Jump to content

First Archery Coues Deer Jan 2020

Recommended Posts

January 25, 2020

My friend Christian and myself headed out to one of our favorite glassing points to try and turn up a good Coues deer buck. We had been hunting muleys for the majority of the month, but after missing a buck 3 straight times the day before I felt I needed to make a change. 

We were able to find a very good Coues buck around 0900 after a mostly slow first few hours of glassing. The tops of his antlers could be seen behind a prickly pear as he pushed a doe across the top of the ridge we had been staring at for hours. We immediately knew we would be trying to put a stalk on this buck!


We watched him for 20 or so min before he did what all big Coues Deer seem to do, DISAPPEAR! He had fed over the ridge towards a canyon covered in thick brush.  Christian and I grabbed our gear and started the steep hike down from our glassing knob. Our plan was to work the ridge line around the East of him and set up on the ridge directly across from the canyon we believed he had fed into.

We got to the next ridge and immediately started glassing with excitement to see the buck again. After a few hours of seeing nothing, but a small 3x3 bedded under a few bushes I made the decision I was going to go after the small buck. I had never killed a Coues Deer let alone with my bow, so I decided to just go for it.

I decided to hike straight down into the canyon 300-400 yds with a plan to hike up the other side to his level and come in straight onto him. Christian stayed back on the binos and guided me in. I had not made it more than 100yds down the canyon when I looked up and spotted the big buck from the morning! I radio'd to Christian that I had found him and would be changing targets. The buck was still with the doe, but he was up feeding behind a pair of juniper trees.


I slowly worked my way into the canyon keeping my eyes focused on the doe that was bedded off to the buck's right. There was a large prickly pair cactus out on a small bench on the canyon wall that I figured I could get a shot from. I slid and crawled my way down the ridge until I got to the prickly pair. I peered over the top of the cactus and could see the buck had fed out from behind the junipers presenting a shot. After what felt like 5 min of trying to calm my nerves behind the prickly pair, I came to full draw, and rose up onto my knees. At some point while coming to full draw the buck had moved directly up the ridge from where he was originally feeding. I guessed another 10 yards and settled my pin a little over his back. I can still remember watching that arrow fly across the canyon and the sound of the schwacker broadhead as it hit the buck! The buck spun a 180 and ran straight across the canyon face and disappeared into a cut!

I was overjoyed for about 3 seconds until I heard Christian come over the radio informing me he didn't think it was a good shot. Immediately doubt started to creep into my mind that I might not be able to recover my first Coues Deer. After searching for blood in the steep, thick brush covered ridge, we decided to hike out in the dark. The truck was still parked at the top of the glassing knob, now well over 5 miles away. Exhausted, I sat in the truck in silence replaying the shot over and over in my head and thinking I had blew my shot at a stud first Archery Coues.

January 26, 2020

We arrived at the glassing knob just before first light with a plan to use our glass to relocate the buck again. It was probably the longest, slowest morning of glassing I had ever done. Needless to say we did not find the buck. Around 10:00am we decided to hike back down to the spot the buck was the day before and look again for blood or tracks. I was not very optimistic. After another agonizing hour or two of zig zagging the sides of the steep, thick ridge we decided to call it. Christian was down the ridge for me and said he wanted to walk another 10' over and then he'd hike up to the top of the ridge with me. Not 10 seconds later I heard him shout "I got blood!" 


The excitement took off after that as small droplets of blood quickly led us into my broken arrow and then large pools of bright red blood!



And then we found him! Piled up in the bottom of the canyon no more than 100 yds from where I had shot him.


Luckily the sun had only started to hit him by the time we found him and the cool January air in the bottom of the canyon preserved him allowing us to salvage all the meat!



The pack out was just as brutal as the night before, but this time I did it with a grin the whole way!


Thank you for reading





  • Like 11

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome story and great write up. Thank you for taking the time to type it out and share it with us. Congratulations!!!!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thats a heck of a first buck! It will ne a tall order to beat that one!.

Also welcomebto the forum. 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now