As much as I love to hunt, nothing brings meaning to life like a family.  I’m happily married to my wife, Jodi, of 12 years.  I’m also the dad of three great kids, Grace, Cash, and Sophia (the twins as we call them).  I couldn’t really exist without them.  In the words of Montgomery-Gentry, “Lord knows I’m a Lucky Man…”

Hunting big mule deer is nothing less than consuming.  If a hunter wants to take more than even one in his lifetime, he has to be focused, dedicated, and willing to work hard for it.  There is a quandary, though, for a family man.  It can be very difficult to balance the demands of providing for a family with the dedication it takes to hunt big mule deer.


I try to include my family in my mule deer forays, but I’m the first to admit that they aren’t as interested in the pursuit as I am.  I try to make sure we do the things they want to do as often as possible.  Still, though, some of my fondest memories are those I’ve spent with my family in mule deer country.

Here’s a quick watch of a recent scouting trip I took along with my daughter Grace.  She’s known on the Rokslide forums as Cowgirl Up, a name she picked for herself.  If you’re lucky enough to be a dad, you’ll understand it when I say I’m more likely to remember the day this video was taken than any of my hunting days.   Watch close, you might even see a nice buck.   The video was shot on one of the ranches we manage for our outfitting business.  It’s located forty miles from town at the end of a long rough dirt road.  It runs on generator power but is a great place to get away with my family.  


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Robby Denning
Robby Denning started hunting mule deer in the late 1970’s, only missing one season in 35 years. At 25, he gave up the pursuit of all other big-game to focus on taking the best bucks possible. He began hunting the West on a DIY budget hunting an average of 30 days a year for mule deer. Robby loves the hunt as much as the kill and the entire process from research to scouting to hunting. He’s killed four bucks over 200 inches in the last 15 seasons, mostly on easily-obtained tags. He owns a public-land scouting service and runs a private-land outfitting business helping other hunters in their pursuit of deer and elk. Robby has scouted and hunted literally thousands of square miles of mule deer country and brings a wealth of knowledge about these experiences with him. To him, the weapon of choice is just a means-to-an-end and will hunt with bow, rifle, or muzzleloader – whatever it takes to create an opportunity to take a great mule deer. He is also the author of "Hunting Big Mule Deer" available on Amazon. Robby believes all of creation is from God for man to manage, respect, and through which to know its Creator


  1. Thanks for this story Robby. I’ve often wondered how you find ways to balance family time with field time. My oldest child is a 3 year old girl. This summer I took her out in a bean field (midwest) to watch some deer. She absolutely loved it. Last night she asked if we could go out to the fields and watch some deer. Tonight is the only night we can fit it in this week, but you can bet I’m looking forward to spending that time with her!

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