Sunday, September 28, 2008
Some twenty years ago I had a mentor who helped me learn about deer hunting. How to shoot a bow, what signs to look for during scouting trips, tree stand locations, field dressing my deer, bucthering, packaging and cooking my venison. I in turn passed this knowledge on to young adults getting started and carried them on youth hunts for their first deer. When I moved away from Lascassas, Tennessee I kind of gave up the passing of knowledge to young adults until now. At present day I am mentoring my grandchildren and neighborhood youths in the art of Whitetail hunting and enjoying every minute of it. Each subject I talk to the youths about brings back a memory of my mentor and these memories are what keeps him alive for me to continue my teachings. He was 7/8 Cherokee Indian and could shoot a bow better than any man I know now so I know everything I was taught was better than anything you could ever get from reading books and TV shows. Today, I'm proud I had a teacher and dear friend willing to take the time to show me how to hunt whitetail deer and enjoy the woods and nature as it was meant to be. Our heritage was handed down to me by my mentor and I've passed it on throughout the years as it should be to many young adult hunters. Today my mentor has long ago passed but his spirit lives on through me and my mentoring of young adults. Be a good friend and mentor to some young adult and pass our heritage on to future generations of young hunters trying to learn our great sport as you did when you were young. Mentoring is a great feeling and it keeps our young adults out of trouble with the law. Thank You Charles Duke for passing on such a great heritage to me.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Years have passed since the first hunting trip with my dad. I was only 13 years old and eager to go squirrel hunting with my dad. Though I didn't have my own gun yet I knew from my first trip out into the woods this was what I wanted to do the rest of my life. Anyway, it was fall of 1971 and the leaves had already began to change colors, there was a slight dew on the ground and the weather was a perfect cool morning air with no wind blowing. As we drove to a little country churchyard and parked, Dad explained that we would have to leave by 8:30 a.m. due to church starting. We were hunting the woods behind the church house which were full of big red fox squirrels. As the sun began coming up we could already hear the nuts dropping and the squirrels jumping from limb to limb. We sat by a large oak tree watching and waiting till we could get a clear shot at a squirrel stopped on a trunk or limb of a tree. Dad had given me a 410 single shot shotgun to hunt with and he was using a 22 bolt action with a scope. By 8:00 a.m. we had both taken our limits and was heading for home.It was a couple of years later in life that I found out that my mom didn't like any wild game that was all shot up with shotgun pellets so then was when I began hunting small game with only a 22. My birthday was in October and for my 13Th birthday my parents got me a 22 rifle which I learned to use well and took many a squirrel and rabbit with. To this day I still only hunt small game with a 22 rifle and enjoy every minute I can in the woods whether or not I take game home or not. Today I hunt big game with an occasional trip for small game but my preference is big game animals.