I happened to catch the national news tonight on CBS. Their final story was about a guy who asked a simple question via social media...."What is your favorite moment in life?" Interesting question. I thought maybe some of you would like to comment or list your favorite whitetail hunting moments. I'm still learning on how to build this website so I'm not sure if you can actually post pictures in the comments section. So....I'll make you a deal. You leave a comment describing your favorite moment, email a picture to me, and I'll post it on here for everyone to see. Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
My favorite hunting moment happened in 2010. That year in August, I had experienced a heart related issue and was hospitalized for a couple of days. A-fib...what you see in the commercials now on TV quite a bit. Long story short, my heart stopped for 6 seconds when my pressure dropped too quickly.
Obviously I recovered, but began to realize I was mortal at 40 years old. As soon as I got out, I couldn't stop thinking about it. To get my mind off this issue, I threw myself into a huge project. I decided to build the box blind I had envisioned for some time. My goal was to take all of the kids hunting with me.
As with most projects a QDM'er takes on, I went all out. We began in mid August and worked non-stop until the middle of October. By the time the youth hunt rolled around, my 12 year old daughter, Bailey, was ready for her shot at a deer. At that point in the construction, the poles were up, deck was on, but no walls or roof. I decided we would place the pop-up blind on it and see what would happen.
We arrived around 6 pm that evening, much later than planned. No sooner was the blind up when the deer began to poor into the WI Clover. Bailey decided she was going to shoot a doe when suddenly a small buck entered the field. He entered from right to left traveling at a 90 degree course never turning his head (foreshadowing here...). Bailey spotted the buck and turned her attention to him. Obviously I was not going to tell her no, given I believe a small buck is a good harvest for your first deer at 12 years old. She took a deep breath and settled in through the scope to take the 80 yard shot with a single shot 20 ga.
I was watching through binoculars as she squeezed the trigger. I knew instantly it was a good hit based on the mule kick the buck made. He ran into the woods and she knew it was a good shot also saying "I hit him, I hit him." We waited a little while, but proceeded to start the trail. The buck only went about 50 yards into the woods and piled up in some briers. She tracked every drop until she saw the white belly.
We had quite the party calling everyone and sending pictures. As you can see below, our smiles will last forever in this picture. Even though it turned out to be a half rack, this was the best hunting moment of my life.
We had a friend complete a European Mount and it is up on her bedroom wall. Since then, she has vowed to shoot the next deer with a bow. She has missed a couple of times and definitely gets buck fever; therefore, I'm sure she is my kid. Hopefully this fall will be the magical moment with her bow.
Make sure to leave a comment and send me your favorite moment photo. Come back again, and thanks for your time.
Andy Hayes is a devoted husband and father of 4 kids living in West Central Indiana. Outside of his family, his passion is hunting whitetails. He does not claim to be a professional hunter, but simply wants to share what he learns during his quest to improve whitetail habitat and hunt mature bucks.