I want to take some time in reflecting on my Whitetail hunting experiences for the shotgun seasons that have just gone by here in Iowa...This post had begun much earlier in the month, but my concentration to complete it has become divided with a few other activities.
What a day for the opener of Shotgun Deer here in Central Iowa! December 4th, started off cold and blustery and ended cold and blustery. We didn't get the snow our fellow Iowans got Friday night...the line fell northeast of us.
This Fall the snow occurrences have skirted to the West-Northwest and to the East-Northeast. The dusting we received overnight vanished due to the hefty breezes blowing past. I am thankful for the lack of snow at the moment...
Shotgun Deer for 2009 gave us a couple of feet of unstable, gravelly snow to trip through. Conditions that I didn't find appealing .I didn't get to spend much time pursuing deer, because my Mom fell and broke her shoulder a few days before the season started.
Getting back to yesterday,I didn't get to go out for the morning passage - when the deer come back from their night-time browsing activities, many times they come through our yard on their way to bed down for a bit.
Before Thanksgiving my neighbor to the South who hunts with a group of at least 14 other guys using the drive method to concentrate the deer to shorten the time to fill their tags, asked about pushing deer out of my timber. I agreed.
I had some messages on my answering machine that they wanted to come to my timber as the last place on their itinerary for the day. They weren't positive of the time they would be coming through.
Having an errand to run in the morning put me a little behind in my household chores. So I tried to play catch up after lunch.At 2:30 I took Sadie out for a short stroll in preparation for getting dressed in hunting garb, and get outside to stake a spot. On our stroll behind the garden our activity set off a flurry of activity - it seems to be a perennially popular bedding area at this time of year.While we were making our rounds in the yard I caught sight of my Mentor down the ravine a bit on our fence line. I hoped our flurry of activity would have sent a deer in his direction,but at that time it didn't happen.
I went back into the house to get all ready to go outside- heading back behind the garden once again to see if I could stir up anymore deer and send them a short distance for the benefit of another. Not seeing anything,I took off, in the direction where fresh buck rubs had been popping up almost daily for the last two weeks.
On the way to my spot in a downed tree in between two fields I sent a doe and nice sized buck in search of another place to bed down. Being caught off guard and heavy brush kept me from sending a slug in either situation.
Getting to my position I stood for a while before a pick-up truck and occupants headed down to begin the drive through the timber. Hearing gunfire to the south I hoped they would send something in my direction. I saw a young doe come back and enter the timber too far to the east for shooting range. Then I saw a doe with two fawns come trotting in a hurry to get away from the fray. The doe stood visibly upset with nose and mouth pointed to the wind tasting what lay ahead. Then they too took off to the point where the first doe had entered back into the timber.
Another gun shot went off. This time it was up by my house, where I had last seen my Mentor...He had gotten a lactating doe. I am thinking the one that had just past me with young in tow.
I tried to be helpful in getting his deer moved over some rough terrain back to his property and up an incline to his pick-up. We eventually got it loaded and hung in his garage...So went the first day of Iowa Shotgun Season #1.