Well it has been a VERY long and hard season. I have hunted hard from Aug till now and either the weather or the game wouldnt cooperate. OK and every now and then this hunter would screw up too..... Anyway after having the skunk gods smiling on me all year I finaly broke the curse Sunday after I harvested a beautifull sitka blacktail. Please bear in mind a typical sitka deer is a 3x3 with or without eye guards unlike mule deer or columbia blacktails. 4x4's are rare.
I flew to Kodiak Island Thursday after work and hopped in a 206 on floats and got dropped off at a remote lake. Friday I awoke to foot steps mere feet away from my tent. In a panic I yelled "Go away bear!!" thinking I was about to become a snack for an old bruin. I was releived when I heard the gait of a deer running. I unzipped the tent and saw a doe 25 yards away on the skyline in the moonlit dark. After it got a little light, I got up, dressed and went out up the hill the same place the doe had gone. I got to the top (35' up from camp) and saw a doe on the other side of the valley. She was 575 yards. I thought about popping her but the grass made it difficult to lay down and get a clear shot. A few minutes later a buck appeared behind her. He chased her away, got bored with her and headed my way. I went to cut him off, loaded my rifle (top loaded it) and closed the bolt. I jummped him about 10 minutes later and wound up with a 80 yard broadside shot. I pulled up, aimed, squeezed.......click. I opend the bolt only to find a round had not chambered. I thumbed one up and locked her down but the buck was gone.
The next morning I went after another buck in the same spot. I jummped a doe and a youngin. Passed on her for the baby. After watching her for a while hoping a buck would show up I headed off to pound more frozen veggetation. AFter ditching some heavy clothes and walking only moments I looked over and saw another nice buck at 75 yards. He was facing me head on. Against my better judgment I pulled up and aimed, fired. WACK! It sounded like a solid hit in the chest. I watched him the best I could and marked the spot I shot from. Looked for blood, the deer, any evidence of a hit. I spent a couple hours looking for any sign of him or blood. Nothing. Chalk one up for the bears. I know confirmed my fear of loosing a critter to a frontal shot. I WILL NEVER TAKE ANOTHER ONE!
0 for 2. I head out on my 3rd and last huntable morning. I hiked to a small hill over looking some flat open country hoping I can spot a buck or even a lone doe at this point. Also hoping to see ravens flying over my loss. I was watching a couple ravens far off seeing what they were up to when I saw movement below me about 65 yards away. I looked through the binos and it was a buck. Yes I thought. Round chambered, saftey off, I layed down bi-pod open. He stopped at 88 yards quartering away, aimed a little back, BANG! WACK. The sound of a solid hit. In typical deer fasion he ran about 50 yards and piled up. He is a 3x3 with matching eyegurds. He scores 81" with only 1/8" deduction. He is all but perfectly semetrycal which is rare for a sitka buck. The 155 AMAX liqified part of his liver and both lungs. The best part of this hunt was the struggle to keep my drinking water liquid enough to drink. It was so cold I had to sleep with enough water bottles to get me through the next day. I had to thaw my boots out every morning over my pocket rocket just to get them playable enough to put on. 15 hours of night and getting longer, no whisky, no beer. Just bucks everywhere!