Whitesburg KY
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Struttin’ Time

Why I no longer go deer hunting

I must ask your forgiveness. Since I no longer deer hunt, it is easy for me to forget the beginning of archery season.

I got a couple stories on opening day, and we already ran one in The Mountain Eagle. I have been asked to put the other off until some pictures get in.

I was asked just this week, “Steve, why did you quit deer hunting?” My answer was swift. I feel as though I will never again kill as big a buck as I have killed. I have on my wall some nice trophies, each one with a story.

Most of the bucks I have taken are probably in the 119-125 class. The biggest buck I ever took and had scored was taken off my deck at my house in Dry Fork. He was taken in the middle of the rut in November of 2004. He officially scored 135 by the Department of Fish and Wildlife of West Virginia. That’s because my wife, Sharon, and I had a 155 acre farm in West Virginia and I took it to a show there to have it scored.

My “brother” and my best friend, Raymond “Pap” Brown of Dry Fork, laughed when he saw my deer and said, “I have his twin on my place.” My friend Pap and myself have many health issues right now, but we both are hanging in. There is no finer man that Pap. He is a role model for the way we all should be. Get well soon my brother.

Anyway, I started deer hunting in 1967 at Camp Atterberry in Indiana. It took me until 2004 to kill my biggest buck, and it is not a Pope and Young. Although I have taken well over 50 deer, my math was failing me. I figured I could not hunt or live long enough to top my 135. I refuse to kill any deer smaller than my 135, or what I think is smaller.

So, after killing a few more bucks, but letting many pass I figured I would just quit, and so I did four years ago.

But I am still in the business of writing about deer hunting and would love to share your stories. Meanwhile, if you go by Pap’s place at Dry Fork stop by and say hello. And tell him I sent you.

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