Well ladies and gentlemen, I am about to embark you on a hilarious adventure into my first bow Hunting experience!!  I had been hunting whitetails with a shotgun for about 10 years prior to meeting my best friend Pat.  Once pat and i started discussing whitetail hunting, he encouraged me to get a bow and he would teach me.  After being a little reluctant I purchased a used bow and began shooting the Summer of 2002.  Pat took his time and patience and taught me the ins and outs of bow hunting.  By Fall of 2002 I was ready to get into a tree stand, or so I thought.  Opening Day of archery season in 2002 Pat takes me to his hunting property.  280 acres of timber right in the heart of Whitetail Country in illinois.  mind you that Pat and his 4 other friends that hunt this property are all in between 5’10 tol 6’4 all around 175 to 225 pounds, and most of them can climb a tree like a Monkey!!!  Well at that time I was a phelt 6’1 340lbs, without any gear on. So the entire 2 hour truck ride to the Farm and I kept asking Pat, “you sure you have a tree stand that I can easily get into?”  He assured me that he had the perfect stand picked out for me and he guaranteed me a shot at a whitetail. 

     Well October 1st, 2002 we arrive at the property and get all our gear on and our bows and head to the woods!!!  after about a 1/2 mile walk Pat and I are standing in front of a huge Maple tree and Pat looks at me and points 30 feet up in the air, and stated “there it is the best stand on the property, I look at him and then back at the stand and there was no ladder or even screw in steps.  I asked him how in the world was I suppose to get in the stand, ” I don’t have wings!!” He stated” oh it is so easy, just take the branches all the way up, well mind you it is October in Illinois, it is 85 degrees, and the wind is blowing a brisk 25 miles per hour.  So he leaves me so I can make my journey into the stand.  He walks to his stand which is only about 150 yards from me and I begin my journey to the stand.  I hook my bow and backpack to the tow up rope and start out on the bottom branch, and thinking to myself that people at my funeral will at leaset know I died doing what I loved!!!!!  So I climb very cautiously and carefully, taking my time sweating and cursing the enire way.  25 minutes later I am on the branch right beside the tree stand, which looks about as big as a shoe box!!!!  I tip toe into the stand praying the lock on rusted 12 inch by 12 inch platform would hold my girth, as i bear hug the tree, like that was going to save me I finally make it onto the platform and into the 6 inch wide cloth seat, mind you I have now sweated off around 3lbs so I am a hefty 337lbs in a tree stand rated for 250lbs, not a good situation.  Once situated inthe stand and get my bearings, the wind started to pick up and with every gust the tree top swayed and so did me and my toddler chair i was sitting in!!!, so at this point I go to pull u my gear, which has my safety belt in the backpack, and I start slowly pulling my pack up to me, when about halfway up, you guessed it, caught up and wrapped around three branches!!!!!!!!!  There was no way in He!! I was clmbing back down this tree, so I did what any hot, sweaty, fat man would do and screamed as loud as i could for my bussy PAT!!!!!!!!  Who got me into this situation!!  Pat made the 150 yards through a cut cornfield in less than 10 secs and standing at the base of my treee, scowling at me, he stated”I thought you fell or was hurt!’  I told him I was not hur but I needed a little assisstance in getting my gear untangled before I just gave up on bow hunting and went back to the house for a chair and a beer!!!!    So I get my bow and safety harness and he gets back to his stand.  The enitre hunt I don’t care about deer, but I am focused and praying not to fall with each and every gust of wind!!!  SO finally around a half hour before sunset a yearling made her way to 20 yards a stopped.  I got to my shakey feet, drew back and had so much adrenaline goign that I shoot a foot over back, but what an awesome experience even after goign through all that misery, I was hooked!!!!

    At dark my buddy and mentor came back to get me and I was still in the tree, telling him all about the yearling and how awesome bow hunting was and trying to climb down the branches in the dark was more of a challenge then climbing up!!!  I get to about 10 foot off the ground and I am hanging by one branch and trying to find the other branch with my foot, my buddy Pat is trying the best he can to help me but is crying from laughing.  I finally get to tired to hold on anymore, mind you I am 340 pounds, and I tell him I am going to jump to get out of my way, by this time Pat is vapor locked and can’t peak and I look like the Biggest Man ever to be on a pommel Horse going for the Gold in the Fat Man Olympics, so after about three good swings to clear from the tree, I land on the ground with a thunderous roar and all my weight going forward and I ran smack dab in between to saplings on my knees and come to a halt as the two trees fall completely over!!!!  What a ride.  Well I hope I have visualized for everyone my first boe hunt as a fat man and hopefully some of you Plus Size fellas can relate to the tradegy of being a big man in the Hunting Woods!!!

 

Thanks for Reading

 

Tucker