Maine residents had dibs Oct. 29 on the first day of open deer season and turned out big for the morning hunt.

Tagging stations on the outskirts of Lewiston and Auburn recorded dozens of deer harvested by early afternoon, and plenty more were expected by sundown.

Mike Hemond of Hemond’s MX and Offroad Park in Minot skins a customer’s deer Saturday in Minot. Joseph Charpentier/Sun Journal

Brittany and Mike Hemond of Hemond’s MX & Offroad Park in Minot have been butchering deer for several seasons and this year marked their first as a state-registered tagging and weighing station.

“Last week we got a big one because it was youth season,” said Brittany Hemond. “The heaviest today was around 132. They’ve been mostly does – just one buck.”

Just as Brittany Hemond finished her sentence, two more deer rolled in on the back of a utility terrain vehicle – a large doe about 115 pounds and a small, antlerless buck. The hunters, who asked not to be named, said it was a beautiful day to start the season even if just a little chilly.

“Everyone was out there shooting around, so we just wanted to get ours and go,” one said.


The Hemonds recorded seven tags before 1 p.m., many more butchering orders before the end of the day and a couple calls ahead for some tags.

J.T. Reid’s Guns in Auburn registered six tags by noon with a couple of the hunters saying they came through after seeing the lines at some of the other stations. J.T. and his son, Mike, said they had only weighed one of them, but have had a couple nice ones.

“We had one nice buck. It weighed about a buck-fifty, buck-sixty,” said Mike Reid. “We had one four-pointer, about a buck-fifteen. They all just came flying in all at once.”

The Reids said one hunter tried stopping off at Northland True Value Hardware in Turner, but kept going so they would not get stuck skinning their game into the dark.

Hunters come to Hemond’s MX and Offroad Park in Minot on Saturday to have their game processed. Joseph Charpentier/Sun Journal

Northland recorded over 20 tags before noon and the lines were quite long on a couple occasions, said clerks Brandon Steele and Jenny Maheu. The last buck they processed before noon was 256 pounds.

“I don’t know how many points it was because I was focusing on getting our scale fixed and we had them lined up out the door,” said Maheu.

“There’ll be more straggling in here I’m sure,” said Steele.

Open season runs from Oct. 29 through Nov. 26 and muzzleloader season will follow from Nov. 28 through Dec. 3.

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