Deer Hunting

Wow… where is time going? Many of us serious deer hunters have been counting the days until we could venture forth to the woods, crop fields, and creek bottoms in search of the elusive whitetail deer. We spent many hours scouting areas, running trail cameras, and trying to put ourselves in the most productive locations for hunting success. And now, here it is early December, and we must realize deer hunting season is coming to an end.

For some of us, the deer seemed to be plentiful, and our tags and freezers were filled. But for many others, the numbers were noticeably down, and we were oftentimes disappointed, making trips afield to see nothing but squirrels, raccoon, and noisy blue jays.

The Indiana weather was really not helping. I know during the early portion of bow season I was happy I had my camo Frogg Toggs rain gear, and it seemed like the wind was more of an issue and constantly changing. It was either too hot and humid, making deer activity occur later, and, the next thing you know, it was freezing rain, ice, snow, and windy again.

The last couple of years I noticed more aches and pains in my aging body. It was getting to be more of a chore getting out of bed. My hips and knees have taken a beating. Since 1964 and this year, I had a situation occur that really set me back health-wise, and I was thankful I was hunting with my grandsons that morning.

They had to basically carry me out of the woods before daylight and bring me back home. A couple hours later, I was in the emergency room of St. Vincent Hospital in Kokomo, and I was then sent by ambulance to St. Vincent of Indianapolis where I had three surgeries in three days.

The Indiana archery deer season continues until Jan. 7, 2019, and the firearms season closed Dec. 2, 2018. The muzzleloader season opens Dec. 8, 2018, and closes Dec. 23, 2018. There is still time for the dedicated deer hunter to fill his tags and freezer, and I certainly hope to have regained enough strength to get back out a few more times. I still have a couple doe tags, and I would certainly like to add a couple mature does to my freezer.

Late season hunting can be productive, but you must also realize the deer have been hunted since early October and are extremely cautious now. Many of the feeding locations are now gone due to harvesting, but this is the time of year the deer start “yarding up.” Usually if you find one deer, you find a number of them.

Dress warm, hunt safely, and I hope you and your family enjoy some tasty, tender venison through the off-season.