Today is Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Of books and bucks

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Take a look at the buck Mt. Juliet's Tony Collins killed opening day in Maury County

A couple of good reads
There are a couple books you can order just in time for Christmas. One is a book of inspirational outdoor stories and I loved it.  Passion of the Wild, is a super read written by my fellow outdoor writer, Mike Giles from down in Meridian, Mississippi.
I can promise you, whether you hunt and fish or not, you will get both enjoyment and inspiration from the stories in this book. The best thing is, it is written in our language.
You can order from Mike. To get ordering information, contact him at He will give you the price and info on how to order.
No Paved Road to Freedom is a different read altogether even though it was written by a real outdoorswoman.
Sharon Rushton at one time, worked for the TWRA and then bounced around in several outdoors related positions before settling on the banks of Table Rock Lake in Missouri.
This is a page-turner account of a young man’s escape from Communist Romania and starts with the bombing and invasion during World War II.
If you are a history or war buff, you will love it. If you just like a good factual story, you will love it.
Contact information is Give her a shout and she will get back to you post haste.
Or, you can go to and they can tell you about e-books and how to get it that way.

Meanwhile, back in the woods
Deer season is progressing nicely. For once, we have not been hurt by too warm weather and some exceptional bucks are being killed.
Opening weekend may have been down a tad due to the cold, windy weather. Hunters who ventured out and stuck with it seemed to have a good opener.
The rut also seems to be confusing. In some areas, there are reports of plenty of chasing while in others, like where I am hunting, there is none.
One can have a psychotic episode and take to strong drink trying to figure it out. The fact is it is turning into a good year for hunters.
Back on November 4, 10-year old Heath Gilley dropped a fine four-pointer with his muzzleloader. It was Heath’s first hunt with a muzzleloader and the buck field dressed at 98-pounds. Heath is the son of Dani and Darell Gilley of Lebanon. I suspect if the girls or video games don’t get him, he is going to be a fine hunter.
Word also has it that Samantha Nelson killed her first buck, an eight-point, on opening morning of rifle season. The word is also that husband Ken Nelson Jr., is going to have to pony up with taxidermy fees. (I suggest Foster Butt at Wildlife Taxidermy in Madison.)

As a sidebar, I hope they catch the sorry sucker that set Ken’s rental house on fire.
Over Rutherford County way, John Hailey got out of the courtroom long enough to go hunting. John killed a doe opening morning.
He shot her about 7:30 on the family farm in the middle of a sleet storm. He used a rifle his granddad gave him 18-years ago. Good shooting, John. John is also a superb hand in the kitchen. It will be interesting to see what he does with deer meat. Later in the year, I might venture out for a duck with him.
Tony Collins, a Mt. Juliet hunter traveled to Maury County opening day to take a real trophy. Tony killed a bruiser of a mature buck opening morning. This is just one of many big bucks I have seen or heard about so far this year.
The weather and my health have sorta prevented me from getting out as much as I usually do.
I skipped opening day but the great weather forced me to go on the second day. I just love those cold, crisp, mornings and it was sure cold and crisp at 17-degrees.
I had a plan to hunt two different stands, devoting about two hours to each. When I noticed my water bottle had frozen, I started to wonder about hunting the second stand but it was such a beautiful morning, I decided to soldier on.  It only took 10-minutes in the second stand.
That makes five for the year and I think I shall wait for a nice buck from now on. Maybe I can kill one like Mom, Betty Whitener.
She killed a super seven point Nov. 30, her third buck in two years and second eight-point this year. This one dropped in his tracks at 200-yards! You go girl.
I predicted earlier that we would beat last year’s kill figures. I still think we will.
However, official figures for our opening weekend of rifle season show us slightly behind last year, about 17,000 compared to about 14,000 this year.
Those could be the actual numbers or they could be an indication of the impact of the phone thingies to check deer in. Mike Forbes at Lebanon Locker said he is running way up on deer brought in for processing.
I have found that to be an excellent indicator of how it is really going.
Well, enough chitchat, time for me to be getting out and about. I hope your season is going well.
Good luck and hunt safely and let’s get ready for Christmas.

Contact John L. Sloan at

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