COVINGTON TOWNSHIP -- Monday, November 27, is the biggest day on the hunting calendar here in Pennsylvania.
It's the start of rifle deer season.
The numbers from the Pennsylvania Game Commission are staggering. Nearly 600,000 hunters are expected in the woods on Monday, adding millions to the state's economy.
We found a lot of hunters but we didn't find any lucky hunters.
The opening attraction at the Covington Township Volunteer Fire Department wasn't deer, it was pig and chicken in the form bacon, eggs, and sausage at a hunters' breakfast.
Keegan Litts, age 12, from Clarks Summit did have deer on his mind, not on his plate. This seventh grader was thinking about his first day hunting.
"Gotta be quiet going in. Gotta make sure the shot is right," Keegan said.
Keegan said he's ready to go. He's read the rules and has taken a hunter safety course.
John Edwards is a veteran of cold November mornings in the woods.
"The plan is to get in there and see what we could find, I guess," Edwards said.
Litts, Edwards, and the others are enjoying the first hunters' breakfast here, ever.
"It was a little crazy, but we did it. We got here at two o'clock this morning," said worker Sarah Rouse.
Volunteers did the work, and they had the supplies: dozens of eggs, hundreds of strips of bacon and sausage.
Out in the woods, the bounty was not as plentiful. We caught up with Mark Loftus, hunting near Bear Creek.
"I just love it. I have no reason for it. Personally, it's just something I love doing. I actually save my vacation for this time of year," he said.
Loftus isn't giving up, even though he's come home empty for the last seven years.
No snow, brown deer, brown surroundings, made it tough but hunters gave it their all. Some walked, some waited in tree stands, all hoping for a successful first day.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission says about one-third of the kill happens on opening day. Rifle deer season in Pennsylvania wraps up December 9.
The game commission expects a big kill this year. The reason, the deer population is up because of the mild winter last year and a big food supply of acorns.