Shawn – Hunting Trip

Shawn: Lost in the Fog

Deer season, early bow hunting in the Adirondacks Mountains, 1992. I was in a hurry to get out hunting, and I brought 2 friends. We left my truck, and off we went into Sand Lake.

Not long after, we had Tony stay on the trail, and Ron and I went to the lake. Within an hour, it was raining and getting colder as we headed in our path. The lake was gone, and I was past the lake outlet.

After about four hours, I was soaked in my 1987 era US Army woodland camo. No food, no water, no fire, or contact, as my bow was all metal, a P.S.E. I found a beaver flow and drank a sip of water due to the rain. It was a lot higher to cross. So, as it got dark, about four, the wood became too foggy to see any distance.

As I traveled about six miles away from my truck, as a crow flies, I got colder and felt weak and thirsty. I planned for the night as to stay in one spot, but my friends would be in the same shape. So, as I looked around, I walked up the side of a mountain, all the blowdown from a microburst a year or so earlier. I hit a trail not used but very muddy, an old logging road possibly. As I waited, I heard a shot in the distance.

Since it was bow season, it wasn’t our party of hunters. As I started to walk towards the blast of the shot, my other friends did the same. As dark hit, I walked until I hit the seasonal road and was exhausted, sore, and dragged along for miles of dark, wet, sandy road. I made it to my truck. It had been a spooky long day, but my friends had the same experience. All were spiritual, and we sat in the truck with the heater on, out of the weather. We headed to the nearest camp to warm up.

Remember: always pre-plan. Write a note, use a map, bring water and food. Make better choices for hunting and first aid, as my friend had recently had a heart attack, and I had some bad luck. As I say, even a short hunt should be pre-planed, and everyone should stay together. Mother nature wins. As we drove away, it was snowing, and the temperature dropped.

The only thing that got me out of the woods was my early twenties. I never go without basic first aid, a lighter, a map, lots of water, and snacks. Praying a bit helps, too.