November 29, 2021 at 8:39 p.m.

An unordinary hunt

Schlauderaffs tag bucks after hiatus from stands
Chad Schlauderaff and his son, Kiptin, pose with their 10-point buck they shot Nov. 8. The Schlauderaffs tagged the buck near the farm site where the Schlauderaffs’ heifers are raised near Vergas, Minnesota. PHOTO SUBMITTED
Chad Schlauderaff and his son, Kiptin, pose with their 10-point buck they shot Nov. 8. The Schlauderaffs tagged the buck near the farm site where the Schlauderaffs’ heifers are raised near Vergas, Minnesota. PHOTO SUBMITTED

By Jennifer Coyne- | Comments: 0 | Leave a comment

VERGAS, Minn. – Hunting is a sport the Schlauderaff brothers dabbled in many years ago but not something they consider themselves devoted to. That notion may be changing following their prized hunts Nov. 8.
“It was a good time,” Casey Schlauderaff said. “I don’t know if I would’ve gone out if the kids didn’t want to go, but now I think we’ll be doing more of that. It was pretty fun.”
Casey took his children – Jaston, 9, and Avery, 7 – hunting on the morning of Nov. 8, when they tagged a 10-point buck near the farm site where their heifers are raised. That evening, Casey’s brother, Chad, went hunting with his son, Kiptin, 5, when they bagged another 10-point buck only a mile north of where the first deer went down.
“I haven’t hunted in 15 years but Kiptin wanted to go out, so we did,” Chad said. “That whole hour I hunted, I thought I did alright.”
The Schlauderaffs dairy farm in partnership with their brother, Cory, and parents, Gary and Barb. They milk 650 cows in Otter Tail County near Vergas.
On that pleasant Monday morning, Casey’s children were home from school and itching to get out in the stand.
“Avery pestered me for a week to get a license,” Casey said. “They were super excited to go hunting.”
After a quick stop to grab hot chocolate and snacks, the trio were setup by 7 a.m.
They occupied the same stand Casey’s nephew tagged a buck in over the weekend.
As the Schlauderaffs waited and watched the woods, they noticed a fisher collecting the remains of that earlier-shot buck and carry it away.
“That was pretty cool to see,” Casey said.
After about an hour in the stand, Avery noticed the prized buck and then quieted down as Jaston saw him too and Casey took aim. It was in the hay field on the outskirts of the woods; a mere 50 yards from where Casey’s nephew shot his.
“As we waited for him to bleed out and walk over there, Avery said her heart was hurting she was so excited,” Casey said.
At the shot site, the crew cleaned the deer and got the buck ready to take home. Jaston and Avery helped their dad hold the legs and learned where different organs were located within the cavity of the animal.
“They were good troopers,” Casey said. “Then, they couldn’t wait to tell Mom all about it when she got home from work.”
After chores that same day, Chad and his son retreated to another part of the woods for their chance at a buck shot.
The father-son duo was in the stand for about a half hour when they noticed the buck come into range at 4:30 p.m.
“Right away we saw something take off in the cattails, and I thought that’d be our only chance,” Chad said. “Then, awhile later, I saw a reflection of antlers as sundown started. I told Kiptin to be quiet and don’t move.”    
To Chad’s surprise, his son was not bothered by the shot but was rather thrilled. Together, they dressed the young buck, and Chad answered all of Kiptin’s questions.     
That evening was the second time Chad and Kiptin went out for the season. They first ventured to the stand on opening night.
“We were in the stand for 3 minutes and Kiptin was already asking where the bucks were,” Chad said. “After 5 minutes, he told me we needed to move to a different spot.”
While it was evident the Schlauderaffs’ children enjoyed the first weekend of Minnesota’s deer hunting season, the brothers also had a weekend to remember. With the season often falling in line with harvest or winter preparations on the farm, the Schlauderaffs have not taken part in the sport for some time.
“This is by far the biggest deer I’ve gotten,” Casey said. “I was pretty pumped.”
Chad agreed.
“With the dairy, we just get so busy,” he said. “If the weather’s nice, I should be doing something there, and if the weather is miserable, I don’t want to be in the stand. But Kiptin wanted to go and it was fun.”
Chad made tenderloin steaks and breakfast sausages with his buck.
“We have a freezer full of beef, so we need a little variety,” Chad said.
Casey is going to have his rack mounted.
The Schlauderaffs are done hunting for the season but are aware of other large animals in the area; their neighbor has spotted them on a trail camera. For them, the two bucks and the thrill of the hunt through their children’s eyes was more than enough.         
“I haven’t been a super big hunter in the past, so this was just fun,” Casey said. “This has gone to show you that a little woods is all it takes.”


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