We hunted at our friends Bill and Lisa’s property. They greeted us at the dark hour and Bill led us out to the hunting spots. All three of us walked out to the tree stand where we dropped off Linda, and then Bill and I walked to a small clearing spot on the other side of the road. My plan was to lay in ambush (on foam pads under camo netting) for any deer coming into the small clearing. I chose a spot along one edge where any rifle shot would be in the opposite direction of Bill and Lisa’s house, or Linda, in the tree stand. It was tight. As it got light, I realized I would be a far better off with a shotgun and buckshot. But I was there, and though feeling the situation to be ill-posed, going back and `retooling’ would bust the hunt.
I got to thinking – it seems adventures with Linda end well when they don’t go as planned.
I decided to check for any text messages from Linda.
Totally emarrassed!!!! I
Jammed the gun so bad.
Can’t get bullets out
Crap. Still jammed?
It was now thirty minutes later … has she been jammed all this time?!!!
Yep. Coming down.
Meet at road.
We met up, and I cleared her jam in … 1 second.
And got her reloaded and back in operation in one or two more.
“Someone didn’t take the time to become familiar with their firearm.”
“I’m done,” she said.
“No, get your butt back up in that tree stand and let’s hunt …”
I felt my situation (across the road) was busted, so I decided to join her in the tree stand. It’s a wood-frame box, up on stilts, next to a big tree, accessed by a tall ladder. There was just enough room for her to sit, and me stand, her facing one way, and me the opposite.
The stand has good views west, south, and east. I commented that the stand is probably best hunted with two people, to be able to look both directions. She replied how much she liked it when we were together. Of course that drew the question of an `intentional’ jam. Pause. But I believed her that (it was) not.
As we continued to quietly blab, she looking west, and me east, a big doe popped out into the open in my view. I knew these things only last only seconds, so I quickly lined up, with crosshairs behind the shoulder, and fired. I was hoping the 180-grain round would `flatten’ the deer, but she bolted and ran south, and disappeared.
I waited to see if any other deer would try following her. Two smaller ones did, but too quickly to offer targets.
Using the 5X scope on the rifle, I looked for bullet-exit `spray’ on the ground where the deer had been standing, but could see none. I was pretty sure it was a 100-percent shot, but not seeing spray worried me, and that the deer appeared to run some distance, worried me a bit more.
After a while I decided to descend the tree stand to ground and look. And when I couldn’t find any spray, now on the ground, I was further worried. Could I have missed? It seemed the entire scope was filled with fur when I fired … (and the gun is perfectly sighted in).
Finally I found some deep red (blood) spray. I was hoping for pink. I started to follow, but it was surprisingly difficult. The dirt is orange and the entire ground covered with orange, brown, and red leaves. I asked Linda to come help. Pretty soon we got used to finding flecks of blood amongst the orange and red vegetation … and found the deer. Indeed she ran the ceremonial 90 yards of a double-lung pass-through shot. And then collapsed.
Truly, we seem to have the best success when something `unplanned’ happens.