It’s always thrilling to hear stories straight from the people who experienced them. We pick up where we left off with Bianca Jane and Her Humble Hunt. In this episode, Bianca and host, Bruce Hutcheon, share how they got into hunting with their life partners. She goes into a detailed story of an encounter she had while hunting alone and pushing past her limits. Bianca shares her passion and dedication to hunting with her storytelling.
Listen to the podcast here:
# 511 “Her Humble Hunt” Part 2 – Bianca Jane
I’m with Bianca Burnett and Her Humble Hunt. If you haven’t read her episode before this about Beauty & Her Bow, you need to read that and grasp what Bianca and I are trying to accomplish with this little sharing of thoughts and comments. It’s from our hearts and it’s who we are and what made us into the people who we are today and the people who we will be tomorrow. You can go to her blog, HerHumbleHunt.com, Beauty & Her Bow and her 501(c)(3) foundation. We are going to talk about hunting and Bianca’s got an interesting upbringing of her hunting tradition. It may be a little bit different than some other people and very similar to a lot of people. Bianca, how does this whole thing all begin?
It started over with some steaks grilling on the back deck and my fiancé looked at me and said, “You want to go hunting?” I never liked it at first and I didn’t have anybody growing up to take me hunting. I have some families in the area that were hunters and I got to be a part of the harvesting aspect when they came home, but I don’t have anybody to say, “Let’s go hunting.” From there, him and I took off into the wood ever since. It all started with a T-bone steak, some sweet tea and a question.
They’re together, they’re a couple and they’re hanging out and all that. How long was it before he asked if you wanted to go hunting?
I don’t know, I still beat him up about that. I was like, “What? How can you do this to me?” My fiancé’s hunting deer and various other game for over 30 years. He has two children. When they were going through high school, he was a director and all kinds of things and he took a break about five or seven years. When me and him got engaged, it’s probably about three years into it before any of it was ever brought up. It got brought up because we were in the shooting range, we call it Sunday Fun Day, it’s Sunday gun day. I said something about the gun range and some of our friends who are hunting. He said, “Do you want go hunting?” I was like, “Yes, I do.” It took that long to ask me that question.
The reason I brought that up, we went back through that sometimes. Ladies, don’t wait. If your husband is hunting, they say, “When are you going to take me?” It’s a guy thing, he does a hunt with his brothers, cousins, college buddies, high school buddies, whatever. You say, “You and me, let’s go out for the day. We don’t have to go to camp. We don’t have to do anything. Let’s go and see how it works out. I might like it.” When I first got married, I took her hunting. It was okay for her and that was about it. Fortunately, she let me go hunting but she knew what it was about. She enjoyed it and she had fun. I remember one time we’re sitting, we were duck hunting, we had a blind set up.
She had to get up at 4:00 in the morning. Everything’s set up and sitting there, the sun’s coming up. The stillness on the water, the fog drifting by and it’s perfect. There’s no wind at all and all of a sudden you heard the wind whistling and she goes, “What was that?” I said, “That was a duck.” She said, “How can you shoot it?” I said, “This is hunting,” She was looking to me going, “Wait a minute.” You got the gun, all the stuff and one tries to land in decoys and that didn’t work out well for him at all. Give your partner the opportunity to say no or say, “My son loves antelope hunt. He cares less about elk hunt. He loves to go an antelope hunt. He’s all over that.”
The funny thing about it is, honestly, I do a ton of solo hunting already, but when he goes hunting with me, he’s generally not hunting. He’s done it for so long, he is worried about me. He’s starting to be a company. He enjoys being out there. He doesn’t care about killing anything. He didn’t kill a single deer last season. I did it, and that’s the beauty of it. You have different stages as a hunter. Now, I call him my number one sponsor. He is amazing and we get joys in different ways the further you get.Hunting is not about the harvesting and the killings because people go years and don't get anything. Click To Tweet
Let’s talk about the 2017 hunting season. How’d that go for you?
As far as I am concerned, it went very well. I got my first spring bow. I went to Florida, came back from the Taxidermist. It was a beautiful spotted boar. I went to Florida and that was amazing. We watched hogs all day, but I went on that hunt not to kill anything per se. Yes, I wanted to bring home pork, but I needed to get jitters off of me so I could sit and wait and watch. I didn’t want that instinct to jump and shoot at the first thing you see. My fiancé knew that I still need to work some of that out of me. Literally, I sat there and I was all out to shoot for the first eight hours. That was a big learning experience. Do whatever it takes to be comfortable at that time. I’ve been shooting them but finger-up shooting them, and so I was getting comfortable with my rifle and everything.
Next, we rolled and get some bowfishing down in Florida. I met up with a fish enterprise. There’s some stingray, bowfishing. That was a lot of fun. I’ve shared that trip with one of our best friends Ron Vandergrift and April decided to take that on the beach with a cocktail. Me and Ron, we went bow fishing all night. That was the amazing experience. I almost shot a hammer head. They caught me in time because that is illegal but I’m nearsighted and I couldn’t quite make it out. Back home, if it was big, you shoot. They got me just in time. Then I went to Alabama. I dropped an eight-point buck right there. It was November, but right after Thanksgiving and Christmas.
My first shot of the season, I completely missed and I ready my scope and feel a little better. I let a few doe pass, then probably made a shot on at least one of them. I’m in my own head the wrong way, but at least I knew that they didn’t know I was there. It might have been because I was 40 feet up in a tree. I was always supposed to be at 30 feet. That’s the story, but at least they didn’t know that I was there. Though I had a misfire, I was literally dropped in on my scope and it was beautiful. It has been a perfect shoulder-to-shoulder shot. That was instinct, safety off, drop the edge, shoulder up, trigger and flick. I had a misfire. I’m out of ammo, my mouth was hanging over, and I was like, “Why didn’t it drop? Did I miss again?” I realized my gun never fired.
You’re 40 feet up in the air? On a hang on?
I’m on climb on stand, a climber. I knew that buck had been coming in through there. They’re already been spotted. This was after my initial eight-pointer. I was out for double digits. I knew that eight-pointer was back there, I did spot it various times. I put my back to the entry where it came in through the woods. It always passed through that way and put the tree to my back for coverage. I was in my treestand the same day snow touched down Alabama. It was beautiful. I’m sitting and getting coated in snow and I’m enjoying myself. I might have even stuck my tongue out and licked some snow.
I’m literally enjoying being in this tree, snow is coming down at deer camp. My first season, I’m solo hunting. My fiancé’s at work and he’s come to join me after. I’m in the moment and this eight-point buck walks up to my left side. I happen to look over and I’m like, “Hello.” It never made a sound. I never heard it. I said I learned this season was deer do not make sound. That was like, “How do these squirrels sound like?” These deer are silent predators almost. If they were predators, we would be dead. I never heard him. From what I understand, the deer put down pheromone in different things like it’s scared or spooked. Sometimes, he walks past me to my left. I had him. I was already sitting here and I crossed another eight.
All of a sudden, the buck puts his head down and sniffs. He had jumped four feet off the ground. It suddenly scared him so bad and it wasn’t me. I had not moved at this point, not a single movement came out of me. I didn’t even turn my head to him, I looked with my eyes. Other than that, I knew better than to move. I had all this waiting for him to get farther past me. He was angled up so I knew I could make that shot through. He jumped toward towards his left and I quickly dropped in, thinking I could get a shot down on him.
By the time I pulled up my rifle, he looked right up at me. He looked me square in the face and he took off. He hauled his tail. I could hear his hooves at that point. It was so intense, the kind of power he put down. I can hear the hooves hitting the ground as he hauled tail out of the woods, then he was gone. It’s not about the harvesting and the killings because people go years and don’t get anything. I’m thankful for the eight-pointer that I got. It was a little warm that day, a little bit of a rush to drag him out, gut him and get him cooled off. That was a little bit earlier in the season, then we had a hard winter.
We had such a hard winter that I didn’t get to go back after Christmas even though Alabama season doesn’t end until mid-February. Even our close friends that hunt like us, we didn’t go back out. We weren’t prepared for two-degree weather. Here in the south, we haven’t seen weather like that in years and for me, I tried. My hands would freeze up. I couldn’t move my feet and toes. It didn’t matter what I had on. I’m glad I got what I did. but I learned a whole lot. I spent a lot of hours out in those lands I had seen before. When it seasoned in, it looked like a whole piece of different land to me, so I started mapping it and knowing better what I was looking for when I was scouting areas. It was a beautiful season. This one kicked off and who knows what’s going to happen.
Let’s go back to the buck, keep those note down and smell something that wasn’t good. Had a doe been there or a buck? Who left that warning sign?
You all can tell it’s not a professional. I always think what I think. A week before that, I had left my climb stand on one of the trees. I have a couple of them I leave in different areas. He came back and said, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to be hunting your spot.” I was like, “You’re not hunting my spot. The land is every body’s. We were all out hunting that week anyway.” He saw that buck and he shot at that buck. I bet you anything if it wasn’t that same buck that whatever happened that week before or a few days prior that scared that last deer off so bad. Best I can bet was that it was smelling that fear. The guy said it was an eight-pointer. He described its rack to me and I said, “That’s that same buck.” I don’t know for sure what it was, that’s the best guess I have. I’m like a gargoyle that stone in a treestand. The grim reaper might come by a couple of times to make sure I’m still breathing because I did not move. My body hurts so bad to come out of the stand. I looked with my eyes and it wasn’t me, but something scared him.
We had funky brow tines. The G1 are brow tines.
G1s, that’s what it is. You’ll see the eight-point that I dropped, it had huge G1s. Astronomical some would say in respect to the area and I’m like, “Is that it’s brother maybe? Maybe it’s his twin?” They outsize the rack almost. It looked weird. They were weird laid out for what the other deer in the area looked like. The people in the area, they had in there the whole life and the population of deer there. If they see an ugly deer or they see something that’s messed up with it, it’s rack and whatever, they’ll always tell the club owners, “Can we follow different rules? We don’t shoot anything under six points and various lengths but those can give you $100 as the first person to drop that buck. Because I don’t want to see his face staying in my herd.” I might’ve got some money if I dropped that buck.Be yourself and don’t sell yourself short. Click To Tweet
That’s interesting and I knew Caribou leave scent. There’s no question because I’ve watched Caribou come in and they follow the herd. Why would they follow that herd? Because of a trail maybe. I can’t remember the guy’s name that hunted up there, but he told me about how Caribou will secrete something out of their hooves. The other Caribou following will come right along on them.
Back at camp, we don’t hunt together but we were all in the camp and we even talked about it. Some of the other hunters brought that up too. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe I’m right either way. I was lucky that day. He’s little tail in with a bit on my wall. I had him. I was literally going to flip my safety off when he spooked. I already had it in my head.
Do you want to share something about the International Huntress? What’s that all about?
It is based on women building women. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never harvest, if you started hunting months ago. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been hunting your whole life. The basis of it is if you want it, you have a chance to be one of four ladies who will get to make a trip to Namibia, Africa and be a part of a team of ladies representing dedicated women who hunt. It’s easy to apply. Tell them why you love to hunt, send them a video, pictures and if you ever watched Extreme Huntress. If you know who that is, you know what this means. It means amazing things. I know for me, I could never afford to go to Africa and hunt, but we’re not talking elephants and lions and animals like that. That’s not something that I personally could see myself going for.
We’re talking warthogs and things. It’s a completely free hunt. It’s nearly $10,000, a seven-day free trip that you can be a part of. You can look it up on InternationalHuntress.com. Ladies don’t miss opportunities to apply. I’m super stoked. Some of the ladies that are semi-finalist, I’m like, “I’m your fan.” If I get to make this trip, I’m probably going to need a couple of hours to meet these other ladies that are amazing. Don’t miss out. You do not have to be a lifelong hunter. Be yourself and don’t sell yourself short. Don’t worry, don’t underestimate yourself. Best of all, don’t second guess yourself. If you need any help, you need more information, send me an email.
How do people get a hold of you on social media with Beauty & Her Bow and then this International Huntress?
First and foremost, any and everything involved in my world will be found on my blog. My blog is HerHumbleHunt.com. You can mail me at Bianca@HerHumbleHunt.com. You can do it directly through the website. You can subscribe to my monthly newsletter. If you have story, tips and trick or how-to, you can submit an original piece in my blog site and be featured also. On social media, my Facebook is www.Facebook.com/herhumblehunt. On Instagram, it is @HerHumble_Hunt. I don’t have a Twitter. I barely have time to keep up with other things. I love to communicate, so get in touch. If you have any questions, anything that we went over, Beauty & Her Bow, there’s a post about that and the development of that foundation will be updated on the site as well as in the monthly newsletter.
It’s been such a joy to catch up with Bianca Jane and find out what the heck’s going on in her life. I watch American Idol, I see these young kids and see their first edition then you see them go through the steps and all of a sudden, they’re going toe-to-toe and singing a duet with some iconic people. They’re sixteen, seventeen, eighteen years old. That comes from confidence. The biggest thing and the biggest change I’ve seen in Bianca Jane is simply the confidence and the voice that she has given. Because she has a voice, she has a place. You’re in for an amazing ride. It’s a beautiful thing to watch. I had a friend that said, “It’s a beautiful thing.” It truly is and I tip my hat to you, lady.
Thank you. I was thrilled to get back to chat with you. I have so many things that I want to talk to you about. Thanks to you, you were a part from the beginning and you were on the first day. Enjoy it. It’s not about killing, it’s about hunting. Thank you for that.
Thanks, so much for spending your time and enriching all our lives and everybody that read the Beauty & Her Bow.