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Archive for January, 2020

January has been more spring-like than winter with the exception of only a few days. This morning was no different.

I planned to try to harvest a fat doe this day and I came extremely close on fulfilling that plan. While edging along a field I noticed a doe around twenty-five to twenty-eight estimated steps from me. Some young trees blocked her torso, so I continued the sneak always watching from my peripheral vision. As I walked along I cocked the flintlock’s hammer and “set” the Set trigger. Ten feet later I had a completely opened shot and I stopped to aim the sights. Just a mere millisecond later the doe unnerved and off she went.

In total I would have around 43 deer sightings this day, but no good other shots were offered. However, I did see a nice-looking buck, but he was not legal. The buck sported four points. This deer was still chasing does, too. I hoped she would have turned in my direction but she didn’t and this buck began chasing tail, so to speak.

The squirrels were very active with these warming temperatures. I saw plenty including a Fox Squirrel.

In the pre-dawn morning I heard a Barred Owl several times and later I would see one.

Tomorrow morning I will be out again, but I can only hunt a partial day. My services are needed elsewhere by noon.

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One of those shoot with a camera deer instead of the flintlock.

Besides the numerous issues, dealing with the family over the last six months, one issue had me in a literal emotional distress. That issue was for federal jury duty in Pittsburgh. I have anxieties about certain things. Traffic, such as one finds on SR 28 and within Pittsburgh is one such issue. I don’t feel comfortable within large crowds. Rapid technology changes and dealing with foreign communicators on the phone find me avoiding as much as possible. The list is longer, but you get my drift.

A Cherry Run tributary.

I am thrilled to know, as of this evening the 7th, I will not  on jury duty. With all the issues bottled up in my senses, I actually broke down upon hearing that news. The burdens have been heavy and that release couldn’t contain my feelings at the time. I hunted very little this year between doctor appointments and worries. However, I did get out a little since New Year’s Day with the flintlock.

January 2, found me in familiar hunting haunts. I spotted three deer feeding along a field’s edge and I circled to try to set up catching them coming through the woods. I kicked up three deer wondering if those deer had already moved this far. I moved on and set down among a couple of logs. In a short time I started seeing deer moving around. A deer started moving towards my position and I readied Old Jacob. The deer was within a range from past years, but I am still being cautious with ranges over forty yards or so. The deer bedded down!

I could see deer off and on among the trees, but most were way too far. Another deer showed up and walked to the bedded deer. AFter a while of  feeding it turned and the bedded deer followed it. I circled again and was walking a field’s edge and spotted a fuzzy-faced yearling at about twenty yards. the deer was wide-open and broadside, but I elected to not shoot. I continued around and spotted another deer among saplings and limb. I tried to fond an opening and shot. The deer stood and looked at me. The shot was farther than I initially thought and I hit one of those limbs. I saw a number of deer before heading home, but no shots were offered.

Yesterday, January 7, I hunted for deer and set up watching a grassy right-a-way. I sat almost two hours before loosing the battle with the cold. I began a warm-up walk and was returning on the right-a-way only to see three feeding deer clear across this deep and steep hollow. They were on a reclaimed strip loaded with goldenrods and briars. I began the stalk.

I was around a hundred yards or so from where they were bedded when I herad a voice saying hello. I turned and a woman on a horse with two dogs. were  just below me. She said to say hello to not scare the horse. We had a conversation and I knew the deer, most likely, would have been moved and they were.

  I continued up the hill seeing some deer ocaasionally, but none were close enough for a shot. I spotted a bedded deer across a gulley and watched it get up and begin feeding. I paralleled this deer as I could but never could get close enough for a shot. I crossed the gulley again and was still-hunting and spotted some deer approximately 40 yards away. I could see three deer, but multiflora rose caused me to wait for a more open shot. Suddenly, to my left were three more deer. Now I couldn’t move the flintlock if I wanted without those three deer on my left spooking.

The three deer began walking across a little saddle and reappeared and walked a rim of this hill about 25 yards. The other three deer were going to come right to me so I waited. Probably this was a wrong decision. No, it was a wrong decison. I should have pulled up on the deer above me.

As luck would have it the second three deer moved up and walked the same trail as the first three deer. They stepped across an opening and I waited for the “PERFECT” shot and ended up not firing at all. The hard question for me to answer is why I held off. Any of those six deer were close enough and offered me broadside shots. This mind-set of mine to look for prefect shots causes a lot of deer to move forwards. Oh well!

Now, I seemed to enter into the hunter mode and still-hunted on the trail they were on. I never caught up to them. I suspect with the way the winds were changing that a whiff of Larry reached them and they moved away faster. I quit around one o’clock. I was anxious to get home to find out the results for this jury duty issues and as noted above all is well!!!

As you can see I did “shoot” some deer with the camera. Maybe with a change I this weather I will feel more like pursuing deer.  The weather has in recent days had rather warm temperatures and rain. The upcoming weekend is forecasted at 61 degrees with rain.

 

 

 

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