Deer Season 2012

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Like always summer is here and gone before you know it.

The wife and me decided back early in spring that it was time to have a barn built. Long story short, I always thought I wanted to have a house built. After the barn undertaking, there's not a chance of a snowball that I would jump in on having a house built.

And while things actually went relatively smooth, I do have some bald spots on my head where I ripped out big chunks of hair.

"We'll start July 18th or 19th"

Which translates to "We'll be in touch, maybe" and that really was my biggest complaint with the entire project. Say what you'll do and when you'll do it and then actually do it.

The barn turned out nice and I lost 6 or 8 lbs shoveling gravel around the base of the barn, inside and out. Nearly 100 lbs of grass seed later and we're about set for winter. Got a decent stand of grass started, the entrances covered in gravel and concrete and a little electricity run in the barn.

Now I can run some hooks into the beams and get ready to string up some deer.

My oldest granddaughter, Lillie, is going to deer hunt this fall during the youth season. Her and her new step-dad, Steven jumped in and took the Missouri Hunter Safety Course late summer. So back in mid September she, her Mom and Steven came over for a shooting session. Lillie shot my old Marlin 60 quite a bit and then graduated to "the deer rifle".

She was a little apprehensive about the recoil and noise so we played it down and didn't make a big deal about it before she fired the gun for the first time.

I got her situated at the shooting bench and placed my little Ruger 77 compact in 6.8SPC into the rest and rear bag. I explained the 3 position safety to her and had her look through the scope. Down range I had put up a life size deer target in full color with a targeted kill zone. When she reported that she could see the target well, I cranked up the power on the scope. She exclaimed that she could "really see it now".

I calmly said "when you're ready, push the safety off and squeeze the trigger." Her first shot landed within 3/4" of dead center. Her response to the recoil was great. She did not seem alarmed or anxious about it at all. 2 additional shots fell within 1.5" of dead center. And before she got nervous and started anticipating the noise and recoil, I had her stop.

Now granted, the 6.8 spitting 85gr Barnes TSX bullets should be down in the 7-9lb recoil range, but for an 11 year old that hasn't fired tons of ammo, I was thrilled with her reaction and accuracy. We'll get out and shoot again before season opens but we are running out of time quickly.

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