It was a cold October day. The fog wouldn’t lift until late morning. It was the opening day of Kentucky’s muzzleloader season, and I was high atop a mountain looking for a buck making his way back to his bedding area. The day was perfect for deer movement, and it wasn’t long until the action began. It didn’t quit until about 11:30 that morning. As soon as daylight broke, I began to softly rattle just enough to let the neighborhood deer know there were two bucks around. I especially wanted the boss buck to know that he had two intruders. At 9:00 I spotted antlers about 45 yards away. The buck stood at that distance for a minute or two, long enough for me to get a decent glimpse of the size of his head gear. I was in big buck territory, and I had my hopes set on a wall-hanger. This buck was close to being just that. As he looked up toward me, I quickly appraised the width of his rack. He was a good buck; not exactly what I was looking for, but nevertheless a good buck. That’s when the temptation began. For the next ten minutes I watched that buck through my scope. I counted eight points and no brow tines. He came as close as 25 yards. I wanted to pull the trigger so bad, but I also wanted to wait. I knew in Kentucky a hunter has only one buck tag, so whatever I took would end my season in that state.
In a matter of a few short minutes I argued, debated, and weighed my options. I was torn in so many directions. I could settle for what was sure and safe or I could wait with no promise of ever seeing anything bigger the rest of the season. I passed. I’m glad that deer didn’t stick around much longer. After he left, I thought about what had just transpired. I was reminded that my life and yours is made up of the…
For complete coverage, see the October 12th edition of The Lexington Progress.