The afternoon hunt started with a roll call via text. Rob, Schultzy, PT is everyone up? PT was the only negative as he had another commitment. Next text..Beer on first deer? Response 2, Game Ons!
I'm hunting the same ridge, that I saw different bucks from on Sunday Morning-early afternoon. Including a shooter 8 pt. Tonight I felt I had to make a strategic move in stand location to cover more of the south side of a cut. At around 4pm, two doe come busting past me. I quickly focus on thier backtrail, and see what I believe to be my nice 8 slipping over the ridge. I see nothing more and darkness is coming, sunset is looming and I'm on my last 20 minutes.
I can hear deer, this noise is different form the squirrels I've been listening to for the last 3 hours. The leaves are like rice krispies crunchy and loud. The deer are on the other side of the cut, in the area of some thick grape-vine undergrowth. I can't see anything. Time is getting short, I give a series of grunts, the movement is getting closer. I see 2 deer, both doe..but hear more behind them. I grunt again, the doe are unsettled. But something is coming. I hear him making a scrape in the crispy leaves. I look at my watch, I have mere minutes left, I grunt more aggressively. I see movement up the trail coming my way. Finally with the last available light he steps out of the cover. I had previously ranged the tree he steps behind, 28 yards. My super peep is cloudy and my practice in the witching hours is about to be tested. My 28 yard pin is green, which is clear and bright. I wait for the shot anchored at full draw, he turns and the arrow is launched. The woods explode with movement and noise. But I think I hear him crash. I climb down to at least go to the shot sight. By the time I get there it's dark. No blood, no arrow..?? Hmmmm. But I think I heard some thrashing on my way over to the spot. I walk the trail a bit..no this is wrong, back to the shot sight to search for the arrow or blood. Nothing!!! Dang it, I know what I heard. Back up the trail, further this time, I round a slight bend and see antler on the ground. I hit him good the angle must have been excellent. The arrow lodged in the off shoulder blade as it was still in him. No blood on the ground, but recovery within 20 yards.
I'm thrilled with this buck. It wasn't a usual set-up it all came together based on prior sightings and intuition. I hunted this spot 2 times Sunday and Monday. It's a Public Land Buck. This land gets hammered last year they took over 150 (tagged) deer off this 3000 acre tract.
He's a solid 8 with an "acorn" kicker off his brow tine making him a 9. Score and all later, I have a job interview in an hour.
Some-text buddies owe me a beer..Budlight please