It was Wednesday morning November 16, 2011, 5 AM, when we arrived at the hunting lease near Kirksville Missouri. The wind was strong and steady as I rolled out of the van. Chris and Jim unloaded my action trackchair from the trailer and I thought about one thing, monster buck.
The guys quickly transferred me from my permobil wheelchair into the action trackchair and got all of my gear ready. I joked with Chris that he needed to improve his driving skills while putting my permobil back into my van. It's obviously not as easy as it looks, right buddy?
Chris and I wished Jim good luck as he would be hunting a different part of the lease after guiding disabled children all last week. This would be Jim's first chance to hunt the property this year.
I was so excited to get started I put my chair into fourth gear, and we made our way quickly and quietly to the ground blind Chris and Jim had set up specifically for me several weeks earlier.
It did not take very long for Chris to set up all of my gear (rifle rest, adapted rifle, battery and adapted trigger) as well as zip up my jacket and pull my hat down tight. The temperatures were very cold (27°) and the winds were blowing hard.
As I sat in the ground blind watching the woods transform from darkness, I thought about how lucky I was to be enjoying this hunting trip. About how many people volunteered their time, donated money or worked to make this possible. I thought how great it was to have this opportunity and how thankful I was to so many people.
We were not in the ground blind long before Chris spotted a half rack five point making its way along the creek bottom. The buck was obviously looking for a hot Doe and actually came 15 yards in front of the ground blind. Unfortunately, I was unable to get it into my scope due to my limited mobility. Chris assured me not to worry, there would be plenty more opportunities.
The day continued like that, watching Does come in, turkeys and even a coyote! This hunting lease had it all and I was enjoying nature at its finest. We hunted from the ground blind all day, thankful that the blind was blocking at least some of the wind. It was cold, I was cold but there was no way I was leaving early.
At around 4:30 PM we spotted a nice eight point about 120 yards away. After some maneuvering using my action trackchair to turn to my left I settled the crosshairs on his shoulder. I used the sip and puff trigger activator and my 270 exploded. For whatever reason I missed. Whether I hit a small branch or simply had buck fever I'm not sure.
We waited around to see if anything else would come by, but nothing did. We made our way back to the van, transferred me back into my permobil and made our way back to the motel without a Missouri Whitetail but with exciting memories.
Stay tuned for Hunting Missouri Part Three