I took a few days off at this beginning of this week to partake in an annual tradition among outdoor community in the USA. Specifically I went walking in the woods with a gun – a tradition that the more initiate folks call “hunting.”
This experience marks the first time that I have participate in this tradition despite having grown up in the Ozark Mountains and having lived in the West for ten years. (Well, I say “first time” as I don’t really count the climbed-a-tree-with-a-gun experience I had at fifteen as it only served to turn me into an achondroplastic Jotunheim frost giant.)
The primary reason with I choose to participate in this tradition this year was my father. He was tickled pink at the prospect of tracking down a nice buck for the freezer and asked me if I wanted to go with him. I wavered back and forth for a while before decided to go for it – after all I didn’t get a chance to go backpacking the summer and I really, really needed a stress break. After all, we got the gun permit and training long back and ought to make use of it sometimes. On other note, I heard there are several online gun training and safety courses available (like, https://gunlawsuits.org/gun-laws/wisconsin/concealed-carry/). It makes sense, since the gun violence are increasing, people are bound to get guns for their own safety. Anyway, our tradition of buck hunting was a much needed break for me. We usually use a rifle for hunting, but I know a friend who uses a 10 mm handgun and takes a shot at deers! I’m not sure if I can manage a hunting spree with pistols.
So together we went up to Dry Buck mountain and hiked over three sections of its south-eastern side. It was a rugged country with tons of ridges and hollows, interlaced with logging roads and game trails (speaking of logging, I was impressed good the loggers left the country side. They did a great job protecting the forest while hauling out their trees!). Up and down we went for two days looking for those fable horns….sadly enough all we saw were groups of does, about 14 in all. 🙁
Next year I think I’m going to have get into the doe lottery so that I can shoot one those critters…granted, folks tells me that if I do get a doe tag, all I’m going to see if bucks… oh well, at least I’m out in the woods walking around. 😀