Sunday, Nov. 13, 2022

This morning we headed across the road from camp. I figured the snow would be gone by the time we came out, and I wasn’t far off the mark. It didn’t warm up too terribly much, but it was enough to melt the snow. 

  I had a decent morning finally. I saw 10 deer, but only one was a buck, and it was more than 100 yards away and chasing a doe. It was a high-racked buck that we have on camera. With the way the week has gone, I probably would’ve tried shooting him had he given me a good opportunity. Brian saw one spike, and it fed under him for about an hour and a half. 

  We came out of the woods around noon and scurried around to go to one of my favorite spots.  When we arrived, nobody was parked alongside the road. That was a relief since the area gets pounded. After hunting it for a few years, we have enough data collected to understand the area’s resident deer can withstand the pressure. However, the best part about the place is that as the archery season moves toward gun season, many nonresident deer filter into the area to look for does and many giants show up out of nowhere. This time usually corresponds with when the pressure finally lets up. It’s a win-win.

  There wasn’t much sign in the area where I put my stand, but I know it’s always good, as it’s a great transition zone. Within minutes of getting in the tree, I had two does make their way past me to feed on some acorns. 

  After they disappeared, I saw a buck appear out of nowhere. The sun glistened off his antlers, and he looked majestic as he looked around. Since the week has been rough, I decided I would take him if he went past me. 

  Eventually, he made his way to me, and I drew my bow and anchored. Seconds later, the arrow found its mark after being in flight for 45 yards. The buck ran about 50 yards before running into a tree and falling to the ground. 

  It has been a long week. It’s not the type of deer you dream about going to Illinois to take, but I’ll be happy to have it in my freezer. I love eating venison more than ever, and I want to make sure I have a good supply going into the new year. 

  After skinning the deer and deboning it, we realized that much of the meat was bad. Someone had already shot the deer earlier in the season, and it had some bad infections that showed themselves when we began working on him.  One arrow had split the backstrap in half and another pierced the the guts. It’s hard telling what happened or if it was the same person who wounded both animals. Like last year, it could’ve just been someone who shot at one buck and didn’t know if he had hit it or not, then looked away and turned back to see another buck there and wing another arrow at that one and kill it, not knowing if he had wounded the first one. The stories people tell are sometimes beyond believable, but when you hear it from he source’s mouth, it’s hard to deny it.

Unfortunately, my batter on my phone had stopped working when I got the deer, so was not able to snap any photos before we cut it up. It was a nice 8-point frame but he was missing a brow tine, making him a 7-pointer. I was happy happy to wrap my tag around his antlers.

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