Was up on Isle of Skye for a couple of days on business and my mate of many years allowed me to stalk one of his many blocks of wood. Set off from the car at 8.15am with a gale force wind and driving rain battering me in the face but hopeful that the new forest track and mature trees would shelter me from the worst of the weather. I stalked along the forest road and on reaching the first fire break glassed down the ride.
Low and behold a hind was standing in the heather at the bottom approx 100yrds off with a fence and trees as the only back stop. I moved in under the nearest tree and set about crawling to get a safe shot. The hind slowly edged forward across the ride to be immediately followed out of the trees from the right by her calf, which stopped on leaving the trees. The calf stood still in the ride looking up towards me but seemingly unaware of me being there. I had the scope on the engine room but something did not feel right and with the calf only half protected by a small rise behind it I resisted the shot. It moved forward a couple of paces to where the mother had been and I decided to cancel the stalk.
The calf moved off to the left so I moved to the other side of the ride to see if it was there for a safer shot. Unfortunately it had carried on but phew as I glassed the other side of the ride bottom, a house and outbuilding came into view just behind the trees where the deer had been. If I hadn't followed safe practices and proceeded to take the shot then the house/occupants could have been at risk.
Call it sixth sense or down to good DSC training but it came into play and prevented a potentially embarrasing/dangerous situation.
The day previous I stalked within 20yrds of a hind and calf, but they did not know I was there and I did not know they were there being round the corner of a ride until we came face to face. I still dont know who got the biggest fright me or the deer!!!
Anyway there is always tomorrow.