Mandan News

Vern Davis: Praise for the North Dakota way of life

Hello from Morton County Parks.

This month I guess I’ll take a special dispensation and write about family instead of parks.

A couple weeks ago I was treated to an experience that can only happen once in your life. It was Veterans Day and the Davis men were out deer hunting.  On this day, Derek, my grandson, bagged his first buck.

I don’t know who was happier – Derek or me!

We had been instructed by older son, Phil, to post and wait for he and Jon to drive something towards us. Well, the drive never got started – what happened was that Derek came over a hill on the way to his posting place and met up face to face with his buck.

He took a shot and wounded the deer and the chase was on. The deer ran about a quarter mile and laid down – Derek in pursuit. He got close and the deer took off again – this time Derek missed. The chase was on again.

About another half mile and he finally got his fatal shot on the deer. Meanwhile his dad, uncle and grandpa were wondering what was going on. The older boys were waiting for Derek to take his spot – so was I and then the news broke -“Dad, I’ve got a buck down!”

Talk about excitement! Son Jon came over and told me the news. We took the truck down the cattle-vehicle trail and got a few yards away from Derek and the deer.

A neat thing is that Derek had to do the field dressing of the deer. Phil gave instructions and a little bit of help. Derek has also been present to help in the cutting and boning out in preparation for sausage making on Thanksgiving weekend. This kid is doing things right. He helps whenever he can.

So, the thrill, excitement and stories will last a lifetime, and I guess to the North Dakota way of life that is the way it should be. Oh – did I mention that I have a granddaughter, Kiara, who likes to walk behind her dad when we’re hunting? I can’t wait for the day she gets her first buck. Then the stories will really start!

See you next month.

Derek and grandfather, Vern, pose next to the first buck Derek ever took down.