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Bagging Grinches

2019 9 Point Buck
.308 Rifle
Chemung County, Horseheads, NY

I love to hunt, always have, but cancer is a Grinch, trying to steal everything, even an Outlaw’s roast beast.

When I was 16, I bagged my first buck, an 8 point, up on a Phelps Mountain ridge.

My 1st Buck
8 Point
Phelps basin ridge
Adirondack Mountains

My next buck didn’t come for a number of years. I was stationed with the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, hunting with my college friend, Chuck, on his family’s land in New York State’s Southern Tier. I shot once at a buck, then watched it disappear down a slope in the woods. Fearing I had missed, I unloaded my shotgun, dropped it from the homemade wooden tree stand I was in, jumped to the ground doing my best PLF (Parachute Landing Fall), reloaded, and headed downhill to give chase. All for naught, there he lay, a nice 6.

My “PLF Buck”
6 point, 1988
Hunting with my Friend Chuck
Horseheads, N.Y.

I drove it back to Watertown and stood outside of my girlfriend’s 2nd story apartment throwing pinecones at her window. I thought I would impress her with the trophy on display in the bed of my pickup. Must have worked. That “girlfriend” was Robin. She’s now my wife.

But by the time my son RJ was old enough to hunt, I was sick. I managed to get him through the Hunter’s Safety Course. My Dad, his “Gramps”, spent time teaching him to shoot, but that Grinch stole the strength I needed to share with both RJ my love of the hunt and the taste of roast beast .

Re-enter Chuck. Chuck and I had lost touch while we each raised families, but my children knew of his place in my life, and somehow found his address and invited him to a surprise party they threw for my 50th birthday. Chuck met RJ there, and invited us to hunt.

Chuck immediately took RJ under his wing. They have continued to be close. Along the way, RJ learned to hunt, bagging deer with rifle, muzzleloader and bow.

RJ’s 1st buck taken on our land here in Watertown
Hunting partners Doubling up

RJ’s 2020 Bow Buck

I still can’t eat the roast venison feast or trek the mountains in pursuit of a buck. I no longer do tree stand PLFs. Cancer may be the Grinch. But Chuck is Outlaw Santa, with a Posse. With Chuck guiding our slay, and RJ riding shotgun in support, this season we tagged 5 deer, two of them nice bucks. “Hey Grinch- Check your bag!”

A successful hunt with my friend Chuck
RJ’s “Broke Rack Buck”
Sharing .308 Success with my son
Another priceless Father/son hunt

Cancer may have stolen the roast beast, but he can’t steal our hunt!

My “Barefoot Buck”
(I was barefoot in a ground blind when I shot it)
With My friend Chuck
Chemung County, NY

Until our trails cross again:

Happy hunting!

No bag limit on Grinches!


(And RJ)