Sierra Larga Deer Hunt

By Dr. Jim Clary

Sierra Larga Mts.
Photo by Jim Clary.

These are the Sierra Larga mountains of New Mexico. They could also be called the "bad lands," as there ain't much there except mesquite and scrub juniper.

I spent three days in the Sierra Larga and saw nada, not a single deer. However, I had a coyote play Dances with Coyotes with me on the way out.

Crazy critter, I put my gun up for a shot and had her in the crosshairs at 50 yards and she just cocked her head and stared. I put the gun down and she cocked her head the other way and stared. I decided that if it was as tough for her to find food up there as it was for me to find a deer, I'd leave her be.

Thus, I had a friend for the day. She followed me all the way out of the hills to my truck and she sat down about 100 yards in front. I got in the truck and drove slowly down the dirt track toward civilization and she followed beside the truck. I shouted out the window, "If you keep this up, someone will shoot you, but it won't be me, so take off." Finally, she finally did. Thus ended my first hunt of the season.

Was it a failure or a success? I submit that it was a success.

Most intelligent folks realize that modern day hunting is a scientific management tool essential to the well being and conservation of wildlife. Not to mention the fact that sportsmen contribute more money towards conservation than any other group in the country. Over one billion dollars per year, according to Southwick Associates.

The thing that most anti-hunters do not understand is that hunting is not about the killing. It is an opportunity to remind us of who we are and where we came from. It reminds us of times past when life was simpler and less complicated. Finally, it reminds us of the beauty and wonder of the world around us, of which we are a natural part. Maybe I'll get a deer next year. In the meantime, I will carry the memory of that female coyote with me forever.

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Copyright 2014 by Dr. Jim Clary and/or All rights reserved.