Treestand thoughts – the “hunter’s edge”

I don’t know if you are like me, but after a couple of deerless
days in my treestand, I start to question a lot of things, such as
why aren’t I seeing any deer? 

Is this hunting spot as good as I thought it was? Can the deer
easily see or smell me? Never mind all of those bucks to my credit,
maybe I’m not such a good hunter after all.

As I ponder these very relevant questions, I begin to lose my
“hunter’s edge” — that special force that keeps me alert and
thinking that any moment the biggest buck of my life will step into

If you’ve never thought about it before, anticipation and what I
call the “hunter’s edge” are very important to the amount of
enjoyment that we have when we are afield.  Lose your edge, and you
might as well be sitting at home, drinking a beer, eating snacks,
and watching a football game. You won’t be having fun in the

As I pondered all of this on the last day of rifle deer season
—  teetering on the brink of losing my “edge” — a deer came into
view.  Soon there were three deer, five, then eight, no, there were
9 deer. I scoped this group of antlerless deer and discovered that
one was actually a buck that had already shed his antlers.

As I watched the totally undisturbed deer, one old doe gave me a
foot-stomping stare-down from 15 feet away. I must have passed her
muster, for the deer resumed feeding, and I retained my edge.

Years ago, when I had scored on six bucks in a row, I thought
that I was a great hunter. However, a number of unsuccessful
seasons have sure made that image fade. During the slow years, such
as 2010, it is best to remember something friend and fellow outdoor
writer Linda Steiner recently penned: “… game kills result when
adequate skill meets a huge dose of luck.”


Categories: Pennsylvania – Mark Nale

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