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Starting a Tradition with Two Bangs

BarclayBy Bill Barclay

-- My daughter, Gina, had accompanied me on deer hunts for more than 15 years. She never cared to carry a rifle but enjoyed the outdoors and the hunt.

Then in 2006, she decided that she wanted to hunt. I had my father's 1917 Enfield rifle that I inherited when he passed away. I had the barrel re-blued, the stock shortened and added a scope so my daughter could hunt with it. She tried it on the range and had no problems. After our trip to the range, I started calling her Old Dead Eye.

We lived in the mountains south of Dayton, Wash., and had a few white-tailed deer living by the creek that ran through the property.

After agreeing on a date we could hunt together, Gina came up the night before. We talked about where we were going to hunt in the morning and decided that we would just hunt around the house the first day. After a sleepless night for her, I got up about hour before daylight and was having a cup of coffee and waiting for the sun to come up prior to starting out.

About five minutes after legal shooting time, we looked out the window and there were two nice bucks, a 9- and 10-pointer. Before I could say anything, Gina stepped out onto the porch, loaded her rifle and made a perfect shot on the 10-pointer. Needless to say, she was very excited about getting her first buck and wanted to run over and see it. I told her to wait just a minute and I would go with her. 

As I was getting ready, the 9-point buck came back looking for its buddy. That was my chance to make a good shot on it. Within 10 minutes on opening day we both had our deer. 

I now have a new hunting partner who cannot wait until deer season starts again.

Bill Barclay
Dayton, Washington

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