11 point / 250 pounds
Sort of downhearted over flood recovery, cost and work. I didn't clear anything as usual until just a few days ago. Walk paths were impossible to get through and my tree stands overgrown and shooting holes blocked. Almost two and one half days of clearing, mowing and more ouchies than I can count from thorn trees and "wait a minute" brush.Day one to hunt Oct. 23. Never went out until the 23rd and season opened Oct 1st. Even then I didn't go out until 3:00 pm. I wasn't in the treestand 20 minutes and here comes a 6 point buck. I thought about him, but didn't shoot or didn't want to at first. He wandered around for I don't know how long and temptation set in. He was in a different shooting lane and when I drew there was all these tangles I had missed. No shot, so he walked. He moved off and that took forever when I didn't have a shot. So I went back to house and got my long handled clippers. On the way back here's this huge doe just about where the buck was. She never moved, just watched until I got off my ATV. So much for day one.Day two, Oct. 24th; Up sort of late, but not. Got in the treestand by 7:00 am. Just got a arrow nocked when a young doe walks in. She is small, maybe a early fawn because she doesn't quite have the boxy head of fawns. I let her walk. After 8:00 am everything just plain got quiet so I ended the morning. That evening didn't prove fruitful at all. Nothing but one squirrel.Day three, Oct. 25th; Up in the tree again at 7:00 am. A few minutes pass and a nice doe comes in to my far right. She stops at the edge of clearing and just looks around. I thought I'd give a go. She didn't come in. She turns straight up this gob hill left over from old coaling mining days. At the top she looks back towards my left and away from me. She watches a bit and perhaps a indication I didn't pick up on. She then drops over the hill out of sight. Meanwhile, three squirrels come out of their hole and having a blast chasing each other around the trees. Comical as all get out. And then out of the corner of my left eye there is antler there. Sort of blocked by brush I can still tell he is more than a 6 pointer. He steps out and for sure he is a shooter. Rack isn't huge, but he is big body wise. I draw, aim and fire and my arrow glances off a tiny tree limb I couldn't see. Yeah, arrow passes completely under the buck and buries in the ground. All he did was jump a bit and turn to see what went thump. I didn't think about it at the time, but I have scent tag hanging just about where he stands and that may have held him up. I edge out another arrow, careful, slow and stopping when he looks my way. I finally get the arrow nocked and get drawn. I fire and the arrow is headed for his boiler. Just as the arrow gets to him he lurches away, but the arrow strikes "home." He takes off and as soon as he is gone I get down. Ain't no waiting because I know he's hit hard. Where he stood there is blood and blood trailing him. Unbelieveable he's gone more than a I thought he would. I keep going and I'm wondering if I did get a solid hit. I keep going and I'm not feeling good. I drop over a hill and there he lays, almost 250 yards from where I shot him . I start to him and wham, a buck bedded down beside him takes off. Now, trailing my buck I ran into two sets of hoof prints in the rain soften dirt. Evidently, the other buck was his traveling companion and why he went as far as he did. The desire to stay with his companion kept him going.The fixed NAP Braxe broadhead had blew a huge hole going in and a whopper hole going out. Though the buck was lurching sideways I couldn't have hit him and more dead center. If he hadn't lurched the arrow would have been a perfect straight through the lung area. As it was the arrow hit just a bit back, catching his left lung and perhaps just a bit forward of the center of his right lung. Lung tissue was even bulging out the exist hole.He looked in super condition and fat. Once I got through admiring him I counted points. 5 on one side and 6on the other side, a fork and that gave character to his small rack.And the work began. I can't drag him! I was barely able to turn him around to head home. I pulled him for about 10 feet and said; "I got something better." I get my ATV. Wrong. My ATV won't pull him up the hill. The front came off the ground time and time again. I lean forward, out across the handle bars and the ATV still climbs up in the air, but then spins out. Two more tries and I'm changing direction. Down the hill, into the neighbors adjoining field and down along side of our property. I go easy and finally get home.Took some pics. Not a outstanding 11 pointer, but still nice. And huge is this buck. I guessed him over 200 pounds. My wife guessed him 250. Grrrrrrr. Rig out of the buck, 36 hours hanging our cooled gargage and we go to work. Boned out completely he yields 120 pounds of meat. Back straps, roasts, fry meat and 23 packages of hamburger. By most write ups you get about 50% after head, hide and bone is removed. Never is stated the amount of fat. I removed near a half a 2 1/2 gallon bucket of fat. So my wife was right.Of this pics. Pic of the exit hole side. I stand 5 foot 10 inches and pack 280 pounds.
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