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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/23/2018 in all areas

  1. 42 points
    Got to my hunting unit on Friday 21st at 6:00 pm. 24 hrs later, Saturday at 6:00 pm, put an arrow in this bull, ran about 100 yards and dropped. I'm very happy! Thanks for looking
  2. 38 points
    I'm not as active as I used to be on CWT. But I still linger and have always had a tremendous amount of respect for what Amanda built from the beginning. So if I can contribute to her and the rest of you Coues deer fanatics I will! I finally caught up with this buck after he eluded me last year. He's an old buck (and I'm not very smart) so I honestly couldn't be happier. It's always special when you can follow an animal this long. And for those who've done it, it can be very bitter/sweet also. I especially feel that way as I feel like I linger closer to my Coues deer hunting days being numbered. Enjoy.
  3. 35 points
    I had the privilege of helping my nephew get his first elk this morning. He has a CHAMP and crossbow permit. Walking more than a 100 yards on flat ground was going to be tough, so sitting water was going to be our main focus of hunting. Yesterday, he and his dad found a tank that had a lot of elk coming into that was easy access for him to get into. After sitting last night, no elk were seen but some nice bucks did come in to keep them occupied while sitting. This morning I was able to go, so we decided to go sit the same tank. We got there just before daylight and we could hear some bulls blowing but they were a long ways off. After a little bit a bull started getting closer an closer blowing as he come. Finally we could see him on top of the ridge and he was coming in. He first got to the water facing straight on. He walked out into the tank and screamed right at us. He turned broadside and Mike was just about to shoot when he turned straight away and started drinking. After a minute or so, he started raking his antlers in the mud and little by little he started to turn. He was quartering away and I told Mike to aim right at the last rib and squeeze it off. The shot hit perfect, lodging in the opposite shoulder. The bull took off and I cow called and got him to stop. Not five seconds later he was down at 80 yards. The hunt was so much fun and glad I was able to be apart of it. Everything worked out perfect. Brian
  4. 33 points
    Left home at 6am, got to the spot late. glass up deer on the furthest steepest mountain and they’re at the top like bighorns. Couldn’t see antlers with 15s from there, but one was raking a tree and looked like a bigger bodied deer so we had to get closer and see. We worked to a ridge 550 yards away. See a couple spikes, then my friend says there’s a little better one. Ok last day deer. Hit him a little back, but not bad for standing up using a tripod for the rest lol
  5. 31 points
    Got the privelage of helping out a good family friend on his bull hunt the past few days. On Monday morning we were into them quick and before we knew it the elk starting filing right past us. He was set on shooting a smaller 5 point that was coming and stopped at 55 yards, when I told him “there’s a better bull coming”. This bull stepped out, I cow called, and after a great double lung shot, and the short 75 yard track job; the work began. Exciting experience to say the least. Best of luck to those of you still out pounding the hills.
  6. 30 points
    Heres my OTC Buck, shot him Monday just after noon, took about 8 or 9 days of spot and stalk/sitting. Have a shed of his and last 4 months of cam pics. This is my biggest coues and my first archery coues...addicted.
  7. 29 points
    Elton Bingham was born on February 19, 1904 in Milton Wisconsin. The son of hard working dairy and hog farmers, he grew up with a love of the land and the soil and the bounties that it could provide. Today it would be hard to imagine but until the late 1960's very few deer could be found in that part of the state and as a boy and into his adult life he always cherished the annual trips to deer camp in northern Wisconsin. When old enough my father accompanied him and I grew up listening to the stories of deer camp. kangaroo court was held each evening and punishment was dealt out accordingly. If you missed a doe the tail of your hunting shirt was cut off, a buck and you lost a sleeve. Bad shots, forgetting your knife and a myriad of other events were also punishable offenses and it was not uncommon for some participants to be wearing only a collar by the end of the hunt. Elton Bingham carried a model 14, .30 Remington pump gun that he traded farm work for in 1920. Basically a rimless 30-30 that was Remington's answer to the lever guns so common of that time period. In Elton's hands it was the nemesis of many, many deer in the Wisconsin woods. I remember as a grade schooler getting to shoot it once at a fence post with a corn field back drop, admiring the spiral magazine and thinking it was the coolest thing in the world. Eventually it made it's way to Arizona when my father brought it back after a visit. At 9500 feet the air was thin and I stopped on the incline to catch my breath and look for awhile. I thought of my Grandpa rushing into the barn and driving out the cows and horse teams as they succumbed to silo gas. He suffered severe lung damage but men were men and to lose the farm was unacceptable, to claim bankruptcy would be worse. Looking down at his rifle and the worn bluing at it's balance point and knowing that because of him my hands were now where his had been was almost surreal. In the thick aspens I knew that this was as close as I would ever come to hunting whitetails in a Wisconsin cranberry swamp. As close to my Grandpa as I had ever felt. Elton and Constance Bingham 1930
  8. 29 points
    I was truley blessed this year...and was lucky to harvest this buck from my tree stand at 19yds. Had 6 bucks come in on my first day in stand. This buck decided to come in as I was preparing to leave for the day. I only had this buck on camera twice... but in 3 weeks from the first picture he must have doubled in size...amazing, and I'm sure he had a little growing left to do as well. We rough scored him at 107 1/8"
  9. 28 points
    It was a pretty short hunt for us. Found a hot doe on Thursday evening and went back in the AM. Found this buck and a few others but this was the heaviest and largest frame. She thought about passing him as we watched them for a couple hours but then decided to take him. She made a great shot at 270 yards and he was done. Met some good people up there and had a great time. She was very blessed to get that call. Thanks to all the people who offered info on the unit!
  10. 28 points
    Scouted for a month ahead of the season. Hunted for 13 days and finally everything came together. Tough hunt. Was hunting unit 8 and it was hot and dry. It was 85 the first 5 days and not much cooler after that. 81 yesterday. My son was supposed to be my helper but melted in the heat. I took him home after 5 days and was alone the rest of the way. Some of you will remember my dad passed away in May. This was the first time I went on a hunt without him. Emotional roller coaster for sure. Had many close calls and got a tip from a guy I met on a little hidden water spot. Sat there a couple days with no results other than antelope, mule deer, coyotes etc.. I did get several bulls on camera at night and it kept me coming back. I chased bugles around in between. After 12 days I was about wore out and decided for good or for bad, I was going to sit that spot until the end. Day 13 found me in the blind before daylight with bulls bugling all around. As luck would have it, part of the herd decided to come down the ravine to the water. The big bull pushed his way through the cows and into the water. 40 yards. He turned to broadside, I calmed myself, settled my pin and let it go. Hit him just a little high which brought on some nervous moments because he bled in his chest instead of leaving a blood trail. But I knew I hit him well and was confident he was dead. Made a circle and found him about halfway back. Not going to lie, I shed some tears. It was a long, physically and emotionally draining hunt for me. Then, I had no help. Did everything on my own. Told my wife, I can say I did it alone now, but I never want to do it again. A common theme with the bulls where I was hunting, was weak backs. Everyone thought it was from the drought. Not sure, but if this bull had backs to go with the ridiculous fronts, I can only imagine what he would have scored. All in all, I had a great hunt and met some good people. Was considering doing euro mount. Anyone have any suggestions of someone in Phoenix that is good, and reasonable? Almost done. Should have my hands on him soon. Can't wait to put a tape on him. Daniel Gradillas of Spot-N-Stalk Skullz holding him.
  11. 27 points
    Tagged out on my first elk during the late rifle bull hunt. Moved to AZ from Texas back in 2016, hunting western big game has been the most challenging, humbling, and rewarding experience I've had as an outdoorsman.
  12. 27 points
    I got the opportunity to go on a friends archery bull hunt. First time for me to do this, tag along and help out. I learned alot but this was one of the most epic hunts I have ever been on. It was a ton of fun chasing bugles through the forest and watching them rake their racks. This one was the 3rd attempt to get on a bull. This time I dropped him off and drove around a mile on the other side where the meadow was because I knew he would chase them out of there if he spooks them, so I can get eyes on them if they ran out and radio in. Not long I got the radio and he said he stuck one. Drove back to the old logging road and hike into him. My buddy was worried about his 55 yard shot and showed right where he shot him. I looked down the narrow corridor of trees about a 100 yards down and the sun beaming on the body and antlers and said "dude your bulls right there" Hugs and congrats happen! Man that was fun!!! Sad its over. Gutted it out and drug it out into the open for some nice pics.
  13. 26 points
    Our Son graduated from Air Force BMT this morning. We are very proud of this Airman!
  14. 26 points
    My Dad and I had a very successful and quick opening day hunt. With a short amount of time to hunt do to other priorities, I put him on 2 great bucks within 20 minutes of daylight. After spotting them at 725 yards, we cut the distance a few hundred yards and set up for the shot. He went back and forth a few times on which one he wanted to shoot, but he settled the cross-hairs on this beautiful desert buck. A quick 220 yard shot and... we were tagged out, back to the truck, and home before 1045 am. Thanks for looking and happy hunting
  15. 25 points
    After hunting a specific buck For 3 days with little to no deer to be shown for it I switched hunting areas and met up with my buddy Todd who had found an area in his scouting that had a few mature bucks in it. It payed off and that evening we killed this solid buck. I’m beyond thankful for friends who are willing to grind out the crappy days and come through when I needed it! Thanks fellas!
  16. 25 points
    Long story short shot on top of a mountain which we knew packout would suck but what we didnt expect for it to do is go over the mtn to the other side which is dang near a cliff and die. 6 hour packout with 6 people. But job is done.
  17. 24 points
    I put in for over 38 years and had max bonus points for the 2018 sheep draw and got tag #2 in Unit 28 (south). My son-in-law, Dan Ott, and 26+ year hunting partner, Ed Soyring, accompanied me and the guides, Tyson Hatch and Matt Holcomb of Double H Outfitters. We decided to wait till Monday, Dec 3rd to start hunting to avoid some foul weather and any conflicts with the other hunter in the unit who had been waiting for 51 years for tag #1. Congrats to Craig (and Matt) on his terrific sheep, which scored 189". We saw lots of sheep on the first day and tried a stalk but two big rams got into it and ran off before we were in position. The second day was more discouraging with fewer sheep sighted and the big one from the day before just walking off out of the area. Third day was the charm. High winds kept a herd of 7 rams and 1 ewe pinned down below some cliffs. Three different stalks finally culminated in a 176 yard shot on a very nice ram. Pack-out was easy. He green scored by G&F at 172-1/8” and 6 -7 years old. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ; and, also, to Chris, Matt, Tyson, Ed and Dan.
  18. 24 points
    My 10-year old son, Evan, took this buck on Saturday 12/29/2018 on the late desert muzzy hunt. The buck was with 10 does and was running a hot one. Evan made 130 yard shot to take this mature buck for his 1st big game kill.
  19. 24 points
    Killing a nice coues has always been something that has eluded me. I’ve killed a bunch of them over the years but never one that i would consider nice, or big. I have been fortunate enough to take some real good elk, mulies, antelope, bear, etc. but coues have always kicked my butt. Having killed 3 between 95-98” my goal is always to take a 100” buck. This year was no different. I’ve been chasing one particular buck for 3 years now but i have never seen him hard-horned. My goal was simple this year, kill that buck. I have hunted him endlessly through archery and rifle season with no luck. I spend a LOT of time scouting and running cameras so i know most of the deer that are in the area i hunt. As soon as the bucks shed their velvet this year, i lost track of all the “shooter” bucks i have been watching. I can’t for the life of me figure out where they go. Well, the opening morning of my rifle hunt rolled around and Jason, my brother and myself found ourself at our glassing point. Jason had a tag with me and my brother was there to help out. We started seeing deer right away but nothing special. After covering all the country in our immediate vicinity, my eyes started to wander to the country I’m sure we all look at with the thought of “why am i glassing so far away?” I mentioned to my brother that i could see a couple deer waaaaayyy out there and he told me pretty much what i was thinking to myself. Why the he!! was i looking over there. I figured i was looking at a couple does anyways, so i got back to glassing the more approachable country around us. A few minutes later my brother told me he spotted some more deer waaaay out there where i was looking and one looked like a decent buck. Not getting too excited, i pulled out the big eye and looked him over. He was a decent buck, but not what i was after. We kind of forgot about him and got back to business. A little while later someone was looking over him again and he seemed a lot bigger than we thought. Another look through the big eye confirmed there were two bucks. We could tell they were both at least decent with one being larger than the other. We watched the bucks bed and made a plan. Jason and i would make a very long and what should have been “low percentage” stalk to see how the bucks looked from much closer. The stalk worked out great. We found ourselves 450ish yards from the bedded bucks. After a quick look, i decided to try to shoot the bigger buck. A few minutes later he stood up and walked through a narrow shooting lane. I fired and the shot found it’s mark. Buck down. After the celebration ended we noticed the other buck was still standing there and Jason decided he was big enough. A few minutes and one shot later we had two bucks dead within feet of eachother. I never got a great look at the buck i shot i just knew had a good frame and could tell he had a bit of funk on his rack. When we got to the bucks, i was pleasantly surprised. He was not the buck i was after but he is one i could not pass. Jason’s buck was also a little better than we thought. Nothing like an opening morning double-down on a couple good bucks.
  20. 24 points
    Well I was fortunate enough to draw another early bull tag this year. This year I would be chasing rutting bulls with a bow in hand in a unit I personally had never elk hunted before. My hunting partner and I spent a lot of time this summer running cameras and scouting with very little to show. About 2 weeks before season everything changed and the bulls started to move in. The hunt started off great with good rutting activity and several solid bulls to chase. Opening day found me in a pocket of 5 or 6 bulls tearing up. The bulls were very responsive to calling and several smaller bulls were passed. The second morning of the hunt had me intercepting my target bull and his cows. The cows passed by me at 10 yards broadside but the bull opted to walk right to me. At full draw the bull was staring me down at no more than 4 yards when one of his cows circled behind and winded me. The cow barked and the bull started to take off. I managed to stop the bull and guessed him at 35 yards with no tome to range and let it fly but he ended up being at 51. That night while heading back to camp I had a black heffer jump in the road in front of me. As I hit the breaks and tried to avoid hitting her my side by side decided to flip over. Miraculously I walked away with a bruised arm and a sprained ankle. I ended up coming home to recover and hopefully able to hunt again later in the hunt. Wednesday I was able to head back up and give it another go. With my ankle in a brace and immobilized as much as possible I was able to stalk a great bull but was unable to seal the deal. Thursday morning I decided to head to an area we scouted and saw several good bulls. We got in the area and had bulls sounding off all around us. We played cat and mouse with a group of 6 bulls that had 2 groups of cows. After calling to the bulls for 30 minutes while working in on them one of the bulls finally committed. The bull worked from across the canyon right to me. The bull was at 30 yards when I let the arrow fly. He started to walk when I released and I hit him a little back but still in the liver. I immediately started to cow call and the bull stopped at 20 yards. I was able to get another arrow in him and this time took out his lungs. The bull ran about 20 yards and piled up. This hunt definitely won’t be one that I will forget anytime soon. Can’t thank all the guys in camp enough for all the help and encouragement.
  21. 23 points
    I found some really nice bulls in the desert, a lot of them were broken up, but good bulls none the less. But, just in case, I had several blinds built and stands hung at remote water holes. So opening morning, i glasses up a nice 6x6 in the desert, with 9 cows. I was by myself, but gave chase anyways. I ranged them at 1200 yards, and took off. When I got over there, the elk were gone, and I have no idea where they went. I may have gotten picked off, or maybe they just moved on. But without a spotter, there was no telling. I looked for them till noon, walking and glassing. Nothing. since it was warm, I thought I’d get on a waterhole early, and try my luck. It was a long rough ride in, and then a short hike. When I got all settled in, I realized I had no water. I got out of the blind to hike back, but decided I better get right back in and tough it out. An hour later this guy came in, but from a direction I wasn’t expecting. He wasn’t a big bull, but I wasn’t gonna be choosy. I had to move my chair to the other side of the blind to draw. I had him at 35 yards. I settled the pins, and let one fly. To my disappointment, I could see blood dumping out of his brisket. I hit a solid foot low. But when I shot, I heard the arrow or the cam hit the blind, which really messed up the shot. Re adjusting my chair nearly cost me. I tried a few quick follow up shots, but blew them. The good news was that this bull was pouring blood. I’d spent the previous night hand sharpening the shwacker broad head, and that was critical. I could see he wasn’t going far. I dug in my pack for some stalking slippers, and slid them on. I snuck to 50 yards, from where he was standing, and had a small window in the trees that I could send an arrow. I figured I could hit liver with the shot I had, so I took it, and nailed him. At that point I backed out and called pwrguy, who brought another friend for the pack out and meat cutting. He expired shortly, with very little of a tracking job. He was probably less than 75 yards from the initial shot. Both shots were complete pass throughs. I was really thankful to take him on opening day. God certainly answered that prayer.
  22. 22 points
    Well here is the short and sweet version of my wife's first elk hunt. She drew a limited opportunity "Any Elk" HAM hunt. I knew it had the potential to be a tough hunt so contacted my friend Shane Koury to help us out. We got on a monster bull early on day one that none of us had ever seen before, but he wasn't in a shootable location. As we moved in on him, he and his cows busted us. We were determined that he would be our target bull and set about to pursue him the rest of the hunt. The first day and a half were great. He was a very silent bull and bugled very little, which made it tough to find and trail him in a flat, cedar heavy unit. Late on day two the weather started moving in and for the next few days we were pelted by rain, snow, sleet, hail, and heavy wind with little to no breaks in the weather. This weather effectively killed the rut in our unit. The bugling slowed to just one bugle before light by day two. By day four the bulls were back in bachelor groups and there was zero rut activity or behavior. On day five Shane and I did an evaluation of my wife's mood. We agreed that we (mostly me) were putting our standards and expectation of bull size/class on her and encouraged her to be more open with us about what she was looking for in the hunt. It was clear she really just wanted to shoot a mature bull, and we didn't want to kill her enthusiasm with the continued grind for our target bull. After we "adjusted" our expectations and plans, we quickly came across this guy in a bachelor group of three bulls. Kursty made a good 235 yard shot with the muzzleloader. We heard the loud unmistakable thump of the bullet making impact, but he ran off into the thick cedars. After a short time we began tracking him. No blood, but because of all the moisture, a blind man could have tracked his deep prints in the mud. After bumping him a couple times we agreed to back out and give him four hours. It was probably about 40 degrees at the time so we weren't too concerned about meat spoilage. We could tell he was struggling to stay ahead of us and was done, but needed some time. Those four hours drove my wife to a near nervous breakdown. After picking up the trail where we left off that morning, we found he had bedded up not far from where we left him. Kursty put one last shot in him at 21 yards and he was done. This was a fantastic first elk hunt for my wife that had a little bit of everything, highs and lows, grinding it out, crazy weather, a little rut activity, etc. I am super happy for her and can't wait to get her out in the field again.
  23. 22 points
    Went to glass for pigs this morning and do some deer hunting. Found no pigs but saw 40 deer. We glassed up a herd that finally had 3 rutting bucks. A spike. A 3x0, and a 160 class 4x4. Put my daughter on the stalk of course to shoot the 4x4 but when she got up there the 2 bigger bucks pushed the spike out of the herd and he came to her at 43yds. With 2 days 3 days left in December and never killing a buck with her bow she got it done. Long pack out. The arrow was all the way to the fletchings but he fell on it and pushed it out. He went 30yds and expired so proud of her and we cant wait for January
  24. 22 points
    Call it an infatuation. Call it an addiction. Call it a passion. Call it an obsession. A waste of energy. A waste of money. A waste of time. Call it a problem, or a sickness. Call it whatever you'd like. If it's a sickness, I have it, and it's incurable. If it's an addiction, an intervention isn't going to stop it. Trust me, I think my wife might have tried that in the beginning. If it's a waste of time, and money, then that explains why I'm so far behind on chores and why i cant afford luxurious vacations. If it's a waste of energy, then that explains why I feel so dang old. It's not going to stop however. The reward is too great. Succesfully spotting and stalking coues bucks with a bow is the ultimate satisfaction, second only to creating and raising a family. Hunting coues deer with my bow has consumed my soul for many years now. It's a high I've continuously yearned for since I felt it for the first time many years ago. This late summer archery season was as productive as any season I can remember. It cost me money, and time, and energy, and sleep, but each day I got to spend in those desert mountains this season was a day that all non-hunting related stresses left my mind. It is unbelievable how healing it is to climb out of the desert floor, glue your eyes to a pair of binoculars on a tripod, and pick the landscape apart. I was able to lay my eyes on many good deer and had some very close calls. Unforeseen events caused me to miss more days than I would have liked during the season, not counting the days I missed because of work but all in all the this August /early September was one to remember. It flew by and before I knew it, I was down to one day of hunting left. My good buddy Randy Landwerlen made the drive down to hunt with me on what would be the last day of the hunt for both of us. I had a pretty good idea where some shooter bucks were living so we made a game plan that included parking trucks in two different spots and hunting from one to the other. This would allow us to cover most of the country that the big bucks had been calling home. We dropped Randy's truck off and then continued on in my truck. As usual, it was a race against the sun and we sucked wind climbing to our first glassing spot of the morning. It was one of the better glassing spots in the area, but it definitely wasn't a great hill to start a stalk from, primarily because of the effort required to make a move in any direction. Randy was the first to spot bucks. They weren't shooters so we kept looking. I was feeling more pressure than normal to find bucks. It was our last day to hunt and I actually had a spotter to aid in a stalk. I primarily archery hunt alone, unless the stars align and I can get out with my hunting partner Cody, so I really wanted to take advantage of this opportunity. Aside from the bucks Randy glassed up, things were pretty slow for the first bit of the morning. I eventually found a shooter far off on top of a big ridge but he didn't stay visible for long and he wasn't in a spot that wasn't going to take less than 3/4 of a day to relocate. Randy spotted a few more deer and then we elected to glass back behind us. I found a group of bucks and began to direct Randy to them and before I really got finished giving him all the details of their location he says "those are nice bucks." "I dont think they're shooters." I responded. "That deer on the left looks big." He replied. I obviously wasn't looking at the same deer he was. About 100 yards left of the deer I was looking at were a group of bucks and with them was a deer that both of us agreed was a shooter. We watched the bucks for probably half an hour before deciding to cut the distance some. They were two canyons over and one of the canyons was quite large. . .and deep. We crossed through the smaller of the two canyons and thankfully the bucks had not moved. They fed towards the top of the ridge and eventually bedded down. Randy and I went back and forth about who would stalk the deer and how to go about it. You know you're hunting with a top notch guy when the guy is an avid coues hunter but he's adament about letting somebody else go after a deer rather than himself. Randy convinced me to go after the deer and as you can imagine, I didn't need much convincing. The thermals had pretty much settled and the wind had been pretty consistent for about an hour. I chose a path and tried to memorize some landmarks. Crossing the canyon between us and the deer was not going to be fun. It was going to take me some time and I was afraid that the deer were not going to stay put. I made it about 2/3's of the way up the opposite side of the canyon when I hear Randy holler at me. I knew what that meant. It was over. I looked at Randy through my binoculars and he gave me the signal that they had crossed over. Without a spotter I would have wasted the next few hours stalking deer that weren't even there. Ask me how I know. I climbed a little further until I got phone service and called Randy. He told me that the deer ran up and over but he didn't think they were spooked. I decided to climb to the top of the ridge and just walk down it towards where the deer went over and maybe glass off the other side. Before I made it to the top, Randy text me and said that he found them again. What a relief. They bedded again down the ridge about 400 yards from where they were when I originally started my stalk. Talk about catching a break. The wind was steadily blowing on my right side and slightly in my face. The deer were in their second bed of the day, and they were bedded near the top of the ridge. For once, I felt like I had an advantage. Unsteady wind is my arch nemesis. Finally, today, the wind was steady. I continued down the ridge until I felt like I was getting close to where the bucks were at. I noticed a doe feeding where I thought the bucks should be. I also noticed two cows fifty yards to the right of the doe. The advantage was tipping back into the buck's favor. The best route with the most cover was not available to me now because of the doe and the cattle. The doe laid down, so I crept a little closer and stopped for awhile. Eventually one of the bucks stood up about ten yards past the doe and came and rebedded near her. My goal at this point was to get within shooting distance of the buck that had just rebedded and then sit tight. He wasn't the shooter but I wasn't sure exactly where the shooter buck was and I figured he wasn't too far away. I was 120 yards at this point and the wind was still blowing on my right side. It took me about 20 minutes to crawl to 80. After sitting at 80 for a bit, another buck stood up and fed over to the doe and buck closest to me and bedded. I now had two bucks and a doe at 80. The shooter buck was still out of sight. I could see the head of the second buck which was actually a plus. Now I could move and keep an eye on his ears to know when my noise levels were too high. I crept in to 60 and the buck's ears never perked up once. At this point I could make out the antler tips of the shooter buck. The tree he was under was 74 yards away. I got to 70 when the wind died and I began to run out of cover. I stayed there for a good while waiting for some wind and one of the small clouds in the sky to give me some shade. After being there about ten minutes I felt the breeze against my face. A few minutes later, a cloud provided some shade, so I began to crawl some more. It took me about 15 minutes to cover another 10 yards. I got to 60 and felt like getting any closer was too much of a risk with the two bucks and the doe at only 45 yards from me. My adrenaline levels were beginng to rise and I could feel the fever coming on. I knew I was close to making this happen. Fortunately I had time to gain my composure. In my younger days, this multi-hour stalk would have taken me all of about 30 minutes. Like a grizzly bear, I would have blundered my way in there, hoping this buck tolerated my presence long enough for me to take him down. Today though, I chose to take the form of the Nile crocodile, hiding in the depths of the waste high grass until I got close enough to let the jaws of my BowTech snap, and letting the teeth of my rocket steelhead tear into my quarry's flesh. After sitting at 60 for awhile, the buck stood up and offered a broadside shot. I wasn't completely confident that he was exactly 60 so I tried to verify his range by ranging him rather than the tree above him. I had a hard time with the tall grass, but I finally got a range. He was 60 exactly so I attached my release and raised my bow to draw. He flopped back into his bed before I had a chance to completely draw and the waiting game began again. I wondered if I had wasted my only oppurtunity. It was now afternoon and I was in deep consideration about whether or not to try and crawl closer when out of nowhere, one of the closer bucks jumped up and darted out towards the big buck. Both of the other Bucks jumped and followed. I didn't know what happened. The wind was good. I was motionless. I thought the gig was up so I jumped up and got ready to draw. All three bucks soon realized that their jittery nature had gotten the best of them and they decided to all head back out of the sun into their shady beds. As the big buck approached the tree he had been bedded under, I drew my bow. He got right back to here he had been bedded and stopped, quartering to. I held for about 10 more seconds before he turned broadside. I settled my 60 yard pin at the front of his lungs and applied pressure to the release. As my arrow left the bow, the buck simultaneously began to twist towards me and drop his front end, attempting to drop back down into his bed. My arrow flew true, but unfortunately his vitals were not in the same location they had been when I initially shot. The deer was hit lethally, but it wasn't the perfect double lung shot that I had anticipated. The buck bolted directly towards me and stopped at a mere 15 yards in the tall grass. I couldn't see anything but his head but I took a guess at where his body was in the grass and let another one rip. I heard the impact and the buck bolted off out of sight down the steep, rocky hillside. I immediately called randy to see what happened. He said the deer went down. He was able to watch the entire thing. I was ecstatic. So much work had gone into this. My emotions came to a peak and I let out a schoolgirl yell that echoed through the canyons. I really could not have done this one without Randy and I intend to return the favor someday. Randy made his way over to me and I could see he could appreciate the deer for what is was, which is a rare trait these days. It was refreshing to see somebody view the deer as something more than just a certain amount of inches. We took pictures, deboned the deer, and began our pack out. I'm sure many would wonder why I would bother climbing to the top of this mountain, crawl through the chigger infested weeds and grass, and sit in the baking sun for hours . Maybe I am infatuated. Maybe I am obsessed. Maybe I am addicted. Maybe it is a waste of time, or money, or energy. Maybe it is a problem I have. Or a sickness. Call it what you want. I call it living.
  25. 21 points
    I want to say thanks to all the guys that take part in this forum. You guys made researching this hunt easy. Coues Whitetail was everything it was supposed to be and more. I scouted this buck in July and found him on the second day of my hunt. I was able to get close (150 yards) and seal the deal with one well placed shot. I'm very proud of this buck. The warden was able to age him between 6 - 8 years which makes it all the better. Thanks for the conversation as always and enjoy the pictures! Reece