Sunday, January 14, 2007
Hunting- Memories of the past
It was the 2nd week of January 1985. A 6-8 inch snow on the ground and a break in the weather. A friend of mine (Jim Thomas ) and I had either sex whitetail deer permits for Rutherford County, Tennessee. 3:30 a.m. on a saturday morning we began our 20 mile journey to try to fill our deer permits. As we drove down the road I began explaining the terrain to Jim as this was to be Jim's first deer if he could find and make the shot placement count.The road trip was very treacherous due to snow and ice covering the road. When we finally reached our destination,we got geared up just as the sun was beginning to rise. We began slowly moving across fields, through thickets and through the woods in search of our prey as we decided to spot and stalk our first day. After approximately 1 1/2 hours of hunting we spotted 5 deer coming out of some cedar tree fields and into an open Johnson grass field. We were at 200 yards and Jim quickly decided to allow me 1st shot at filling my deer permit. I quickly knelt down raised my 6 mm Remington bolt action rifle, put the cross hairs of my 3x9x40mm Bushnell scope on the top of the deers shoulder and easily squeezed the trigger. Though I was hoping for a 300+ yard shot, the 200 yard shot with my 6 mm rifle was just to easy and I soon was filling out my tag for placement on the deer I had just taken. It was then time to find Jim a deer to fill his tag with. Jim helped me get my deer on my shoulders and we began a large circle back to the jeep. When we got to the jeep we headed to another farm which joined the farm we had just hunted. WE geared up and headed out across the fields again. By now it was around 9:00 a.m. and as we crossed the first field we spotted three deer crossing a gate opening between the 2nd and 3rd field which was estimated by me to be about 350 yards. Jim debated for a second and decided it was too far of a shot for him and wanted to move closer. I advised against it but he insisted,so we began moving closer and just as I predicted the deer spotted us and ran off before Jim could get the shot. By 9:30 a.m. we had moved into a wooded road bed and was heading back toward the jeep. Once again we spotted a group of deer walking through some very thick brush and trees and Jim was still unable to get a shot. We got to the jeep and decided to give it another try on Sunday morning but as we drove around the ice covered road three deer crossed infront of us and stopped in a gully bottom just passed a fallen tree in a brair patch. Jim stopped the jeep, observed the deer which began feeding out from behind the fallen tree and decided to try for a shot. He stepped out of the jeep with my 6 mm rifle,slipped ever so slowly over a low spot in the barbed wire fence, and using a sapling to steady himself took careful aim. I, still in the jeep observing the deer, was whispering instructions to Jim and hoping for his shot. Jim then squeezed the trigger and his deer dropped like a rock. I climbed out of the jeep, crossed the fence, congratulated Jim on a fine shot which was at 175 yards dead on and we slowly walked to Jim's deer lying in the snow. Before Jim approached the deer, I instructed Jim not to disturb the snow around the deer but to walk up to the head and neck area from behind it. Jim followed my instruction, I ask him to kneel down and hold up the deers head, at which time I then took a photograph of Jim and his first deer. Jim took many more photos of this deer but none will give him the memories of this hunt as the one I took while in the field just after the shot made. This was one of my best memories of many throughout my hunting lifetime of over 30+ years and I hope many more to come "God willing ". So now leave me a comment and an address so I and others can read some of your memories.