Dick Pinney's Guide Lines: Impromptu hunt got hairy in a hurrry

By DICK PINNEY November 12. 2017 3:28AM


We've got a lot of memories from Novembers past and no doubt we've covered some of them here but we'll take a chance on not duplicating this story.

We were bored, we can't say "bored to death," but pretty near that! Our planned deer hunt with some friends had fallen through as some family problems had thrown a "monkey wrench" into the hunt for them.

And we couldn't rise our best friend and constant hunting and fishing on the phone. The "Tomcat" no doubt had been bored to death himself and was probably out on some abandoned power line or railroad tracks hoping that a deer would present itself.

So in a bit of desperation, we left word on his home phone on where we'd be and what we would be up to, which was to tackle some really thick (and great deer bedding area) for some one-man still hunting, the Dickster being that one man!

The swampy and thick area that always was a favorite deer bedding place was as close as you can get to impossible to penetrate, but we knew from growing up within sight of this place there were always some deer hiding there and that, if conditions were right, we might be able to get close enough to get a whack at one.

Just before we left home we called the Tomcat again, hoping to connect with him, but no luck. We did confirm we were on our way to hunt "The Great Bog!"

Jungle would be a good description of this thick cover, made even tougher to still hunt because it was an old swamp that had receded, leaving knee-high humps between wet spongy places for us to sneak around in.

We'd pulled this trick a couple of times in the past and almost always moved some deer, but getting a whack at them each time was tough. Flagging white tails usually was their answer and it was like spitting in our face.

But this time we had a new plan. We were just going to bushwhack our way through about a half mile of this swamp and set as many deer as we could onto alarm and on the move. Then our plan was to "tippy toe" our way back toward where we started on an adjoining and seldom used railroad track.

We knew we had moved some deer because we could hear them crashing through the underbrush, but we didn't know how many or where they were headed, never seeing anything except a glimpse or two of white tails seeming to choose several different escape routes.

During my route through the thick swamp, we'd loaded up our Ithaca Deerslayer shotgun with "double B" buckshot as we knew the shooting would probably be at running deer at close range.

But when we got to the end of our sneak-and-peek trip back, we made a big mistake in not removing the buckshot and replacing it with shotgun rifled sl ugs!

Using all the stealthy tricks we could manage, we started our sneak back along the tracks, keeping on the low side that would hide our silhouette from any deer. And after about 20 minutes of this sneakin' and peekin,' we spotted a nice mature doe that, although she was on the alert, kept dropping her defenses and feeding on some of the succulent nibbles that deer always find in the woods.

Very slowly we mounted our scoped-sight 12-gauge and found her front shoulder a good target. The gun went off almost instantly - kind of like someone else had pulled the trigger - and down it went! I scrambled up onto the tracks and just got a couple of fleeting shots at her as she waved her flag at me.

There was deer hair scattered everywhere! Then we remembered that we had forgotten to change from buckshot to rifled slug ammo! I almost jumped out of my skin when the Tomcat shouted to me. He had seen where I was on his way to join me.

We did say deer hair everywhere. That was no joke!

And we are saying right now that we'll continue this story to its end in our next week's Guide Lines column.

Please stay in touch.

Dick Pinney 's column appears weekly in the New Hampshire Sunday News. Email him at DoDuckInn@aol.com.


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