New additions to the house
Having a harvested animal mounted is not only a trophy on the wall, but also a preservation of the memories experienced during a particular hunt. Memories that will last a lifetime. Today I added my 2008 New York 6 point and 2009 Pennsylvania 8 point to the collection (The slow turnaround time is due to my Dad, who is an amateur taxidermist with little spare time, doing the work).
To some the 6 point wouldn’t be a trophy at all because he only scored in the 90s, but to me the experience of the hunt was enough reason for me to have it mounted. That weekend I had the privilege to hunt and spent quality time with my cousin, who I don’t get to see often enough. The first day and a half of the 3 day hunt were pretty rough with 30+ mph winds and heavy rains. During the 2nd evening of the hunt, I had the honor of being on the farm when my cousin harvested her first buck. For as much time as she had put into hunting over the years, it was incredible to finally see her connect. Since she was tagged out, she then offered her stand to me for the following morning. After two challenging/frustrating hunts in the area of the farm that I was hunting, I decided to take her up on her offer.
The opening weekend of the New York gun season just happened to fall during the peak of rut in 2008. The morning was cold and frosty as I sat bundled 16 feet up a split oak tree in my cousins’ stand. One hours into daylight I spotted a doe moving behind me. Even though I had a doe tag, I decided to hold off to see what the rest of the morning would hold. A few minutes later I notice two deer moving 100 yards to my left through the brush. Upon further inspection with my binoculars, I noticed antlers on both of them. There was just too much brush in the way to even consider a shot. I decided to go for broke and use my “can” bleat call. On the first turn of the “can” they both stopped. On the second turn, the smaller of the two turned and started heading towards me. He was only a 5 point, so I wasn’t too anxious to take him if he were to give me an opportunity. Once he started coming, the other buck came trotting through the brush to about 75 yards where I could clearly make out that it was a very wide rack, but could only make out 6 points. The 5 point paused at about 80 yards and would stay there for the rest of the hunt. The bigger buck started shredding every piece of brush in sight, followed by a few grunts. I sat in the stand anxiously awaiting a shot opportunity. While watching the show he was putting on, I suddenly realized the doe from earlier was 10 feet from my tree heading towards the bigger buck. As she moved closer, he turned and started to head towards her. He went about 5 yards, hit an opening in the brush, turned, and started wreaking havoc on the brush again. I knew this was my chance for a shot, so I slowly raised my TC Omega to the railing, cocked the hammer, and found his shoulder. After the smoked cleared, I could tell the Powerbelt bullet had done its job. The buck went 20 yards and crashed. After texting my cousin to tell her I had got one, the celebration was on. Once she arrived, we both walked over and admired the deer. In my eyes, the score of this buck is irrelevant, because you can’t put a score on a memory like this one.
The definition of “trophy” is certainly open to interpretation. It really is all about the hunt and after reading your story, both of these were trophies well worth mounting!
Tell your dad he does great work!
April 15, 2012 at 5:32 pm
Thank you. I will pass that along.
April 16, 2012 at 8:12 pm