First Time Deer Hunting With Grandpa!!

Posted By on February 3, 2016

By: Abigail Taylor (11)

Abbi Deer Hunting My mom and dad called me into their room in early October to tell me that Grandpa Taylor called and wanted to know if I would like to go hunting with him up in Goldendale, WA. He said he would pay for my license and out-of-state tag. I had a friend’s birthday party that same weekend. The choice was easy; I was going hunting!      

Unfortunately, my dad was unable to go, so my sweet, awesome, wonderful mom loaded my two sisters and me in the car and we headed for Goldendale, WA.  After we got to the campsite, we played in the forest behind the trailers. All the cousins thought it would be fun to make a teepee out of fallen braches; we all helped since a teepee is a lot of work. Then, when we finished building the teepee, we covered it in branches from fallen trees, so it was somewhat dry and warm inside. We were told to get cleaned up so we could go into town for dinner at a pizza joint. After we got back to camp, we played some more, had dessert and went to bed; we had to wake up early for opening day of deer season.

My Grandpa Frank woke me up around 6:30 a.m. so we could get ready to go hunting. We got dressed, packed food, grabbed his Remington 280 with a 3×9 power scope, and loaded up in the truck. As we were driving to the area my grandpa likes to hunt, we saw two spikes; unfortunately in this unit they have to be a 3-point or bigger. Once we got to the place we were going to park, we grabbed our packs and rifle and started our hike.

I thought hiking would be easier because the terrain is flat with smaller hills and thick standing trees with lots of deadfall, very different from what I’ve hunted in Idaho. Boy, was I wrong; hiking up the hills and climbing on and over the deadfall carrying a 15-pound pack and my grandpa’s rifle kicked my butt. We made about a 1-to-1½-mile loop to scout the area and ended back at the truck. We unloaded the rifle and took off our packs and talked about where to go next as we ate licorice out of grandpa’s 10-pound bucket of Red Vines.

After we filled up on Red Vines, Grandpa took me to Porcupine Point before we headed back to camp. Grandpa told me that 20+ years ago my dad claims he heard a porcupine humming to him while my grandpa went to get a deer he shot, nobody knows what the porcupine was humming, but all our hunting friends and family know Porcupine Point. The rest of the day, Grandpa drove me around and showed me the different areas we’d be hunting so that I would be familiar with where we would be hunting.

The next day, we got up at 5:40 a.m. and it was dark, cold, and wet from rain the night before. We did not eat breakfast because we had packed food and snacks for our morning hunt the night before. Grandpa and I loaded our packs and the rifle in the truck while it was warming up. Once everyone in the hunting camp was ready, we loaded up in the three trucks to drive to our hunting area. It started to get light out while driving and we saw an area that looked like a good spot. We parked the truck, loaded the gun and made sure it was on safety. I carried the rifle as my grandpa led the way through thick deadfall and standing trees. We walked a 1-to-1½-mile loop scouting the area and then we sat for a while to watch for deer. It was getting to be late morning and we didn’t see anything, so we walked back to the truck where we got warm and had a snack.

We drove to a different spot, took a turn around a big pine tree and there it was; a nice big 3-point buck standing in the middle of an old Cat road. My grandpa threw the truck in park and said, “Grab the gun.” I grabbed the gun, walked around the truck, and my grandpa said, “Load the gun;” but I had no bullets (cartridges). I had left them inside the cup holder. He took the rifle and told me to grab the bullets, so I grabbed some and loaded the gun. By the time I got it loaded, it was too far away and I could not find the deer in the scope, so I gave the rifle to my grandpa who tried to find it in the scope. When he was lining up, “BOOM” someone else shot at it. We went to help him find it, but could not see any blood where it was standing. We circled back towards the truck to see if there was any sign of the buck, but he had disappeared. We jumped in the truck and headed back to camp.

On my last day we got up for a morning hunt and headed down a road that was new to me. While driving, we saw another spike on the side of the road. Grandpa continued driving and we saw a second spike far away by two trees. We finally stopped at a great spot; it was thick with deadfall and standing trees. We walked a loop that was about 2-2½ miles (half of it was an old Cat road). When we were walking, we spooked a doe and saw a fresh deer bed with a buck track in it, but there was nothing we could shoot. After a five-hour hunt, we decided to go back to camp.

As we entered camp, we were welcomed by the smell of my grandma’s wonderful cooking. We filled our bellies and packed our bags to go home because we had school the next day. I had so much fun spending the three days with my grandpa hunting. Even though I didn’t get a deer, it was a great opportunity and I had a great time. My dad always talked about going hunting with his dad as a child, a tradition that my grandpa and dad will continue with me and my younger sisters.  

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