Jim Gardner: Modern day deer hunters
October 26, 2012
To the editor:
I grew up hearing the stories of my Dad and Grandpa Art at the homestead on Douglas Mountain in Moffat County, Colorado.
Much of their diet consisted of venison and the garden vegetables they harvested. I was intrigued at a young age by the deer hunting tales told by Dad.
My first hunt was on Douglas Mountain. Dad and I drove up there in a 1950 Chevy.
We stayed with Pete Perusic, an old bachelor, who homesteaded on Douglas Mountain in the early 1900s. There was no plumbing or electricity of course.
The food was great, the cabin was warm and the entertainment was spectacular. Pete brought out an old fashioned accordion, closed his eyes, turned his face to the ceiling and played us the concert of a lifetime.
Dad and I were "hoofing it", early the next morning. Dad taught me about deer tracks, deer habits and deer country.
Dad taught me how to hunt the ridges, the draws the cedars and the sagebrush. He provided experiences that will be valued memories as long as I live.
Now I live on a ranch in Brown's Park, Daggett County, Utah.
Saturday was opening day of deer season. I was amazed and dismayed at what transpired.
There are hundreds of square miles of ridges, draws, cedars and sage brush, where dads could take their sons and daughters hunting. But there they were, parked along the road adjacent to our hay field.
Vehicles and ATVs were parked or prowling along the road, waiting for the sixty to seventy deer pacing nervously just inside the fence. Finally the deer, as if on cue, jumped the fence and "ran the gauntlet.
One nice buck was harvested.
The question I have is what did the sons and daughters, on their first "deer hunt" learn from that experience?
Dads were all dressed up in their camos, for which to drive their outfits up and down the road, coffees or energy drinks in hand, radios playing and heaters blowing against the cool air.
I also wonder what the story is when they talk about the deer hunt of 2012.
"Yup, that deer up there on my wall was right there in the rancher's field when it started to turn daylight. We waited for him to come out and run for his life across the road and nailed him right from the road. Oh yeah, it's illegal to shoot from the road".
I guess I'm old fashioned and don't understand the way things are done nowadays. I just feel sorry for the sons and daughters who went "deer hunting", but don't have any concept of what it's like to hunt deer.
Brown's Park, Utah