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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The older I seem to get (just keeps happening! :eek:)the more I seem to appreciate the other stuff that happens while I'm in the woods hunting. You can bet your a$$ that I enjoy whacking something as much as the next fella, but when it comes right down to it, that simply ain't what happens most days that we (me anyway) spend out hunting.

When I was a lot younger I doubt I ever noticed 1/4 of the things going on around me as I was in the woods. Well, perhaps I did, but they simply didn't make any type of impression on young impatient me! These days I truly enjoy the other sights and sounds of the woods, even when they having nothing to do with the game being hunted.

My first morning out this deer season I was in my tree stand way before legal shooting light. It was a bit breezy, but finally it was cool weather and oh so nice simply to be back there in those familiar woods. I sat and relaxed in the full dark and as the morning approached, I tried to appreciate all that was happening.

The birds started chirping right on time, 30 mins before sunrise. The first thing that ambled by was a big old oppossum. He was followed, not long after by a huge, nearly all-white skunk. Yes, I enjoyed watching both pass by (especially ole Peppy!) It wasn't long after that a deer came by and for that I'm truly thankful. I saw several and that capped off a wonderful first morning of deer season for me.

I will admit that I do seem to perhaps enjoy a day when game being chased is actually sighted, but I also enjoy a lot of the other stuff that happens as well. I saw a trio of pileated woodpeckers (big, red-headed) this morning and realized that although I've seen pairs of them working "together" many times, I'd never before seen a threesome.

I saw (actually heard first) a squirrel digging for a nut and then finding one darn near as big as his head. He snatched it up with pride and started bounding away. His route took him to a small dead tree maybe 15 yards in front of me and he began to climb with that big ole nut in his jaws.

He stopped about 5-6' up the tree and climbed out on a small limb. Well, he wasn't on that limb for more than 2 seconds when it broke and he fell to the ground. he fell into some 6-8" weed grass and then I saw his head pop up and he looked around. No doubt wondering if anyone else has seen his folly. He bent over, picked up that hickory nut and then looked around as much as to say "I meant to do that!" and bounded away. Luckily I did not fall out of my stand, laughing as hard as I was.

Not much of a posting, I know. But just wanted to remind you (and myself) that we go to the woods to do things in addition to the harvesting part. To sit and enjoy what nature has for us. To think about stuff, hunting or non. And most of all, to have a darn good time!

Thanks!
 

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Yeah, last year when I was sitting in a tree stand on the edge of a creek, I thought about how nice it was to just be away from everything and enjoying the woods... the birds, squirrels, chipmunks, etc. I even watched the reflection of the moon in the creek for a while as it got dark.
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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The most memorable scene when hunting for me was many years ago in the Pennsylvania woods deer hunting. Sitting on a deadfall and contemplating a razor head arrow I had just stepped on and had flipped up to snag and tear my pants leg (darn'd stick/string hunters :D), a doe with fawn came mincing into the clearing from my left about 30 yds away. The woods were quiet, the late afternoon sun beams were streaming down at a slant and it was picture perfect. The fawn mimicked every hesitant step the doe made and would look wherever the doe looked. Took them several minutes to negotiate the clearing and disappear into the far woods.

I cherish that moment in time and think of it often.
 
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TnHunter, this may be the best posting I've seen on this site in quite a while...don't sell those "other" moments short!

I was bow-hunting some new ground last Sunday when I saw the tiniest little brown bird that I have ever seen. This thing was the size of a ping-pong ball and shades of brown, all over. It stayed low to the ground as it worked its way around me, giving me lots of chances to inspect it, closely. I'm sure some ornithologist is going to come along and explain it was a lesser nuthatch, or some such thing. All I know is it was incredibly small and cute, and that it made my whole evening. :)
 
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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Never forget the first time I saw a greenjay in south Texas. Thought my vision was going, or perhaps still suffering the effects of the previous night! :rolleyes:

Went back to camp and asked what looks like a bluejay, but it's green? Got told, with the "you're stupid" voice, it's a greenjay. OK..... duh, guess that was easy!
 

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For the past few years, I've kept a large bird feeder about 15 yds from my blind. The days aren't nearly so long when you're enjoying the action.
 

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And who would have thought. They now say you will see more game if you keep this energy that is emitted when we are not relaxed under control. Of coarse they are trying to sell something but we all know, when we just go out to enjoy the hunt, we see more game. Might be something to it.
 

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Junco on the edge of my blind 4' from my themos and looking at my box of raisins. A chickadee on the brim of my hat and another on my shoulder, but best of all a chipmunk with his front paws on the toe of my boot so he could get a good look up at me. These were wild woods creatures, not tame yard animals used to feeders and handouts. Gray squirrel about 40 yards away sounding like half a dozen deer as he plays in the leaves underneath a tree line oak tree and me without my 22. I'm glad I didn't shoot him, he was the most action I saw that day. A bad day hunting beats a good day at work but then I bet you already knew that.
 
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