By HSP Member, Brent
This was a new farm to me and I was not real familiar with it yet. I was hunting on the ground this day, just trying to figure it out.
I had Seen two 8 pointers earlier in the day but passed as they were in the 120-130 range, and I was holding out for something better. I started
Back to the truck a little early and as I was walking by a tree I noticed a fresh scrape that was not there in the morning when I walked by that same tree. I went about 100 yards west of the scrape to get down wind and decided to sit there until last light. I just stood up to start to the truck when I heard some deer running through the timber behind me. Out came two does and a buck. He was right on the tail of the second doe. The doe and the buck went right by me, no more than 20 yards away, but they were running. I mouth bleated and the buck stopped at about 80 yards quartering away from me. I had to free hand it at a bad angle but I knew this was a good deer. When I shot he ducked his tail and ran straight away. There was only about five minutes of shooting light left and it was getting dark fast. I went to where he was standing but couldn't find any hair or blood and by now it was completely dark. I checked the weather and it was going to be cool and clear. Since I had the property reserved for the next day and I was not sure if I made a good shot, I backed out and decided to come and look for him in the morning.
Terrible night! No sleep and when I came out of the house in the morning it was raining a little bit! I was ill.
I looked for over an hour before I found any blood, it was on the underside of a blade of grass. Two hours later I found where he had laid down. He had gone several hundred yards through head tall CRP. Not an easy blood trail to follow after a little rain. I had just read an Outdoor Life Article on following blood trails and it noted that deer going in straight lines and so far this had held true for this buck. The bleeding had stopped sometime after he had laid down, and I could not tell which direction he had taken after that, so I just started doing circles out from where he had laid down. About thirty minutes later I walked up on him! I knew he was a good deer when I dropped the hammer, but I didn't know how GOOD until I got my hands on his antlers...gross 163...net 159. Not official, just me measuring it and using the B&C form.
The best or worse part of this story is that the next day after I found him, I went back to fill my doe tag and I jumped a deer that has about 20 more inches of antlers than the one I shot! An absolute monster!
<<< Go Back