Every year, I go out with my dad and we hunt locally here in Pennsylvania. It’s pretty much a family thing. We all get together, look for deer and have a great time. Once a year when we hunt for bear. We go to a cabin and make it a longer trip but otherwise, we are out doing day trips taking a lot of turkeys, woodchucks and geese. I was three years old when my dad took me groundhog hunting and I’ve never looked back.
One of the best memories lately was last year when I got my second buck. It was an eight-point, but was one of the first I killed at long range. I’ve grown up around long-range shooting. It’s gotten to me and now I’m shooting competitively.
Last year, I finished ninth in the 1,000-yard World Open and was junior shooter of the year. Currently, I’m the lead junior shooter for 2016 in the 1,000-yard match as well.
But for all the competing, I love actually hunting in the field.
On that buck hunt last year, we were just about ready to pack it up for the day. We were coming out of a hollow when we crested these hay fields. I looked out over the horizon and saw the deer in the distance. It was about a half-hour before the shooting light was gone, so we set up and threw my gun on a bi-pod. With one shot, the deer was down. It was really exciting because in our area, bucks aren’t super common. Guys don’t get them very often.
After I’ve been hunting so long, it’s become a passion. Getting that buck that day was the best. I was pretty much overwhelmed with enjoyment. I like hunting because every time we go out it’s a new experience. Even if you don’t get anything, you see stuff you wouldn’t have seen before. I’ve learned that the more you practice shooting, the more successful you’ll be when the situation presents itself.
Age 13Orangeville, PA