It was beautiful. The snow that we saw in the southern parts of South Dakota this past week brought with it, all kinds of combinations of emotions. From, I can't wait for Christmas to are you kidding me, to we don't even have our crops out of the fields yet.
For the past few weeks I've been taking some vacation. Some of it working on projects around the house, (I still have a lot left to do here) to spending a little time in a tree stand bow hunting.
The morning it snowed, I was on one of my stands west of Sioux Falls. It hadn't started snowing yet. I was 'on deer' all morning. By the time I finally gave in and headed back to Sioux Falls the snow was starting to fall pretty good.
It's the next day, that this story is mostly about. I took off 'after the snow' to go back to deer hunting. It was amazing! As you can tell by the cover photo, and by some of the other photos that I took with the Galaxy S4 that I use courtesy of Sprint Sioux Falls, it was a post card afternoon. Until that is, it all started falling down.
As the winds would pick up-little by little- that snow starting falling from it's perch up on the trees. Yep, while all of you were enjoying a nice day, I was in the middle of another mini-snow storm. The sounds of the snow and leaves hitting the ground made it sound like cattle rummaging through dry foliage. It was unnerving for a hunter sitting in a tree stand and it did keep the deer from moving till way late in the evening.
As early evening approached I had an awesome 2 1/2 year old buck in perfect shape for a shot. 11 yards. A slam dunk. I drew my bow, checked my sites, grunted at the buck to stop, which he did....and then I. I let him walk.
It's a combination of things that led to the decision. #1 I'm not a fan of tracking a deer in the dark. #2 Last years drought and sickness to the deer herd had taken many 'older, more mature deer.' I just didn't think it was necessary for me to 'take a deer' just to show that I could.
Yep. I drew back on him and then let him walk.
Is it cause I'm getting older? Maybe. But those of you who bow hunt know how difficult it can be to get to the place where you know you could shoot a nice deer every year. You have to be in a place where there are deer, which I was and you have to do things right so you can be in position to shoot one.
The next afternoon I went out again. The snow was still dripping down the tree I was in, the deer were still moving. I had 4 different bucks all within comfortable shooting distance. I passed 4 more times.
I may get out for another hunt or two this year. For right now, I know I've been close enough to keep me going till next year. When hopefully the deer are a bit older and bigger. This last pic is from the stand were I sat Thursday afternoon. More traffic. No big deer, and one beautiful afternoon.