View Full Version : Pronghorn Hunting

October 8, 2007, 10:45 PM
Took a friend hunting this weekend that just got back from Iraq in April. Had to find him a landowner voucher since he didn't apply while in Iraq so he had a doe tag to go along with my buck. This was his first successful big game hunt that he ever had. Prior to going to Iraq he went on a deer hunt and never saw one deer.

The first day was kind of disappointing for him as he missed a couple of easy shots on does both right around 200 yard shots. He was getting really discouraged and saying that his gear wasn't good enough or that he hadn't spent enough time on the range. I just chalked it up to buck fever, plus me helping a total of 11 hunters on opening day really limited my time to help him.

By the end of opening day most of my guys had filled their tags or had plans and couldn't come out on Sunday to hunt. The rest that hadn't filled their tags that were hunting were experienced enough I just turned them loose and let them fend for themselves so I could devote my time to helping my friend.

Some friend I turned out to be as I found a decent buck with a really wide spread on his horns and I had a buck tag. So I put a stalk on him and had a my tag filled by 7:30 on the second day. My friend was happy that I got my buck but he really wanted to fill his tag. Luckily a cold front had moved in so after field dressing my buck we could continue to hunt for his doe.

After about 3 hours of searching and one failed stalk we found 2 does grazing an old wheat field. We had to back out of one stalk and try a different angle because we would have been shooting directly at some house about a half a mile away if we had taken an shot at these does. The new stalk we put on had us crossing some pretty open terrain with very little cover to hide us.

We had one small hill between us and the does which we used to full advantage over this stalk. We had drove around to the houses that were in our line of fire and so that we had them to our back the whole time we crept up on these does. We were able to cover about 400 yards before the hill wouldn't hide us anymore, so we had to crawl thought the grass for about another 60. The lead doe had spotted us but got a little curious as to what we were so she started moving towards us with the other one in tow.

They got a bout 260 yards from us when they decided they were close enough and started moving away from us. I told my friend to set up for the shot and to watch the trail doe as she was presenting the best shot. I told him to aim half way up the rib cage and behind the shoulder and when that doe stopped moving to squeeze the trigger.

When the doe stopped my friend fired and the doe went down hard. I asked where he shot her and he said he aimed just where I told him too. I said she wouldn't have gone down that hard or fast if he hit where I told him to aim, so he finally admitted to aiming for a high shoulder shot. He also admitted that he didn't have bad gear and his first day blunders were do to buck fever.

When we dressed out his doe she had two broken shoulders and a shattered spine. Plus my friend had the biggest smile on his face and it lasted all day. Sometimes helping someone get their game is more fun than if I had shot it myself.

October 9, 2007, 08:37 AM
I am glad to hear it. Sounds like a blast! I would like to take a pronghorn hunt someday.

We had to back out of one stalk and try a different angle because we would have been shooting directly at some house about a half a mile away if we had taken an shot at these does.

Good call on that, not alot of people would think of that, I gotta be honest I might not have either. What rifles were you using?

October 9, 2007, 08:22 PM
My friend used a Parker Hale .308 with fixed 4X Bushnell and Harris bi-pod, I think the ammo was factory 180 grain soft points from Hornady. I used a Parker Hale .270 3-12X40 Bushnell and Stoney Point shooting sticks, hand loaded 130 grain Hornady SPBT, 62 grains H4831, CCI 200 primers, and Federal cases. We both bought our rifles from the same guy, I was going to buy both, but when I found out he wanted one I gave him first choice and he took the .308.

October 10, 2007, 04:18 PM
Huh, I have actually never hard of a Parker Hale rifle till now. I googled them and they looked like nice rifles. How do they shoot? Can you still buy them new?

Jack O'Conner
October 10, 2007, 05:21 PM
For many years, Parker Hale built big game rifles around actions salvaged from WW2 surplus German Mausers. Sort of like factory made custom rifles. They tend to be exceptionally well built but pricing is often much lower than would expect.

Parker Hale was based in England but components were built in West Virginia for a time. The name Interarms was sometimes used But they're still Parker Hales. Sadly, like many firearm makers, they stopped importing to USA during the Clinton years. Parker Hale rifles are not terribly hard to locate. Try gunbroker.com

Good shooting to you.

October 19, 2007, 08:16 PM
Thought I'd add a little more to my post now that I've got the pictures back. I hate it when I forget my digital camera an have to get a disposable. I went right into black powder deer season at the end of pronghorn. Didn't see any deer the whole weekend but still filled my deer tag with my truck several hours after legal light, heading back to the Springs so I could be at work on Monday.

My little buck barely went over 12.5" but had a really wide spread.
My friend and his first big game animal ever. Nice little doe that had a lot of fat on her. She got my knives and saws all greasy while cutting her up. Nice little welcome home present after being in Iraq a year.




Another friend who I helped get his first big game animal in Colorado. Shot this little buck the day before @ 350 yards. Tikka 7mm Remington mag with 168 grain Berger VLD bullets.

October 20, 2007, 07:15 AM
Great pictures. I'm from Kentucky and my trips out west to take a few Pronghorns are some of my best hunting trips. Your buddy will remember that first doe for the rest of his life.