and Down Buck
by Ed Kelly
11/06 New York
I was faced with a
new challenge this year, the wide open field I usually sit in
for the opening day of shotgun season was full of standing corn,
a situation I had never encountered in 12 years. The only view
I had, instead of a wide open field, was a narrow path between
the woods and the standing corn, about as wide as a four wheeler.
I sat out all day on the opening day and let a beautiful split
brow buck walk away. As the sun set that day i was dissapointed
in myself for letting a buck like that go. The next morning I
went out again with high hopes of seeing the buck I had let walk
the day before.
About 15 minutes
after legal hunting hours began, I raised my gun up and aimed
as far as I could see down the path to see if I had to turn
the brightness up on my red-dot scope, as I made my adjustment
I looked through the scope again to doublecheck the adjustment
and something walked right into view of the scope. I quickly
let the gun down and watched as the animal walked in. I waited
for ever, or so it seemed, for the animal to get close enough
to count points.
When i could see
him i figured he was a hi-racked 8 point perfect for the wall!
I could see that he was an older deer. I began to shake uncontrolled
as he walked into 20 yards, he was facing me head on and i didnt
want to take such a poor shot. He walked in to about 15 yards
and the turned and stopped. He was quartering away so I took
aim and put the red dot on him, I shot and he bucked, then he
ran infront of me and I shot again that put him down. He stopped
moving in a couple minutes but I gave him 15-20 minutes to expire.
As I walked over
to him I snapped a twig on the ground, his head popped up, he
looked right at me and his rear end popped up and he pushed
hiself away with his front shoulders on the ground, in a couple
seconds he was running on 3 legs. My heart sank as I then realized
I hade made a poor shot, shooting him through the shoulder.
I let him run so I didnt push him out of the immediate area,
and with 2 slugs in him I didnt think he would go far. I let
3 hrs pass befor I went to track him verbally beating my self
up the whole time for wounding such a spectacular animal. After
the 3 hours I began to track him, if there is a "good"
blood trail this was it! I tracked and tracked and tracked for
about 1000 yards. The trail went into some very thick brush
and I stopped.
My friend called
on the 2 way radio and I filled him in on the details. He said
he would be right over to help. I brought him to the blood trail
and we agreed that he would keep tracking the animal as I walked
up-wind to a laneway cut in the brush by a pond and afetr a
couple minutes he yelled "he's coming out!" I stood
still and heard brush crashing, he popped out of the thick brush
only about 10 yards away I knew it was him because he was standing
with one front leg just hanging there so I put the red-dot on
him and fired, he went down that time.
My friend walked
up the laneway and he was first to reach the deer. I stayed
where I was be cause I always say a prayer of thanks after I
get a deer. My friend then yelled "HE'S GOT 15 POINTS!"
Then I ran over to him exited out of my mind, as I looked at
the buck I saw a split brow on one side with a ton of mass and
the other brow had 4 points with a ton of mass. I began to count
points 1...2...3...and so on.....he ended up having 15 scoreable
points with a bunch of stickers. The biggest buck of my life
was there in the picture with me thanks to a great hunting buddy.
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