Well, after a year's worth of planning, purchasing equipment, reloading, proving ballistic card data, and gratuitous amounts of trigger time, we finally made it to Wyoming for an Antelope hunt. My dad and I had talked about doing a long range hunt with his 7mm mag for awhile now and it was finally time for some action. The long drive out to Casper, WY was a real energy zapper (22hrs). However, the next day after we settled in we were ready to do some scouting and checking of our zero. The time spent at the range was brief (after we waited for a brush fire to be put out) and then we headed off to scout our ground. Quickly we found a good ambush spot and saw several herds of antelope with a few shooter bucks in the mix. Now, a shooter buck for us wasn't a Boone and Crockett type of buck. The game we both were looking for was basically something mature with at least ten inches in height.
When hunt day rolled around the next day we went out around 9am and set up on a ridge top. The herd of about 6 Antelope were roughly 250yds away from us and after ranging with the Leica 1200 LRF I had dad give me the click adjustment and I was ready to go. The buck I had in sight had other plans though. He must have spotted movement by us and actually came running up on us. He got to about 25yds of us and stopped to see what we were doing. WOW! That was pretty unexpected to us both. I always heard they were hard to get close to and they spook easy. After he checked us both out he ran back to close to where the herd was and basically singled out a doe to posture at. I again ranged him and now he was at 225yds. Dad called out the click adjustment, "2MOA!", and I click the NF down from the 2.5MOA it was set at. Now I had to be patient and weight for him to turn broadside because he was starring right in my direction. Finally, he turns to approach the doe from another angle and stopped for a second. I put the crosshairs on a high shoulder shot hold and squeezed off the 168gr berger VLD right in his direction.
Thwack! Immediately I think "Crap, I lost my sight picture" after the shot..."Is he down?" I asked...my dad, surprised and excited, laughs and says "He's down!"
This all happened in about 2 seconds. At this point I cycled another round and finally got back into my reticle and saw he was lying on his side and done. I was pretty excited...to say the least. I couldn't wait to get out there to him and see him. My dad said the antelope took the shot and it spun him around completely. He then took off running about 10yards and crashed. The rest was history. He definitely fit our shooter category of at least 10inches and mature. At Pearce Processing off Yellowstone Hwy a gentlemen measured, aged, and generically scored him. 4yrs old, 80points, 12.5in main horns with ivory tips and curved diggers. What an awesome Antelope and great experience. The best part was my sharing that experience with my dad. He took his antelope
that afternoon at pretty much the same spot. His Antelope was taller than mine and a year younger,and very impressive as well. I should mention that while we were field dressing the antelope we found out first hand the devastation that the Berger Bullets cause. It's devastating, I mean exit wounds you can put a fist in, and if you make a good shot, the berger will make it a quick and ethical kill. I'll shoot bergers everyday!
We celebrated the next day, after a unsuccessful attempt at prairie dog hunting, by heading back out to the area we were drawn to hunt in and watched the sun go down having a coke, a cigar, and some good stories and laughs. I'll never forget it!