4PT16.14 – Keep Believing

4PT16.14 – Keep Believing

It’s been a tough week. My wife left me and took my son with her (just for a few days), and every other hunter in Vermont has killed a deer while I impatiently wait for my turn. I’ve seen some real beauties posted on Facebook since the Saturday opener. I’ve even seen some pictures of nice bucks too!

Tonight I finished off the last of my frozen pizza while I tried to rethink my strategy for the season. The pizza was so good I had to convince myself it wasn’t delivery! Tomorrow I’ll probably buy another one. I need to do something to survive….my venison procurement this fall has been minimal. If I was living 200 years ago, I believe I’d be a vegetarian. Not by choice, mind you.

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A Letter to Vermont Deer Hunters

A Letter To Vermont Deer Hunters

Deer Vermont Hunters,

It is the most wonderful time of the year, isn’t it? This Saturday marks the day that you and I have been anticipating since the sunset at the end of last season. Opening day of rifle season is upon us!

For the majority of you, rifle season is the “big dance.” Before dawn you’ll be scurrying about gathering last minute items for a day in the woods or sitting down to a hunter’s breakfast with your hunting buddies. Maybe you are leaving work early Friday afternoon to head to camp for the season. If so, I bet the excitement of the weeks ahead is already dominating your thoughts and probably has been for some time. As hunters, this is what we wait for all year.

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4PT16.12 – It’s a Matter of Time

4PT16.12 – It’s A Matter Of Time

Someday, I am going to devote an entire article on the most important ingredient required for a successful hunt. The ingredient? Time.

I can’t remember a year when I have hunted over such an active scrape line, complete with fresh rubs and extending over 650 yards. It felt like I was finding fresh sign each time I hunted it. As near as I can tell, the scrape line leads to his bedding area and he checks them during the night. This works out well for him but not for me. Big bucks can be very frustrating.

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4PT16.11 – Oh So Close!

4PT16.11 – Oh So Close!

Maybe it’s the changing weather or the feeling of hunting with a firearm in place of my bow, perhaps it’s both, but I feel more excited to hit the woods this time of year than any other. Daybreak on Saturday morning found me huddled up against the base of a mature pine tree trying to stay dry in the light drizzle. As the day wore on, I was sure thankful I decided to throw on my work rain suit at the last second before leaving my truck. I looked a little silly but was dry, so I wasn’t complaining.

I was hunting the area where I’d shot the doe the previous Tuesday. There had been fresh buck sign in there at that time, and the area serves as a travel route for deer as they make their way to bed down after a night on their feet. It was the logical place to begin my 2016 New Hampshire Muzzleloader season.

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