By Brad Glass
For years, I have hunted by myself. I’ve always dreamed about sharing my time in the woods with my father, but due to his busy schedule and his selfless acts of helping everyone else, he just didn’t have the time. He’d bowhunted for many years, but had not spent a single morning in the woods for the past 10 years.
My father taught me everything I know about hunting. He also helped me scout and hang tree stands. It was a lot of fun, but deep down, I knew he missed every part of bowhunting.
One winter, I was finally fed up. I went out and bought him all-new hunting gear and told him he had no choice but to do a little hunting with me. He happily accepted. I knew it was going to be a year to remember.
We started scouting in the spring and hanging our stands in the summer. As fall approached, we couldn’t wait for opening morning. Just a few months and we would be back in the woods. My father was as excited about it as I was.
During the first few weeks of bow season, we saw plenty of deer but let them pass. We were looking for a trophy. Bowhunting can be very exciting where we live in midwest Ohio. We were having the time of our lives.
Just before Thanksgiving, Dad tagged a very respectable 8-pointer. The joy we experienced was incredible.
I still had a tag to fill. My father told me the stand he’d been hunting was bound to produce a trophy, and that I should be in it on opening morning of the gun season.
That season kicked off just days later. I was very excited. I knew there had to be a reason why he was putting me in this stand. The weather wasn’t ideal, but I felt it was going to be an awesome morning.
It was raining, cold and so foggy, you couldn’t see 150 yards. Thirty minutes into the vigil, four does walked by.
Around 10:30, a massive buck emerged through the fog on the field I was watching. I have tagged many whitetails, but this deer was like no other. He was the king of the woods.
As he approached within 80 yards, he started to walk out of my shooting lane, so I had no choice but to take the shot. I shouldered my New England Firearms muzzleloader and squeezed the trigger.
As the smoke cleared, I watched the buck go down about 35 yards away from where he stood.
I waited a few minutes and then went to my tuck to call my dad. He could tell by my voice something special happened, I just told him I was going to need a little help getting this one out of the woods.
He was off work that day, so he came right out. He was speechless when he spotted the rack from over 100 yards away.
The deer was a massive 13 pointer with a 22-inch inside spread. To some hunters, it may not seem that big, but to us, it’s a world-class whitetail.
The season has ended for us, but we both know there are many more years of spending time in the woods, scouting, hanging stands and creating stories to tell around the campfire.