My son and I returned from our annual deer hunt in Pennsylvania with some wonderful stories and a gift of a whitetail buck. The area we hunt has been the same for going on 30 years. There has been little change here and the woods are as beautiful as the first time we walked to the top of the mountain. These 69 year old legs screamed a bit but I'll never complain. This trip was a bit short, reasons numerous but I won't bore you with those details. The time was quality and pretty much that's all that matters.
It was 19 degrees when we started our 2 mile climb up the mountain. The clear sky and bright moon assured us the need for a flashlight was unnecessary, and at 4:30 in the morning it was almost well lit naturally. I was on stand long before legal shooting time. Sitting in quiet darkness your mind clears itself of all the things that are really unnecessary and you focus completely on the task at hand which is placing a tag on a deer. Over the course of seven hours I saw a total of 11 deer all of which were not legal to shoot. It was 1pm when my eye spotted 2 deer in a power line clearing. I watched for a few moments and there was a another deer in view, and that was a legal 9 point buck. They were moving through the clearing which was a 150 yards from where I stood. I made a quick decision to take a shot. I brought the scope right on the bucks shoulder and let the 243 round fly. I could see the buck stumble and knew I had him. A quick second shot brought him down. I waited a few minutes and started walking down to the deer. As I got closer to where he was hit I was startled to see he was not there. I started my search for the deer and it didn't take long to find him.
A beautiful Pennsylvania 9 point whitetail buck. Before I placed my tag on him thanks were given to those who made it possible to harvest this true gift.
It was 1:30 or so when I started to drag him out. I told my son to go back and continue hunting and he would catch up to me later. As I moved down the mountain I had hoped to hear a shot ring out and that shot would be my son taking a deer also. It turned out that didn't happen and he was with me to help drag the deer for the final leg of the. We talked and talked of the hunt and the result. These are special times between hunters, and made even more so when the hunters are father and son.
Today was the first of many dinners that we will enjoy with the gift of that deer. Jeanette made some delicious potato pancakes. They are seasoned and fried to a perfect crispness.
We had some homemade applesauce my daughter made for Thanksgiving. It went perfect with the potato pancakes. Thank you "Candy".
Everything was done to compliment venison tenderloin. The meal was simplicity with a touch of elegance.