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Weather is much improved, but still no luck

December 2, 2011
By Kenneth Cobb , The Inter-Mountain

The weather for Tuesday and Wednesday of the second week of the buck gun season was also something to be desired. I went out for about two hours Monday afternoon, but like the first week, I did not even see a deer.

On Thanksgiving Day, I hunted in the National Forest on Cherry Fork. The woods were exceedingly damp, but this is what I like. It is easier to walk through the leaves and make very little noise.

On Friday, I hunted in the National Forest on top of Pleasant Mountain at the end of Wilmoth Run. These woods were absolutely dead. If I had scouted this location before buck season, I doubt seriously if I would have hunted there.

On Saturday, I hunted in a place in Tucker County that I have never hunted before. While I always enjoy seeing new country, the only thing I did see on Choke Trap Run was a small black bear just passing through. The weather was great for deer hunting this past Thursday, but I had to work in the morning, prepare the column in the afternoon, and attend a funeral visitation.

I have two Class N (antlerless) stamps for next week. I am going to try to get a female deer on private land in Randolph County. I also have an eligibility card for taking an antlerless deer on public land in Tucker County. All I need to do is find some public land in this county where there are some deer.

The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources has not put out a buck harvest news release that I am aware of. Chances are the buck kill will be somewhat lower than what they predicted.

I have seen some pictures of some nice bucks that have been taken in this area. A few of these racks are real trophies.

About the most astonishing incident I have read about for the entire 2011 hunting season is the woman that was bitten by a copperhead snake. According to reports, a 21-year-old lady from Logan was bow hunting in Ritchie County in late October when she was bitten twice on the leg by a copperhead. The female hunter was taken to the nearest hospital in Parkersburg, which is about 40 minutes away. Once she arrived, this hospital did not have any antivenin so she was transferred by ambulance to Ruby Memorial in Morgantown.

The young lady was discharged from the hospital about three days after her bite. She was home for less than 24 hours when she had to return to Morgantown for emergency surgery to relieve pressure on the bite. She also had to be put on a ventilator because fluid was building up in her lungs. This patient may have had a reaction to the antivenin.

According to the WVDNR, copperheads and rattlesnakes are the only poisonous snakes found in West Virginia. The DNR considers rattlesnakes more dangerous than copperheads.

I'm in some disagreement with this. Rattlesnakes will usually give some warning when they are close to anyone. If they are not crowded, they will often try to get away. Copperheads give no warning. They are difficult to see when they are in or under dried leaves. Some people seem to think the lady stepped on the snake when it bit her the first time.

The lady says the snake coiled around her leg like a constrictor. She tried to get it off when it bit her the second time.

The young ladies' friends in Logan have set up an account to help pay her family's expenses as they travel to and from Morgantown.

This money will also help pay for some of the medical treatment she will have to receive once she is out of the hospital. This is true West Virginia Mountaineer Spirit coming from the people of our great state.



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