05 January 2008

Holidays with NAS-1

Welcome back from the holidays! What a hectic holiday season it has been! I hope everyone had memorable and safe holidays and that everyone managed to make it to the woods, even if only for a day.
My son, "NAS-1", came to visit for the holidays. Even with all the holiday shopping, traveling and visiting with family, we still made it into the woods a few days. With no significant snowfall yet, and temps below zero C. we have not had any good wild boar (inoshishi) yet, but deer (shika) hunting has been very good though. NAS-1 and I had a few uneventful days in the field going over track recognition, hunting safety, and firearm safety. These were great days, hanging out together!
On Sunday 30 Dec 07 NAS-1 joined me on a group hunt on the foothills of Mount Fuji. We found a nice fresh boar track in the morning but it gave our group the slip. I will be looking for him the rest of the season. In the afternoon hunt, we sat on a hill overlooking a bend in a creek and the edge between the pines and hardwoods. My partners jumped a deer about a mile below us along the creek and thought it had ran out where we had no hunters. I heard some motion in the thick brush below us and moved uphill about 10 meters to see if I could listen better. White Antlers! That is all I saw swaggering between the bushes approaching the treeline. I signalled to NAS-1 and took up a kneeling shooting position. When I pulled up my gun, all I saw was bushes with white antlers sticking out. Talk about buck fever all over again! I knew I had only a tiny space between the trees to get a clear shot on this big buck, but only if he continued walking in the same direction, and did not see or smell us. I saw his shoulder come into clear view about 70 meters below me and I let a slug rip. The bullet penetrated about 1cm in front of his right shoulder and exited about 1 cm into his left shoulder. He dropped in his tracks (thanks to Federal Premium Vital Shok 12ga 3" Magnum!).
NAS-1 saw his first monster buck taken, and first ever Sika taken. He then helped out field dressing, and later, butchering this fine animal. Check out the photos of us with this monster Sika.
I think NAS is hooked and he is already planning his next visit!
Well, it is back to work for me on Monday so I better sign out now.
See you in the woods!

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