Ok! Back from Joe Kurz Wildlife Management Area and I had a blast. It always cracks me up when I camp out, particularly these days, when I tend to obsess over things like eyeglass cleaners, decongestant, salt and pepper, etc. and then forget something big.
Like, oh, a pillow and sleeping bag.
Yep, I’ve been camping since the early 1970’s – in Ohio, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia. I was in the Boy Scouts of America for years, and helped as a camp employee one summer, and as an assistant Scout Leader for a while, and I forgot to take a sleeping bag.
One thing to remember, if you read this and aren’t local to Atlanta, is that this time of year, most of the people out camping aren’t worried in the slightest about being COLD. Honestly, I could have slept in a pair of gym shorts on TOP of a picnic table if it wasn’t for the bugs and the rain. It’s WARM, so heat isn’t the reason for taking one, its more like an additional layer of padding between me and the ground (I use interlocking shop floor pads in my tent, nice and soft), and someplace to stick my toes in the middle of the night. But STILL, I forgot the darn thing… Luckily, the only thing more common than Dollar General stores in that area are mosquitoes. I picked up a low-cost pillow, pillow case and blanket and those worked just fine.
The original plan was for myself and my buddy Danny (mentioned before, usually during hijinks) to spend Friday, Saturday and Sunday down there, but due to a broken water line, he couldn’t make it. I sent a text to Clay and he let me know that Jim was going to be down there for the weekend, so it turned into Team Bifocals all the way!*
We scouted a bit Friday afternoon, then decided where to hunt and got our gear together. We hunted the same spot Friday night and Saturday morning, but we knew that storms were rolling in, so we had to skip Saturday afternoon. (I don’t like sitting halfway up a tree, holding a lightning rod while wet and standing on a metal platform if thunderstorms are coming in, silly me…) Instead, we hung out at the Ranger station chatting with a good ol’ boy from the DNR (I could listen to his Cajun accent all day) and two state DNR rangers, while I made some coffee and soup.
This morning we put our stands in a new location, and around 8:30, Jim sent a text that he had hit a doe and watched her go down. I asked him if he needed any help and he said ‘no,’ but I decided at that point that if I didn’t see anything, I would come down around 10 a.m. since I drove and he didn’t have keys to the truck. This was Jim’s first kill with his Bowtech Experience, and he loves it!
I timed it just right, he had only been back to the truck for maybe five minutes when I got there. We loaded the doe up, recorded the kill at the WMA check-in board, and field processed the doe right there so Jim could fit her in a cooler full of ice for the trip home.
Then we went back to camp, cleaned up, packed up, and we both headed home. I was going to hunt the evening, but it would have put me home around 11pm if all went well, and well after that if I killed a deer, not to mention the whole safety aspect, so I decided to be safe and come home. And take a shower. And spray the mud off o’ my truck, etc. etc.
Enjoy the photographs 🙂 If you have any questions, visit the FaceBook page and ask me!
*(At a cookout after 3D season this year, somebody mentioned that they were letting all of their staff shooters go and starting a new, six-person shooting team named “Team *store name!*” Jim and I both wear bifocals (get off mah lawn!), so I suggested we call ourselves “Team Bifocals!” and so far the name works for us! 🙂 )