Jarrod E. Stephens
The Ashland Beacon
Success in most aspects of life is affected greatly by the amount of preparation and determination that is applied to each endeavor. Little effort results in minimal success while true determination results in satisfaction.
During the 2018 deer season, Cole Wellman and his dad, Robbie, braved the elements for an entire twenty minutes before Cole was able to harvest his first buck. One would be crazy to assume that every hunt would be that easy and that’s why Cole continued to set his eyes on the 2019 season. At 9 nine years old Cole has hunted squirrels, rabbits, deer, and turkeys and has been quite successful. “I’ve been hunting with my dad for as long as I can remember,” Cole said. When I asked Cole which was his favorite animal to hunt he hesitated a bit and then said, “I like turkey hunting the best because of how loud and exciting it is, but I like hunting everything.” Each hunt and each harvest pointed him toward the next season just as his dad hoped.
The first days of the 2019 deer hunting season didn’t render the results that Cole had hoped but he didn’t give up and continued following his dad into the woods in search of a trophy. “He had to really earn this deer,” Robbie said. “Last year he had about a 20-minute hunt but this year he had to hunt about six days.”
Cole and his dad monitored their favorite hunting spots using trail cameras and had several photos of some nice bucks that Cole hoped to cross paths with. Finally, after relentless determination, on Saturday, November 16 he did indeed cross paths with a nice buck.
Here’s the hunt in Cole’s words.
“Dad and I started up the hill about 6 a.m. and got to our hunting spot around 6:30 a.m. or so. I watched out of the back of the hunting blind while dad watched out the front. I heard dad whisper for me to come to his side because he said he saw a buck. I saw it and it was one of the biggest bucks that I’ve ever seen. We thought that it was coming to eat but it was actually tracking a doe. Dad was afraid that the buck was going to jump the fence and leave. I found the buck in the scope and dad only got the ‘sh’ out for the word ‘shoot’ when I shot.” Cole smiled really big and laughed at this point. His trusty .243 single-shot rifle had perfectly done its job. “The buck fell straight down, and I couldn’t believe it. We waited in the hunting blind for about five or ten minutes before we went to the deer. I was so nervous.”
“Finally getting out of the hunting blind and going to get the deer was really exciting because it was the big 9-point that we had seen on camera,” Cole said. “We thought that I might get that buck on the other hill, but it showed up where we were.”
At the end of every successful harvest, whether big or small, a real hunter will begin the process of preparing for the next adventure. Cole is certain that he’ll continue to hunt and carry on a tradition that his dad has passed to him. “I’m going to hunt for the rest of my life,” he said. “I just love it.”
There’s no doubt about it that there’s a sport for everyone, and Cole Wellman has clearly chosen one that he not only enjoys but also one that he’s excelling at. After telling me about Cole’s harvest Robbie said, “I just hope that he knows how to hunt when I’m gone.” From the evidence that I gathered while interviewing the young hunter I’d say that the tradition of deer hunting will be going strong for many years to come in the Wellman household. Congratulations Cole Wellman on your awesome 9-point buck!