Archive for January, 2014

Sunday December 8, 2013

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Well, today was the last day of the 2013 rifle season. I was in my stand about a half hour before daylight. Just as it was getting light enough to see I could hear a deer down below me. It sounded big when it walked and I’m pretty confident that it might have been one of those big bucks I have on camera. I strained my eyes and ears while trying to locate him. The noise was so loud it sounded like he was right underneath me. The harder I gazed into the brush the more disappointed I became as I listened to the sound fade into the background. An hour later a doe and a fawn went across the flat in front of me and a short time later three does came across the ridge behind me. Unfortunately no bucks followed.

Dad said he was going to still-hunt to my stand so we could have lunch around noon. At 11:30 I got rocked out of my world when a gunshot roared on the hill above me. Something inside told me he had missed, so I quickly readied my gun and started scanning the forest for a running deer. I didn’t see a thing and the seconds turned into minutes and before long I knew nothing was coming by my stand. Within a half hour dad showed up underneath me. He had spotted a big buck on the ridge above my stand and tried to get it turned toward me, but the buck crossed a few knobs just out of sight from where I was sitting. I guess that tops off the year. We stayed in until dark, but we didn’t see another deer. The sun went down quickly on an incredible season. I’ve never been so excited about the next year as soon as the current season ends. All I can say is, “WOW!”

I’m guessing this might be the buck my dad saw.


Saturday December 7, 2013

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

I didn’t get much sleep last night. Everyone rolled in and we have eight guys in a really confined area. My uncle Lee cooked breakfast this morning. He always does a great job with stuff like that. It’s too bad his body has fallen apart over the last few years. His shoulder seem to be doing a little better than it had been the last time he hunted with us. Dad and I got going early. At first light I had a lone doe come sneaking down the runway in front of me. She was acting uneasy and nervous as she kept looking behind her and on the ridge out in front of me. I’ve hunted long enough to know something was going to happen. A half hour later I heard the ice crunching as I saw a set of antlers moving through the brush. I instantly identified it as being the 5-pointer that I have a bunch of trail camera pictures of. That’s why I like trail cameras. It makes it pretty easy to identify deer when they come through the woods if you already have pictures of him. Being the last weekend of the season I was tempted to pull the trigger, but I just watched him instead. The doe bounded up the hill and he quickly followed. When he hit the top of the rise in front of me he stopped and stood still. I could see all the hair on his back go up and he turned around and high-stepped out of there. He ended up going past me two more times throughout the morning. The last time I was able to get some video of him. If he survives the winter he should be a nice deer next year. I ended up seeing eight deer for the day. Dad saw a handful of deer. When the 5-pointer stopped on top of the hill I’m sure a big buck was on the other side of the hill, but I never saw him. I just can’t seem to win this year.

We’ll see what tomorrow brings. No matter what it has been a great year and I’ve learned a lot about different things. Here’s a photo of the buck I passed this morning.


Friday December 6, 2013

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

When I woke up in the middle of the night the rain was coming down in buckets. When I glanced at the road I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get to where I wanted to go in the morning. The road was going to be coated with ice. I quickly fell back asleep and drifted into dreamland. When the alarm sounded at 4:45 I was disappointed to see the rain hadn’t let up at all. It was coming down even harder. After conversing for a few minutes Brian decided to don his rain  gear and get his cameras. He knew he had to get them  and he figured he wouldn’t be wasting any valuable hunting time if he went and got them in the pouring rain. Since the days are so limited in the hunting season I put my rain gear on and headed across the road and up the mountain.

After climbing 3/4 of the way to the top of the mountain I could hear a plow truck going down the road in front of camp. As soon as I heard it I turned around and headed back to camp. I decided to follow the truck down the road. Upon pulling into the place I park I felt a feeling of disappointment run through my body. I hate going into the woods when it’s light. I like to be where I want to go before daylight. Since it was fairly quiet I wanted to take my time and poke through the woods in hopes of catching one napping.

As soon as I got out of sight of my truck I cut two tracks. It appeared to be a doe and a fawn. I could tell the deer had JUST walked through the area. A few steps later I saw another track that cut their tracks and followed behind them. I knew it was a buck. Before I could even pick my head up from looking at the tracks I heard something and saw a nice buck go crashing over the hill in front of me. He wasn’t a big one, but he was still nice. If I had been paying a little more attention I probably could have gotten a shot at him.

I climbed into my stand around 8:30 and sat there until dark. I saw 14 deer. One was a small spike horn that I had no interest in shooting. I still can’t figure out where the big boys are hiding. Maybe they have me figured out. Brian headed back toward the big rub as soon as he got back from getting his cameras. Unfortunately he forgot to turn one of them on, so there weren’t any pictures on that one. The other picture had quite a few daylight pictures, but they were all does. We’ll see what tomorrow brings. The whole crew will be in camp tonight for the annual last weekend of the year hunt. It’s always a good time.

Here’s a runway next to my stand. It has been this way since summer.


Thursday December 5, 2013

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Brian and I headed north pretty late last night. We rolled into camp around 11:30pm. I knew I was going to be exhausted this morning, but I also know there are only a few days of rifle season left and I want to make the most of my time. Since it was just the two of us Brian decided to go in with me and hunt out of my dad’s stand because of all the sign around it last weekend. We got going early and I was in my stand before daylight. It didn’t take long for deer to start wandering by. I still can’t figure out how I’ve seen so many deer without seeing one of the big bucks I’m looking for. I saw five does this morning, but it slowed right down after 11 o’clock and the woods went dead, so I decided to get down and collect a few of my cameras.

As I wandered around I looked for a place to sit for the rest of the afternoon. I found a place that looked good, but I just couldn’t find an area I could nestle into that gave me very much confidence. No matter where I looked I could find something just not quite right about it. Instead of going back to my stand I walked and sat, walked and sat. My head bobbed up and down a few times as I rested my weary ass on a log. To keep myself from falling asleep I got up and began wandering again. A short time later I cut the tracks of two hunters. One was wearing a bobbed sole boot and the other had a diamond shaped sole on his boot. I backtracked them and found my way across two beaver dams in the process. Before I knew it I was heading out of the woods. The day flew by.

When I met Brian at the truck he was pretty excited. He had found a lot of deer sign as well as some really impressive buck sign. There was no doubt in his mind where he was going to spend the remaining few days. His only deterrent was the fact that he still had to retrieve two cameras from the other area he had been hunting. He saw three deer out of my dad’s stand this morning, but no bucks. The weather is calling for freezing rain. That might change our plans.

Here’s a rub Brian found today.