I stopped by the local big-box sporting goods store earlier this week, looking for a new hat and gloves for hunting. I ended up getting a decent pair of gloves and a "mad bomber"-style hat. Now, it's no cunning hat, but that's ok. I don't have the 'stache to rock a cunning hat.
I went hunting after I got out of work this (Sunday) morning. The weather was foul. It had snowed most of the night and the plows hadn't done their thing yet. With the truck locked in 4HI, it took me about 20 minutes to go ten miles.
I got there just as Hunting Buddy was pulling a small button buck out of the woods, with (he says) an 8-point still waiting in the ravine. He was short on time and wanted to keep hunting, so we set up for a quick drive (he'd walk, two of us would sit) and I settled in to watch.
It was a near-perfect morning, and spot. Cold but not bitter, I had a nice spot tucked in the lee of pine tree and about six feet below the edge of the ravine. The wind would gust a little snow over me now and then, but never really caught me. I watched across the flat bottom and creek below, and tried to stay awake. I nodded off a few times for a minute or two, so perhaps I missed seeing a deer, but likely not.
I did get to see a very small red fox at a flat-out run as Hunting Buddy pushed down the far side of the ravine and across the bottom. I toyed with the idea of taking it, but (1) it was at a dead run, (2) I wasn't going to spend a $3 slug on a fox, and (3) I'm cheap and wouldn't feel like paying to have it mounted.
Having finished that small drive with no luck, we moved to another spot to repeat the process. This time, however, we were on the windward side of the highest point for a mile in any direction, in a cut field. 25 and sheltered from the wind was comfortable; 25 and walking into a 20-25mph prevailing wind was bitter cold.
I have to give credit to the hat, though: my ears were toasty warm! My nose and cheeks took it hard, but no permanent damage. As far as I'm concerned, that 30-minute walk/wait has already made the hat worth the price.
Hopefully I'll sneak out a few more times this week and put another doe in the garage.
4 months ago