Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Deer Hunt

This story was told to me by my dad. It is about a hunting trip my dad had with his stepdad (whom we called Pappy.)

Now pappy, when he was a younger man, was 6 foot tall, worked in the oil fields, and was a wild catter. My dad, at the time of this story, was in his teens. The story takes place here in Colorado, up on the Gore range.

My dad, Pappy, Uncle Fay, and some friends were hunting for deer one season. They had stopped to take a break and rest for awhile. They were almost at timberline level, on a ridge taking a break, when my dad spotted this little two or three point buck down the ridge a ways.

My dad pointed it out to everyone and Uncle Fay said it was too far away for a shot.

My dad asked Pappy what he thought and Pappy said, "Hell, I can hit him from here!" So Pappy found him a comfortable spot on a rock looking down the ridge, took aim, while everyone else was telling him that there was NO WAY he was going to hit that buck, that it was a waste of time and ammo. But that didn't seem to matter to Pappy. He wanted that buck.

So, taking his time, aiming, and thinking he has adjusted for the range and angle of the ridge, he pulled the trigger.


Several seconds later, they all watched as the buck made about two steps and fell over. Every one said it was a damn good shot! Pappy stood up and looked at all of them and said, "I told you I would get him," and he looked at my dad and winked.

As everyone stood and watched, Pappy took off down the side of the ridge, going from one rock to another, trying to not start a rock slide.

When Pappy finally got down to his deer he laid down his rifle, straddled the buck, got out his hunting knife, and leaned over to slit the buck's throat.

All of a sudden the buck jumped up with Pappy on his back and started to run down the side of the ridge. (I won't print what Pappy was hollering while on his ride. )

So, here is Pappy on this deer's back as it runs down the ridge, a knife in his hand, and trying to slit its throat. Now to hear Pappy tell it the knife was dull at the time. He said that he forgot to sharpen it before they had left camp that morning.

Anyway, Pappy finally brought down his deer. And all the while everyone on top of the ridge are hollering and laughing their heads off.

As Pappy was cleaning out the deer he could not find a bullet wound. As he rolled the deer over he found the wound. It seems that he -- how should I say it -- he hit him in his marble sack. Took it right off!

By the time everyone else got down to Pappy and brought him his rifle he was nursing some bumps and scrapes. Everyone told him what a great shot he was, that it was the greatest shot they had ever seen. While all this talking was going on, some of the guys were looking at the deer and asked Pappy where he had hit it (they didn't see any wound.)

Before he could say a word, someone rolled the deer on to its back. Everyone looked and saw that the buck was minus a certain part, and they all started to giggle, and then laugh. Poor Pappy, red faced, trying to tell them all that he shot the buck that way on purpose. To save meat. That the angle was off. And if he had hit him elsewhere there would not have been much left of the buck.

Now, I know that this sounds like a tall tale, but I think that it really did happen. When I asked Pappy about this story, he turned red, lit his pipe, and admitted that it was so.

My grandfather (Pappy) was a man that had fought in WWII, came from a big family, had seen a lot of changes in this world, traveled all over the United States. He seemed to know a little about everything. Like a jack of all trades. He built my great grandparent's home up in Kremmling, Colo.

In my eyes, he was a great man, a good man, humble, and loving. Even with all of his faults. He had a side that was fun, and his eyes would light up if you asked him a question about his life.

I truly miss him, as I'm sure he is missed by others.


  1. "Marble sack" hmmm? I didn't even know deer played marbles!

  2. KN, I think they do! They play marbles for bucks.

  3. Great story.I,too, have a funny deer story about a friend of ours,which comes to my mind, but that would make a nice post sometime. It's rather lenghthy.


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