Time for Filling up the Freezer
After years of depending on other people to fill my freezer with meat (and fish), I decided this year it was time to take matters into my own hands. I took the hunter safety course at Halls and got my conservation (aka bowhunters) license for CT.
R and his dad have hunted the same farm in Rhode Island for years, so I went ahead and got my RI license, as well, so I could join them. Unlike Connecticut that does not allow hunting on Sundays, you are able to hunt 7 days a week in RI. It just so happened that RI opening day was a Sunday this year, so the three of us made a plan to go.
We headed out late afternoon, as we knew it would take some time to figure out where to put me since a tree stand was out of the question (I’m terrified of heights). R decided to walk me in, so he could set me up on a rock wall just outside a large field. As we were walking in, we spooked a buck which was chowing down on some food.
Once we got to my spot, R showed me where the deer would come out from the woods into the field, so I would be able to properly set myself up to get a shot within 30 yards. Not 10 minutes later, a heard the gobbling of turkeys, followed by a group of 11 coming out of the woods in the exact spot he had said the deer would. I grabbed my rangefinder and saw they were right around 18.5 yards, a perfect bow shot! Unfortunately, bc of the license and tags I had in CT, I wasn’t allowed to shoot them, but they kept me entertained as they meandered across the field.
About 30 minutes later I could hear rustling in the woods behind me. I turned slowly, to make sure I didn’t spook whatever was there, but I couldn’t see anything. As the sounds got closer, I was finally able to make out a doe. I watched as it got closer, finally stopping at 30 yards from me. It was a good size doe, but I knew I would not be able to shoot it with it coming up from behind me. I held still and the deer continued to work its way closer to me.
Finally, when it was about 15 yards away, it noticed me and looked me right in the eyes. I held still and it inched closer. I tried not to blink, but I don’t think I was doing a very good job. It got within arms length of me before stopping again and just staring at me. I fully expected it to take off running back into the woods at this point, but surprisingly, it just slowly wandered off in the other direction.
I was bummed that I wasn’t able to get a shot on it, but WOW, what a cool experience! Also, at this point I was pretty excited knowing that within an hour I had seen a buck, turkeys and a large doe. I figured it was definitely my night, and I was going to walk out with a kill my first time hunting.
Unfortunately, not long after this thought went through my head, I heard the sound of dirt bikes ripping through the woods, and I knew it was all over. After 20 minutes of them tearing up the paths, I didn’t see another animal the rest of the night, with the exception of a cute little chipmunk that tried to make friends with me by bringing me a tiny apple.
Even though I would have loved to have gotten something, it was a beautiful night with perfect weather, so I really couldn’t complain.