. I was tired by the time I returned home.

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