Lucky 13

By Worth Nelson
Nevada, 2009, DIY, Public Land
Lucky 13Feb/Mar 2011 EHJ (Issue 123) - The second week of September in northern Nevada found my 13-year-old son, Worth Jr., and I packing for a weekend of muzzleloader hunting. It had been a few years since we had hunted the area he drew, but we’ve had pretty good luck in the past. We came up with a plan that included a twoand- a-half day circuit through some old “favorites”.

We headed for our first camping spot on Friday afternoon. On the way out, we talked about normal father-son things, but I also asked him how big a deer he was after. He replied that he’d like to beat his deer from the previous year - a 21-inch 4x3, and of course it would be nice to get one bigger than his sisters’ bucks, each of which were bigger than his. Arriving at camp, we set up the cots and bedrolls, cooked some chorizos and prepared coffee and hot chocolate for the morning.

Daybreak on Saturday found us climbing up a ridge to hunt across a drainage and glass the pockets below. We found no deer, so back down to the trail and the truck for plan B. We used midday to travel, glass, and get to our second camp. Along the way, we talked to two other hunters who had only seen three does.

Arriving at our second camp, we still had a couple hours of daylight, so we decided to head up the canyon. Not far up, I glassed a nice buck lying in the shade of a pine tree. After a short stalk, we were in perfect position. The nice 24-inch 4x4 jumped up and Worth shot right over his back. Needless to say, when a 13-year-old misses a nice buck, there is some consoling to be done. I assured him that he was not the first guy to miss a nice deer and at least we got to keep hunting. He finally agreed and mentioned there was still the possibility of finding a bigger one.

The next morning we were on a ridge top and headed down into a saddle to glass. I spotted a nice buck 500 yards away, and after looking through the spotting scope, we decided he was a VERY nice deer.

I took Worth to the top of the ridge the deer was on and then went back to the saddle to be the spotter. After arriving back at the saddle, I couldn’t find the deer. Worth had worked his way down the ridge a couple of knobs, so I went back to meet up with him. When I got to him, he said he had found him but he was in the bottom of the canyon.

Worth Nelson, Jr.

For a full account of Worth's adventure, go to page 48 in the February/March 2011 issue of Eastmans' Hunting Journal.