Hook and Bullet Club

by Nick Wognum

Even with temperatures in the 50s for the 2021 Minnesota firearms deer opener, there weren’t a lot of shots fired last weekend. The DNR had predicted it would be tough hunting in the Ely area and it looks like they were right.
At Camp Cholesterol we were down to four hunters in the field. Sitting was easy but dressing to get there was a bit tricky. We found what worked best was to carry in a layer or two so if you did get cold you could put them on instead of getting to your deer stand soaked in sweat.
Our group didn’t fire a shot but there were deer that came through and weren’t too concerned we were there. A doe and a fawn came in to feed by Megan and Evan watched a button buck munching in a clear cut. My nephew Justin and I didn’t see much from our stands, but that’s the luck of the draw.
We did have some great meals including venison steaks I had saved from last year for dinner on Friday night. Then on Saturday it was Sarah’s famous homemade manicotti that stole the show.
Megan whipped up some great lunches as well with pulled pork on Saturday and a taco bake on Sunday.
There’s still two weekends left in the firearms season and it looks like we might get some tracking snow if the weatherman is right. Snow on the ground also makes it a lot easier to see deer from the stand.
The number of deer harvested over the weekend was down in Minnesota and the number of licenses sold dipped as well. Both of these are concerning.
We need to continue to find ways to involve young people in the tradition of deer camps and hunting. The youth season held over MEA weekend is a great tool and hopefully will continue to grow in popularity.
Let’s hope the deer herd makes it through the upcoming winter without being run down by wolves and weather. We’re doing our part by not shooting any deer. Yet.