Well it sure has been an interesting buck season, cold weather with rain and snow have made it difficult to get to hunting areas in the mountains and the deep snow and cold make for uncomfortable conditions to hunt in.
Never the less it is buck season and the only way to kill one is to get out there and hunt. Personally, I've spent a few miserable days in the woods for nothing. As I write this I have yet to see a buck while hunting.
I like to hunt the Bickle Knob area but the snow forced me to hunt lower on the mountain than I like to, and it seems many other hunters had the same idea. Opening day was a mad house where I was, a lot of hunters and the deer were running everywhere. I must have seen fifteen or twenty deer by 11 a.m. but not a single one with antlers.
Other hunters must have at least seen bucks from all the shooting I heard, but I did not see very many with deer and the bucks I did see harvested, were all on the small side. I have only heard of a few nice bucks taken and they were big deer with very impressive racks.
Understandably, the buck harvest will most likely be lower this year, especially in the mountains where the weather played a big role in where hunters could get into and the amount of time hunters could spend out in the elements. The weather also kept many deer holed up in thick cover waiting out the storms and cold temperatures.
I still have a couple days left as I write this and just maybe I will be lucky enough to cross paths with one of the nice bucks I saw earlier this fall. But luck does not seem to be on my side this year, or last year for that matter. I just always seem to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, I go left when I should have gone right. One prime example happened on Thanksgiving Day, I was hunting that morning with a friend who is one of those people who just seems to always be in the right place at the right time.
We walked up a small hollow together just before daylight and split up as shooting light approached, he went right and I went left at the head of the hollow. I don't think twenty minutes passed when I heard him shoot and thought, "that lucky ____ just killed one."
Since I was only a few hundred yards away I decided to go see what happened and sure enough he had shot a nice five point buck, not a huge rack but better than anything I have seen.
As if this guy isn't lucky enough, when I got over to him he showed me a 3/4 inch diameter beech sapling with a bullet hole in it. The buck had been standing behind the tree when he shot with his .308 and the bullet went right through the tree and dropped the buck in its tracks - talk about luck. Its people like this that make me want to stick to fishing.
Nonetheless, I have enjoyed the days I hunted, I had turkeys, squirrels, quite a few does and even a bear to keep me company in the cold and snow. It just would have been nice to have some venison for the freezer.
Not all is lost though, doe season opens Monday and muzzleloader season the following week, plus bow season lasts until the Dec. 31, so I still have a chance to put meat in the freezer.
The good news is that there should be plenty of bucks left for the muzzleloader season and who knows perhaps my luck will take a turn for the better.