Those tracks, lead to next year

Trout Whisperer

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  • Prostaff Member Trout Whisperer

You give me some new fresh snow and I have to go for a walk, if to do nothing more than find out who, besides me, is in the natural neighborhood. Same old Ground, now completely covered in white, on trails I have skidded wood numerous times for two or more months, appear this morning like new trails. I try to move at a quick pace, it's cold.

Around the first bend I spy a large deer track that just reminds me how small my buck was two weeks ago. I got a buck, but nothing like those hoof prints was around when I was sitting in the stand. Its tracks show it moseyed up to a pile of left over cedar branches, browsed a bit, then waded through its dinner pile and headed deeper into the swamp, but I'm not going that way today. I pull my cap down tighter and rub my mitts, it's time to move.

I trod along without making a sound. In a long stretch of logged over ash; I look at stump after stump recalling the hot sweaty hours of fall firewood cutting. Each stump has a bedraggled white cap. Now today, I'm pretty bundled up and another cross country deer has beaten me to the second woodlot, has walked past half covered grasses that winter has not yet covered. These tawny brown fronds sway over the snow at a height of three feet. The next snow will put them down on the ground for good.

I see tuffs of velveteen green moss swirled about the base of the ash trees that a lone deer again dined on. It's a big deer track that walked up to that tree. The deer and I, one week after the deer season, seem to be on the same course, but again I'm a der season late and a big buck short. I'm going back to the ridge, to see whets up, up there, so I don't follow these tracks either, and me moving, is warmer.

Back at my stand I climb the ladder, sweeping the snow off each rung as I go up. I brush off the seat with my glove. I settle in it, to take a few looks around, almost laughing, like I didn't look at all these woods enough during the past few weeks. Seated, the cold presses in, My backside won't last long here.

The cold takes its toll and quickly, I am dressed for walking, so I get up to go. Looking back at me is a buck. Sixty yards away, half between two balsam trees. His rack is dark brown with polished tips. He is a solid twelve pointer and He's looking directly at me, as I stare just as hard back at him.

When he leaves, He doesn't jump or explode, he just turns and strolls off as I watch his large fat frame disappears in the pines. I climb down; I look where he was standing once more. I look at my boots prints, I know where they lead to, the bucks tracks will just lead to next year, and so with the cold temps today, I decide not to follow those tracks either. The trout whisperer

Posted by Trout Whisperer under Hunting Stories on November 21, 11 11:14 AM | Permalink

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