So, yesterday was my first hunt with my new crossbow and in a new area.
I completely went in blind, meaning I did nothing in terms of "scouting" the area.
I had the fortune of actually working right across the street from the area for a couple years about a decade ago.
I used to fish during my lunch break at the little streams so, I was familiar with certain areas of the park.
Just wasn't too sure on how much time would have made an impact on this area.
Glad to see that not much has changed, well kind of, it would have been nice to see some sorely needed improvements but, I'll leave that for a different post.
I got through the area by 6 AM when I was told that the area would be open, that was also erroneous information told to me by the office. After talking to the workers there, I was told that the area never closed during deer season. That makes more sense to me.
Regardless, I still saw a nice sized doe feeding on the grass right across the street from the parking lot so, it was a good sign to start the day off. Or so, I thought.
I parked, got geared up, guzzled down my last bit of coffee and I was off to my first spot, 6:15 AM.
Heading into the opening that I wanted to start at, I saw a clump of bushes that for some reason I was convinced that a deer was bedding in. I got down, took off my pack and decided to lay low until I got better light to glass into the bush and for legal shooting time to begin. 6:25 AM.
As soon as I moved my hood to get a better view of the bush, I saw a small figure move then dart from the bush. I immediately thought, "GOOD JOB YOU #%@^, YOU JUST BLEW YOUR FIRST DEER", that is until I saw the deer. It was still dark because of the cloudy day but at the distance, I was at I could see that the deer was most likely a fawn by its size and it's gallop. That happened literally only 3 minutes from legal shooting time which was at 7:03 AM.
Got into my spot and waited until 9 AM. No activity besides some bushes breaking across the woods from me.
At 9:30 AM my jitters got the best of me and I broke cover and started to head to my second spot. Right before leaving the area I went to readjust my pack when I look over my shoulder and I see my 3rd deer as it pops its tail and melts back into the woods....I should have had that one. Another lesson learned. I also learned that the way I carry my crossbow is a great way to lose the bolts out of your quiver. Right after losing that deer I noticed that my other 2 bolts tipped with Rage Hyperdermics were gone. Misson bolts are about $80 per 3 pack and those broadheads are about $35 per 3 pack. Needless, to say I lost about an hour of hunting time while searching for those missing 2 bolts. The end result, I only recovered 1. The worst part is that I had 6 extra bolts with me that day but I left my second pack of Rage Hyperdermics at home thinking I wouldn't need it....Lesson 2 learned.
Around 11 AM I got back to my first spot to see if I can get that deer that I spooked earlier but, of course, with my luck, the area workers decided to drive their dump truck right in front of me and have a weed break.....Yes, I got these fools on tape, I was about 50 yards from them and they had no freaking clue I was there. In fact, I broke cover once again because they blew my spot and I just started walking towards them. At about 10 feet from them, they finally realized that I was there. Their reaction was priceless, I got the classic "OH S#$^, BBBOOOOOOY I HAD NO IDEA YOU WAS THERE!!!! I DIDN'T SEE YOU AT ALL UNTIL NOW!!!" while they try and hide their blunt. I simply responded with a "Yep" and walked on by.
That event pretty much puts a cap on my day.
I scouted out a few other areas, found a few tree stands, a couple homeless camps, talked to a nice homeless lady, found some nice fresh tracks and scrapes then I called it a day at 3 PM.
I'm still mad at myself for not waiting a few more minutes for that one deer that I missed due to my impatience and I learned a lot of valuable lessons yesterday. Regardless of not coming home with any meat, I came home with more knowledge that'll help me get that meat in the future. Hopefully, in the near future.
Thanks for reading, sorry for the bad results. But, I promise that I'll have a "successful" post one day
Good luck all! Hope to see you out there one day.