View Full Version : A very good day indeed....

Dave McC
December 21, 2001, 08:00 AM
Sometimes it all comes together quite nicely....

Best buddy and I managed to find some mutually available time yesterday,and traveled to Md's Eastern Shore for a late season M/L hunt. He leases this farm,among others, and has some of the best whitetail habitat in the world to hunt. It's not why we're friends, but it's a nice bonus.

My mission was to fill the freezers, I'm feeding two households and the one doe I checked in isn't nearly enough.BB had to take a doe, he already had a good buck with a M/L, so he needed to take a doe before he could take another buck, under Md law. So far this year, he's take 7 deer, mostly does. The bucks are for paying customers, he guides.

So, we got into position, he 30 feet in the air near one bait pile, me on the ground near another in an improvised ground blind. The Doctors forbid me climbing trees any more. For once I listened to the voice of reason and sold my stands.

The cold front was coming in from the NW, temps were dropping and the wind was gusting to 30 MPH or better. I got situated and started glassing the brush about 2 PM.

At 3:05,a big shouldered buck came into the pile, ate briefly, marked a scrape nearby, and left. I had several shot opps, but like I said,this was a meat hunt. Besides, I won't take a buck unless he's better than the 9 point over the fireplace. This one wasn't, best guess low 130s P&Y.8 main points, maybe a sticker or two.

At 4PM he was back, again eating 40 yards from me and checking a scrape. After a few minutes, his attention was riveted on something out of my vision, and he withdrew, tail down. 10 minutes later, I saw why....

Blocky as an Angus Bull, he strode in like John Wayne entering a saloon. This was the Alpha buck, a huge 10 point that wasn't the biggest buck I'd ever seen, but made my personal Top 5. And yes, he was bigger than my 9, by a considerable margin. Wide,thick, tall, and the tips of his beams almost met, he was a Booner for sure...

Like the smaller buck,he ate a bit of corn, then pawed and urinated in the scrape, rubbing his antlers and head on the overhanging branch. He stood and looked around for a few minutes and eased back the way he came from. The antlers still did not need my binocs to appear huge.

I closed my eyes and Thanked the Diety for the sights I'd seen this day, and decided that if nothing else happened, it was a good day indeed.

I still was facing left, sitting in my blind. It was made in four large but close trees, probably originally sprouted from the same stump. A movement at the periphery of my vision to the right caught my attention,and I noted a fawn moving towards the pile. Its mother followed shortly, passing about 10 yards upwind from my location.

Now, BB had asked me to let any deer feed for a while before shooting. Deer that feed for a while at a site and then spook out will return far better/sooner than those that get shot at as soon as they arrive. So, I sat and watched the deer feed, and enjoyed that sight as well. But, all things end, and eventually the doe caught sight of me. She didn't spook, but started the head bob, foot stamp routine all deer hunters dread. She advanced towards me, all senses at max, and I knew she was close to leaving. And I had a small problem...

I had set up so that I could shoulder and fire, but she was on my offside. One of the trees forming my blind was situated so that I couldn't get off a shot w/o lots of movement, unless....

The TC was below the deer's line of vision, so I swapped hands, brought it up slowly while cocking same and had her turn broadside just as the ML reached my left shoulder.Yup, shot her lefthanded, the 20 yd shot was otherwise a gimme. The big Buffalo HP went through both shoulders and she piled up within 50 yards. Another clean, humane kill, and I stood there in the dusk and gave Thanks again, to He from Whom all blessings flow.

Dragging her to the lane was tough, this was no yearling. I tried to reach BB on the radio, but the battery was down. So, I returned to where we had parked his Sport Trac and waited until he pulled up on his ATV. The conversation followed something like this....

BB: "Did ya see anything"?...

Me: "You won't believe what I saw!"..

BB: "Tell me later, we have to go find my doe".

Me: Let's go get mine first"...

BB: "Huh"!?

A few hundred words and getting my doe later, we found his doe piled up 50-70 yards from where he shot her. He used a bow, and took a grey faced Alpha doe, probably about 160-170 lbs live weight. Eastern Shore deer have a great foodbase and run large. Mine goes about 100 lbs dressed.

So, after the necessary chores and loadup, we pulled out onto the road from the driveway and had the headlights illume 8-10 vague gray shapes in the field across the way, with some of those bright green eyes very far off the ground, even for the Shore.

All in all, a great day. Two for two, both clean and quick kills, and no tracking involved. It doesn't get much better. Best Buddy spent part of the ride back rearranging his schedule for today. I know exactly where he'll be this afternoon, trying for that John Wayne buck.

Thanks, and good hunting to all.....

December 21, 2001, 08:08 AM
Great job, Dave! :)

December 21, 2001, 08:46 AM
Thanks for sharing a wonderful day Dave.

Noted a couple of things that you probably take for granted but many would miss. Patience. You let it flow and did well. Shootin wrong handed, pays off at times when lookin for meat or protectin your own rear. Should be practiced a bit with all weapons.

My doc doesn't mind my climbin trees, he gets upset when I keep fallin out of em tho.

Sam...."Walk down and do em all"

Dave McC
December 21, 2001, 09:30 AM
Thanks,guys,I appreciate being appreciated(G)...

A coupla things....

Sam, you know my views on ambidextrous shooting. This is a case in point. And, I had considered switching to southpaw anyway. My cataract surgery has left me with a better left eye than right, for the first time in my life. I note that the front sight comes in clearer using the left eye. I'll make it to the range this weekend and and see how well I do with it. For wingshooting and clays, I'll stick to the right eye and side.

But, whether sporting or "Serious" shooting, learning to use weapons from the other side makes lots of sense. One may need to, some place and time....

As for health issues, I don't enter the woods w/o a cell phone, Talkabout radio, standby medicine, and without somebody knowing exactly where I am. Old age bites.

BB has been after me to get a new M/L, an inline like his Remington w/ big scope. For the nonce, I'll stay with my sidehammer and peep sight. 80 gr of 3F and that 385 gr Buffalo HP do a job on whitetails at reasonable ranges. Our shot opps run on the short side. All in all, with all weapons, our average shot runs 32 yards, if my sloppy records can be relied on.

Thanks again...

December 21, 2001, 10:06 AM
Old age bites.

Yup. And I was really dissappointed when I found that my medicinal nitro wouldn't go bang when I played with it.:D


December 21, 2001, 10:17 AM
Congratulations Dave! A nice trophy AND a stocked freezer ....such a deal! :)

Dave McC
December 21, 2001, 01:48 PM
Not on nitro yet, Sam. Maybe next, tho my BP's been much better since retiring from the Fool Factory. I've 13 separate prescriptions right now.

Thank Heaven for retirement bennies...

Thanks, Atticus.Freezer won't stay stocked for long. Feeding 5 adults, 2 kids. Grand niece's(19 months) first taste of meat was venison. Might have been my kids' first also.

Art Eatman
December 21, 2001, 05:00 PM
Gettin' old ain't for the faint of heart.

:D, Art

Dave McC
December 22, 2001, 08:46 AM
Nor for sissies, Art(G)...


Best Buddy staked out that spot yesterday, no monster but a P&Y book 8 point came in. BB let him
pass, and later took another big greyfaced doe that ran and dropped 10 feet from his ATV. 32 crop permits to go....

December 23, 2001, 07:34 AM
Very nice read.

12-34hom Happy Holidays.

Dave McC
December 23, 2001, 08:39 AM
Thanks, waiting on the butcher....