Sunday, December 27, 2009

First Hunt of the New Year

Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I've been sick with an upper respiratory bug during the holidays and have been barking like a pack of beagles for the past week....I slept in this morning and felt a lot better when I woke up. By 7:00AM, I'd had my coffee and shower and couldn't stand it anymore and had to get outside.
Knowing that the new year brings on the Alabama whitetail rut, by 9:00AM I was picking up Morgan, the 16 year-old son of the property owner whose farm we will be hunting today. I'd had the opportunity to scout this particular property two weeks ago and found quite a bit of pre-rut sign. This farm lies in a large valley that mostly constists of large pasture land and cattle farms. Both sides of the valley are bordered by large rock bluffs and hardwood ridges. While scouting, I found that a nice buck was bedding on one of the knobs overlooking an open hardwood hollow that split the mountain ridge on the east side of the farm. The buck had given up his escape trail after I bumped him during the scouting trip. Anticipation was high that Morgan might get a shot at his first buck. By the time we arrived at the farm, the sun was breaking through the remaining clouds of the cold front that blew through the day and night before. The conditions seemed to be perfect. We got Morgan setup downwind from the buck's escape trail as I made my way up the mountain ridge. With the wind in my face, I made my way down to the knob where the buck should have been bedding down. But as it often times is with big bucks, they seem to be in the wrong place at the right time. Today he wasn't home.
Even though I was probably more disappointed that Morgan didn't get an opportunity at the buck today, I feel sure that we will get him an opportunity at a buck in the next couple weeks because January is when Alabama's deer hunting is at its best.