By Sheila MacEachron
--“If you shoot a wild boar for our wedding reception, I’ll definitely marry you,” my soon-to-be-husband, Mac, joked. So I did! You could say that the bride brought home the bacon.
You have to understand that before meeting Mac in 2005, I had never hunted anything in my life. I am a college professor and although I loved being in the outdoors, hunting was not part of it.
So July 2006 found me at Woods Edge Ranch near LeRoy, Mich., on a hunt for a Russian boar. The ranch is comprised mainly of hardwoods and is run by Jason Kanouse. Jason regaled me with tales of how he and his various family members have dealt with charging boars in the past. Needless to say, this was not what a first-time hunter wanted to hear! I kept thinking things like, “Can I still climb a tree at my age?” and “Can I hit him in the head with one shot if he charges?”
Jason, Mac and I walked into the ranch and almost immediately saw three boars strolling toward us. All were over 250 pounds. They ran into the woods when they saw us, and we followed.
After about 20 minutes of walking, we could see the boars in the distance, and they were definitely not happy to see us. They snorted a warning in our direction and off they went.
They were too far away for a decent shot so we had to follow them again. They finally stopped and we were able to get within 35 yards. Mac wanted a trophy to mount, so we were looking for one with the “prettiest” razorback. He wasn’t the biggest one in the group, but he looked good . . . well, at least as good as a boar can look with a thick coat of mud. I don’t blame him, though. With the mosquitoes so thick, I wanted to roll around in the mud, too!
I leaned against a tree to brace myself and looked through my scope. Most of the body of “my boar” was behind a tree, and he was facing me. I would have to be patient and wait for him to move. After holding up a heavy gun for what seemed an eternity, he finally turned broadside, and I squeezed the trigger. My shot went exactly where I wanted. He jumped, ran about 20 yards and then fell.
I was pretty proud of myself that day. One shot and down. Not too bad for a new hunter on her first boar hunt. Since then I have taken another boar with a muzzleloader, four deer, four turkeys, one bear, one zebra and one blue wildebeest.
Oh, and by the way, 260 pounds of boar meat tasted pretty good at the reception.