Mondays do not get much worse than today did right out of the chute.
It started very early this morning when my older brother Rich and I poured through a woodlot for 90 minutes in search of a doe that I had arrowed the night before.
No luck, and for an archer there is no worse sinking feeling than having lost a deer. Believe me, it hurts - and hurts badly - when an animal cannot be found.
If anyone hunts deer with either a crossbow or vertically held bow for any length of time the losing of a deer is going to happen. But that doesn't diminish the disappointment.
Part of the problem was that the direction the doe took was through some very heavy cover. That, and during the search I spooked a very thick-furred coyote. On opening morning a week or so back I heard a pack of coyotes howling so I know that my deer has become fodder for the beasts.
Things went from very bad to much worse when I used my mechanical sled to cock the bowstring of my aging Horton Hunter crossbow. The sled's cocking string didn't even come up one-half way when the Hunter's right limb literally exploded, sending shards of carbon, plastic and metal flying in all directions.
My right leg has a nasty red welt where some piece or another struck.
I have no idea why the limb would break in such a fashion unless it had become fatigued after 15-plus years of service or maybe developed a crack of some kind.
Now I'll have focus on using my Horton Vision 175 and turn it over to my 84-year-old father-in-law when he comes up from Florida for his first-ever archery deer hunt.
Wish me luck. And my father-in-law, too.
- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn