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Thread: First Buck After 20 Years of Hunting!

  1. #1
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    Default First Buck After 20 Years of Hunting!

    Warning: Long Story Ahead...
    received_439980036945813.jpgbuck.jpg
    Hello everyone, I want to tell the story of my first buck after 20 years of hunting. I will start with a bit of background information. I grew up hunting on my grandfathers farm with family and friends. We ran dogs and got a lot of deer over the years. I have shot two does and a little button buck fawn, but have failed to shoot (let alone hardly see) a mature buck over the 20+ years I've been hunting. My grandfather passed away in 2003 but we still hunted the same farm and surrounding areas, very successfully. Several years ago our hunting gang had a large falling out and have since split up and went our different ways. My brother gained access to several large farms north of Belleville which along with my dad and his best friend, we have hunted somewhat successfully for several seasons.
    Every year I would watch my brother, dad and friends get bucks, which I'm always happy to see, but really I kept wondering what I was doing wrong or if maybe I just have bad luck.
    This year was different, I had won a trip to go on a cruise earlier in the year based on my performance at work, and I also accepted a significant promotion which resulted in moving my family to London. Heading into the rifle season, I knew this would be the year. I told my wife confidently that I will be coming home with a buck. I had used almost all my vacation for various reasons throughout the year and as a result only had 3 days to hunt. That didn't phase me, I knew this was the year.
    Two of the farms we hunt are shotgun only and having an old Remington 870 smooth bore I have always been limited in how far I can accurately but more importantly ethically shoot a deer. I convinced my wife to "allow" me to purchase a new Mossberg 500 with a rifled barrel. After sighting in the shotgun 2 inches high at 100 yards, I felt confident that I could easily take a deer 150-200 yards if needed. I'm now glad I took the time(and money) to test several different sabot slugs for accuracy at longer ranges. I settled on Hornady SST 2 3/4 300gr slugs, my shotgun seemed to like them the best.
    Now to the hunt. We had a South West wind on opening morning so I decided to sit in a ladder stand my brother set up on the edge of a large corn/bean field to my north/east and a bedding area to my south. Several large bucks had been seen on camera throughout the last weeks and my brother thought that would be the best chance to get some action. I got in and setup at 5:30, long before first light, and waited patiently for legal shooting time. By 7:30 I hadn't seen or heard a peep out of the woods. Several shots had rang out on the nearby farms and I was beginning to get anxious (I know, it was only 7:30). But something in me was telling me to move positions. I had been keeping an eye to the South East where the corn field behind me met a large bean field along the same bedding area I was hoping had deer in it. For whatever reason, I climbed down from the ladder stand at 8:10am and crossed a little irrigation ditch onto the edge of the corn field. Under the protection of a somewhat strong breeze, I moved silently towards the bean field, protected by a small berm running perpendicular to my approach. As I got to the edge of corn/bean field I saw a doe step out of the cedar bush and walk into the bean field. She was probably 80-100 yards away and with no doe tags I waited patiently in the hopes that a buck would be close behind. It wasn't 30 seconds later when I saw another deer step out. I pulled up my bino's and saw antlers! Suddenly the realization started to sink in that a buck was standing within shooting distance. By the time I came to my senses both deer were on the move and I realized I didn't have a broadside shot on the buck. So I started moving parallel along the edge of the corn/irrigation ditch, using the berm as cover, hoping to close the distance on the buck as it was following the doe. I popped up in a position where I thought would produce a chance at a broadside shot. When I looked up the buck was moving on an angle away from me and was now 160 yards away, but standing broadside. I hoped to lean against a small tree to stabilize my aim, but it was too small and flimsy to hold the weight. Instinct kicked in and I raised up my shotgun, settled on the vitals and "squeezed" the trigger. The buck dropped in it's tracks! I stood and waited for the deer to get up, thinking there's no way I just dropped him in one shot at that distance while free standing. I eventually made my way over to the deer and found him stone dead with a large pool of blood streaming from it's neck where a slug sized hole had went clean through. Hence why I had squeezed in quotes, I must have flinched or jerked when shooting and pulled my shot left, but from some stroke of luck I had produced a perfectly clean one-shot kill with little to no meat loss. I couldn't believe what happened. I quickly phoned my dad and told him for the very first time that I had a buck down! I still don't know why I left my stand, but boy am I glad I did! My first buck, a solid 8-point! We gutted, skinned and sent him to the butchers that afternoon. He was done within 1 hour and I now have a freezer full of venison.
    Sorry for the long story. Pics included below.
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  3. #2
    Has too much time on their hands

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    Awesome! Congratulations! Sometimes you just have to trust your gut. Speaking of gut, that buck sure looks well fed.

    Sent from my SM-G960W using Tapatalk
    How is it one careless cigarette can cause a forest fire, but it takes a whole box of matches to light a campfire?

  4. #3
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    Very nice read
    Congrats on the success
    "Everything is easy when you know how"
    "Meat is not grown in stores"

  5. #4
    Getting the hang of it

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    congrats and thanks for sharing

  6. #5
    Has too much time on their hands

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    congrats! Most times it's the unexpected that results in success. Good for you!
    Although care has been taken in preparing the information contained in the above post, the author does not and cannot guarantee its accuracy. All rights reserved.

  7. #6
    Getting the hang of it

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    Way to go. Enjoyed reading

  8. #7
    Has all the answers

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    thats a real nice deer!

  9. #8
    Has too much time on their hands

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    Congrats on a beautiful buck, sometimes I rather be lucky then good LOL
    "Give a man a fish and he eats for a day, Teach a man to fish and he eats for the rest of his life"

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by anfield21 View Post
    I eventually made my way over to the deer and found him stone dead with a large pool of blood streaming from it's neck where a slug sized hole had went clean through. Hence why I had squeezed in quotes, I must have flinched or jerked when shooting and pulled my shot left, but from some stroke of luck I had produced a perfectly clean one-shot kill with little to no meat loss.
    Welcome to the 'Neck Shot' club

    Although unintentional, you now see why it's a great choice of a shot to drop a deer in it's track.

    Great story and congrats on being able to stalk a deer. It can't be done where I hunt and wish I had the opportunity to do more of it. I walked slowly into the woods last night quiet as a church mouse on a pine needle cushion and a Doe and Fawn over 200 yds away saw me before I saw them..White Flagged and goodbye.
    Last edited by MikePal; November 7th, 2019 at 09:54 AM.
    Arte et marte (By Skill and by Fighting)...The RCEME motto

  11. #10
    Apprentice

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    Congrats! Hopefully this starts some new luck for you

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