Well, our first deer hunt went very well. This was the first of two ADA hunts and by that I mean Americans with Disabilities Act hunts.
Inks Lake state park has had deer hunts for many years. It is a lottery/draw type hunt that has always been very popular. I worked on the hunt crew for two of these hunts.
We started these disabled-hunters three years ago when we had an inquiry from a woman named Charli, about hosting a disabled person to hunt. Charli had been an avid hunter but had sustained an injury in an ATV accident that left her a quadriplegic. Our boss, Chris Hall, the Lead Ranger here at Inks got the idea and was allowed to run with it. He got Roger, one of the park volunteers and an accomplished craftsman and builder, to build the first ADA compliant deer blind and within a very short time, it was ready to go. Charli's first hunt was a success and her Dad, Robert was so impressed with the program and he got together with several of his friends to further support the program. The next year we got two more blinds built, had state of the art deer feeders donated and enough deer corn to support us for the entire season. Another huge success! This year, through more funding, we got funding for four more deer blinds that were built by another park volunteer, Chip and his wife Bunky. I'll take some photos of the blinds before the season is over.
I was lucky enough to get a hunter this year that I had for last year's hunt. Danny is a retired Deputy Sheriff in Burnet who lost one of his legs and is now confined to a wheel chair. It was good to see him and his wife again and catch up with them. Unfortunately, he didn't see a deer this year, but promised to return next year to try again. The rest of the hunters were successful and we ended up with 7 deer taken by 7 hunters, giving us a 100% average. We hope for a continued successful hunts for the rest of the season.
The hours are long on the hunt days, but we enjoy it and I expect to continue for many more years. We will have one more ADA hunt next week, so I'm looking forward to that.
Stella and I have volunteered to do site checks on Friday, Saturday and Sundays. We did it last Sunday and it wasn't too bad, so we'll see how it goes from here on.