hey george..being a writer you must also enjoy reading. so, i thought i would share a hunting experience with you. when i was 12 years old, my dad figured i was tall enough in the brithces to follow him into the hills of eastern Arizona on the New Mexico line, deer hunting. yes he was packing a 7mm mag. he bought at sears in 1964 in Eugene, Oregon. well, we left camp early that morning and walked east out of camp. the country was open with little to no cover. on the tops of the hill's, there was some sage brush. i remember my dad telling me there were deer in the area that had taken on the same color as the blue sage brush and their hair was a light powder blue color. i was carrying my Daisy "Red Ryder" all i was allowed to carry by state law at the time. well, seemed like we had walked miles, but in fact we could still see the road that led to camp bellow the mountain we were climbing. once we hit the top, we followed the ridge east, back to where it topped out and we found ourselves overlooking a canyon that was about 300 yards across. we walked along the edge of the canyon and once in a while my dad would toss a rock into the sage brush below us in an attempt to spook a buck up from it's bed. after a couple hours of walking and me throwing rocks as well to help out..my dad told me to sit down. by the tone of his voice i knew instantly he saw something. i hadn't seen a thing! i was too busy watching where i was walking to keep from falling. i watched my dad bring his rifle up to his shoulder and when i looked across the canyon to the oposite side where my dad's 7mm was aiming..i saw it ! a nice bug buck with a huge set of antlers. i will never forget the sight of those antlers laying against the morning sky when he topped out on the ridge top. i had my ears plugged with my fingers the whole time waiting for the shot i knew was seconds away. i felt the blast from the rifle is it roared across the canyon and i saw dirt and dust bust into the air as the buck went end over end. i was so exciting i wanted to bust down the canyon and climb the oposite side and get to the buck quick as possible. my dad grabbed me by my shirt and said..slow down...no hurry we will take our time geting to him..we dont want to fall and get injured back in here miles from camp. so, we begain our walk down the steep hillside to the bottom, then across the dry creek bed and up the oposite side and we climbed it seemed for ever. once we found the top, we began looking for the buck..i couldn't wait to see the horns again! the buck was not there! we searched the grass and found where he had tumbled and then got up and dove off the back side of the ridge. there was blood and enough to follow. so now, we start trailing him. my dad was explaining to me that he could not have gone far due to the amount and color of blood being lost. what happened next is burned into my memory for life..i will never forget the experience i was given that day! as my dad and i made i to the creek bed bellow, and started tracking the buck down the creek through the dry sandy bottom..we started hearing voices. mens voices talking! there was no one else around us, no other shots fired, and my stomach, even at 12; was telling me something was wrong! as we approached the men, still on the deer's blood trail, i saw one of the men reach over and get what i know today was a lever action 300 savage. the other men left their rifles leaned up against the sage brush. there were five of them and me and my dad. my dad is 7/8 cherokee indian and 1/8 irish. i knew his temper, even then, and have seen him in many fist fights over less. but, i am only 12 and could see myself in a bad situation. one of the men in the group was passing around a silver flask while another man was busy dressing the buck out and puting his tag on my dad's deer. in Arizona, a deer tag at that time was a metal band. once it was slipped around the base of the horn and zipped together..kinda like a zip tie, it would have to be cut off with a hack saw or metal sheers to be removed and was worthless at that point. "a used tag" VOIDED! well, my dad looked at the man with the rifle in hand and said "look's like you fella's found my buck" the man with the rifle replied: "what makes you think it's your buck?" my dad replied back: " well, i shot him on the top of the ridge behind us, it was the only shot fired, and you can clearly see the blood trail we have been folowing brings us here to my buck" the man with the gun then pointed the muzzle towrads my dad and i and said: "ok..if you think it's your buck..go ahead and take it" my dad, for the first time in my life, in a bad situation, looked at the man with the rifle and grinned! my dad said to him: "thats ok..there are plenty of bucks in the area, me and my son will find another one" my dad looked down at me and i knew by the look in his eye, he was appologizing to me! my dad motioned for us to go and it was all i could do to keep from turning and blasting that man with my "red ryder". we climbed to the top of the hill, which was about 350 to 400 yards or so high, directly above the five men. my dad then gave me an order and by the sound of his voice i did exactly what he said! i found a spot behind a large rock and peaked over the top looking down at that five men who were standing in a group off to one side of the buck. i watched closely as my dad took several 7mm mag. rounds out of his shirt pocket and lay them on the top of the rock infront of him. he had five in the rifle and at least 10 infront of him. he kept four in his pockket for the walk back to camp. my dad bench rested his 7 mag. on his jacket, ontop of the rock and told me to plug my ears. i did as he said and watched close as he touched off the first round. when i saw the imnpact of the bullet against the antlers..all five men ran down the canyon leaving their rifles behind. they cleared 300 yards in no time..the next round hit the body of the buck..i watched as my dad shot that buck and destroyed every piece of eddible meat and the 5x5 rack now lay in pieces. we wathced as the five men slowly walked back to the deer and their rifles and listened as they yelled obsinities and fingers waving in the air. my dad then said "lets go" and we walked away and headed back to camp. we never saw those men again and i doubt they packed out what was left of the deer they had stolen. but, i was proud of my dad for giving them what they desrved and protecting me in a bad situation at the same time. the next day my dad and i walked from camp and my dad took a nice 5x5 sage buck. we packed camp and headed home. this type of theft does happen more than people know in the hills of new mexico and Arizona. greed over a buck! and sometimes people get hurt. but my dad gave them what they deserved..a buck that was as worthless as they were for stealing it! hope you enjoyed the reading. jim
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...how you turned out to be such an ignorant sob. You had a good teacher!
in your direction in a "Hunting" situation out in country.
I apologize for that last crack. I guess your posts just rubbed me the wrong way. We don't agree but I take back that last comment.
and your dad sounds like a marvelous man. He handled the situation with aplomb and dignity. Best of all, no one got hurt and those 5 thieving crooks learned (I hope) a valuable lesson. This is a man whom I would loved to have known.
brian..i accept your appology. as a christian man it is my faith and belief that when a man is done wrong he is to forgive the offender. thus i will also be forgiven for my faults. my dad, if i may, is one of the most wonderful men i have ever known. he has helped me take care of my two children after the tragic death of thier mother. we were married 17 years. he has been with my mother for 48 years now..and she is slowly dying from multiple illnesses. he has worked construction since he was 14 years of age and has supported his family with his hands. my dad will be 68 years old this july, 25th. and i expect he will be back in the hills hunting deer this november. you should watch him climb a mountain..he is like a goat i swear! he still to this day refuses to drag a deer. he dresses it out and packs it up on his shoulders and carries in to the truck on his back..at 67 years old..last november i watched him pack my daughters deer 2 1/2 miles to the truck. when i begged him to let me take the deer and help, he just replied.."nope, i got it loaded..you and tiffany just follow along" he is a funny man without even trying to be..he has a way about him that is comical yet with only a 6th grade eduaction he is so very intellegent. i love my dad..i have shared many memories in the filed with him over the past 45 years. but each year i run the video camera and cherrish every hunt with him now. brian i wish you knew him to. you are forgiven! jim starr
brave father, but it sounded as if he actually put you in harms way to me. but i guess i would of done something similar.good story.brian
thank you for sharing your story.