This was the first year my dad was not able to go out due to declining health. This was hard for me as my dad and I have hunted together non-stop for 38 years.... My hubby got me a new 44 Marlin for my b-day. I went to the shooting range and got her sighted in and I was not very confident in how it was shooting, but got a pattern down that I thought I could work with. I had hunted with my 20 ga since I was 16 (36 yrs).. so it felt foreign to be shooting a different gun. Opening morning... 8:00am, one of the nicest, biggest bucks I've seen in a long time came waltzing in, stopped 20 yrds out, quartering slightly my way, perfect........ Fired off a round and ****, he was gone. No blood, clean miss. I just about cried. I don't miss at that range, never have. Got home after spending opening day checking the area for the deer. I discovered that my scope was loose. I didn't notice this at all sighting in, but in the cold, it was obvious.... GAHHH! Tightened everything, fired a few more rounds and after making adjustments........ she's dead on. Dropped a couple youngsters in their tracks a few days later. This was all I saw. I didn't go out for late doe as I usually do because there just aren't enough day active deer out there and too many hunters in my area. (found the neighbor had gone on to our land to still hunt last day of doe season, you know the one who said we are not to go on his land, yeah, that one ) I went out last day to loosen my tree stand and pull in ropes etc. His tracks were all over my hunting area and it wasn't to track, he was hunting. We will be having a little talk. Ps... Dad has an uncommon blood cancer and he's beginning chemo treatments soon. I hope he can get another chance to go in 2018. Prospects for what he has is about 2 yrs or so but I don't see that happening with the way his health is so far. My game plan is to build a mobile, raised hunting shack with heat, so he can go again. After he is gone, my mom wants to sell the farm. She has refused to allow me to purchase the land separate from the property and sell the house alone. We have been talking about leaving MI, so I am hopeful that I'll still be able to hunt where we move. I guess all good things have to come to an end some day. This was not a good year for me.