September's Sabbatical

When I got Skinner's call and told Terrel to sit, we got our rifles up with our elbows on our knees, just in case. So we didn't really have to move.

When the antelope stopped, my crosshairs found his engine room, my finger squeezed the well tuned trigger, and down he went. Terrel turned his head, looked me in the eye and said, “I was just gonna do that!” Greedy ole Dad stole the day again. Bad habits die hard . . .

For the rest of the week I was gunless, trailing, coaching, and sometimes leading Terrel to his two tag filling antelope, an exciting but missed shot at a coyote, and one dead prairie dog.

Ron's Remington 700 in 25-06 reached out and got his doe at last light Wednesday, and his grandson had a heck of a time. He got so excited when he had the opportunity to shoot, that he missed everything. One day at a waterhole antelope surrounded him, and he couldn't make a choice. It was overwhelming.

Thursday we had target practice at midday.

Friday morning Grampa was stickin' his chest through his camo when he got the call that the young feller's Ruger 77 in .243 Winchester'd put two on the ground by 8:00 am. Fence sitting on the Local Morning Antelope Escape Route had paid off. Terrel and I had heard five shots that sounded like two guys cutting loose at something. Later Seth said he had a lot of trouble reloading. He'd had only three in the rifle when he started shooting, emptied it, reloaded and shot twice more.


Seth and his Friday Morning Double.


I said - “I don't know what was going on behind your eyes, but no one who rips off five rounds that fast - sounding like two guns - had any hiccup throwin' shells into his rifle!” Dang, that boy's fast!

If we'da had the light offa his Friday morning smile on our first Wyoming night in bear country, that nocturnal bruin never woulda showed up near us . . .

By two thirty Saturday morning we had run the nine hundred miles back home, unloaded the truck, and jumped into our own beds. Out of eight tags applied for, seven were filled.

We ate in a dry stream bed most days at noon. We saw deer, buffalo, antelope, prairie dogs (Some of which we shot during the hottest part of the days), bear paw prints, elk, and a bunch of cool people.

Do it again? Yup. Soon as we can!


Les Voth learned to hunt whitetail deer and coyotes in his native Canada, and has hunted both as often as possible in eastern North Dakota since immigrating to the United States.