I went up to north MO near the Iowa and Illinois borders hoping to shoot some big farm country deer at long range with my 7RUM. It was the middle of the week during the gun season and quite a few deer had already been taken in the area opening weekend. To compound things, the wind was blowing 25-35 mph for 2 days straight. I was hunting some standing corn interspersed with picked bean fields and small strips of woods. I saw a total of 4 does the first 2 days.
We decided to switch areas due to the wind and hunted a series of wooded draws that overlooked a creek bottom and some standing corn. The place was absolutely torn up with deer tracks, trails, rubs and fresh scrapes but the landowner said that 6 deer had been shot on the 80 acres opening weekend. Nevertheless, he felt that there were many more deer there due to the amount of crop damage.
Wednesday afternoon, I sat on a finger ridge overlooking the sheltered creek bottom and at about 4:05 PM a small buck came along the trail probably cruising for does. I did a hundred mental calculations in just a few seconds and decided to take him as we were seeing so few deer and had shot none so far. I found an opening in the trees and just let him walk right into my crosshairs. At the shot he went into that familiar frantic stumbling scrambling death run and made it about 30 yards before falling one row into the corn. He turned out to be a 1 1/2 year old buck that had broken off the end of his right beam, taking his G3 with it. He would have been an 8 pt. Interestingly, the points he had all were "acorned" on the ends. From where I sat to where I shot him was a lasered 53 yards. So much for the long shot! He had a nice big cornfed body and I was very grateful to have him.
I was shooting a 150 gr Ballistic Tip at 3400 fps, so I figure impact velocity was at least 3300 fps. The bullet shattered the onside shoulder and took out the top of the heart and the great vessels as well as the front of both lungs. There was a 50 cent piece sized exit hole on the opposite shoulder. Upon skinning the deer, there was a fist sized hole through the ribs under the shattered shoulder and I found a small piece of jacket next to the exit wound on the other shoulder. Pretty impressive performance if you ask me for such high impact velocity and solid bone hit.
Yesterday evening I decided to hunt a public area about 10 miles from my house where you can only use muzzleloader or bow. When I pulled into the parking area there were four other trucks there. I had a secret spot, however. Last year I had discovered a well worn trail about 400 yards from the parking area on the back side of a fiendishly steep hill. The whole area is very steep hilly terrain. I settled in about 3:45 next to a big tree overlooking the trail with my CVA Firebolt 50 cal loaded with Triple 7 and a Hornady 240 gr XTP sabot. At about 4:20 a small doe came along the trail and I eased the rifle up and bleated when she stepped into an opening at about 35 yds. She cooperated and stopped so I lined up the fiber optic sights behind the shoulder and pulled the trigger. BLAM! Huge cloud of smoke, can't see anything. The smoke cleared just in time for me to see her stumble and fall. I had taken her cleanly behind the shoulder. I was very excited since there aren't many deer in the area and I had been wanting to take one there for several years. To do it with black powder made it all the more special. Sometimes the size of the deer doesn't equal the size of the trophy. I hope you other guys are having success this fall as well.