Posted by Sam H.
This year has been slow for deer hunting for us. But the dry spell finally ended for me. On November 14, I shot a great 5×5 thanks to the ability for hunters to use archery equipment during rifle season.
It was a cool morning with the wind out of the south-west so it was the perfect opportunity to sit in my favorite treestand on the whole property that I had already shot 2 big bucks out of the years before. Right away I saw a nice buck at 20 yards but it wasn’t legal shooting time yet, so I had to pass on him. Just as the sun started to peak we started to see more deer. First, there were 2 bucks messing around just 35 yards north of me in the brush. I heard the bigger one of them snort-wheeze at the other one. Once I heard it, I grabbed my Primos Buck Roar deer call and hit a snort-wheeze to challenge him. He turned my challenge down and trotted away. But that’s ok, because I don’t want to shoot a wimp anyway.
Later, around 9:30, I saw a small fawn 35 yards to the west. I didn’t care that it was there but then I saw a big body behind a cedar tree. Next, I saw a brown spot with a little blond mixed in with it on its head so I knew it was a buck, and he had a huge body, so I knew he had to be a big one. Before he could clear the thick cedar, I stood up and got ready to take a shot. I let him walk at 20 yards until his head got behind a tree so that I could pull my bow back without getting caught. When I pulled back, he noticed some movement but he didn’t know that it was me. I settled the pin right where his heart is. I pulled the trigger on my release and he sunk and swung towards me. My arrow hit right in the shoulder area and penetrated about 4-5 inches, just enough to get one lung.
He ran to the spot where those other bucks where playing and walked in circles as he was dizzy. I noticed that he was bleeding heavily, so I knew that it was a good sign. Eventually he walked off to the west. We gave him 3 more hours to die in peace. We got down at noon and started tracking. Right away, we found blood and it made for an easy blood trail. We got about 100 yards, and a doe and a buck jumped up and made a run for it. I knew it was him. He ran 75 yards before bedding down underneath a cedar tree. We sat there passing the binoculars between us watching him for any movement and strategizing how to sneak up on him if we needed to.
After about 20 minutes, he stood up to reposition himself and fell back down. He laid there and tossed and turned like he was having a bad dream. After another 15 minutes, he hadn’t moved and he didn’t look like he was breathing. We waited for the train to come for some cover noise so we could sneak up on him quietly and get another shot. We got within 20 yards and kneeled behind a thick tree. I pulled back my bow while Kevin grunted at him to see if he moved and I could shoot him. He didn’t move at all. We snuck around and tried the same thing, and still, nothing. He was lifeless. I had finally done it! I had killed a giant Pope and Young buck that was a lot bigger than I originally thought.
We gutted him and drug him up to the road and got back to the stands since it was cold enough that the meat would stay cold enough. Now, the meat is at the butcher and the head at the taxidermist. What a great day!