Rob Pade

Rob Pade

The 2013 season started like it does every year for me; so much excitement and just plain looking forward to getting out to the woods. In the time leading up to opening day I had my bow tuned to perfection and, my clothes washed and put away in their scent proof containers. My favorite hunting partner Rick Bullmann and I were in earnest discussions about whether or not to go in the afternoon or morning of opening day. Well afternoon won the discussion.

The afternoon was hot and we got dressed along side of the car. The land owner comes by for a quick visit and after a great conversation off we go to start the 2013 deer season. Sneaking in to my saddle stand I notice a ton of tell tale signs buy the mineral station we set up a few years back and thought “this is going to be fun!” Well wouldn’t you know it; up the stand maybe five minutes and along comes 4 does. A few minutes later a good 8 pointer stands 5 yards from my stand were I range him for over an hour with my Vortex ranger rangefinder (the entire time with a giant smile on my face). Then just about 5 minutes before I have to get down in comes a huge, tall tined 10 pointer that although in range I couldn’t line up a perfect shot at due to the receding light. Wow what a night! I remember coming out of the woods so exited I was like a kid, asking Rick if he thought I made a mistake. No was the answer and man was he right. The next week back out we go and see lots of deer again. Every trip we took out we saw more and more deer. A couple of weeks later I was out with Rick and another good hunting partner enjoying the beautiful night and I said “tonight I’m going to fill my doe tag” and 5 minutes later, almost on cue, two big healthy come in range and one is taken for the freezer. I remember thinking this kind of stuff does not happen to me.

The whole season was like this – deer sightings almost every time we go out and as the season grew on better deer were being seen. The next memory of the season was my son Hunter saying one night “Dad, can we go hunting tomorrow?” I was pumped and so out we went. Hunter was in the stand we have out back playing video games and me telling him that’s not what you’re here for. He looks up and says “Dad look over there – 5 deer.” Smart butt was my answer. The group consisted of 3 bucks and four does and one of them had a really nice rack. I couldn’t have written it any better.

Two days later finds us out again up a tree I have shot many deer out of. Hunter in his saddle and me in my saddle – life couldn’t get any better! Well it did; along comes the buck from the other night. Now I feel the pressure of shooting this buck with my son in the tree. Is he going to make too much noise? Is the buck going to keep coming? I draw the bow, look down at Hunter and he has a huge smile on his face. The buck keeps coming then turns quartering away. Almost in slow motion my arrow flies. Looks a little far back but on a good angle. Within five yards the buck gets wobbly and down he goes. Hunter yells, I yell, – wow what a year!

Once again I would like to say how thankful I am for my life, my family, my close friends, and the great people I have gotten to know in this industry. Thanks Vortex for letting me be a small part of your great team!

Stoney Creek, Ontario

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