Right now I am coming down the home stretch of packing for a brief weekend hunting trip. I have all my gear squared away, my bow is shooting well and I have neglected nothing. As I go through the rituals of laying out my clothing and equipment, I am excited. Things have gone well this bow season. I have had new territory opened up for me to hunt, I have seen quite a few deer and even managed to punch a tag a few weeks ago. My confidence is high, as are my spirits. Anyone who regularly hunts knows just what I mean; the days leading up to a hunt are like the days before Christmas. The outcome doesn’t matter, not really. Knowing that there are lots of possibilities is all it takes to instill an optimism and euphoria which I am not sure many people ever really know. Even when the wind is blowing and precipitation is flying I enjoy my time in the eighteen inch by eighteen inch world that is my treestand. At the end of it, even if I go home empty handed, I feel better for having put in the effort and had the experience. I love the look of the woods and meadows over the course of sunrise and sunset and I feel a connection with all the animals I see, from the perpetual bombardment of chickadees to the rare glimpse of a fox or an owl and even the sought-after deer. I know I will never shoot a deer while sitting on my living room sofa.