Last hour of the last day curse. ( You can have it Bro. )
Hey all. Been missing the forums but I have been a bit tied up. But some of that ended this morning.
I have been hunting deer HARD this season. I have put hundreds of miles and dozens of hours into finding the elusive buck. I have not been picky. I was not looking for a monster. I am just looking for a male deer with at least 3" spikes. You see, I hunt primarilly from the back of an atv and I understand that the big bucks live where my feet won't carry me. So be it. Regardless, I have seen probably 200 does and the only bucks I have seen were on someone elses rig. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/mad.gif[/img]
This morning was a different story. But before we get to that, let me give you a little history on the "curse" mentioned in the title of this post. It seems that the last few years I have not gotten my deer until the last hour (as in, gutting the deer or loading it in the truck in the dark) of the last day of the season.This year was lining up to be no different. Again, as mentioned above I have spent days and hours and miles and miles on prepairing for and scouting and waking up early and going to bed late and eating dust and shivering and sneaking around rock piles and glassing hill sides and blah and blah and blah to get a deer. In fact, on Sunday, when I got home I told the wife that I have had a fun season but no deer for me and that I was done for the year. But the season ended today. Tuesday. And when my bro called yesterday to see if I wanted to give it just one last morning my first thought was "no, I gave it a good run but no. I would be done." But then I thought "last hour of the last day. Sunday was not the last day, Tuesday is and if I don't go I won't get my deer. I have to follow the rules." Besides I can only hope for a deer if I am in Gods great outdoors. I have never seen a deer in my back yard. So we went.
Well as it turns out we did see a buck. A spike that was legal antler length and not to shabby body weight wise. And in order to keep your interest I will jump to the important particulars. He was up the side of a hill and on first hit with a laser it showed him at 460 yds. By the time my bro had rejoined me (he actually did the first injun crawl over our concealment hill to confirm the spikes then came back to tell me what he saw and talk to some other hunters about some does on the next ridge.)the buck had moved to a lasered 470. I put final clicks on the scope and focused on the details. Breath, good platform, breathe, pull off the shooting hand glove with my teeth, breathe, broad side picture, sqweeze, reaquire deer in the scope. It jumped a slight bit, kicked its rear legs and walked up the hill and over the top. The shot felt good and my bro said it looked good in the binocs. So with that he went and got the light weight .243 and made the climb for the deer. An hour went by and I heard 3 shots before he appeared over the hill with a dead deer. After he got back I heard the story about how the deer made it a way down the back side of the hill and how it was a steep haul back to the top. Only one of the 3 shots was from my bro. He finished the deer in the neck as it lay in the grass looking at him but not getting up. As it turns out the shot I took went just a little far back for a quick dump. It fractured the liver and clipped the top of the grass bag stomach. It would bleed out but it wasn't bleeding out quickly. The Nosler J4 bullets did their part, I just needed to move the shot 4 to 6 inches forward for the result I was hoping for. I lasered the hill where I actually contacted the deer and got a solid 480 yards. Done deal. (for those who don't already know, I NEVER would have tried this shot alone and my Bro knew that he would be primary on retreiving a long range hit. Leftovers from a car wreck prevent me from doing what he did (with alot of sweat) for me.)
Well that puts us at about 11:30 ish in the morning and I don't have to be to work untill 2:15 and Bro dosen't have his buck......YET! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
So we drove farther up the road we're on and run back into the 4 does we told the earlier hunters about. What pretty does they were, so we moved on. Then we saw 3 other deer at at least 550 yards and we looked and looked but they were in a draw and we couldn't determine if any of them were bucks. So Bro crawled up a hill that put him 100 yards closer. The 3 deer had moved from their spot toward the approaching 4 does and somewhere in the mid day sun 6 or 7 deer still added up to 4 deer but one of them became a... You guessed it... A 4ked horn (hmmm?).
As the deer miraculously came toward us from somewhere around 400 yards they went behind a knob that broke north and south into two seperate draws. We got Bro set up behind the .308 and ranged everything we could in preparation for him to whack the buck when it reappeared. And we waited. And while we waited and lasered we realized that if they broke down the north draw they could show back up at around 600+ yards. Not good, as I only have confirmed drops out to 500 for the gun. So bro gets up and walks north to look down the draw. He comes back and says no deer seen so we decide to head to the south draw to ambush them as they come down. Well as luck would have it they did come down that draw. And then at some point they cut north over a second saddle and poppd over the hill just 80 yards away, behind us, with me and my Bro standing in the road with optics in our hands and the rifle 10 feet away laying on the roadside berm. BUSTED! Well the deer went back the way they came and a little more to the north which gave us a chance to backtrack and set up for a 180 yard shot. Again to make a long story... My bro cracked of a round that was perfect in the lungs but I think it missed the heart ( I honestly don't remember seeing it when we gutted the deer.) so it fell over androlled around a bit then regained its footing. It moved south again and broadsided again at around 220 yards. Bro held a little high for this clean up shot and vented the top of the gut chamber just behind the diaphram. That was enough for this deer. he walked a few feet and went down for the last time.
After a much quicker drag than the first one of the day and a quick trip back to the truck with the deer I was able to call in to where I work in time to keep out of trouble. But I only had 15 minutes to spare to make this call.
My bro and I put very similar time for the hunt this year. He put in more field time than me looking for potential spots that we would be able to hunt from or with the aid of the atvs and I put in the extra time working on building up loads for the guns and getting the gear as ready as I could in time for this season. It was a hell of a great day hunting and both of us pulling a buck within a mile of each other after all the time and miles put in just seems to defy reason. It was however my bro that dropped the 4k this year and in the last hour of the last day.
Thanks for the help and congrats on the buck Bro. And if it is a curse, You can have it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
GRAVITY. It's not just a good idea. It's the LAW!