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Ikeepitcold
08-06-2013, 08:27 AM
Eastmans.com 2013 Forum Story/Photo Contest-

Submit your BEST 2013 DIY public land elk, deer, or antelope single best photo and hunt story in 500 words or less to the forum. You only get one story, and one photo, not one story per species. The winners will be chosen by you, our forum members and the winning story for each species will be published in an upcoming issue of EBJ or EHJ!


Here are the rules:

1. The elk, deer, or antelope hunt must be a 2013 DIY public land hunt. Paid or guided hunts do not qualify. You may hunt with friends or family but the elk, deer, or antelope must be taken by an EBJ or EHJ subscription holder and forum member during either the 2013 archery or rifle season.

2. This is not a biggest horn contest. It is a contest for the best write-up and field photo combo on your 2013 DIY public land hunt.

3. You must be an active EBJ or EHJ subscriber and eastmans.com forum member by the end of the day August 31st, 2013. No exceptions.

4. All entries, with photographs and your subscription number must be submitted on the thread titled, “2013 EBJ-EHJ Elk, Deer, and Antelope Contest.”

5. All entries with their single photo must be submitted by midnight, January 10, 2014.

6. Voting will be done by eastmans.com Forum members and will be conducted over a two-week period starting January 11, 2014 and ending midnight, January 25, 2014.

7. Forum members will be allowed one vote and may use only one forum name.

8. Once the votes are tallied the winner will be announced and PM’d with instructions for submitting the winning story to the Eastmans’ Powell, Wyoming office.

9. In case of a tie there will be a runoff between the tied entries. Dates will be announced at a later time.

Disclaimer:
Stories may not have been submitted to any Eastmans’ publication or published in an Eastmans’ magazine. Eastmans’ Publishing, Inc. reserves the right to refuse any story for publication consideration.

Thanks everyone. We can't wait to see your hunts and read your awesome stories this year! The lucky three winners will also receive the below prize package.

Also everyone NO cell phone photos will be accepted! Use a good high quality digital camera. Even tho cell phone photos look great on your computer and devices they are still not good enough to be blown up on a full page of the magazine.

Good luck to all of you!

The Eastmans





Prize Packages:


Antelope Story - Speed Goat Special package
1 - Hunting Trophy Antelope book
1 - EHJ blaze hat
2 - DVDs: Antelope Safari 2 & 3
1 - Havalon Knife (addition to package to more closely match the Mule Deer package)

Mule Deer Story - Mulie Madness Collection Package
2 - Books: Hunting High Country Mule Deer & Mule Deer Hunting Tactics
1 - EHJ orange hat
2 - DVDs: High & Low in Mule Deer Country & Destination Mule Deer
1 - Grey Ghost 272

Due to the already running ELk contest there will not be a prize package for Elk. Enter your Elk story and and photos there to win the Ivory Ring.

Ikeepitcold
08-06-2013, 08:56 AM
Sorry guys if you tried to post on this thread. I posted in the Anouncement area and that section is only for Mgmt.

Timberstalker
08-06-2013, 10:46 AM
I like the idea! I'm looking forward to everyones stories, hopefully my hunts go well enough to contribute. This year will be my first antelope hunt ever, it starts Saturday! Good luck EHF'ers!

Ikeepitcold
08-14-2013, 09:42 AM
I've been seeing some great bucks coming out of the woods. Don't forget to submit your story

hoshour
08-18-2013, 09:51 PM
Don't underestimate the importance of the photo. Take the pic with your cell phone and you will probably be out of luck.

Umpqua Hunter
08-18-2013, 10:22 PM
Don't underestimate the importance of the photo. Take the pic with your cell phone and you will probably be out of luck.

Unless it's an iPhone... ;-) Actually it takes great pics.

Ikeepitcold
08-19-2013, 12:16 AM
Nope No cell phone pics! Hoshour is correct and sorry that got passed us. I will add that to the rules. Cell phone photos are still not high quality enough to be blown up to a full page of the magazine. I will verify this on Monday but it has always been this way even since the IPhone 5.

hoshour
08-20-2013, 07:07 PM
The reason is that no matter how many megapixels the phone boasts, a phone camera, no matter the brand, no matter the price, does not have the processor or the glass for good quality pics when you blow them up - same goes for cameras on tablets.

When you see the new "Submit Your Story" guidelines for the magazines, coming out shortly, you will see a line in there that Eastmans' WILL NOT ACCEPT CELL PHONE PICS for publication.

You guys need to spread the word. It would be a real bummer to submit a good trophy story and not get it published because the only pics came from a cell phone.

Ikeepitcold
08-27-2013, 07:54 PM
Hey guys we are seeing some great Antelope coming out of the hills. Lets get them on this contest thread. Who's gonna be first?

Ikeepitcold
09-18-2013, 07:05 PM
http://eastmans.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=17678b12d7126ae85876f0854&id=695bec516f&e=20fd2e8cb5

Ikeepitcold
10-11-2013, 07:56 AM
Ok guys what's the deal? How come we don't have any story's? Is everyone using cell phones to take your photos these days?

Musket Man
10-11-2013, 03:54 PM
I wanted to enter but my pics are not near good enough and I just read the rules again that it has to be DIY public land and my hunt was DIY on private land. I hope to see to see some stories on here soon too!

Ikeepitcold
10-11-2013, 05:21 PM
I wanted to enter but my pics are not near good enough and I just read the rules again that it has to be DIY public land and my hunt was DIY on private land. I hope to see to see some stories on here soon too!

Well ya I don't think I can let that go. But I hope we get some story's soon too. Thanks MM. Oh and just cause you think your pics aren't good doesn't mean they aren't.

Musket Man
10-11-2013, 05:59 PM
I forgot all about taking my camera when I went on the stalk and didnt think I had time to go back and get it and get him out all before dark so I ended up taking most of them on the tailgate of my truck other then a few I took with my phone which takes terrible pics. They are ok but not even close to magazine quality. I posted some of them and my story here.
http://www.eastmans.com/forum/showthread.php/5747-Bittersweet-Antelope-success-in-Wyoming

Ikeepitcold
10-11-2013, 06:29 PM
I forgot all about taking my camera when I went on the stalk and didnt think I had time to go back and get it and get him out all before dark so I ended up taking most of them on the tailgate of my truck other then a few I took with my phone which takes terrible pics. They are ok but not even close to magazine quality. I posted some of them and my story here.
http://www.eastmans.com/forum/showthread.php/5747-Bittersweet-Antelope-success-in-Wyoming

Great antelope! To bad the pics aren't the best but thanks for sharing anyway. Next time keep that camera in you pack!

Musket Man
10-11-2013, 07:40 PM
Great antelope! To bad the pics aren't the best but thanks for sharing anyway. Next time keep that camera in you pack!

Thanks! I didnt even have my pack packed yet. I was just planning on looking around and getting things together for the next morning and I really wasnt expecting to even attempt a stalk that day but the right opportunity came up so I went out there and got him! I think it was a classic case of antelope fever;)

hardstalk
10-11-2013, 11:17 PM
Thanks! I didnt even have my pack packed yet. I was just planning on looking around and getting things together for the next morning and I really wasnt expecting to even attempt a stalk that day but the right opportunity came up so I went out there and got him! I think it was a classic case of antelope fever;)

Gets the beat of us!

Ikeepitcold
10-12-2013, 09:20 AM
Cameras are very small these days. They should be a part of you pack list.

Musket Man
10-12-2013, 12:54 PM
It was definitely on the list but umm..... lets just say at the time I was thinking gun bullets binos rangefinder tag. Think I was lucky to remember a knife at that particular time in my life! All I really knew is there was a nice antelope bedded in a perfect place to make a stalk and I was going to get him!

Timberstalker
12-03-2013, 01:44 PM
Now that things have slowed down for me, I decided to tell the story of my 2013 Oregon antelope hunt. It is long overdue, but better late than never right?


It was the late 90’s and I was in my twenties when I decided to hunt antelope in my home state of Oregon. Back then good antelope tags were taking 5-6 points to draw, that seemed reasonable at the time. There were a couple things I wasn’t aware of back then, a thing we know now call “points creep” and a baby girl named MaKenzie had just been born. 15 years later I drew an antelope tag and that newborn baby is now my 15 year old step daughter and hunting partner on my first antelope hunt.

We started scouting the area in June, the season started August 10th. I knew the unit had potential for an 80” or better buck, but finding one was going to be a challenge. The first thing we looked for were waterholes, a dry winter and spring took its toll and water was scarce. The first scouting trips were very discouraging though we did manage to find a few water holes and see a few antelope. Finally one an evening trip MaKenzie spotted what I was looking for, a true trophy class buck. We didn’t get to watch him for long but were very pleased to know he was there.

It wasn’t long and it was time to hunt, the first two days I had my wife, MaKenzie and my youngest step daughter with me. We were not far from camp when my wife spotted a herd of antelope on her side of the truck. I set up the spotting scope and saw a good buck in the herd. I decided to put a stalk on them and get a closer look while the girls stayed behind. About and hour later I could see that the buck was defiantly a good buck also that there was another buck, but neither one were the buck Makenzie and I had seen while scouting. I decided to pass on them and continue looking for the big guy.

Later that afternoon I met up with a friend who also had the tag, he told me another hunter drive by with a big 80” class buck on a 4-wheeler, I knew that was likely the one I was after. It was the only buck I had seen in the area that was near the 80” mark, I was a little disappointed and second guessing my choice to pass the bucks from that morning.

The next day my wife and youngest went home and it was just Makenzie and I for the next 5 days. We tried every tactic in the book and couldn’t turn up any bucks I wanted to take. Day 5 of the hunt MaKenzie was getting burned out, and to be honest I was getting a little weathered as well. I had to take MaKenzie home that evening for a scheduled event and decided to stay home that night to recharge my batteries and spend an evening with the family. MaKenzie decided she wanted to take a break and stay home for a couple days leaving me solo. I can’t say I blame her, it was hot, dusty and we weren’t seeing a whole lot.

The next day I decided to try a new waterhole some one told me about, after sitting there for 6 hours without seeing anything I had all I could stand and decided to go back to the area where MaKenzie and I had spent all our time. I didn’t see much that day and really missed having MaKenzie with me. My wife and the girls were planning on returning for the weekend and spend the last two days of season helping me out. I was really looking forward to having them with me. The day they were returning I spent most of the day sitting at the waterhole, it was very slow. That afternoon I decided to go back to where we started the hunt and look for the bucks I passed opening day. The girls were due to arrive in a couple hours, I was hoping to spot something for the next mornings hunt.

I was near where I wanted to be when I spotted a lone antelope under a juniper tree not far off the road. I slowed down and sure enough it was a nice buck! I continued up the road where it cut though a small ridge and parked the truck. I grabbed my rifle, range finder and few other things and started the stalk. I came up over the small ridge to see he was still standing there, I belly crawled to within 330 yards. I settled in for the shot, squeezed the trigger and in an instant the hunt was over. I had just killed my first antelope.

By then the girls were only about 30 minutes away. I let them know the hunt was over, and it all happened not far from camp. They drove directly to my location and they all celebrated with me, I was very happy to have them there. Even though I was alone when I shot the buck it didn’t seen like it since they arrived shortly after. We were able to capture some great photos but my favorite is the one with MaKenzie, my hunting partner.

7251

When I drew that tag my main objective was to get a true trophy antelope. In the end I ended up with a good buck, a great hunt with my family and days I will never forget with MaKenzie. It would not have been nearly as much fun if she wasn’t along on the hunt. I hope someday to be her hunting partner when she draws an antelope tag, hopefully it will be before I’m 70!

Musket Man
12-03-2013, 02:04 PM
Great antelope and story timber! I wouldnt worry about it being late since its the only one so far.

Timberstalker
12-03-2013, 02:05 PM
Here are some more photo's from the hunt.


72527255
72547253

Timberstalker
12-03-2013, 02:21 PM
Great antelope and story timber! I wouldnt worry about it being late since its the only one so far.

I hope there are more stories entered!

Ikeepitcold
12-03-2013, 06:13 PM
Me too. Seasons are over or almost. Hope to see more photos and story's.

Musket Man
12-03-2013, 07:13 PM
Next year I will have something to enter! I dont know where or how but Im gonna get something on public land and take better pics so I can enter. I wanted to this year but both my hunts were on private land.

Ikeepitcold
12-03-2013, 07:21 PM
Next year I will have something to enter! I dont know where or how but Im gonna get something on public land and take better pics so I can enter. I wanted to this year but both my hunts were on private land.

I think we will tweek the rules for next year to get more entry's.

I'm rite there with you MM! At least you got to hunt I got diddly squat and better pull some tags next year so I can enter too.

Timberstalker
12-03-2013, 07:45 PM
I hope more folks enter, I think the contest it's a great way to encourage people who normally wouldn't take the time to do a write up. So come on Hunters, let's get busy!

Musket Man
12-03-2013, 08:24 PM
I think we will tweek the rules for next year to get more entry's.

I'm rite there with you MM! At least you got to hunt I got diddly squat and better pull some tags next year so I can enter too.

I like the rules. Even though my antelope hunt wasnt eligible because of them, that is what this form is all about, DIY public land hunting! I have seen some great public land deer and antelope pics posted on the form this fall but I guess they just didnt want to enter or maybe they were all waiting for timber to brake the ice! lol. I had no luck in the draws this year either. All I had this year a 2nd choice antelope tag that I could of bought leftover the day I started hunting and an OTC tag here at home. If nothing else works out next year Im going to get a leftover antelope tag for that unit again. I dont think I will be able to hunt the ranch I hunted this year again and most of the antelope are on private land from what I have seen there but I do know the unit somewhat now and I think I can pull a decent antelope off the BLM there, its just going to take alot more work. I want to go on atleast 1 hunt out of state every year and a poor tag is better then none in my book, as long as I dont have to burn any points to get it.

tdcour
12-03-2013, 08:46 PM
I'll get something posted up here soon if I get the time, but I don't think my pictures are very good since they are at night, but there was no way around it. When do you stop taking submissions?

Montana
12-04-2013, 08:02 AM
I too like the rules... Public land success is the ultimate accomplishment. In fact the reason I'm not eligible for this is because I've let my subscription expire for the first time is years because the stories are RARELY public land general tag (I don't think general tag was part of the rules).

Even it fewer entries its much more entertaining.

Ikeepitcold
12-04-2013, 08:31 AM
I'll get something posted up here soon if I get the time, but I don't think my pictures are very good since they are at night, but there was no way around it. When do you stop taking submissions?

Till Jan 1. Dark is ok. My bull made it in the magazine and all me photos with my bull where in the dark.

Ikeepitcold
12-04-2013, 08:32 AM
I too like the rules... Public land success is the ultimate accomplishment. In fact the reason I'm not eligible for this is because I've let my subscription expire for the first time is years because the stories are RARELY public land general tag (I don't think general tag was part of the rules).

Even it fewer entries its much more entertaining.

Always will be DIY public land

jjenness
12-04-2013, 11:37 AM
2013 shaped up to be one of the best years of bow hunting that I have experienced. Once again I decided to head into the backcountry to look for that special bull or buck to bring home, and after spending 4 days sleeping outside my partner and I decided to pack it up and head back to the truck. Activity was slow and even though we saw some nice bulls and a couple nice bucks no opportunities ever presented themselves.

Due to the treacherous way that we had hiked into our backcountry spot, when we hiked out we had to go a completely different way which put us about 9 miles from where we had parked our truck. After a quick phone call to one of my good friends asking him to pick us up, we decided that we would finish out the days hunt by looking for some antelope. When we got picked up it was still early in the afternoon, and we felt that we should have a pretty good chance at finding some antelope to chase around for the remainder of the day.

Before we left the mountains to go search for the speed goats I told my partner that I wanted to check out this one particular area for some mulies, since we were close to the area. The area I had in mind has proven to be a great summer range for some good bucks, and occasionally a bruiser can be found in the area. As we drove the county road stopping every now and then to glass for some deer I suddenly found two deer off in the distance. We could tell that both of them were bucks, but at over 700 yards away, and looking with only our binos I decided that neither of the bucks was what I was looking for. We continued our way through the area and did not find any other deer that caught my attention so we decided to head out in search of the speed goats. As we came back across the two bucks we had already spotted, we decided to get a spotting scope out and take a closer look at the bucks.

As soon as my partner put the spotting scope on the bigger of the two bucks, his tune suddenly changed and he suggested that I come and look through the scope. He tried to tell me that the buck was much nicer than either of us had thought, and he said that if he hadn’t drawn a special mule deer permit he would probably go after the buck. When I got behind the spotting scope I couldn’t believe that I had almost passed up this buck, and soon realized that the buck would definitely be my biggest buck with a bow.

The buck was in a perfect area for a stalk, the wind was perfect allowing me to get above the buck and try to stalk down on top of him. We quickly worked out our hand signals and I was off heading up the hill. Once I was above the bucks I slipped my boots off and pulled the wool socks up over my pants to try and quiet the loud noises of the dry grass scraping my legs. Once I was directly above the buck I had a small stand of large pine trees to conceal my approach as I descended upon them. I made one last check of my partner with the binos, and all of the sudden I saw my partner doing leg squats over and over again. For the life of me I couldn’t figure out what he was doing, as this was definitely not a signal we had worked out.

I cautiously continued moving down through the pine trees and soon found myself at 30 yards from the bigger of the two bucks, and to my surprise the buck was up and feeding. It was clear to me now that my partner was trying to signal to me that the bucks had gotten up. As I stood behind a large bull pine the buck stuck his head into a berry bush and I took advantage of this by stepping out from behind the tree into the wide open. This caught the bucks attention and we had a stare down for about 10 seconds until the buck decided that I was not a threat. I stood there waiting for him to turn broadside, and as soon as he did I drew my bow back. This time the buck pegged me, but little did he know that it was too late and I let the arrow fly. The arrow was true and I pin wheeled the buck right in the boiler room. I was able to watch the buck expire within view, and to say I was elated is an understatement.

The buck ended up being my biggest buck with a bow by a long shot, and I was happy to have the opportunity to take such a great trophy. It’s funny how we worked so hard hiking 26 miles in the backcountry looking for animals, and now here we were only 700 yards from the county road with a great buck on the ground. When my partner came up the hill he had my video camera with him and he told me that he was able to get the whole stalk and shot on video, which is great to be able to go back and watch the film over with friends and family. 2013 goes down as being a great year of hunting, one I will not soon forget.

http://i1315.photobucket.com/albums/t589/jenness_us1/JBuck2_zps94e6e42b.jpg (http://s1315.photobucket.com/user/jenness_us1/media/JBuck2_zps94e6e42b.jpg.html)

Timberstalker
12-04-2013, 11:49 AM
Great story JJ!

Ikeepitcold
12-04-2013, 04:18 PM
Very cool! I like the hat too!

Musket Man
12-04-2013, 06:23 PM
Great buck and story congrats!

tdcour
12-06-2013, 03:20 PM
My buddy, Chase, and I had been planning an archery hunt in South Dakota and set our sights on the second week in November to be out chasing deer. As I began to finish up my harvest in Kansas, we started to grow a little more nervous about making our November hunt with bad harvest conditions in South Dakota. Luckily, Chase finished picking corn right at the end of October and as the weeks seemed to drag by we finally made it to our hunting grounds in South Dakota.

We were met with windy weather and semi-warm temperatures reaching into the middle 50s during the day. This seemed to make deer sightings a little harder, but with the rut getting started, we knew it was only a matter of time before we started to see deer. The first few days were met with many miles, small bucks, and too many does. We couldn’t seem to find a deer over two years old and were starting to look for other places to hunt.

On the fourth morning of the week long hunt, we woke up to a balmy temperature of 7 degrees, calm winds, and a fresh blanket of snow on the ground. Our luck was about to change, just like the weather.

This morning we decided to start hunting in a different spot that we had not hunted ever before. It didn’t take long for us to realize that any sort of breeze at 7 degrees is extremely magnified, but we were seeing deer so we pressed on. By the end of the day, we had seen 3 shooters and knew where we were going to be heading in the morning.

The next morning, we found ourselves right in the middle of all of the deer. One network of draws we glassed had over 20 deer in them and two potential shooters. After waiting for the deer to bed down, we made a stalk in on the best deer we had seen. The deer had bedded down with a few more deer that we could see in a very deep cut full of buck brush and hardwood trees. We crept into position with the cover of some scraggly looking sage and waited for the deer to get up for an afternoon snack. After about a 30 minute wait the smaller yearlings began to get up. The first, a spike, stood up 30 yards from us straight downhill. The next, a small fork horn stood up at about 40 yards with a small doe. After a few minutes of milling around, they started to make their way downhill and we knew the big guy had to get up soon.

Within seconds, Chase motioned to me that he could see the deer, but didn’t have a shot. I couldn’t see the deer because of the sage I was behind, but decided to get my bow ready for the shot. Out of the corner of my eye I could see the deer slowly working its way down the hill to us. I didn’t even look at the deer as I kept my eye on my shooting lane between some yucca and sage. As the deer dropped its head to grab a bite, I drew my bow, and held for what seemed like an eternity. Finally, the deer stepped into my shooting lane and I let my arrow fly. This is my second deer with a bow and I couldn’t be happier with him.

7298

Ikeepitcold
12-06-2013, 03:26 PM
Very cool! Thanks for the entry.

BruinPoint
12-22-2013, 11:20 PM
http://www.hunt101.com/data/500/medium/P1000051.JPG

Just Right

Colorado is known for trophy mule deer and lots of elk, and muleys are definitely my main interest. This year I picked up a tag in an area that has good public access but high hunting pressure and many of the top bucks are taken each year.

Opening morning found me exploring an area that I learned would be along a migration corridor, but had several roads. The area wasn't as glassable as I had hoped, but I managed to spot close to thirty bucks by the end of the evening hunt. The second day was much the same, although I missed the evening hunt to meet a buddy that was willing to sacrifice his vacation time for my hunt.

We started the third day with coffee and cinnamon rolls and were out on a good vantage before daylight. It seemed like every high spot and point was decorated in hunter orange. Throughout the day we talked to other hunters and the common theme was that most of the buck tags had been filled opening weekend so efforts could be focused on elk.

Learning that, and knowing snow was coming, I had a feeling this already good hunt was only going to improve. If that wasn't enough, it seemed like somebody flipped the rut switch to "on" and that evening we found a number of decent bucks chasing does.

Tuesday was another early start, and we decided to focus on an area I had scouted that was more open and with more country that had to be accessed on foot. Several inches of snow greeted us, and by shooting light it was apparent that glassing through fog and falling snow wasn't going to work. Faced with the decision of whether to hunt with low visibility, we decided to at least explore the ATV trails until the fog lifted. The deer were active and we cut tracks moving into the oakbrush. Visibility was only 200 yards, but I knew a spot where we could glass that short distance to the brushy hillside.

With fresh snow as a backdrop I picked out a nice buck right away. I set up and made the shot just as he was disappearing. Neither of us heard the "whop" of a solid hit, but I felt like I had done my part. After a short trail, I had my buck in hand.

Most people are able to appreciate nature's beauty, but there's something about walking up to an animal you've just killed amid falling snow and stunning scenery that can't be fully described in words or caught on camera. The hunt hadn't gone exactly like I planned, and the buck wasn't the giant deer I had dreamed of, but in the moment it was just right.

velvetfvr
12-27-2013, 02:27 PM
Persistence Pays off!!!
By Geno Savini
This year started out the same as the past 4 years. I drew my junior Nevada deer tag. I found this new hunting spot from tips and scouring Google earth. Opening evening I found myself searching the draws and drainages. I did end up finding over 40 bucks, and several 160-170 class bucks during the trip. On the last day of my week long excursion, I had got in position to get an arrow into my first buck. The bucks were on the trail no more than 20 yards away. I decided to take a 3x4 instead of trying to wait for the 5x4 that would land somewhere in the 170’s. I drew back, but the buck moved. He was broadside, I decided he was around 35 yards and put my 30 pin right on the top of the lungs. I guessed wrong, I sent the arrow right through the flesh on the top of his back, and was never seen again. I tracked him for 5 hours, searched every water source, and with no blood, I knew it was a non lethal hit above the spine. I went home empty handed for what seemed to be my 4th year in a row.
I was able to go back over Labor Day weekend. I knew the groups pattern, and was hoping I could still arrow 1 of the 2 bigger bucks. I did find the 5x4, but each afternoon it rained, putting to what seemed like an end to my hunt. I was truly disappointed, because I had blown 1 opportunity at a very respectable buck earlier in the hunt, and would have had my first archery animal.
I kept watching the weather, and archery season ended on September 10th. I saw a break would be in the storm system, and convinced my parents to go out on Saturday, September 7th for one last try. And one last try was all I needed. I found 5 bucks, which were part of the 11 bucks that I had chased the previous 10 days of my hunt. It was just light enough to see, and I knew it was now or never. Knowing that one was a solid 4 point, I wasn’t going to leave this mountain without him. I only could get 250 yards from them, but they went to one of the 5 water sources on this mountain. I was just watching them from about 250 yards out, in an aspen stand next to a pine tree. I can’t believe what happened next. 1 of the 5 bucks, walked to my tree, and was only 18 yards away!!! 2 of the others headed north, and the 4 point and another small buck came my way. Finally, he came to 32 yards. I took 1 step back, put my sight on him and executed a marginal shot. After giving him 4 hours to die, I was able to harvest a 155” gross, Nevada mule deer, and he was only 2 years old! I finally ended my 4 year drought of not getting my first animal with a bow, but all the training and effort finally paid off.
7412

JNDEER
01-04-2014, 01:18 PM
Lucky 365

Monday September 1st 2012 marked the beginning of what may now be a tradition. I was lucky enough to glass and put an effective spot-and –stalk on a forked horn mid-day. I circled around the deer while he fed and got above him before making a great lethal shot. My brother and I, later that night, were still hunting and found us stopped looking around only to have a nice forked horn walk out right in front of us. I ranged the buck and he was able to put a lethal broadside shot in the deer.

365 days later my brother and I were on day five of our seven day hunt. We had seen some bucks, but were not able to release any arrows. Monday morning came way too early as we decided to drive 1.5 hours from camp to hunt another area. The downside to this spot is that the ridge we glass is a west facing slope and thus putting us on the east facing slope to glass it. You have a mere 15 minutes, 25 with good glass, to locate deer and do your best to keep tabs on them before the sun blinds you. At first light I was able to locate two bucks, one of which appeared to be a large antlered deer. As soon as they were spotted they moved into cover feeding into a small ravine. We stuck it out and used the shade provided by the small trees, shrubs, and brush around us to attempt to continue to glass the ridge. At 0900 we decided to go back to the vehicle to get some snacks and hike to a different vantage point. Upon arrival we found a flat tire. Go figure, last year we had 3! We spent 30 minutes getting that taken care of before finally setting off to a different vantage point. When we got there we found a group of does in the area the bucks were spotted some four hours ago. Thirty minutes later the bucks came out, but now we are battling the heat waves and can just make out that one is a 4x4 and the other appears to be a 3x3. Both are mature deer and well worth a stalk. We wait until 1215 before we head back to the vehicle and circle around to the mountain they are on. At 1315 we are heading down the ridge for the stalk, making sure to hit every one of our pre-selected landmarks. As we approach landmark #2, I catch movement and stop. I pull up the glass and see it is a coyote, bouncing up and down trying to get a mouse. It was quit comical, but then the coyote decided he was done and headed straight for us. This had us sweating bullets because if we spooked him he would turn and run straight down to the bedded bucks. Luckily for us the shade and camo confused him. As he got to within 20 yards and started to bob his head trying to figure out what we were. He went right, then left, then back to his right before proceeding further up the mountain. We hit land mark #3, pulled out our baer’s feet and started the final 150 yards down to the last landmark which hopefully should put us 55 yards above their last known spot. As we approach the upper end of the last land mark we stop to look around in some shade. Through the trees in front of me I spot the rack of the 4x4 and my hearts starts to palpitate and I start to get a little dry mouth. I point out the deer to my brother who is following my lead. We watch him for a second then have to move another 20 yards to the next shade spot between two trees in order to get a shot. Moving like a ninja walking on paper we step our way over some dry branches to get to the shady spot. As I ease out into what will be my shooting lane I lay eyes on the biggest blacktail I have ever seen and he is a mere 60 yards away. My estimations of the landmarks were spot on and it was sure luck that he was on his feet and feeding out in the open. At this point everything else around me became white noise. My heart is beating very rapidly and I start to get that tingly feeling all over just like the one you get when you fall asleep on your arm. I hear my brother tell me to “relax and breathe.” I remember him saying this despite my full concentration on the buck that stands before me with his vitals covered by some small scrub oaks. I am doing my best to stay cool and calm ensuring that my movements are as slow as a chameleon on a limb. I range the deer at 60, then the tree next to him and get 60. I range the scrub brush blocking his vitals and it reads 48. Immediately I know that my arrow would fly over the brush and could hit the deer without issues. Total time elapse is now about one and a half minutes. I then catch movement directly in front of me and slowly pull up the Swaro’s to see the 3x3 and doe up and feeding as well. I realize they are only 45 yards away, but are in thicker cover. My head slowly turns back, putting my attention back on the 4x4 who is munching away on some oak leaves oblivious to his surroundings. I now see and focus on a small red leaf which is covering his vitals, almost exactly where I want to hit. I range the bush again and the deer again just to make sure, but before I can move forward with the shot he takes two steps up the hill. He is now broadside to slightly quartering to me and his vitals are in the wide open. When this happened I drew back and started into my routine. I wear glasses and the shade/sun/shade/sun caused the halo on my .19 pin to be fairly large. I focus on the spot I want to hit and pull back releasing the arrow. Immediately I felt the bow jump in my hand and not a good jump. My grip must have been a touch off, but I watch my arrow fly and hit the deer. I see it hit and it appeared to hit high and mid-body. I feel an immediate let down. All the practice and the biggest blacktail I have ever laid eyes on may have just been gut shot! My brother and I talk it over and conclude that it should have been a full liver hit with a possibility of catching one lung. We wait an hour and slowly make our way to the arrow. It is covered in super dark blood with no smell of gut on the shaft. I feel a huge since of relief as that hour sitting there re-living the 3 seconds over and over was not easy. Whether he was a spork or the new California record, waiting for the recovery can be trying for any bow hunter. It takes us a while to find the location of impact and the first specs of blood, but we start the trail. I let me brother know that we are only going to go a short distance and if the blood doesn’t start telling me he is dead, we would back out and give him more time. Luckily for both of us it was not necessary as he only went 120 yards before lying down. We had lost the trail about 80 yards into it and decided to split up. As my brother went high and I went low, he whistles for me. As I get closer he whispers “I smell a dead deer.” I immediately feel a rush of excitement and ask if he sees him to which he replies, “no, but the blood here looks really good.” Talk about an immediate emotional high bubble burst. As he is saying this and after I hear the dreadful, “No” I am turning my head and looking further up the trail. Directly in front of both of us I see what appears to be a light brown cow lying behind a pine. I tell my brother and slowly pull up my binoculars to check him and it was all over. Whether it was fate or karma we were the two luckiest brothers living in that moment. We ran to each other and hugged, it had been a long season and the little bit of saline that came from our eyes told it all.

After packing the meat and cape out we drove back to our camp. We got things put away and had intentions on driving into town to get the cape in a freezer. On our way down the mountain my brother reminds me of our fortune exactly 365 days ago. We both laugh and say it would be awesome if he had the chance to fill his tag. Not ten minutes later I turn a corner in the road and with ten minutes of legal light left my brother tells me to stop as he just saw 3 deer off of the road. I slow down and finally come to a stop. We both get out and start to side hill towards the deer that were feeding in a small clearing. As we get closer my brother tells me that one of the deer looked like a buck we had seen a number of times in this area. We step out from behind the tree line and see two does and the buck. He is a non-typical having 3 points on his right side and one point dropping over his eye on the left. The buck is feeding and is quartering away. As my brother draws his bow he asks for the range and I tell him “35.” He is at full draw and within a few seconds he releases hitting the deer behind the last rib exiting dead center of his chest. The buck was dead within a minute and ran all of 40 yards. Standing in the last bit of light we both looked each other in disbelief. As we hugged and stood in silence I know we were both re-living all that took place not only that day, but also 365 days earlier.


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Ikeepitcold
01-04-2014, 03:20 PM
Great story. Thanks for posting

Ikeepitcold
01-04-2014, 03:22 PM
Persistence Pays off!!!
By Geno Savini
This year started out the same as the past 4 years. I drew my junior Nevada deer tag. I found this new hunting spot from tips and scouring Google earth. Opening evening I found myself searching the draws and drainages. I did end up finding over 40 bucks, and several 160-170 class bucks during the trip. On the last day of my week long excursion, I had got in position to get an arrow into my first buck. The bucks were on the trail no more than 20 yards away. I decided to take a 3x4 instead of trying to wait for the 5x4 that would land somewhere in the 170’s. I drew back, but the buck moved. He was broadside, I decided he was around 35 yards and put my 30 pin right on the top of the lungs. I guessed wrong, I sent the arrow right through the flesh on the top of his back, and was never seen again. I tracked him for 5 hours, searched every water source, and with no blood, I knew it was a non lethal hit above the spine. I went home empty handed for what seemed to be my 4th year in a row.
I was able to go back over Labor Day weekend. I knew the groups pattern, and was hoping I could still arrow 1 of the 2 bigger bucks. I did find the 5x4, but each afternoon it rained, putting to what seemed like an end to my hunt. I was truly disappointed, because I had blown 1 opportunity at a very respectable buck earlier in the hunt, and would have had my first archery animal.
I kept watching the weather, and archery season ended on September 10th. I saw a break would be in the storm system, and convinced my parents to go out on Saturday, September 7th for one last try. And one last try was all I needed. I found 5 bucks, which were part of the 11 bucks that I had chased the previous 10 days of my hunt. It was just light enough to see, and I knew it was now or never. Knowing that one was a solid 4 point, I wasn’t going to leave this mountain without him. I only could get 250 yards from them, but they went to one of the 5 water sources on this mountain. I was just watching them from about 250 yards out, in an aspen stand next to a pine tree. I can’t believe what happened next. 1 of the 5 bucks, walked to my tree, and was only 18 yards away!!! 2 of the others headed north, and the 4 point and another small buck came my way. Finally, he came to 32 yards. I took 1 step back, put my sight on him and executed a marginal shot. After giving him 4 hours to die, I was able to harvest a 155” gross, Nevada mule deer, and he was only 2 years old! I finally ended my 4 year drought of not getting my first animal with a bow, but all the training and effort finally paid off.
7412

Awesome Geno!

Ikeepitcold
01-04-2014, 03:22 PM
http://www.hunt101.com/data/500/medium/P1000051.JPG

Just Right

Colorado is known for trophy mule deer and lots of elk, and muleys are definitely my main interest. This year I picked up a tag in an area that has good public access but high hunting pressure and many of the top bucks are taken each year.

Opening morning found me exploring an area that I learned would be along a migration corridor, but had several roads. The area wasn't as glassable as I had hoped, but I managed to spot close to thirty bucks by the end of the evening hunt. The second day was much the same, although I missed the evening hunt to meet a buddy that was willing to sacrifice his vacation time for my hunt.

We started the third day with coffee and cinnamon rolls and were out on a good vantage before daylight. It seemed like every high spot and point was decorated in hunter orange. Throughout the day we talked to other hunters and the common theme was that most of the buck tags had been filled opening weekend so efforts could be focused on elk.

Learning that, and knowing snow was coming, I had a feeling this already good hunt was only going to improve. If that wasn't enough, it seemed like somebody flipped the rut switch to "on" and that evening we found a number of decent bucks chasing does.

Tuesday was another early start, and we decided to focus on an area I had scouted that was more open and with more country that had to be accessed on foot. Several inches of snow greeted us, and by shooting light it was apparent that glassing through fog and falling snow wasn't going to work. Faced with the decision of whether to hunt with low visibility, we decided to at least explore the ATV trails until the fog lifted. The deer were active and we cut tracks moving into the oakbrush. Visibility was only 200 yards, but I knew a spot where we could glass that short distance to the brushy hillside.

With fresh snow as a backdrop I picked out a nice buck right away. I set up and made the shot just as he was disappearing. Neither of us heard the "whop" of a solid hit, but I felt like I had done my part. After a short trail, I had my buck in hand.

Most people are able to appreciate nature's beauty, but there's something about walking up to an animal you've just killed amid falling snow and stunning scenery that can't be fully described in words or caught on camera. The hunt hadn't gone exactly like I planned, and the buck wasn't the giant deer I had dreamed of, but in the moment it was just right.

I really like that pic.