Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Another 90 days of craziness

I "officially" opened Michigan's 2008 archery season today. Oct. 1, baby. Gotta love it.

Thing is, I wasn't even on board to go 100 percent, which I found to be odd. Especially once I was 20 feet in the tree and totally getting into the moment ... the season, a flock of fox sparrows chirping at me and everything else that goes into bow hunting.

I guess it was the impending rain the forecasters had promised. Well, that rain never came, and I was so glad I didn't opt for the sack.

The early season is one I always see as a practice round for later when the rut comes in at the end of October and early November. And for this fuzzbudget, it usually takes that long before everything comes together: all gear is working, wind is being used correctly, stealth entries and departures from hunting areas.

Today was proof practice can make a difference.

I would guess I went up a knotty, crappy popple I used as my practice tree at least five to eight times from July until now. By the time I shimmied the much-smoother maple today, I had it wired. Even surprised myself by not spooking deer hanging in the thicket I was hunting under one hundred yards away.

Which gave way to a look at a yearling barely five yards from the tree that was called in with the Primos bleat can. (If you don't have one of those, I would strongly urge you to do so.) The doe came in on a string despite them -- mamma was with her but wouldn't come closer -- blowing at me, I'm guessing, 10 minutes before she came in for a look.

Pretty powerful lure that is, I would say.

I guess I've matured, wised up or watched too many Primos' "Big Bucks" DVDs, because where as in years past I would've jumped on that yearling, this time I was immediately uninterested in sending a homemade wooden lazer through her vitals.

And she still made me 20-feet high in the maple. It's a new deer we're hunting these days is all I have to say. But had it been a shooter I would have been able to shoot before I was busted.

The main reason why I think I was able to get in so quietly was because I'm now hauling around 10 fewer pounds with Summit's "Open Shot" stand.

I guess some dudes are unloading them -- and in the beginning I could see why -- seem unnerving with no railing behind you as you go up the tree.

All I can say is it's all in the safety strap, my friends.

Made all the difference for me. The Ameristep no frills one I bought five years ago holds you to the tree from above, adding a much-needed feeling of security.

Now I can't wait until I go out again. Less weight, more fun.

Let the 90 days of craziness begin.


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