The stag – a majestic animal. It grows new antlers every year. Hunting red deer is one of the most impressive experiences of any hunting career.
So you shouldn’t leave anything to chance on a red deer hunt – and above all, this includes a clear view of the target. Thank God I had an AFL anti-fog lens on my rifle scope on my last guided stalking trip.
It’s still dark when we arrive at the starting point in the hunting ground. It’s late fall, fog has formed overnight, the air is cold and clear. I silently close the car door. The target for today’s hunt is a mature stag. My guide is an experienced hunter.
Before we set off, I switch on the AFL mounted on my Z8i.
We will stalk to the hide and I want to make sure I’m ready to shoot at any time if we happen to meet the majestic stag along the way.
in the first light of dawn when we see the silhouette of a mature stag in the meadow ahead of us. Moving slowly, my guide raises her EL Range TA to her eyes to confirm the sighting. I silently take up position three paces to his right.
I open the cover of the AFL and immediately have the stag in the field of view of my rifle scope. Despite the cold and my deep breathing, the image is crystal-clear.
The stag is less than 50 meters (55 yards) away and isn’t aware of us yet. The meadow rises up slightly behind it, giving me a clear shot. I can make out the hooked ends of the impressive antlers. I am now sure that this is the right stag. The tension suddenly ratchets up a notch.
I quickly glance at my companion who nods in confirmation. And I’m already running through my practised shooting sequence. My mind and gaze are focused on the deer and my breathing deepens. I use my thumb to cock and release the firearm. The illuminated dot of the reticle comes to rest just behind the shoulderblade. This is the moment I had been hoping for.