In the fall of 2015, having recently moved to Rangeley, I was looking forward to learning how to hunt the big woods of Maine. I grew up hunting small plots of private land and was not yet accustomed to hunting what felt like limitless boundaries. This season would mark my second year hunting among Maine’s Western Mountains.
During my first season the mountains were consistently blanketed with fresh snow. This allowed me to try my hand at tracking. One afternoon I cut a fresh buck track. He lead me up a mountain past fresh scrapes, rubs and a few does feeding in an old cut. I never did catch up to that buck. Instead I spent the next twelve months imagining what he might have looked like. I longed for the opportunity to venture back and try again. The fall of 2015 brought that opportunity.
As hunters we are often asked why we hunt? Because, truth be told, in today’s world it is a choice. One can easily go to the grocery store and acquire meat or choose to hike a mountain without the goal of stalking an animal. As an avid hunter, I am baffled by my ability to feel so passionate about hunting yet be unable to fully articulate how I feel. When I ask myself, why do I hunt, the words often escape me. Read More
Although I didn’t tag out myself during the 2017 Maine deer season, this season was one of the most exciting deer seasons I have ever experienced. Scouting began in September as I stepped back into the woods to lay eyes on previous years’ hunting areas and to check trail cams placed at the end of the 2016 season. When approaching the first GPS marker I realized my camera was no longer on the tree. Instead I found scratches in the bark where the camera had been placed. I searched the area and found the camera mangled on the ground a few feet away. The camera had a puncture hole in one of the sensor caps and scratches that peeled away at the exterior. A black bear had torn the camera off the tree and left me with only 4 out of focus shots. One shows a chest of a bear with 2 white patches, another the black nose and a rounded ear. No whitetails to be found. Read More