There are a lot of deer hunting stories out there that veteran hunters share while at the deer lease sitting around the campfire, but I will never forget the time we were hunting in Central Texas. It was early season and we were bow hunting, and never expected a mountain lion to be in the area. It had to be about 1986 and I was 14 years old. I would hunt by myself, but usually in close proximity to my father.
My dad would walk me to my deer stand which was brush blind at the base of a couple of big cedar trees. We’d always make the trek quietly though the spotty habitat and then dad would pour me out a little corn out along my shooting lanes. Before we’d part ways he would always tell me not to move until he came back. He hunted about 160 yards West of me.
One evening, it was about 45 minutes until dark and I had two deer come out about 15 yards in front of me and and start chowing down on the corn. As the two does doe ate, they settled down and I was just starting to think about positioning myself for a shot. Then suddenly, the deer throw their heads up and stare directly in my direction, but I had not even budged.
The deer start to get really nervous, and then I realized they are not looking at me, but something behind me. I’m stuck, I thought. I can’t blink, much less look around without alerting the deer to my presence. The two deer final spooked and then I heard a low purring sound move off from behind me. A little later I smelled what I thought was a faint musky-urine smell. I did not think much of it because I figured it was probably nothing. Plus, I knew there were some hogs in the area too.
I did not see anything until about 20 minutes later. Although it was still too early to stop hunting, I saw my Dad running back to me from his deer stand, his flashlight bouncing with each stride. He runs up to me looking like a crazy person and sees that I’m still siting in my stand. I’m about to ask what the deal is when he takes a couple deep breaths, starts to relax a little and asks, “Did you see it?”
“See what,” I responded. “The mountain lion,” he says, “did you see it?” He then proceeded to tell me about his afternoon hunt. The mountain lion walked into his shooting lane and spotted him sitting in the brush. Then, apparently the cat tried to stalk in behind him. Once Dad realized that the cat was no longer deer hunting, but hunting him, he turned on his flashlight, bailed out and ran in my direction.
It was not until several years later that I told him about the scared deer that ran from my area or the purring I heard directly behind me while deer hunting that day. I knew if I did he would never let me go back with him. I’ve seen a lot of things over the years while deer hunting in the woods, but to this day I have yet to actually see a mountain lion.
If you love Texas, you will LOVE this video!