Hallowed hunting grounds: A place where daily truths unfold

Sean Lesmeister learned a valuable lesson at deer camp: Never leave the deer stand when others are climbing down to head to the shack for lunch. Deciding to stay an extra hour while everyone else was headed in for an afternoon meal resulted in those hunters that were on the move pushing this nice buck into range.

My father instructed me when I was young, and it became a part of me that has shaped who I am today. He said, “Every day you will learn a lesson. Every day. Pay attention to this daily truth and gain wisdom from it so that it will help you grow as an individual. Never ignore that which teaches.”

Some lessons are hard and some are easy. All are messages to instill wisdom so that we may either refrain from making the same mistake twice, or duplicate and repeat what worked so well.

I have learned many lessons in the deer camps I have been part of over the years. Let me share a few with you.

This deer season a lesson learned was that trail cameras are only as good as a stable environment.  What you have been viewing on that image recorder might change dramatically when hunters take to the woods.

There were a lot of disappointed hunters who had been watching their cameras and seeing deer moving at specific times of the day and bedding in certain areas, and all that changed when blaze-orange bodies began marching to their treestands and blinds. Trail cameras are great to show you what possibilities exist, but don’t count on a pattern holding when bullets start flying.

Another lesson: If you are a firearms hunter and don’t have the ability to blanket your hunting zone with cameras, get to know the archery hunters using the property. Archers tend to sit in stands for days, weeks, months, years – OK I might be exaggerating a little, but not much – because they are searching for that monster trophy. They see a lot of deer. Archers just know what’s going on in the woods because they are there. When the rifle season starts, they can give you great details on where to see that big doe or respectable buck to shoot.

This next lesson is one that seems to get reinforced each year and this year was bolstered by that shooting that occurred on a movie set that killed someone. Always be extremely cautious around firearms. A few years ago, I heard a story about four hunters in a hunting shack and one of the hunters set his firearm on the kitchen table. Someone picked it up to move it and it went off. The person who picked it up declared emphatically they didn’t remember pulling the trigger. The bullet didn’t hit anyone, but it blew the coffee pot to pieces, left a big hole in the wall, and had everyone’s ears ringing for three days. Suffice it to say that everyone was extremely enraged… and imagine how ornery they were for the rest of the hunt due to a lack of caffeine.

So, it is without fail that a daily lesson is there for everyone to learn, so pay attention and gain some knowledge from this gospel truth. And know there are some places where these daily messages are more profound. Without a doubt deer camp is one of those.

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Tim Lesmeister, Whitetail Deer

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