As I look down upon my feet I see pine needles, balsam needles, and sand glued on by pine resin. It has created an all natural sole; no shoes are needed to stalk in the woods. A connection between the Earth and I is made. I can feel the differences in the ground cover types like moss, pine needles, water, grass, and sand.
It is much easier to sneak up on something if the ground cover you are stepping on is moist. The sound of your foot on the ground is silenced. When stalking an animal you want to be silent and move slowly and be careful not to snap too many twigs. When you are walking, walk heel to toe to transfer weight. If you are stalking an animal, don’t be afraid to stop. Try to keep the animal unaware of your presence.
Stalking can be useful in the game of capture the flag. The ability to sneak behind enemy lines unnoticed is a difficult task to accomplish. The object, of course, to steal the enemy’s flag and not have yours stolen. There are many different strategies that can be taken. For example, leaving a few people to guard the flag and having others run for the flag. We played this game, campus versus yurts, and the yurt team was in the woods while the campus team would run out in the open directly to the flag.
Walking back from campus Wednesday night I was fortunate enough to stalk two young deer. I could hear them walking in the woods and decided to check out what animal it was. After about ten minutes of quietly sneaking around trees, I spotted these two. Unfortunately, they didn’t hang out long. I was able to snap a quick picture.