November 15, 2018

For Maine, Regular Deer Hunting Season Creeping Up On Us

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It is chilly this morning. A taste of what’s to come with each passing day. Daylight doesn’t arrive at my camp until 7 a.m. and it’s dark by 6 p.m. This morning’s check of the weather (about as accurate as flipping a coin) says snow showers for Wednesday night…YUK!

Got a call yesterday morning from one of the guys who go to hunting camp the first week of the deer season. He and another friend were heading to camp to clean and rake the front lawn. I went along to help.

Arriving at camp, it became obvious – once again – that the camp doesn’t belong to us. We are just allowed to take it over for one week out of the year. The rest of the time it belongs to the mice, snakes, and a family of porcupines.

We cranked up the generator, plugged in the shop vac and within a few minutes filled the tank with another year’s worth of dust, dirt, mice nests, snake skins, and whatever got tracked in on the floors from last season’s deer camp event.

Perhaps it was the first time this summer that I began to have any thoughts about the annual right of passage to hunting camp. I’ve been so busy and working so hard this summer that the last thing on my mind was the upcoming deer hunting season. But, it’s now only a few days away.

In yesterday’s Portland Press Herald, outdoor writer Bob Humphrey writes of the wide variety of deer hunting techniques employed throughout the country. Maine is no exception. Because Maine has a sparse deer population, restrictions on the length of the season and legal tactics to bag a deer limit hunters to what methods they might use to fill their tags. Hunter’s choices may only vary from sitting, standing, or walking.

I have my preferred, and legal, methods of hunting deer as does every other deer hunter that enters the woods of Maine. With that in mind, I don’t pretend to have any authority to tell others how they should hunt. They shouldn’t pretend to have authority to tell me how to hunt either. But sometimes, the way people have been “educated” these days, they just can’t help themselves.

As I age, I find sitting gets done more than ever before but it is not my preferred tactic. I don’t like climbing into treestands, so I avoid them. I have a small pop-up ground blind that I usually set up in some strategic location and go there when the conditions are right – usually to get caught up on my reading. Not only have I never shot a deer from a blind, but I’ve also never even seen one.

Walking and “still hunting” are the methods I choose.

As we each get ready for opening day in our own preferred methods and lifestyles, remember that we are all different and have the right, within the laws that regulate hunting, to do it in the fashion that best suits our wishes. So, let it alone, let them alone, and just get out in the woods and have a great time.

Good luck!

 

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