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Here are a few thoughts i have had of the old first day of Buck season. I don't think many of today's recent deer hunters have experienced.
The biggest one is a good cover of snow in the forest and fields.
Cold feet and shivering from standing or setting still.
The first shot in the distance and then the woods coming alive with gun fire.
Because of the snow cover being able to see deer running in the distance and hoping they turn towards you! More than one or two of them.
It starting to snow again and you are getting covered with snow!
After 3 or 4 hours,as the shooting has calmed down,going to your car to meet you hunting buddies and to eat and warm up.
Seeing drag trails from lucky hunters in woods.
Getting to your car or truck and seeing more than one guys with bucks laying on the ground while you try to unlock your doors to start it but you can't feel your keys in your fingers!
Seeing a family member dragging one towards your parked car.
Hearing how each one was shot and how far.
Looking at deer racks of spikes up to 10 points!
Just one more time i wish i could re-live this with my Grandsons?
 

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In the old days we never left the woods for lunch. Took food with us....sometimes not and hunted dark to dark....and stand in a wooden stand all day.....can't do that any more....knees won't let me. Great memories then and more to come.
 

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seeing herds of deer running the hillsides 10-15 or more at a time.

knee deep snow
drag trails going straight downhill instead of following the logging roads, fastest route to the car, easier to "drag"

Snuggling in between two huge mountain rocks to stay out of the cold blowing wind.

snowed so much your orange hunting outfit looked like snow camo.

pulling your sandwich out of the back pack only to find it is frozen


warming up at the car, talking with family and friends who got deer, you get so fired up, you head right back into the woods to get "Yours"

the old hand warmers that used lighter fluid.

watching the sunrise

so much snow that the tree branches are bent way to low to see any great distance without getting down on one knee.

after that first gunshot deer moving everywhere.

no excuse not to fill a doe tag.
 

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I remember my fingers being so numb I couldn't open the truck door! That was the the three day doe season though otherwise known as the deep freeze!
 

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granddads black and red checkered woolrich coat and pants covered with a orange vest..straight blade case knife with leather sheath ..there was a sea of headlights in your rearview mirror as you were heading out of town
 

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Sitting on stand thinking about the thermos of hot chocolate that I left back at Dad's truck...

Bread bags over my socks to keep my feet "dry".

Toes so cold that I wished they would just fall off!
 

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I'm only 38 almost 39 but I remember being up my uncles camp when I started hunting at age 12 in Hazel Hurst, Mckean County. Those first 5-6 years were the best. You knew the deer were coming and not just a few. Herds of 10-15 with multiple bucks and your scoping them out trying to find the biggest rack. Going back to camp and thinking that the porch was gonna collapse from 5 to 6 bucks hanging from the footers and having to swing them out of the way like you were in a meat locker to get in the front door. Doe season getting set up with 30-45 min before light and hear deer all around you and just waiting for enough light to be able to see to shoot one. I'm not complaining about how it is now, as im still seeing and harvesting buck and doe quite successfully but just not the constant action like back in the day. It was like you had to have your head on a swivel back then. The younger generation really missed out on some exciting times.
 

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Drivers hooting and hollering, before shooting light, watchers shooting at first light.

Jonee hand warmers, 3 lb coffee cans with sand and alcohol, and Sterno to keep you warm. I still use the alcohol and sand can.
 

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Back in the 60's you didn't know it was the first day of buck season here. No shooting and few hunters, not many deer.

Everone was up there with yinz guys i guess.
 

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Where am I going to Hunt the first Day ?? Didn`t matter, nobody cared if you hunted on their Property, no leasing out or Tresspassing signs. See another Hunter and He waved and came over with You not threaten you. Bragged about the fat 4 point You got and not ridiculed.Heard Ringnecks and saw Rabbits and Grouse and maybe a Turkey !!Carried A WW2 Mauser and thought you had the ideal Deer Rifle. Two pair of Pants and Brown Jersey Gloves,two pait in case the one pair got wet , which they usually did! I am 70 and dearly miss the old Days.
 

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Yep, remember those days well. Wearing the green knee-high rubber boots, which allowed your feet to be frozen after just 15 minutes on stand. But having the ice cold feet wasn't so unbearable since you were seeing lots and lots of deer.
The sad part is that we could have those good old days again of seeing tons of deer during buck season, if people would just stop shooting does! It's up to the hunters in this state to make it happen.
 

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Oh not those awful green knee high rubber boots! I think our feet would have been warmer had we taken them off!
 

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Never could understand why hunters go to the vehicles to eat lunch? After all hunting is a picnic......
 

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Born2Hunt said:
Never could understand why hunters go to the vehicles to eat lunch? After all hunting is a picnic......

It's a way to reconnect with friends and family that you don't get to see much throughout the year. We use to do it. In fact some of the guys I only ever saw during rifle season. Some of my best memories in my younger days were of sitting around the propane grill listening to all the older guys telling stories and joking around with each other. I probably miss that more than anything.
 

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Born2Hunt said:
Never could understand why hunters go to the vehicles to eat lunch? After all hunting is a picnic......
We did the same thing as a kid. Me, my Dad, any other relatives or friends we were with, would all meet back at parking area to eat and compare notes. When I got older and my father passed away, I learned it could be very productive to stay in the woods during mealtimes. I can always count on hearing the shooting in the area I'm hunting increase at 10, 11, and 12:00 when guys move to meet each other or head out. I've killed more deer between 11:00-2:00 than I have 7:00-11:00.
 

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These places and experiences still exist in PA if you know where to look. My son and I counted 212 shots I believe before noon last opener. And I still sometimes see herds of 20 or more on public land. In fact I would rather hunt the big woods any day than hunt around the farm. More room to hunt and less hunter density. Job and family limit how often I get to go to the big woods but that's where my heart lies. From what I see with my own two eyes the last few years, some state forest and game lands I wander around have more deer now than at any point in my life and I began hunting in the 80's. It's not all doom and gloom or days gone by.
 

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NanookOdaNorth said:
Sitting on stand thinking about the thermos of hot chocolate that I left back at Dad's truck...

Bread bags over my socks to keep my feet "dry".

Toes so cold that I wished they would just fall off! [/quote




OMG! I remember bread bags over my socks. lol
 

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wearing two pair of jeans to try to stay warm, only to have the top pair freeze stiff. Counting all the shots before 10:00, sometimes over 80. The large herds of deer that would come by. Looking for those 3 inch spikes. My dad telling me to sit still. Buck fever.
 

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All my uncles wearing the red and black Woolrich pants and jackets. Man I wish I had one of those originals.
 

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Oh and I can't forget my old man who had socks that you put D batteries in to keep your feet warm.
 
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