Last year, I was lucky enough to land this bad boy:
It’s a funny story. It was opening day of deer season, a Saturday, and Jonathan and I had planned to go to 6:30pm Mass so Sunday would be free and clear for hunting. We agreed that we had to start heading back to the truck at 5:45. We finished out the day recuperating from hours of hiking, perched up on a hill in case any last minute customers came by. And this one did!
He was climbing a hill about 150 yards away, and this was bad news. He was facing directly away from us, with no ethical shot possible. Jonathan was going nuts, saying “Take the shot! Take the shot!!” I had to tell him I didn’t think I could.
Then, when Jonathan’s defenses were down and he’d stopped covering his ears in anticipation, the buck turned to look at us, and I had a perfect neck shot. You can see the trail of blood in the picture, and right at the top of that is where I shot him. With one smooth pull of the trigger, I dropped him dead in his tracks and probably caused Jonathan some permanent hearing loss 🙂
But that’s not the funny part.
The Funny Part
Because we’d planned on on finishing hunting early that day, we hadn’t brought any flashlights, and light was running out. It was a race just to find where he dropped, and then I had to field dress him in the dark! But that’s not the funniest part, either.
We were over 3/4 of a mile from the truck, and we had to hike the long way around some hills dragging this heavy bastard through the sand, in the dark! The moonlight reflecting off the grassless tire tracks was the only thing we could see. We alternated heart-attack level pushing/pulling for 50 feet at a time, with 30-60 seconds of gasping for precious breath in between.
Enter the Deer Cart!
My new deer cart arrived yesterday! It has a 350 pound capacity, meaning it can manage more weight than I can. This morning I loaded it up with 196 pounds of Bellmyers, and took it for a trip around the yard:
We have a pretty steep hill on one side of our house, so I got a little taste of what this puppy can do. It rocks! It’s easy to pull, and somebody can even push from behind if we hit a couple of steep inclines. The best part is that it folds up nicely and comes with shoulder straps so you can carry it to the deer. No sense wearing yourself out pulling it twice the distance.
Actually, it doesn’t fold up so much as come apart, with convenient zip-up netting to store the individual pieces so they don’t fall out somewhere along the trail. As long as you don’t lose one of those pieces when you’re taking it apart. But honestly, it fits together so compactly when you’re not carrying anything, it’s well worth it.
I’ll have to get in some more practice time with my volunteer deer substitutes this summer!