The Moment I Was Addicted
I couldn’t have been more confused, I had just seen what I knew was an 8-point buck walking by at 10 yards out of the corner of my eye as my dad and I were shuffling trying to find a tree. Dad threw me to the side by the closest tree and we waited as 3 does ate on some corn in the opening of the road. If that was a buck, he sure never made a sound or gave us a view after I saw him out of the corner of my eye.
I was only 10. I was on my first hunt with my father where I was actually able to carry my rifle and be able to shoot on my own. Dad had always wanted to carry the rifle to make sure I knew best practices with a gun. I was so ready for this responsibility on that 4 am, frozen, morning. We wake up around 3 that morning to get breakfast and our clothes in the dryer.
Dad looked over with a smile on his face and says: “Well, I guess it’s just about that time we get you your first deer.” Mid-sentence he hands me the lever action 30-30 that was once his fathers. Iron sights with usage showing on the stock, I was so excited as I slung that rifle over my shoulder. That 30-30 was the rifle that had killed the first deer for my grandfather as well as my dad. We started our hour long walk to our “favorite spot” on the farm. We had always had good luck on this road that lead from the top of the farm to the bottoms where there was an old corn field.
We finally got there just as we were able to start seeing into the field. We sat and we sat and we sat, but nothing had shown. By 8 o’clock, I was frozen. We decided to head up to the top of the farm, where the sun was shining and the steam was starting to come off of the grass and trees from being frozen the night before. I got a few jumping jacks in and we were back down the road heading back to our favorite spot.
We got within 10 yards of where we needed to be and I looked up to see 3 does eating down in the field about 100 yards away. I was immediately grabbed by my father and we hunkered down. At that moment, I look over to see what I thought was a buck. I couldn’t have been more confused, I had just seen what I knew was an 8-pointer walking by at 10 yards out of the corner of my eye as my dad and I were shuffling trying to find a tree. Dad threw me to the side by the closest tree and we waited as 3 does ate on some corn in the opening of the road. If that was a buck, he sure never made a sound or gave us a view after I saw him out of the corner of my eye.
I was uncontrollably shaking, I couldn’t have been more nervous about the situation I was in. Buck fever had absolutely kicked in and I was only seconds away from pulling the trigger on my first deer. Dad let me rest my rifle on his knee and I sat my cheek low on the stock and slowly squeezed the trigger. I had no idea what had happened, but I know what had happened from my father’s reaction. He jumped up and was yelling and screaming out of absolute excitement. He grabbed the gun from me and put the safety on and down the road to the bottoms we went.
I had done it, I had taken my first deer of my hunting career and it was with iron sights at no less than 100 yards. I probably couldn’t do that again right now if I tried. I did know, that at that moment, I was addicted.