Thursday, December 29, 2005

On the Hunt

After severly neglecting the blog for the past two weeks for a variety of reasons, from a bad head cold, to Christmas shopping, to sheer madness around the house and really nothing of pressing interest to blog about, I will now attempt to jump back on the blog wagon.


Monday a week ago now, I found myself 6 days into a 12 day vacation (counting Sats and Suns) siiting quietly and as still as is possible in a tree stand 15 feet above ground level, waiting for that elusive 8-point-buck or his mate (you know her as doe, a deer, a female deer...) to cross my path.

Hunting (1)

The Sunday night before that I had ridden shotgun to the farther reaches of Stanly County with my neighbor David so that we could hit the hay earlier than I would ever think about bedtime, and rise from our slumber well before the sun did.

After a dark trek through the woods and about a 30-minute wait under the moon, itwas legal to shoot. David didn't waste any time. 30-minutes into legal hunting hours, just as the sun was peeking over the horizon, he popped off a round into the not so dark. A large buck had crossed into his line of sight, behind a tree and then emerged clear killing position.

Hunting (3)

POW!!!! I nearly jumped out of my perch above the forest floor, the .30 caliber round piercing the morning silence.

David crackled across our 2-way radios to his brother in another nearby tree stand, quickly relaying that he saw a bigun'.

He saw the deer leap into the air, spin around and run off, surely to die somewhere nearby. David and his brother Chip climbed down from their platforms to look for the doomed animal. I stayed put hoping they'd run some deer my way.

Hunting (2)

No such luck, for me or David. Seems in his haste to take the shot, he may have missed. (And Chip's not letting him live it down!) They couldn't find any trace of hair or blood in the area where the deer was shot. They wandered all through the woods for about a half hour before we gave up and went back to the house for breakfast.

There were no more deer sightings for the rest of the day.

Fast forward 1-week to December 26th.... two Davidson County hunters, an uncle and a nephew, were sitting in their deer stands with no deer to be seen. It was the nephew's birthday so near quitting time the uncle climbed out of his hunting perch to walk the woods in hopes of scaring up a birthday present for his nephew.

As he walked through the woods he caught a glimpse of some rumbling in the brush and greed must have come over him because he didn't wait for his nephew to take the shot. As the movement in the woods just out of his sight continued, the uncle took aim on what he thought might be a bigun'.


Screams came from downrange. His nephew, also trying to scare up some deer, was the source of the movement the uncle noticed in the brush.

Neither hunter had on the blaze orange hat or vest required by NC Law, and so neither hunter knew the other was walking in the woods.


I heard the EMS response to this event on my scanner radios and it became my story on my first day back at work.

The nephew was shot in the hip and was last reported to be in critical but stable condition in an area hospital.

We were Live at Noon, 5 and 6 with the story of why hunters should always where there blaze orange!

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