It should come as no surprise then that nigh two generations of new hunters has known nothing but slinging arrows for deer here.
Come Saturday (Oct. 17) they’ll be plenty happy to do more of the same.
The bow and weapon of necessity has willingly become the implement of choice during that 30-year time span.
While abandoning the rich squirrel hunting traditions of their grandfathers, the older set would have gladly done likewise back when if the same numbers and quality of deer had existed.
With the guns initially kept at bay simply to get the herds growing out of their low population doldrums, the prescription began to work its charm ever so slowly but with that one and somewhat sensational sidebar. The local bucks began living to their prime antler growing ages without the massive culling by the gun a la everywhere Elsewhere, West Virginia.
So low and behold, trophy class whitetails at an astounding rate began turning up and are still doing so at a pretty good clip. Though the trophy thing may have been an unintended consequence initially, it is what it is.
And folks seem to want to keep it that way per expressing just that in no uncertain terms at the various public meeting circuits.
In fact, nearly every outdoor and deer dominated TV show and game agency is promoting just such healthier herds via lesser overall numbers, higher buck to doe ratios and allowing bucks to you know get to say at least four to five years old with a set of those rocking chair sized horns on top.
That’s right they’re trying to make them more like Logan, Mingo, Wyoming and McDowell counties.
These once laughing stock counties of the deer woods have now become its model management citizens. Take that one and smoke it in your deer hunting pipe all ye Johnny Come Lately deer zones!
Still not convinced, Pennsylvania has recently instituted statewide three or four points to-a-side antler restrictions! West Virginia continues to add new Wildlife Management Areas with minimum antler spread criteria. Even within the present bowhunting zone, hunters generally follow sound deer management prescriptions of their own volition to in effect maintain what they’ve got.
Now add in the concurrent archery opportunities for black bear and wild boar and you begin to get more of the opening day picture come Oct. 17.
Now throw in some sweet tree-stand dreaming for yet another unintended consequence in the form of those ever expanding Kentucky elk splashing across the Tug Fork River in this direction.