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My Dad’s Adventure (Page 2)

The story of a perspective-changing hunt for my father, one that echoed our earliest days in the woods together and lit a fire for our hunting future.

On Friday, three days before they were to depart, it was time to get out of Camp November and make the two-hour flight to Camp 17. It was the same country and the same set-up.

"It was around noon on Saturday before we saw any caribou," my dad said. "There were a couple of cows moving in the valley below us. I knew I had to make it happen, so I got my pack and gun and started running."

For the next 800 yards of open country my dad played cat-and-mouse with his quarry. Moving and spotting, then moving and spotting again. And before he knew it, there was a big cow standing about 100 yards in front of him. Pops threw up his Remington 700 chambered in .30-06 and sent a Remington 165 grain Core-Lokt toward its front shoulder—Caribou down!

My dad's partner John, who stayed up on the ridge, later commented that he watched the cow crumble to the ground before he even heard the shot. The next thing he knew, my dad was sitting beside the downed animal, binos around his neck, his heavy pack weightless on his back, just taking it all in.

"I thought, 'look where I am, I can't believe what I am doing.'" he said. "I just sat there with my hand on the caribou and tried to collect my thoughts. I was doing something I never thought I'd be doing. I was in total awe.

The feeling that you are that far away from everything was awesome. It was all the new nature, every time you turned around there was something I hadn't seen before. From ground cover to wolves and giant fish, it was all great."

I sat there and listened to my dad talk. I didn't say much, I just sat there, smiled and swigged my beer. There would be stories to tell for months. We’d chat about filling his final tag, the trip home and whatever great memories swelled up. The pure excitement and life in his voice helped me remember what it was like when we shared hunting firsts together—my first deer, my first miss. We might not have shared this one but I figured we'd have our time.

Many better men will go on to write about the bond hunting fosters between a father and son but I knew, after that moment, I had all the proof I needed.

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