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This season has not gone as I had planned. I spent more time in the off season scouting and preparing and work has kept me from spending much time at all in the woods. On weekends I do get to hit the woods it is usually for a 4-5 hour stint one morning and that is about it. To top it off, I got into a great lease near Macon and have not set foot on the lease since season started. Now, even the WMA seasons are winding down so this morning when I headed to the woods I figured any decent deer should be headed to my freezer.
I headed to one of my favorite natural blinds and laid a scent trail around the perimeter of the creek bottom where I was hunting. I settled in and hoped I had dressed warmly enough to be still till the sun made it over the ridge in front of me. The weather app on my phone said it was 40 degrees when I left my house. However the frost on the ground as I was walking to my blind told me they were mistaken.
I managed to stay pretty warm, once or twice I had to stand up and lift my body weight with my toes several reps to keep the blood circulating in my toes but overall my Kuiu and Wool kept me warm.
Then around 9am I caught movement to my left. Without a sound a small forkhorn that I have seen a couple times already this season was headed my way. If a shot presented itself I decided he would be great for the freezer. I could almost taste the backstraps. I shifted slightly in my seat and slowly raised my Northern Mist into ready position. He paid absolutely no attention to the scent trail I had made but he did not spook and continued in one direction. At the first opening I had he turned and headed away from me and then he turned again and continued on his previous heading. At the next opening I was ready. He was slightly quartering away from me so I came to full draw and tried to aim for the far shoulder. I released and the arrow was on its way. He lunged forward and the arrow hit a little further back than I would like but it was a clean pass through. He ran about 20 yards and stopped. I could see him but just barely. He stood there maybe 10 seconds and then took off, I assume he began to feel the effects of the Simmons Shark. I strained to listen as he crashed through the thick underbrush. I was pretty certain I heard him go down but I decided to wait before going to check.
I found my arrow buried deeply in the soil beyond where the buck was standing. The blood was immediately visible but not as heavy as I would like and it was clear that I had hit the buck further back than I had intended. I left the arrow where it was, went back and collected my other gear and carried it back to my truck (about 3/4 of a mile away. I figured that would keep me from pushing the buck and would lighten my load when I was dragging my deer back later.
I picked up the trail again about 45 minutes later. The blood was very hard to follow, light, watery and the melting frost was not helping at all. As luck would have it, about 10 yards into the tracking I found the buried shaft of a previous hunters miss. (The expanding broadhead still had the rubber o-ring on it) So I used this to help mark blood each time I found it and one of my field point arrows also served as a marker. I would mark one spot, pull the previous marker and proceed. I kept reminding myself that I was sure I had heard him go down but I was starting to have my doubts.
As I pushed on I realized he was heading back towards an old logging road that I had walked many times. With blood so scarce I decided to take a gamble. I left the old carbon arrow I had found at last blood and made my way down to the old logging road. After about 10 minutes of crawling on my hands and knees I picked up his trail on the old logging road. I continued on another 10-15 yards and then happened to look up and around a bend in the road and there he was, another 10 yards ahead. I eased up on him, bow in hand, but another arrow was not needed, he was done.
Upon field dressing I found that the Simmons had destroyed his liver and clipped both lungs. Not sure why I had so little blood. I appeared that the exit wound was higher than the entrance, maybe that was it??
Anyway, I am happy. Second on the ground kill this season and venison for the freezer. Plus, this was a good cull to remove from the local herd. This OTG stuff is fun!!!!
-------------------- Member of; Comptons Pope and Young PBS Colorado Traditional Archers Society and Life member of Bowhunters Of Wyoming Posts: 2439 | From: Wyoming | Registered: Jan 2008
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