What a day! It all started at 5am when my alarm went off. I was planing on going out by myself this moring as Tyler Grey was going to film my regular hunting partner, Josh Dornbush. As I was having my coffee and double checking the weather I get a phone call – it was Josh calling to see if I could film because he couldn’t get a hold of Tyler. Of course I would film as I knew it would be an awesome moring with the temperatures dropping and the pre rut starting. Unfortunately for Tyler, he slept in and missed a great moring to be in the stand.
It was a calm cool morning with a nice frost on the ground. As Josh and I watched the sun rise the anticipation of seeing the buck he was after kept us on pins and needles. We were sitting in our Ameristep stands catching up on life and enjoying the morning, but as time continued to pass we started getting disappointed becuase we had not seen anything and it was 9 o’clock. Then, all of a sudden, it was like someone opned the flood gates as we saw a great buck pushing around a doe and as we were watching him another great buck snuck in on us. Both were great 4 year old bucks, but Josh let them walk as he knew from checking his Primos trail cameras all summer that there were much bigger deer on this farm and by letting these bucks walk they would blow up to be even better deer next year. It did not stop there though, as we had another 4 year old, a couple of 3 year olds, and some 2 year old bucks checking scrapes and cruising trying to find that first doe that may come into heat. We did have several does in around us, but none of them must have been ready. We sat until 10 am, but as the action slowed down we decided to get down as I had things to get done before going back out for an afternoon hunt.
Josh and I met back up in the afternoon, and this time it was going to be my turn to be in front of the camera. After having the action we did in the moring, I decided that I wanted to try taking a decoy, knowing it would either help us or hurt us, but I had high hopes that it would work. As we got settled in for the evening’s hunt, I looked across the field and there was already a doe in the field and shortly behind her was another doe and what looked to be a pretty good buck, although it was hard to tell as they were a good 400 yards away. They ended up going back in the timber as they were too far away to hear my calling.
As the evening progressed we were not seeing anything. The sun began going down and we were thinking the evening hunt was going to be a bust, but then the 2 does we had seen earlier stepped back out and started working closer to us, then turned and went north. Shortly after, Josh said he saw another deer that had stepped out over there. As I pulled up to look through my Nikon Binoculars, I knew it was a buck. He started to follow the same path the does took and I blew on my grunt call as loud as I could so he would hear it. His head snapped up looking over our way and as he took the first few steps in our direction I was thinking to myself ” No way is this going to happen”. Light was fading fast as he nonchalantly made his way towards us – the decoy was bringing him in perfectly. As I watched this buck the whole time through my Nikons, I was uncertain if he was a shooter or not. Josh and I went back and forth trying to size him up but I said to myself I am grabbing my Elite before it’s too late. This buck gave me every opportunity to take him as he paced back and forth behind the decoy. As I studied this buck, I figured him to be a 140 inch 3 year old with a lot of potential so I told Josh I was gong to let him walk. He sure did get my heart thumping though as he was the first buck I have had on me this year and to have him react to the decoy the way he did made for what I felt was a successful day of hunting.