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Author Topic: I miss the old way of deer hunting.  (Read 12538 times)

Offline DOUBLELUNG

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #15 on: July 01, 2019, 02:27:14 PM »
Hunting really is what you make it.  I'd have loved to have that camp experience growing up, but I grew up in a mostly gun-free/nonhunting family.  I channeled that desire to fishing and asked for a rifle every Christmas from 12 on (never happened), turned 18 and started buying guns and took hunter safety.  Pretty much entirely self-taught with a little help from friends.

One easy way to get that old school flavor is to not bring electronics to camp: no cell phones, lap tops, etc.   
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2019, 03:16:53 PM »
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

that's some cool history-would you post pictures? I get it if you don't want too

Offline Wunderlich33

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #17 on: July 01, 2019, 03:21:38 PM »
idaho guy, bigmacc has posted a few pics from the past on some of his other threads.

Do a quick search of his posts and enjoy the reading.  Great memories of the great  Methow Valley

Offline boneaddict

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #18 on: July 01, 2019, 03:28:06 PM »
I miss it too .....


I had the best upbringing a young man could hope for, in Gods country.  Thanks Dad!

Offline pianoman9701

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #19 on: July 01, 2019, 03:30:54 PM »
My dad never hunted. WWII was plenty of guns for him. But our neighbors across the street did and had a cabin up in Maine. We'd go in the summer and shoot red squirrels and the older guys would go back for deer in November. The dad's are long since gone, along with one of the sons - agent orange finally got him two years ago. I'm a few years younger than my brother and his last hunting friend from that family and they don't hunt much together anymore. So it's time to start a new tradition. Hopefully, my present partner Cab and I will be hunting together until his boy is old enough to start shooting squirrels. And bring some other friends into camp. We'll see.
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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #20 on: July 01, 2019, 03:32:58 PM »
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

that's some cool history-would you post pictures? I get it if you don't want too

Thankyou, and at one time years ago I posted 40-50 pictures I think and eventually pulled all or most off as it was brought to my attention that a lot of them were being copied, it took a lot of help and work from family members to put the pictures up because I do not do well with technology :chuckle:, so now I just tell stories.

Offline Bushcraft

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #21 on: July 01, 2019, 04:37:46 PM »
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

That's awesome!  Thanks for sharing.
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Offline bigmacc

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #22 on: July 01, 2019, 09:24:11 PM »
Another thing that I miss from the old days of deer hunting is back then like I said in my earlier post open sights and 4 power scopes were the norm, my first scope was a 4 power Redfield and I used it from the earliy 60,s up into the late 80,s, when I took it off I put it back in its original box and passed it on to the grandkids, its never been used again but is in good hands and in the family. I have many old "trinkets" that belonged to other family members myself, things that have special meaning including rifles, knives, packs, drag ropes, hatchets, mess kits, etc, etc, etc. Anyway with mostly hunting with open sights or "simple"optics(for a lack of better words) we were taught to learn why deer do what they do, why they react the way they do under different circumstances and to basically "think like a deer" at all times while you were in "their world", this was taught to us when we were very young with plenty of trial runs spent on the sides of draws with sling shots before the season just studying how deer reacted when spooked, my dad or a grandparent or uncle telling us to watch where they go, watch their body language from ears, to head to feet to determine where their first move may be. I think a lot of the old way of hunting is not being taught like it used to with all the new technology available with tons more showing up every year it seams. Four, five and six hundred yard shots are being taken with lots of accuracy with new technology available from rifles and ammo to high tech optics and range guessers, heck with enough practice and enough tech, guys are shooting out to 1000 yards, I,m not saying its not right, just saying back then 90 percent of the bucks you killed involved a lot of planning, a lot of savvy, some sort of a stalk and sometimes involving multiple people with all kinds of goofy hand signals. I remember my younger brother killing his first buck at the age of 13 using a 300 HandH with open sights, it took 4 people using 10 dollar 8 by 30 Sears binos about a half a day getting him in as close as possible to drop the huge 3 by 3(and it was huge, had a head like a dang Angus), we finally got him to about 250 yards where he took a good rest on a blow down and squeezed one off, he killed it in its bed with that 1 shot but unless you happened to stumble on to one while out walking thats usually how it seemed to happen and not all the "plans" came together either. My brother ended up spending 20 years in the military with half that time spent in SF as a Green Beret sniper, he credited a lot of his practicing with open sights when he was young to his being able to "slow every thing down" and drive tacks at 800 yards during his service career. Like I said, technology is great but it has changed a lot of how we do hunt now days. I know there are others on here that are my age or older that know what I mean, I am old enough to have experienced hunting without all this technology and young enough to see it being used by my kids and grandkids, BUT I am not old enough to have witnessed my great grandparents using "their technology" back in 1917, I have had to depend on pictures and stories, amazing how things have changed, some for the better and some not. Like I said, when I was young you needed to do a lot of practicing with your shooting and while in "their world" you better have learned how to think like them and you had better know what they were gonna do under any scenario and you had better know it before they do...........now their are apps for this and that and uncle google will help you figure things out :chuckle: Technology is not bad, don't get me wrong, things are just different today compared to 20 years ago, 30, 40 and more years ago and thats ok. The topic is how we miss the way things were when it comes to hunting deer, just throwing my experiences and thoughts out there. Like DOUBLELUNG said, if you want the true experience maybe try leaving all the electronics at home, it really is a more relaxing experience.

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #23 on: July 01, 2019, 09:43:16 PM »
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?


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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #24 on: July 01, 2019, 09:53:10 PM »
Another thing that I miss from the old days of deer hunting is back then like I said in my earlier post open sights and 4 power scopes were the norm, my first scope was a 4 power Redfield and I used it from the earliy 60,s up into the late 80,s, when I took it off I put it back in its original box and passed it on to the grandkids, its never been used again but is in good hands and in the family. I have many old "trinkets" that belonged to other family members myself, things that have special meaning including rifles, knives, packs, drag ropes, hatchets, mess kits, etc, etc, etc. Anyway with mostly hunting with open sights or "simple"optics(for a lack of better words) we were taught to learn why deer do what they do, why they react the way they do under different circumstances and to basically "think like a deer" at all times while you were in "their world", this was taught to us when we were very young with plenty of trial runs spent on the sides of draws with sling shots before the season just studying how deer reacted when spooked, my dad or a grandparent or uncle telling us to watch where they go, watch their body language from ears, to head to feet to determine where their first move may be. I think a lot of the old way of hunting is not being taught like it used to with all the new technology available with tons more showing up every year it seams. Four, five and six hundred yard shots are being taken with lots of accuracy with new technology available from rifles and ammo to high tech optics and range guessers, heck with enough practice and enough tech, guys are shooting out to 1000 yards, I,m not saying its not right, just saying back then 90 percent of the bucks you killed involved a lot of planning, a lot of savvy, some sort of a stalk and sometimes involving multiple people with all kinds of goofy hand signals. I remember my younger brother killing his first buck at the age of 13 using a 300 HandH with open sights, it took 4 people using 10 dollar 8 by 30 Sears binos about a half a day getting him in as close as possible to drop the huge 3 by 3(and it was huge, had a head like a dang Angus), we finally got him to about 250 yards where he took a good rest on a blow down and squeezed one off, he killed it in its bed with that 1 shot but unless you happened to stumble on to one while out walking thats usually how it seemed to happen and not all the "plans" came together either. My brother ended up spending 20 years in the military with half that time spent in SF as a Green Beret sniper, he credited a lot of his practicing with open sights when he was young to his being able to "slow every thing down" and drive tacks at 800 yards during his service career. Like I said, technology is great but it has changed a lot of how we do hunt now days. I know there are others on here that are my age or older that know what I mean, I am old enough to have experienced hunting without all this technology and young enough to see it being used by my kids and grandkids, BUT I am not old enough to have witnessed my great grandparents using "their technology" back in 1917, I have had to depend on pictures and stories, amazing how things have changed, some for the better and some not. Like I said, when I was young you needed to do a lot of practicing with your shooting and while in "their world" you better have learned how to think like them and you had better know what they were gonna do under any scenario and you had better know it before they do...........now their are apps for this and that and uncle google will help you figure things out :chuckle: Technology is not bad, don't get me wrong, things are just different today compared to 20 years ago, 30, 40 and more years ago and thats ok. The topic is how we miss the way things were when it comes to hunting deer, just throwing my experiences and thoughts out there. Like DOUBLELUNG said, if you want the true experience maybe try leaving all the electronics at home, it really is a more relaxing experience.

This really resonates with me.  That's why I love to hunt archery and muzzleloader.  Yes, those weapons have changed drastically with technology, but it is still a relatively short-range activity where I get the excitement of stalking, still-hunting, and sitting still (ground, blind, stand).  Even when I do hunt modern firearm, I like to hunt the denser woods where it is still a short-range game.  I think it is less the weapon choice, and more about how you hunt with it.  I have a lot of respect for the old-time camps and traditions, and for the importance of passing the hunt to the next generation.  This year, I will mentor my sixth new deer hunter, and it has been the greatest privilege of my hunting career to do that.  If we value a lot of the things from the old camps, let's create it again in our modern day camps!  We certainly can choose to do so. 

Sorry for the rambling.  I hope you all are having a great summer.  Fall is coming...



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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #25 on: July 01, 2019, 10:40:00 PM »
I've always felt if you want something - build it yourself. I am building a hunting legacy at my family with my boys after having it skip a generation. Say hi sometime.

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #26 on: July 02, 2019, 10:12:28 AM »
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?

 :chuckle:...no, thats wasn't us.

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #27 on: July 02, 2019, 11:22:19 AM »
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?

Got me thinking, I think I may know of who you are talking about, were they camped up a certain"Creek"drainage?

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #28 on: July 02, 2019, 12:33:33 PM »
Am not what I consider old by any means am 30. But I remember a time when things were different. My family would have a deer camp every year I started going when I was seven. My uncle would take me hunting and let my take my red rider, in my seven year old mind I really thought I would get a buck with that thing of course I knew it would have to be a head shot at close range but I was hunting. I remember when I was to young to have my own rifle I was in awe of thereís. The camp had many classics a win mod 70 .270, rem 700 30 06, rem 760 30 06, win 94 30 30 and even a old wwII surplus 6.5x55 Swede. All had beautiful wood stocks and the biggest scope was a 3 by 9. What I remember most was the ammo the old green and yellow box Remington core lock thatís all anyone needed. When ammo was talked about it was not about the newest and greatest only if you shot 150 or 180 out of your 30 06 and the pros and cons of each. That camp killed many deer but size was not a huge factor any buck was a good one and we looked forward to the storyís and the meat at the end of the day. When I was ten I was able to join the camp for real I saved up enough money to buy a Sears Roebuck model 54 30 30. I killed a doe with that rifle and could not have been prouder. At camp that doe might as well been a 5x5 buck they treated it as it was. Things have change so much we donít do the camp any more. We need to get back to the basics. I have my own two sons now and once they get old enough I will start the camp again and teach them the things that really matter about deer camp. friendship family good food and fun.

Couldn't agree more  :tup: Today everyone seems to be caught up in the rack size, and age as the only measure of success. The hunting shows have created unrealistic expectations from the harvest, esp in Wa., We have huge deer in this state but not in the numbers seen in other states. Blacktail are definitely the hardest deer to hunt if you are looking for a monster, pair that with the terrain that they live in. I too, miss the days when you would spend months dreaming about the hunt, preparing mentally and physically, packing and repacking your gear, and passing other hunters in the woods and giving each other a friendly wave, it still exists in some areas, but nothing like it was 30-40 years ago. 

Offline 2MANY

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Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
« Reply #29 on: July 02, 2019, 01:09:55 PM »
Flatbrimming, Facebookin, Snowflakes.

 


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