Thursday, October 15, 2009

Deer Hunting With Dad

I feel it is my duty as a card carrying southerner to let all you city slickers know that deer season in Arkansas opens on Saturday. Actually archery season is already open, but muzzle loading season opens this weekend. I don't bow hunt because it is just too much work. You have to get the deer too close before you can shoot them. Many of you might think I should give the furry woodland creatures a better chance, but I say you are wrong. I am not hurting the deer population with my gun toting ways.

Just to give you some proof that I am actually a hunter and not someone posing as such, here is a picture of the biggest deer I have ever killed. It was several years ago but is still a fond memory. Actually I am just showing this picture because like all hunters I like to show off my trophies. What kind of hunter am I if I can't use the power of the internet to show my kills to strangers.


If the dead animal depicted here makes you feel squeamish don't worry. My wife and mom have never liked looking at them either. When I stop and think about it I have to laugh. What sensible person carries around dead carcasses to show off to all his family and friends.

A deer hunter, that's who. Stop judging us.

I am excited for this season because it is the first one I will get to share with my little buddy Braden. I have already taken him to deer camp twice this year just to hang out. He loves being outside and with years of deer camp fun ahead surely he will take up hunting like me.

I can already see us spending time in the woods together. I will teach him about the different types of trees. We will learn the names of all the birds we see and most of the ones we hear. We will watch the squirrels scurrying about tending to their daily business. You never know what we might see...bears, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, or something even wilder.

I will teach Braden gun safety. He will learn to hunt with me. Hopefully one day we will get a deer close enough for him to shoot. I killed my first one when I was nine years old. I still have the youth model shotgun that I used. I am already excited to hand that down to Braden as well. Bonding over manly things is something all fathers dream of doing with their sons and I am no different.

For a country boy there is nothing quite like deer camp. You get to hang out with the guys in the woods. You ride 4-wheelers and 4x4 trucks. You can explore. You build fires. You shoot guns. If you are lucky you can take home a trophy buck. Even in those down years you still have the camaraderie to make the time special.

Deer hunting is one of my enduring hobbies. I hope to keep hunting as long as I am physically able. Sharing a lifelong enjoyment like this with Braden will be amazing. With that in mind we will dress him up in his camouflage and take him to deer camp this weekend, and we will be coming back often.

14 comments:

Braden's Mommy said...

I think this picture might even be more gross on the internet than it is in the snapshot, if that is even possible.

Otter Thomas said...

Thank you dear. I love you too.

Russ said...

So Otter, is that your "deer in headlights" look? You almost seem surprised that you hit it!

Baby News said...

My husband hunts. He's going muzzleloader hunting this weekend from his boat. Me? Not so much.

PJ Mullen said...

The look on the face of the deer is priceless, if the tongue sticking out like that wasn't on purpose it is even funnier. Have fun hunting with Braden.

Otter Thomas said...

@PJ: Every deer I have ever killed has had the tongue hanging out in the picture. It is just nature's way I guess.

Rob said...

That is awesome that you and Branden will be hunting buddies. My dad and I were duck hunting buddies until I went off to college and that was such a great time. Have a great time.

otin said...

I used to hunt in Pa when I was younger. I never shot a deer, but I did get a turkey one year. I was never huge into it, I just like having a rifle, and I love some venison stew!

Captain Dumbass said...

I've never been hunting before. Well, at least not for animals. Hmm, maybe I should stop right there.

seashore subjects said...

As an "outdoorsy" girl, I love to shoot (but not at animals) so I have a question for you. I understand the camo. to blend in and I understand the orange to not be shot, but I don't quite get the combo. Is the hope that the animal overlooks the fluorescent orange and only sees the camo? Doesn't the one kind of ruin the other? (yes, sadly these are seriously the things I wonder about)

Manic Mommy said...

Your enthusiasm for sharing your interests with Braden is endearing.

Trying to figure out why I find hunting so distasteful but fishing seems like a fine sport for fathers and sons.

Hunting said...

Great experience for a first-time hunter. More hunting posts!

Daddy Files said...

Any father-son bonding is a good thing no matter the activity.

Well, maybe not EVERY activity. Father-son arson is probably not ideal, but you catch my drift.

Reservoir Dad said...

"I can already see us spending time in the woods together. I will teach him about the different types of trees. We will learn the names of all the birds we see and most of the ones we hear. We will watch the squirrels scurrying about tending to their daily business. You never know what we might see...bears, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, or something even wilder."

That sounds awesome.