Korbin Peaslee, 8, looks over at his father, Jake, as the two settle into their deer blind in Norway before dawn Saturday morning, where Korbin was participating in his first deer hunt on Maine Youth Hunting Day. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

NORWAY — Jake and his son Korbin Peaslee woke before daybreak Saturday to get ready for Korbin’s first day of hunting on Maine Youth Hunting Day. Korbin, 8, has been immersed in the sportsman lifestyle since he was born.

Jake has been hunting in Maine since he was 10 years old, and introduced his son to the sport early on. Korbin has been out to deer blinds in the past and has tagged along with his father on turkey hunts. Korbin’s mother also hunts, although on the first day of hunting season this year, she opted to sleep in.

Maine no longer has a minimum age for when children are allowed to start hunting. In 2015 the state passed the Families Afield Program, which empowered parents to make the decision when their child is mature enough for the hunt.

“I like the outdoors and so does he. He likes to fish. I figure this year he was ready,” Jake said.

Korbin Peaslee, 8, sets up a small stool in a pop-up deer blind in Norway early Saturday morning, where was enjoying his first deer hunt on Maine Youth Hunting Day. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

As they got their gear together, Korbin insisted on carrying his mother’s gun — a .243 rifle that he planned to hunt with — out to the deer blind he had helped his father put up on a friend’s property in Norway on Friday. The pop-up tent structure was nestled in a treeline that runs through the middle of a field.

“I hope they won’t see us,” said Jake. “We’ll blend right in.”

Korbin has had a BB gun for a couple years that he enjoys, but on Friday, the day before his very first hunt, he fired a rifle at target practice for the first time. “I hit a bull’s-eye on a deer yesterday,” Korbin said.

Maine Youth Hunting Day began in 2002 and is designed to give young hunters a head start on the season, and a chance to gain experience without the pressures of competing with adults for the best locations.

Jake Peaslee and his son Korbin walk by flashlight out to a deer blind they set up on a friend’s property in Norway on Saturday morning. Korbin, 8, was participating in his first deer hunt on Maine Youth Hunting Day. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The young hunters, under the age of 16, must have a junior hunting license and be accompanied by an adult supervisor who has or had a hunting license.

Children under 10 years old have to stay within 20 feet of their adult supervisor for the duration of the hunt. On Youth Hunting Day, adults are not allowed to bring firearms of their own.

Korbin has big dreams for his first day of hunting. “I want to get a 30-pointer.” After that, he has a soccer game to play in the afternoon.

Bow season has been open since Oct. 3. Firearms season will open to Maine resident hunters on Oct. 31, and to non-residents on Nov. 2. Firearms season runs through Nov. 28. Maine does not allow hunting of any kind on Sundays.


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