Here is a picture of all of the novice hunters. My hunter, Barham, is the second from the left, wearing the solid green shirt.
Here are the hunters with their mentors, who went into the blind with them to help them. David was Barham's mentor.
Here is the campfire, where most of us spent our time. It was cold all week and we kept the fire burning all day. This really adds to the "deer camp" feel.
Here is Ranger Chris Hall, preparing to begin the processing of the deer that Barham got.
I don't know why this picture is rotated, but you can see that this was a donated buck that was used to demonstrate deer skinning and later the butchering of the meat.
One of my fellow park hosts Chip in the foreground. TPWD Director of Public Hunts, Justin, preparing to begin skinning this deer.
Justin was making good progress in removing the hide from the deer. Some folks actually tan the deer hide which than can then be used like leather to make clothing, belts and shoes etc.
Justin enlisted the help of one of the hunters, Mo, in skinning out the deer. The vital organs of the deer were removed and processed and Chef Jesse came down from his restaurant in Austin to demonstrate the butchering process. I took photos of this process but didn't include them here but if you are interested in seeing them and I will share them with you.
The novice hunt was a big hit and there were a lot of hunters that were interested in it, so I'm confident that it will return next year. I know it was fun for us, but it's a tight fit for two people in the small deer blinds.