Unexpected Encounter with a Whitetail Deer
On October 8, 2004, I was digiscoping behind a small white pine tree in front of an ornimental crab apple
tree with small crab apples. The week before the same tree had attracted birds, and I set up by removing
the center pole from my tripod, and setting the legs to a height of about 10 inches, so that I could get a
clear view of the crab apple tree through an opening in the pine tree branches.On this day most of the small
apples had been consumed, and after waiting for about an hour and seeing no birds, I decided to leave.

I picked up the center pole with my left hand and I picked up my digiscoping set up, tripod attached, with
my right hand, with the camera still attached to the telescope, intending to reconfigure my equipment on
ground more flat and open. I stood up and walked about 4 steps when something caught my eye to my
right side. I turned 90 degress and saw the deer above at a distance of about twenty yards.

I knew that any sudden movement or unusual noise would send the deer running, so I dropped the center
pole on to the long grass, shielding it from the sight of the deer with my leg as it dropped. Reconfiguring the
tripod was not an option as adjusting the leg clamps would surely have spooked the deer, so I lifted the
digiscoping rig by the tripod head, tripod and all, with my left hand, and I turned the camera on with my
right hand. I looked at the LCD and had to focus the scope with my right hand as I wobbled on and off the
deer, continuing to hold the equipment up with my left hand. When I had the scope in focus, I slowly
moved my right hand to the camera shutter release and half depressed it, and looking through the LCD, I
would fully depress the shutter at the moment the deer was in the frame as I wobbled by (the camera was
on manual focus). I was able to do this three times before I wobbled way off the subject, and before I
could line up the deer again it decided to run off.

Here is the EXIF information for anyone interested:
CAMERA       : E5400V1.3
MODE         : S
SHUTTER      : 1/125sec
APERTURE     : F4.3
EXP +/-      : 0.0
FOCAL LENGTH : f18.8mm(X1.0)
DATE         : 2004.10.09 14:59
QUALITY      : 2592x1944 FINE

Equipment that I was using: Televue 40mm Plössl with a Barlow lens configued at 1.33x, Swarovski
AT80HD, and Coolpix 5400 camera.
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