My First Deer Harvest And Its Impact On Me

By Alex Comstock 

Do you remember the day you got hooked on deer hunting? I mean that moment you realized hunting could change your life? I still vividly remember that day, and it was the first time I took a deer's life. I remember when time almost seemed to stand still and it was as if everything in that second changed, and it put me on the path that I'm on today. Ever since that October day in 2010, I became a bowhunter. A whitetail fanatic. And that will never change. Today, I wanted to run you through the evening that I became hooked and how it changed my life forever. 

If memory serves correctly, it was October 2nd of 2010. I was about two weeks into my bowhunting career. After tagging along with my dad and going to deer camp for a few years and never having much action, I decided to take the plunge and jump into bowhunting. I was 15 years old, and had never even been a part of a deer harvest. I wanted deer hunting to be more than just a couple weekends. That first year bowhunting, I was pretty lucky as I had permission to hunt on a family friends small piece of land in town who was a hardcore hunter. He had a food plot behind his house and let me hunt it. 

That day, I decided to bring my 11 year old brother with me as well. I thought if I was getting into hunting, I'd try to lure him into as well (it didn't work). We had to get dropped off as I couldn't drive, and after saying bye to my mom and telling her to be back at dark, we headed into the food plot to sit in our ground blind. 

I literally get goosebumps as I think about that evening right now. As me and my brother sat in the ground blind, I remember being jittery and not knowing how I'd react if given the opportunity to arrow a deer. At that point, if it was brown it was down for me, and a little after sunset, I was given that opportunity. A small doe popped out of the woodlot and started feeding on the other end of the food plot about 60 yards away. I desperately wanted this to be the moment of getting an opportunity to harvest my first deer. 

The doe kept feeding, and was heading in my direction. She kept coming and coming, and before I knew it she was 40, 30, and then 20 yards away and still coming right at me. She then angled and started briskly walking across my field of view. Not really knowing what I was doing, I drew back my bow rather quickly. By this time, the doe had closed the distance to about 12 yards. The moment I drew my bow, she stopped on a dime, and looked right at me. I knew this was the moment, so I nestled that pin right on her, and squeezed the release. 

The split second where your arrow leaves the bow, and connects with a deer is indescribable. And on this night, that split second is why I'm typing this now, have a blog, and am consumed by whitetails. That moment sparked something inside of me, and to this day, I can't get enough of it. And that's something special to me. 

As my arrow passed through the doe, she wheeled around, and took off into the woods, not making it more than 30 yards. What made this night and my first time harvesting a deer even more special was the fact that I got to watch the doe expire. The ability of being able to see her go down, and get the full experience the first time I took a deer's life was very gratifying. It's a day I won't ever forget. 

Looking back on that day now is pretty surreal. I find it so interesting that in the moment I could have never dreamed about the road that night would take me down. At the time I found it fun, knew it was a feeling that I had never experienced up to that point, and loved every second of it. But to think I would become as obsessed as I am now, and even making an attempt to use deer hunting as a platform to make my living is pretty awesome to think about. I'm very thankful that I picked up a bow, and went hunting that night. I think if you're reading this, odds are you can relate. 

Do you remember the moment you became hooked on deer hunting? Let us know in the comments!