It's the most wonderful time of the year for Paul Altobello--it's firearm deer season. He's been at it for over 30 years, but when he came back Tuesday, he came back empty-handed.
"We just let them go. I've watched several bucks this year. I could have shot them, but they were small and the racks weren't very nice. We know there are other deer out here that are much better, so we'll wait, and sometimes you end up with no deer," said Paul.
Paul lives by the saying "let 'em go, let 'em grow." He won't shoot unless it's at least an 8-point buck. He says shooting a smaller deer just isn't worth it.
"We want to shoot a bigger deer. You have more meat, and it's a nicer rack. So, it just makes sense, and that's the way we feel," he added.
One of Paul's friends from camp shot an 8-point buck the second night of hunting season. They say one of the hardest parts of the hunt is deciphering how big the buck really is.
Before Paul shoots, he says he tries to count how many points the buck has, and if it's small, he lets it go. But he still has his eye on the prize. In fact, Paul first spotted the 8-point deer on his trail cam, but his friend is the one who shot it. He says that's just part of the game.
"You could hunt 15 days straight, and you might not see a buck for the whole season, and it's just part of the hunt. Sometimes you luck out and you see deer all season. There are other times it can be a long deer season, but you come out and enjoy the whole thing," he said.
The firearm deer season runs through November 30, but Paul and his hunting buddies will enjoy their tasty treats all year long.