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Hunted by Nature
A man named Jonathon Walker came to Alaska for a hunting trip. He came from Finland to kill an American mule deer. As his plane passed through the clouds hiding the landscape below, he thought back to everything his wife had said earlier,“ You don’t need to go on this hunting trip alone.” When he thought back he remembered saying, “ It’s okay; I’ll be fine.” When he was flying into Alaska he stared at the beautiful Alaskan landscape. The trees and mountains seemed to run forever with open fields beneath them. As he landed in Cantwell, Alaska he walked through the airport and straight to the DNR station. After he got his temporary license to hunt he asked about the hunting. The guy behind the counter said, stretching out his hand in greeting, “I know a lot about hunting around here. The name is Matt Heralds.”
Jonathon extended his hand and replied back,” My name is Jonathon, how hard would it be to go to the West Fork Glacier from the Denali Highway?”
Matt said,” It shouldn’t be that hard”.
Jonathon asked,” Can I get my tree stand air dropped so I don’t have to carry it?” Matt said,” Sure I’ll air drop it for you, and it won’t cost you nothing.”
Jonathon and Matt’s conversation ended and he headed for the diner to eat him a bite. He couldn’t help but overhear two old men talking about the hunting around in these parts.
He asked them,” How hard would it be to kill an Alaskan mule deer”.
They said,” It’s not that hard to but you better watch out for grizzlies”.
He began to have fear for his trip now but it wasn’t going to let it stop him from going. Jonathon got his meal and began eating. He told the waitress it was good and then paid for it. When she walked off he left her a big tip under his coffee mug. After he left he headed for the supplies store to get all his hunting gear. He got his gun, tree stand, some dehydrated vegetables, a tent, a sleeping bag, a portable gas stove, some lean beef cuts, some reindeer jerky, and some water.
On the next day Jonathon packed up his gear and planned his journey. His route was to cut off the Denali Highway, then go through the wilderness. After that he was going to go through a ravine where the waterfall from the glacier fell. Then he would arrive at the West Fork Glacier where he would set up camp and then scout out a really good hunting place. His plan was to return in two weeks time at the most. If he wasn’t back Matt was going to send out a rescue team for him.
His third day was the day he began his journey. He started off the Denali Highway and began tearing his way through the beautiful cypress forest. On his first day of the journey he walked at least seven miles. He set up camp for the night at the foot of the ridge where he tore through the cypress forest. He reached in his rucksack and pulled his gas stove, a bottle of water, and some meat and vegetables to cook his meal. While cooking his gas stove gradually began heating his tent. He ate dinner and then fell into a deep sleep and stayed warm all night. The next morning he awoke and made a wonderful breakfast, and then he packed all his things away and headed for the glacier.
John walked about three hundred feet from where he camped and walked up to the ravine.
“I made it to my first destination,” he said to himself.
He began to climb the side of the ravine where the waterfall was. His crampons hooked into the ice as he climbed preventing him from slipping. Gradually he made his way up the ravine in order to get to the glacier. Exhausted and tired he finally made it to the top and set up camp. He ate his meal and dozed off for the night.
As he awoke the next morning he could hear something moving around. “What is that moving outside,” he wondered aloud. He peeped his head out of the tent and looked around to see what he heard. He looked to his left and saw nothing, and then he looked to his right and saw a small deer finding food.
“What a magnificent sight it was to see the little deer,” he said to himself.
After the deer walked off he packed up his things and was back on his way. It seemed like he walked forever but when he stopped something caught his eye. A small underground cellar is what he saw and he started towards it. Inside he saw nothing on the walls that were lit up by the sun. Something sparkly caught in the corner of his eye. He turned on his headlamp and saw beautiful pink magma crystals. Magma crystals are formed by volcanic activities and snow mixing. He took his ice axe and his ice hammer and pried five or six crystals out of the wall and put them in his rucksack.
Finally he stepped foot on the West Fork Glacier and began looking or a base camp. He saw a small foot hole and climbed in and saw that it was a perfect base camp. After setting up camp he began to look for his tree stand. When he found it he drug it inside his camp so nothing could bother it. Later when he got his tree stand inside he cooked him a nice hot meal which was vegetable soup but he added some beef cuts in with it and left his portable gas stove running until he was finished eating. He cleaned his plate and cut the stove off and went to sleep.
Awaking to a wonderful, calm morning he ate him some breakfast and set off to scout out a hunting place. He walked about a mile and half and found a beautiful open field that stretched out as far as the eye could see. In the center of the field was a cool, crisp lake that was the color of the sky. Trees and thick under growth bordered the field. Jonathon reached into his rucksack and pulled out pink marking tape. Then he found a tree to put his stand in and marked it. After marking the tree he headed back for big rock to get his tree stand.
While Jonathon was gone two hunters and their wives made a base camp at the base of the glacier. Jonathon didn’t know that other hunters were around and didn’t know they were going to be there. The hunter’s main task was to go in and to kill the grizzly named SCARFACE. The bear had brought destruction upon the little town called Cantwell. The bear also hurt many people.
Jonathon set up his stand and headed for camp to rest up for in the morning. After he ate, he got in his sleeping bag and got warm. As he got warm he heard noises making it impossible to sleep but he didn’t dare to leave his warmth. Later, Jonathon fell fast asleep and dreamed peacefully. When he awoke the next morning he ate breakfast and put on his snow camouflage and headed out.
Around 5:30 a.m. Jonathon was in the stand and everything got real quiet. An hour passed and birds started to chirp and the field came alive with life. With in 30 minutes a mule deer walks up and Jonathon gets excited and shaky. “Jonathon calm down and get ready to take the shot,” that was all he could say to himself. Gently he set his 7mm WSM up on hi gun bar and put his cross hairs on the deer’s necks. He took his shot and watched his trophy fall in the bushes.
He lowered his gun down safely to the ground and then climbed down. Gently he picked up his gun and put it on his shoulder and then calmly walked to his deer. When he saw his deer he began shaking again from excitement. He saw that the mule deer had 18 points and loved every moment of it. After he gazed at it he began dragging it back to camp at the glacier. When he got the deer to the glacier he heard the loud noises he heard the other night. He looked around and saw a hulky grizzly bear try to get into something on the glacier. All of a sudden the bear stopped and looked around and stuck its nose high in the air. The bear had a huge scar down its face and it locked eyes with Jonathon.
Meanwhile the two hunters started up the glacier to see what that god-awful racket was coming from. As they walked up the glacier the noises stopped but they kept on walking towards the direction from which it came from. All of a sudden they heard a death-defying screech and they began running towards it. They came to the top of the glacier and seen the bear mauling another hunter. So they got their guns ready and shot into the chest of the bear to kill it. As the bear fell they went to see what the bear was attacking.
Jonathon was the one getting mauled by the huge grizzly called SCARFACE. His body was covered in cuts and bruises and the hunters took him back to their helicopter. They put him inside and rushed him to the nearest hospital. Jonathon survived the ungodly bear attack. To this day Jonathon still thanks those hunters for helping him.
The two hunters put the bear they shot to good use by giving it to a nearby charity to help feed needy people. And the deer that Jonathon shot they mounted it and gave it to him when he got well in the hospital.
While in the hospital it gave Jonathon time to think about what his wife had said before he left Finland. He said to the nurse, “ I should have listened to my wife and not come on this trip alone.”