What Do We Do in the Offseason?
Captain Chuck’s Hunting Report
After the crazy busy season in Sitka, I cherish spending time in the woods with family and friends near where I grew up on the family farm in Minnesota. We have a small cabin that provides shelter and the basics. No running water or electricity, but the cabin provides a gathering place and a well-stoked fire pit. Considering all the challenges of 2020, the time in the woods felt even more therapeutic this fall. I have several deer stands set up that overlook the creek that flows through the property. So long as the heater works, it is easy to sit there for a long time. I was perched in my favorite stand nicknamed “The Pumpkin Patch ” this year when Jen walked over to join me. After sitting for a couple of hours enjoying the view, I told her that I wished a big buck would walk out of the brush for a drink. Well, 30 minutes later that’s exactly what happened! It was unforgettable and made more special that Jen was there to share the experience. I had a clean shot and the deer went quickly from drinking to snorkeling, then back to camp.
This year was made more special because we had 5 women successfully harvest their first deer ever, including Bella Bayerl who has spent two summers with AU as a hostess. One of these gals, Talia, has the scope print on her forehead to prove it. She’s hoping that it leaves a permanent scar to remind her of the excitement of shooting her first buck. I’m still wearing some evidence of the hunting season, too. I was splitting wood when a chunk flew up and whacked my eyebrow. I currently have the most awesome black eye of my life. Of course, I do, it’s still 2020, right?
We all enjoyed a great hunting season. The traditional deer heart and tenderloins cooked over the fire were enjoyed by all, as was the time spent with family, friends surrounding the fire pit.