11/21/2006 ...One last update prior to the season kicking off.
Eventhough I am no longer heading over to camp for the opening days to hunt the Monarch, I still very much anticipate the planned hunt for this buck in week 2 of 2006. Being up at camp with my Dad and brother again for the first time in several years will be be reward enough and I know we will still give it all we got on our week 2 days just like we would of in week 1, probably more effort if we all got buck tags hanging on our backs. Regardless, we are all committed to our week 2 plans (first Saturday thru second Tuesday), no matter if all or none of us fill our buck tag in our various week 1 spots, we are meeting on the hill for those days.
My second post of this thread is proving to be much more important to me during the course of year than the first post about the buck itself. The fact that once again I will share spots whose names strike deep in our hunter’s souls and that all of our time staggered childhoods share. My Dad, my brother, and me in a place that caught Pap’s eye way back in the 30’s and a place whose mention still stops us in our tracks and floods are minds with memories.
I wish the Monarch the best in his avoidance of the few week one hunters he will encounter so he can be part of our long awaited reunion on the hill. I have no doubt he has watched a bear driver pass in the last couple days. Hopefully he has held true to from, and not ran across the open flat or drew attention to himself that may bring a few more hunters after him. But I also know he is not the only one around there should he fall to an opening day rifle. I do hope if he gets taken it is to a life long hunter of the hill, but even if he should fall to a hunter that has never stepped foot on that mountain before or knows of all its lore or of this buck, I wish him an honorable end, quick and painless, and hope he gets the proper respect as he is dragged from the woods and taken around for display. I know he did his job this past Fall in keeping generations of mountain monarchs around and I got ALOT of comfort in that.
This buck has paid me back ten fold over some of the frustrations he has caused me the past couple years from the mistakes I have made hunting him. He has brought the 3 of us back to that Northcentral PA mountain that means as much to us as our family name. Somedays I hope I never tag this buck, today is one of those days. Monday, December 4th I will likely feel different on that as my legs weaken and breath quickens from my climb into his laurel choked homeland.
Wish us luck.