This trip takes us back on the hill stalking hinds mid-season. Work was just starting on a new forest creation scheme so we had to pay particular attention to red deer coming into the area at night from a higher hill.
It was a mid-season afternoon and I had taken the chance to get out and work into a sheltered glen where hinds love to lay at that time of day. On the way I saw a group of deer running across and out of this valley, clearly spooked, which I suspected was most likely hill walkers. A hasty re-think left me backtracking and working into the wind and across the edge of steep crags. I was looking down into the native birch woodland below, but before I got close to the edge Zosia was indicating strongly in front of me and was clearly scenting deer from below us.
As I eased to the edge of the hill I could see a small parcel of reds moving through the trees. Setting up on the quad sticks, a group of three paused at the back just long enough to allow a shot which resulted in a satisfying crack and the hind jumping and falling out of sight into long bracken.
Zosia made quick work of the follow up, but as I approached the dead hind I got a surprise. There was a mouse sheltering under her back, which hastily scurried off as I approached. Now that’s a first .