My dad started taking me to the big woods when I was 5 years old and I loved every minute of it. When I was 11 he let me come up and be part of the hunting crew. He put me in a great spot to sit all Thanksgiving week and Thursday morning a 150”, 11 point, 250lb buck walked 10 yards from us following a doe. The firing pin on my gun froze and we didn’t get that buck, but I was hooked. I spent probably more time than any other kid my age hunting in the Big Woods, who didn’t live near them, until I was out of college and got married. I was always a sitter because that’s how my dad had success, I loved finding and good spot and settling in and then finding the next one. I passed up a lot of smaller deer under 180lbs or so and missed one monster while sitting from the time I was 12 to probably 20 years old. About that time a great friend at college who loved to hunt started asking me about tracking in the Big Woods. I had always been interested but hadn’t tried much. He told me about Hal Blood’s books, so I bought them and read them again and again. I started following tracks around and doing my best, maybe seeing a tail once on a while. At that time my knee and mind was really getting in the way of tracking, I was having a tough time with some things in life and was mentally weak. This killed my ability to stave off fears of getting lost.
I’m now 31 and a normal guy in Maine working a few jobs, being a lobsterman is one of them, and doing the best I can for God and my family. I don’t get to spend much time in the Big Woods anymore, basically zero scouting and probably 5 days or so tracking each season. Through finding Jesus Christ as my savior, reading the Bible and going to God I’ve found great contentment in all of life and a great bonus to that has been having more confidence in the Big Woods. With God’s help, the materials Hal has put out, and time and experience I have finally run into a few big bucks tracking over the last 5 years. I’ve missed some and connected with some. I know believe I have a great chance of connecting with a big buck whenever I step in the woods with snow on the ground.
My favorite part of hunting Big Woods Bucks and tracking is everything! I think about it often throughout the year. From the second I get in my truck at home and drive 4 or 5 hours, to getting in the woods, to being on a track, to seeing the buck, getting a buck, dragging the buck, weighing him and telling the story it’s all a great adventure. I guess the absolute best part would have to be the camaraderie involved. Spending time with great friends, eating, camping, telling stories, dragging and weighing deer, talking the day over, pulling each other out of the ditch, the joy is endless and I’m thankful for every minute of it.