Curve balls while deer scouting

October 25, 2011


I enjoyed the glorious weather we had over the weekend by going down to set up deer stands for the firearms opener Nov. 5. We have been hunting the same properties for about the last seven or eight years, so we didn’t have a huge amount of setup to do.

Unfortunately, we were dealt a couple of curve balls. On one property, we encountered a bow hunter who had set up a stand on a new area were were scouting on the land. Then, he told us his hunting partner was setting up a stand on the opposite end, where my brother hunted last year and saw plenty of deer. These two guys have been hunting this same property for the last several years, and had moved away from a permanent stand we had set up in the back corner, so we figured the least we could do was return the favor and stay away from their stands. But, that meant telling my brother he couldn’t hunt in the spot where he had had good action last year.

Then, curveball No. 2 came when we went to another nearby property to work on a stand that has been the hottest stand of all. We have killed deer there every year but one — when my brother shot at a deer, but didn’t bring it down — and have seen deer there every year. We were surprised to discover that the stand had been stolen.

So, we adapted and prepared a natural ground blind for my brother to hunt. It was frustrating, but my brother moved past it quickly and, soon, so did I. Hunting is all about adapting to curve balls like this. Interestingly, I find dealing with human interference to be more challenging than trying to pattern the deer.

Still, I’m optimistic and excited about the firearms season. And, I will be doing some archery hunting in the next few weeks, too. Hopefully, between the two, I’ll be able to take a deer. As always, Lord willing….

About Dave Hrbacek

Staff photographer and writer for The Catholic Spirit. Also, avid outdoors enthusiast with a passion for hunting, fishing and photography. Married to Julie and have four children, three boys and a girl.

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