Success in the deer blind this morning on the second day of bow season. This fellow was not going to turn sideways so I was forced to take a "front on" shot, which sometimes can be risky (but the Parker crossbow is incredibly accurate). The bolt traveled from the frontal entry point through the heart and lungs and lodged inside, before puncturing the guts. Dragged him back with the Ariens tractor, gutted him, hosed him out, and put him on the trailer. As soon as my neighbors and friends are home (Pisco's Meat Processing, 1.5 miles to the West) I will drop him off. Mike does a wonderful job of making steaks, roasts, tenderloins, and burger. No brats this year, still have some from last. This was a new fellow for Rauhallinen Farm which works out well, as our big boys will be here for gun season and when Eric comes up for the end of bow season. Takes the pressure off. He ran some distance which required tracking about 40 minutes, at times losing the blood trail. Found him about three quarters of the way to my son's blind in heavy brush. Finding blood spots in the Fall with red leaves on the ground is a challenge. Lots of experience with that as a kids at our hunting camp, when after opening day the adults would all drink themselves into a stupor and order the kids to go out in the dark with flashlights in the cedar swamps and find their deer. If the job was not bad enough to begin with, they would come along, stumble, and yell. We got skillful at not only tracking deer, but pulling drunken adults back upright out of muck holes. Benny got to sniff his arch enemy and managed to grab the balls and run with them for a few minutes while I was doing the gutting-likely the most disrespect he can muster for his arch enemy! Celebrating tonight with a couple of Leinenkugels and some homemade eggplant parmesan. A very nice day indeed. As always,,,,wish you were here (and all the girls as well). I would turn them in to naturalists extraordinaire in no time. How nice to know you always have a safe haven where you can come home, no matter what the circumstances.