Saturday, December 19, 2009

Chas. Co. driven hunt - Bang Bang Bang Bang - 2009

Hunters gathered for the annual driven deer hunt at the Charleston-county plantation knowing that after four inches of rain the day before, the deer would most certainly be 'on the hill.' Streaming water coursed through the uplands and duck boots, rubber boots and even hip boots were in order this day. Cold and windy conditions greeted the first drive of the morning, and the results were typical - two does jumped but no deer harvested. The second drive of the morning found in the sweet spot as two does tried to make it past my stand, and both were harvested. The horseman were glad to hear some shooting and came to see what had transpired and offer congratulations, then they headed out to push 'the other side of the drive.' Reveling in the newfound warmth of a double-header doe harvest I was surprised to hear the dogs give chase again and then a 5-point buck tried to make it past my stand. One shot and he did a mighty flip into the road and at the same time let out a wild 'UUUUUUGH' (grunt noise) and expired - allowing me to claim the improbable feat of culling three deer on one drive. With one last drive to conduct I hoped that others would also find the luck to harvest a deer, but fate intended for me to cull one more doe as she tried to sneak past my stand. The 5-point went with me to Cordray's for venison processing while the three does were donated to my fellow hunters.

PhotosByJeff Dennis: A perfect four for four on the dog drive had my spirits soaring - and what good timing with South Carolina Wildlife magazine photographer Phillip Jones on hand; the horseman (including Rawlins and Ed Lowndes) share a laugh in between drives; hunter fellowship is a key part of the driven hunt shown here is David Lucas, editor of SC Wildlife magazine and Comer Morrison

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