Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Trophy Season

Both of my parents grew up in a small town outside of Bethlehem Pa., where I attended college at Lehigh University. Every year, the day after Thanksgiving, my dad and his brothers would go deer hunting. My mothers side of the family was not a big fan of guns or the killing of animals, so it was not a ritual that I was part of. During my Junior year of college, I decided to give it a try. My dad gave me a beautiful Winchester 270 that apparently was quite valuable and set me up on a ridge to await the whitetails that would wander along a nearby swamy area. They had been hunting this area for 30 plus years and assured me that it was the "best spot". I did see a few over the next few years and even took a shot once, but missed. My heart just wasn't into it so I gave it up after a few years. What stuck in my mind more than anything was a talk I had with my uncle Benny. He was actually my dad's uncle, so had been hunting the same club for some 50 years. What impressed me the most is that he had never shot a deer in all those years. Granted it is a hard sport, but 50 years is a long time to come up empty handed. I asked him once why he kept coming and he answered that it was not the deer he was after. There is an old saying that it takes some people their whole lives of fishing to realize it is not the fish they are after. This is something I understand very well. It is why I continue to fish in the winter knowing full well that my chances are slim. So for the last 3 nights I have headed out to "the spot" to do a little plugging. It has been beautiful with a gentle breeze and no boat traffic. The picture below is from March 22nd 2012. It remains the only March Trophy I have ever caught. That is why they call it Trophy season.

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