Arkansas has six seasons—spring, summer, fall, winter, football season and deer season. Several posts on Facebook in the last few days from friends and family reminded me that it’s now deer season back home.
I grew up in a family of deer hunters. Daddy and a couple of my uncles always spent the week of my birthday at the Camden Hunting Club. They were joined on the weekend by my brother and several cousins (Daddy wouldn’t let Tommy skip school to go deer hunting). Daddy was a charter member of the CHC, a collection of cabins and shacks on land leased from International Paper Company.
Daddy and Uncle Joe on the porch of the Camden Hunting Club mess hall. Be sure to take note of the wanted poster.
Back in the day, deer season lasted for a week in November, with another week-long hunt in December. One night during the November hunt was always family night at deer camp. I loved family night. The camp cook prepared venison and homemade biscuits, and the wives of all the deer hunters filled in with the rest. That was some good eatin’.
Today, there’s bow and arrow season and muzzleloader season in addition to modern gun season, which runs for several weeks. Back in the day, the limit was one buck per hunter, per season. Today, doe are no longer off limits.
At one point, my mother, her sister, and her sisters-in-law decided it was time to start their own deer camp. “Deer camp” for these women consisted of a trip to Little Rock for Christmas shopping, a tradition they carried on for many years.
We are heading to Arkansas in a few weeks for Thanksgiving as usual, and it’s a sure bet that a lot of my family will be in the deer woods. They’ll come in on Thursday night for Thanksgiving dinner, and some of them will venture in on Saturday in time to watch the Hogs play LSU. Otherwise, they’ll be up before dawn and in their deer stands bright and early waiting for that trophy buck to pass their way.
Brent bagged this 8-point buck in 2003.
Since deer season is a big favorite in my family, I’m linking (a little late) to Laurie’s Favorite Things Saturday. Head on over and join her for some fun reading.