Feature Story: First Deer

The first deer is about much more than punching a tag; there’s even more to it than initiation as a hunter. The first deer is a rite of passage. It’s about growing up.

deer hunting, first deer
First deer stories.Joel Kimmel

There is no memory forged in the outdoors that is stronger or clearer than a hunter’s first deer. Just the smell of a freshly killed buck or the sound of hooves crunching through autumn leaves can bring back every moment of the hunt in vivid detail. That’s because the first deer is about much more than punching a tag; there’s even more to it than initiation as a hunter. The first deer is a rite of passage. It’s about growing up.