Growing up, I could not wait for my 12th birthday. Every year, the anticipation of getting my first deer grew stronger and stronger. Then the day finally arrived, my 12th birthday (which just so happens to be during hunting season.) I rushed to the nearest sporting goods store and bought my license. I took my time making sure my shot at my first deer was perfect. After a couple tries at stalking, I finally got the job done. I could not have been happier.

For those not familiar with the hunting heritage in Montana. We take it pretty seriously. The harvest of my first deer is a memory that will live with me forever. But, a young hunter in Kalispell is going to have a memory that will be impossible to forget.

Thanks to the Hunter Apprentice program that recently launched in Montana, hunters as young as 10 years old can get a provisional hunting license. This allows them to hunt under the supervision of a parent or guardian until they are 12 years old.

A 10 year old named Keaton Simpach, bagged his first buck on opening day of General Rifle Season here in Montana. His excitement can be seen in his photo with his first buck. But, that excitement would soon turn to a frown when a bear decided to eat Keaton's kill.

According to the Daily Inter lake in Kalispell, MT

“My dad heard something outside,” the Kalispell resident recounts, “so I looked out, and there was some bright green eyes, and we didn’t know what it was at first, but then when he got the flashlight, he looked and he saw it was a grizzly bear.”

By their estimation, it stood 6 to 7 feet tall, weighed 400 to 500 pounds, and had come a mere 15 yards from their camper in the Swan Range. “I was scared,” Simpach said.

See Keaton's photos and read the full story here.

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