Everyone has their deer story and some are better than others. Most are corny and lack staying power. Some resonate because the hunter was an FNG and got the surprise of his life as here. I’m a sucker for the ones where one of my hunting buddies say “Man you gotta come out to Carbonado. The blacktails are so thick that a farmer buddy of mine is begging for me to come over and thin the herd. Bring Buckwheat Junior and we can bag an extra one on his tag. In fact, bring your 12 ga. and a box of #4s because the honkers come in and hit his cornfields hard every afternoon, too. How about this Saturday?”
Fish on. I took off Friday and reloaded some #4s and made sure I had .270s and .243 for Buckwheat. To be safe, I loaded enough 12s to cover about 5 limits just in case. Boy Scouts are always prepared. We picked up Jay Dee and were wheels up by 0400. An irrepressible smile kept creeping across my countenance. Secure in the knowledge that I had a one-ton Dodge B3500 extended Van capable of hauling it all, I mentally calculated where we were going to stack all this largesse. Nobody noticed the drool.
We arrived just before 0700 in the dark and got the stick-in-the-dirt briefing on the free-fire zone. I was surprised to see our group had now grown by four more. The smoking light was turned on and we dispersed to surround a ten-acre field nearby. By 0830 we still hadn’t seen a twig wiggle. Buckwheat was 12 or 13 and fresh out of Hunter Safety training. This was cutting -edge exciting. With the writeup Jay Dee had given this and the sure wisdom of his 12 years, he was convinced we were in the wrong spot. If the census was accurate, we should be in danger of a stampede. One hundred and fifty yards away I spotted a three-point and had him ready to take the first shot when three other guys unloaded on it. Bambo dropped like a bag of rocks and never even did the chicken.
We all walked over to admire the kill and I looked to see where he was wounded. No body hits visible-0/3. The buck did have a stripe of fur missing all the way to the bone from his muzzle up over his right eye but it wasn’t even bleeding. Danny Big White Hunter smartly stepped forward with his deer tag and claimed the kill. As did Ralph and Jared. After the arguments tapered off, each guy wanted his picture taken with ‘his’ kill. This was back in the days of Motorola Brick phones. You know-the ones with 4.5 Watts that gave you brain cancer in 10 years. Danny’s significant other must have been close because she popped in out of thin air and unshouldered her camera about a minute after he called. Twenty (photo) shots later Jared got his turn at the wheel and mugged for the camera with his brand spanking new .270 Weatherby Magnum with 3X9 Variable (rangefinder built in) Leupold tube. And that’s when the deer rodeo began.
You’d figure after twenty minutes that the animal had a major concussion and was ready for the meat wagon. You would have been horribly wrong. Jared was still squatting there with his rifle leaning against the left antler holding up Bambi’s head when this sucker blinked and came to. The only thing missing was a bronco chute, an 8-second timer and an announcer. Jared had a death grip on both antlers and Bambi was furiously trying to stand up on his hind quarters and shake his head. Jared’s fancy Weatherby Mark V was spinning around like a prop on an O-1 starting to make turns. The strap had by now become hung up on the left antler and every time Bambi shook his head the gun would begin a new series of oscillations. By now Jared was beginning to see this ride was short lived. He bailed out off it’s back in a perfectly timed maneuvre and landed on his feet like he planned it. The Weatherby continued to make turns.
The deer, now free and armed to the teeth, took off as most do in kangaroo fashion. Buckwheat and I watched as four rifles promptly raised in perfect synchronization and started shooting. Up! Bang! Down! Pow! Up! Bang-pop-bang! Down! Boom! Pow! Boom!. This time it was 0/5. All the while Jared was screaming “It’s a Weatherby you assholes. Quiiiiiit Shooting!” at the top of his lungs trying to effect a cease fire. Wasn’t gonna happen. By now everyone was deaf as a post and some were even reloading. It looked like a Mexican firing squad with everyone completely out of phase with each other.
Have you ever read one of those stories where ten of Philadelphia’s finest in blue have a guy surrounded and suddenly unload 14 rounds each out of their .40 Glocks when one gets queered? After the smoke clears, the perp has about two less fingers and three torso strikes. You always wonder where the other 135 rounds went. Pretty much the same with Dave/Ralph/Jared’s trophy three by four. Two hundred years from now the EPA will declare it a lead pollution clean up site. As for the Honkers? What Honkers? It turned out to be a CLAVU day (clear to altitude-visibility unlimited). You’d have needed a 37 mm AA gun to bring them down.
Buckwheat Junior wrote a book report on this and got an A. The teacher was very happy that the geese all lived happily ever after and Bambi escaped- in spite of the fact that he now owned an eeeeevil high-powered deer assault rifle.