Hunter Almost Hunted

Jayden Cruz, Staff-Writer

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Imagine coming face-to-face with a ferocious beast in the wilds of nature. That’s exactly what happened to Clairemont resident (and Madison High School student) Joseph Grant, who  interlocked eyes with a black bobcat while on a recent rabbit hunting excursion. To say the least, he was left unnerved by the encounter.

 

Grant says his hunting trip started out just like any other day of hunting. Out at Hollenbeck Canyon Wildlife Area, he went out into the San Diego backcountry — as usual by himself — on a damp cold morning. “The pitter patter of the rain water dripping onto fallen leaves made for an ambiance and sound chamber only mother nature can construct,” said Grant.  From the start, Grant had a hunch that something odd was going to happen. “The air was so thick, I could chew it,” he added. He climbed onto his hunting platform and sat and waited… About five minutes had passed when he heard the scurrying of a couple of rabbits.  “This was unusual, as I usually see one roaming by itself” Grant said.

 

“What really had me confused was that it was like they were running away from something in the distance, but I didn’t think about it much or else I wouldn’t have had the chance to shoot them, so I aimed down my sight and shot.” He began explaining how the shots echoed through the forest like a lighting strike. Getting down from the tree, he counted the now dead white tailed rabbits. He marked them. Grant said  “I counted four, which was the most I’d ever gotten with just two shots, but they were far away so the pellets had time to spread out. I reached for the last one- I heard what sounded like very slow footsteps to my right. I paused mid reach and saw glowing yellow eyes peering around a skinny tree about 20 feet away from me.”

 

With only a second to react, he grabbed his shotgun strapped to his shoulder and inched his hand towards it, quickly, but not too fast.  He did not want to scare or upset the bobcat. His left hand was on the barrel, his right glued to the trigger. Grant said, “My hands were placed on the shotgun, but I wasn’t  sure if I wanted to shoot next to him and take the chance he might attack me. I decided to aim and shoot the shoulder.” His first shot blew the cat’s shoulder completely off.  “And yet he still jumped towards me…I shot again right between its eyes.  I couldn’t even recognize its face anymore, it was so distorted,” Grant recounted“My heart was pumping.  I sat there for a bit to gather my thoughts and I grabbed my stuff and left,” he said.  

 

Unfazed by the traumatic event, legend has it that he still goes gaming in the same area.

“It’s all a part of what I love to do.” “Everything can’t go perfect on every hunting trip or else it would get boring,” Grant said.

 

 

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