hunting · learning

My First Hunting Trip

So yesterday, out of the blue, my cousin sends me an email saying he’s talked to his wife’s best-friends husband and got me permission to hunt on his farm land near Morden. It’s only 1.5 hours away as opposed to 2.5 where the other land is. He tells me it is “very good deer hunting property” and that there are guys that hunt it during rifle season that already have tree stands up and stuff. This is great because it is a step ahead for me because they’ll have them strategically placed along existing game trails.

I’m kind of excited to get out and scout the land and get a couple of weekends of hunting in before the baby shows up.

My first hunting trip a few weeks back was more of a 4 day camping trip as opposed to a hunting trip. It was a great experience being out in the bush for a couple of days. The guys I went with are pretty awesome and they showed me a lot of stuff. It was amazing sitting 15-20 feet up in a tree and watch the sunrise and set. We’d be in our treestands by 6am and sat there until 9:30-10ish and then again in the evenings from 6-8:45ish.

It’s so cool to watch the change in the woods from night to day and then from day to night. We didn’t see any deer, because it was just too hot out, but the birds were so much fun to watch. I was doing particularly well one evening as I sat there in my tree stand, perfectly still, and a little chipmunk stopped on a branch not 3 feet from my head. I slowly turned my head toward him and whispered, “boo!” She started chattering at me and then ran up the tree and then started dropping things down at me. It was hilarious and a pretty cool feeling. I mean I was sitting way out in the bush, and was so still, that a wild animal was unaware that I was there.

It was a little disheartening that we didn’t see any deer though. Well, one of the guys saw 2 deer the first morning that were about 100 yards away, but since we are just bow hunting our max range is 30-40 yards. Part of me wonders if they were closer and he let them walk because it was first thing in the morning on opening day. The guys I went with were more out there to be in nature and away from it all for a few days. They made it very clear that hunting wasn’t their priority and that being out there was. Which was a little annoying because I was out there to hunt. I was out there to be one with nature and snag me a deer to fill my freezer.

But it was all good. It was my first time hunting, my first time bow hunting, and my first time multi-day camping with no showers, running water, etc, for 4 days. It was 25-30 everyday, which was way to hot. And the mosquitoes were out in full Manitoba fashion. I must have gotten 100’s of mosquito bites over the few days we were out there and I was literally bathing in repellent. It did eventually get to the point that I just started to ignore them and as long as you didn’t scratch them, they weren’t that itchy.

All in all, it was a decent enough trip, but more camping than hunting. I’m hoping to get out a few more weekends, and hope to go out after work on a Friday, sit in a tree until sundown, sleep for the night, get back into my tree first thing in the morning, and then either hang out all day and go back into my treestand that night and Sunday morning, or else head home Saturday morning after sitting in the tree.

There is one thing that worries me about hunting alone. Gutting and skinning the deer if I get one. I’m more than comfortable with my archery skills, but when it comes to gutting it, and most likely quartering and skinning it to take home, I’m not so familiar. I’ve been watching videos on it, and reading about it, but I still think I need to buy an actual instructional book and video. And take the book into the field with me. This way I’d have a reference guide to help me. 🙂 lol

I found this great site, Heartland Bowhunters, that does a great job of getting me excited to be back in the bush looking for deer.

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