An Eight Year Old’s First Hunt

The summer months before the 2008-2009 whitetail season were filled with anticipation. This would be the first year that my 8 year old brother Spencer would attempt to take his first whitetail.

SpencerHe had tagged along on both whitetail hunts, and several turkey hunts, and now was ready to try it for himself. Armed with his new .223 rifle, he was ready to head to the woods.

It was the second week of the Texas whitetail season, and we were just hours away from Spencer’s first opportunity. We set up a target, and let him shoot a practice shot. He hit mere centimeters from the center of the target. He was ready.

That afternoon, Spencer, my father, and myself, loaded up and headed to the blind. The blind we chose was perfect for his first hunt, as there were several deer using the area, and the longest shot is about 75 yards. We arrived at the blind about 3 ‘o clock, and got settled in.

As we sat there reminiscing about past hunts, I noticed movement to my left. “Don’t move.” There was a big spike, and a nice buck working in our direction. The second that Spencer laid eyes on them, he was ready to shoot.

We instructed him to wait a little while, as it was early, and a bigger buck may present a shot. We sat there for about an hour, and only a couple more spikes, and 2 does made their way to the area. It was getting late, and we decided to let him try a shot. The beautiful hill country buck was feeding in front of us at about 50 yards. My father helped Spencer ready for the shot, as I captured the events on video.

Finally, Spencer was in position for a shot. As I videoed the hunt, my father was helping him calm his nerves. We finally got him steady, and Spencer told him he was ready. BOOM! The beautiful buck collapsed at the sound of the shot. We all laughed and shook hands.

All those hours of watching hunting videos, and shooting foam balls, had paid off. We were so excited, that Spencer had taken his first buck, and that he had made such a wonderful shot. Even more wonderful than that, the entire thing had been captured on film, and Spencer’s reaction was priceless.

We sat there for several minutes, and then went to recover the buck. It was a beautiful hill country whitetail. We headed back towards camp, and my brother Steven, and my mother were already on their way to see what had been taken.

Spencer with his deerSpencer told them the story a thousand times. His excitement was amazing. This is what deer hunting is all about. To make the evening even more special, my brother Steven had taken his first bobcat. What a wonderful day.

As I sit writing this story, Spencer is just as excited as he was the moment he shot. He can’t wait for his next opportunity to hunt again. As a whitetail hunter, I have had many memorable moments, but this one tops them all. There is nothing in the world that can bring more joy, than watching a young person take their first animal.

I would like to encourage each of you, to take a young boy or girl hunting. It has provided me with my finest moments in the woods, and I am sure it would do the same for you. God bless, and happy hunting.

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