I guess that's why they call it hunting...

By: Andrew Switzer
By: Andrew Switzer

On Saturday I got the opportunity to open the firearms portion of the Missouri deer season with my dad.  We were hunting at opposite ends of an 80 acre plot just South of KC.  We were reminiscing and trying to figure out the last time we hunted the opener together and think it was about 8 years ago.  We opened several seasons in the same stand when I was younger and had some great hunts.  Hopefully we will have many more openers in our future.  It was great to be out in the woods with pops a couple hundred yards away, and I even had a great opportunity to take a nice buck...but that's why they call it hunting right... 

The Story....My stand was set up in a creek bottom with a bedding area and great buck sign, and perfect setup.  A nice 8pt which would have been the second largest deer I have harvested (behind a large 10 pt I shot in 2003) came by, following a doe at 8:30.  He approached the opening I needed him to walk in to, I needed him to take on more step but he turned and went back where he came from as the doe passed through.  I was bummed...but then 2 more does came from the other direction and the buck came trotting back to check them out.  They scattered and he went back where he came from.  I had a shot opportunity, but was waiting for a better one and waited too long.  When he left, I was really bummed because I had him within 50 yards twice but nothing to show.  I sat in the stand all morning and at 11:00 spotted movement from where the buck had gone.  It was a nice doe...and sure enough the same buck was on her trail.  "OK, this is it.  He is giving me a third chance." I thought to myself.  The doe came right to me but instead of following her he came around the back side (trees in-between me and him) and cut her off.  They were within 20 yards, I had a shot but hesitated one second too long....she juked him and took off behind me as he chased this hot doe.  I could have thrown up...three times in one morning I had the sights on a nice buck with the safety off but nothing to show and no deer jerky to eat.  I've learned that lesson many times before both duck and deer hunting.  The lesson...don't hesitate when you have an opportunity.  However, even with this missed opportunity, there is nothing like being in the woods on opening morning. 

Feel free to share your stories with the rest of us.  And if you actually pulled the trigger...feel free to post your pictures on Drew's Braggin' wall... http://www.wibw.com/fishing  Hunting and Fishing Pictures are welcome.

Don't hesitate or it will be too late!

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