So, you've missed a deer early in the season. Here's why it's not the end of the world.
It's early October and hotter than heck. Mosquitos are swarming your face as you climb down from the tree. What might add to these frustrations? Missing a deer.
Nothing can be more frustrating than missing a deer, or even worse, wounding one.
But if for some reason it happens, here are four reasons it's okay to miss a deer early in the season.
1. It happens to everyone.
Now, this isn't necessarily a good excuse, but almost all hunters have misjudged a shot. Everyone is human, and we make mistakes. However, good hunters take the time to understand what they did wrong and learn from it.
2. There's all season for redemption.
If the goal is to fill the freezer with fresh venison, an early-season miss allows ample time to correct a mistake. However, if a hunter misses an opportunity with a mature buck, the chance of seeing the deer again will substantially decrease. Then again, the rut does crazy things to bucks, so don't write off that trophy buck just yet.
Which leads to the next reason why it's okay to miss a deer during the early season.
3. The rut gives bucks a shorter-term memory.
Once the mornings get crisp and the bucks start chasing, a buck won't remember the time you shot over its back, accidentally using your 30-yard pin instead of your 20-yard pin. The flip side of this point is that does typically remain sharp and won't be as forgiving to a mistake you made early in the season.
4. Time to hone your shooting skills.
If the reason you missed wasn't because your arrow nicked a branch or some other fluke, it may mean you need to hit the range more. Lack of preparation is often a hunter's biggest regret. Avoid that post-miss remorse by practicing and making sure everything is sighted in.
The bottom line is, hunters should be 100-percent confident before pulling the trigger or releasing an arrow. An early-season miss isn't the end of the world, but put in the effort and practice as often as possible. You'll thank yourself later.