November Report

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ranwin33
 
Posts: 2110
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Location: Kansas and Missouri

November Report

Postby ranwin33 » Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:13 am

Sorry I've been a way.  This is kind of long but hey, I've missed posting for a while.

[font=calibri]Gun season 2008 was going to be a short one for me – I had conferences and classes I had to attend opening week.  So I headed to the farm the Wednesday prior to do some bow hunting before the woods filled with hunter orange.   Wednesday evening I was sitting a stand on our New Plot, didn't see much until the last half hour of light.  Then a doe came running through trailed by a buck.  I could get neither to stop with my calling so I sat and waited for dark.  After about 10 minutes another buck came through, he was a legal shooter with four points on one side, but his other side was completely gone.  He moved through quickly looking for more does.  He was young, but I would have like to get a closer look at the missing side.  When I left the plot, I pulled the card on a game camera we have there hoping to have gotten a picture of the buck.  No such luck, the camera was too slow, but I did notice another set of antler tines behind a nearby tree on a buck I had not even noticed while watching the missing antler buck move through.[/font]

[font=calibri]Thursday morning I was in a stand on our Hilltop Plot, my old standby.  Had a couple of doe move through and a button buck, but again nothing I was interested in shooting.  I was hoping the doe might bring in some big boys but no luck.  I did see some deer off in the woods but could not identify what they were, nor would they come to my calls. With the installation of the New Plot, the Hilltop Plot seems to be getting secondary use.  In the past, we would see plenty of deer on it, but this year they have been pretty sparse, and mostly does and young bucks.  They have also been moving onto and around the plot in odd directions.  Only one "shooter" all year long so far, I've come to call him the white tined ba$tard as we've had several encounters, all in his favor. [/font]

[font=calibri]Came back out Thursday evening and hunted the Hilltop Plot again, it is usually a better evening plot then a morning plot anyway.  Again, saw a few doe but no bucks.  The doe came in from the north, an unusual direction.  They kept checking the woods so I was hopeful something else might show.  Whatever they were looking at chose not to come out.[/font]

[font=calibri]Friday morning back in the New Plot, with one day to gun season it was more of a reconnaissance hunt than anything else.  Saw absolutely nothing, but did not spend long in the woods as weather was turning.[/font]
[font=calibri]Friday evening we stayed in the barn, we were having pretty good rains and even if I didn't mind getting wet, I knew I'd never be able to blood trail anything I shot.[/font]

[font=calibri]S[/font][font=calibri]aturday morning, gun season was cold and windy.  Big winds out of the north with some snow flurries.  We had installed a tower blind in our warm season grasses a few weeks earlier.  [/font][font=calibri]http://www.sportsmansguide.com/net/cb/cb.aspx?a=210559[/font][font=calibri]   Since I had very good luck the previous year, I thought I would leave the woods to my brother and nephew. We put in the grasses three years earlier and have never hunted the field – drive bys on ATV's indicated not much was going on there anyway.  The tower (only seven feet tall) was situated so I could see into our Hidden Plot, the east slope of the NWSG, the fence line on our north border and the woodline to the east.  All within gun range 50-150 yards.  I spent the first part of the morning trying to re-secure the blind from the inside.  The north winds had blown it partially off the base.  I finally gave up, got out and retied everything.  Around 9 a.m. I decided to do some calling despite the wind.  After about 15 minutes I watched as a set of bright white tines began moving just above the warm season grasses to my southwest at about 30 yards.  My old friend was back for a visit. I turned to get in position for a shot and as I did so, the buck raised his head and looked right at me through the blind's window.  We stared at each other for a few seconds before he lazily bounded off over the slope and into the woods.  He offered a couple of running shots, but I know better than to try those.  That was the only deer I spotted opening morning, given the scarcity of gunfire, I would say most hunters were experiencing similar results.  Neither my brother who was hunting the New Plot, nor my nephew who was hunting the Alfalfa Plot saw anything either.[/font]

[font=calibri]Friday afternoon I was back out in the NWSG.  Winds had slowed a bit and I had brought some clothespins to help secure the blind flaps.  Along with a small propane heater, I was set for a comfortable afternoon hunt.  I had pulled the ATV right up next to the stand so I could use it as a ladder to re-tie some of the ropes securing the blind.  While I am doing this a 6 point buck walks out of the grass about 20 yards in front of me, as I am standing tall on the ATV.  He looks at me for about 20 seconds then proceeds to walk off, not scared a bit.  That already made the afternoon hunt worthwhile so I finished up, drove the ATV out to the fence line and stashed it in among some cedars.  I climbed back into the stand and made myself at home.  Along about 4 p.m. I noticed movement down in the Hidden plot, about 100 yards away.  I got my binoculars up and was able to make out a doe grazing on the remnants of some clover.  I watched her for quite a bit, and then a small buck showed up to graze with her, not chasing or bothering her, but just hanging out.  I spent another five minutes watching and considering whether or not I would shoot her if she made her way toward my stand.  As I watched, the thought popped into my head that this would be a prime opportunity for a buck to sneak by along the east tree line down to my left.  So I put down the binoculars and took a quick look to my left.  Sure enough, there was a buck moving along the woods about 150 yards away.  I got my binoculars on him, determined he had enough points and antlers outside the ears, and then brought my rifle up.  Just as he was about to pass by our old plywood stand I had my crosshairs on his side and fired.  I could tell he was hit, but he did not go down, nor run off.  I continued to watch him through the scope; he was moving slowly but still not falling.  He began to make his way into the woods when I put another round in him dropping him to the ground.[/font]

[font=calibri]I radioed my brother and nephew that I had a deer on the ground.  Both radioed back they too were covered up with deer.  My nephew had several does around his stand in the New Plot, and my brother had a buck and a doe spotted from our ground blind just off the Hilltop Plot.  I headed off to recover the deer while they continued to hunt.  The buck turned out to be a smallish eight pointer on the downhill side of life.  He had an injured rear leg and his teeth were nearly down to nothing.  I could not age him based upon body but given the tooth wear, I am pretty sure he was quite old.  Eventually my nephew showed up and we loaded him onto the ATV to take him back to the barn.  He weighed 192 field dressed.[/font]

[font=calibri]The nice thing about shooting a buck is that you can sleep in the next morning.  I sent my brother and nephew off Sunday morning for the second day of the season while I returned to bed for a while.  About 8:30 a.m. I was sitting on our deck scanning the woods with binoculars when I heard a shot close by.  The radio crackled a short time later with my nephew announcing he had taken a buck off the new plot.  This is his second deer and first buck since he has been hunting with us the past 7 seasons.  That pretty much ended the hunting for everybody that morning, as we were thrilled that he connected on his first buck.  My brother came by the barn to pick me up on the ATV and off we went to see what he had down.  His deer weighed 127 field dressed.[/font]

[font=calibri]The deer was a nice basket rack eight pointer, clearly only a year and half old, but no one was going to complain about age with this being his first buck.  His story was pretty impressive, he had waited for thirty minutes while five doe milled around in the New Plot beneath his stand – he just knew a buck would show up if he was patient.  I do not know if I would have had that kind of patience, especially given he had only shot one deer previously.  His shot took out both lungs and the top of the heart; the deer traveled only about 15 yards before piling up by a brush pile.[/font]

[font=calibri]I had to head home that evening, but my brother was able to hunt for two more days.  He saw several doe, but no bucks and did not shoot anything.  He said the deer he saw Sunday morning had 4 points on one side, but he still chose not to shoot it, as he could not really tell how big the deer was.  [/font]

[font=calibri][/font][font=calibri]I took the week of Thanksgiving off from work and was able to hunt that Monday and Tuesday.  Since gun season was still going on and I had filled my buck tag I decided to take my bow and see if I might shoot a doe.  I was back again on the Hilltop plot for my Monday evening hunt.  I had two deer come out at about 3 p.m. neither had antlers.  One was definitely a doe; the other I thought might be a button buck.  It of course was the one offering all kinds of shot opportunities.   I took several pictures of both deer while trying to determine if I had two does or a button buck and a doe.  Zooming in with the camera allowed me to see both deer were does.   By now, though I had decided neither was all that big so I let them walk by the stand at about 5 yards.  Half an hour later another deer showed up, this one was definitely a button buck, so I watched him graze for a while before he headed off to parts unknown.[/font]

[font=calibri]Tuesday morning was cold, low 20's if not colder.  I was in the New Plot – more just to be out in the woods than to hunt.  I stayed in the stand until about 9:15 a.m., finally deciding to come down having not seen or heard a thing, other than about 50,000 squirrels.  On the way out of the plot, I stopped to add a card to the game camera.  When doing this I noticed the date was wrong, so I tried to change it.  For some reason the buttons decided not to work correctly so I had to spend about five minutes fooling with it.  Finally getting it all set up, I stood back about 15 feet to see if it would take my picture.  While I am waiting on the camera to go off, I hear leaves crashing off to my front left.  I look up and there angling on a line directly toward me are four does coming hard to the plot.  I am too far away to get behind a tree so I say to myself, "I'll just draw my bow and stand still like a tree."  Now I'm standing there in the middle of the food plot feeling pretty exposed, my bow drawn as four does head almost right at me from an angle to my left.  I'm standing there stock still holding my drawn bow when the first doe, a big one, comes slowly in front of me, just a hair angling toward me, no more than 5 yards away.  She finally notices this thing standing in the plot, takes a look at me, sniffs, then proceeds to amble on by.  I let the arrow fly and she runs off, crashing just the other side of a small hill.  One of the other does sticks around to see what is going on; I could have shot her as well.  I chase her off and proceed to go look for my arrow.  I knew I had a good hit with pass through as I saw the wound bleeding when the doe turned and took off.  I Could not find my arrow so I head off to look for blood.  As I crest the rise of the hill I see another deer about 30 yards away, at first I thought maybe it was the one I shot, but a close look indicated no blood on her side.  We watch each other for a while, so I give her a couple of grunts on my call to see what she will do and she actually starts moving toward me.  I'm thinking maybe I'll get a double, then I realize I really don't want to have to gut and haul out two deer being by myself.  So I ignore her and head off looking for the one I shot.  I traveled about 20 yards and found her piled up next to a tree; the other doe had been milling about where she went down.  Interesting thing about this doe, her backside was all tore up, and I do not mean a little bit.  The wound was dry so most likely a couple of days old, but I do not think she would have survived with this damage.  It looked like something had been eating on her; the only thing left was her tail.  At first I questioned if this was my deer, but she was still warm, had fresh blood and the wounds matched where I shot – she had to be mine.  I eventually found blood and was able to trail her back to near where I shot so that confirmed it.  Just not sure what would have done that to her backside.  I did get pictures if anyone is interested.  She weighed 105 pounds field dressed.[/font]

[font=calibri]Every year I go into the season wondering what great thing will happen this year – it seems like something always does.  This year it has to be those four does coming into the food plot with me as I am standing there completely out in the open.[/font]

[font=calibri]I may head out again this Friday for the end of muzzleloader season, I still have another gun tag for a doe and my brother will be there.  Somewhat up in the air right now, but my next available time to hunt will be over the holidays when I have about 10 days off, and that is a bit of a ways away.  So you can probably guess which way I am leaning.[/font]

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“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
Aldo Leopold

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JPH
 
Posts: 3416
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:28 am

RE: November Report

Postby JPH » Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:00 am

Sorry, short on time so I could only scan your update. Lookks like Novemer treated you well. Congartulatrions!
 
But did you say your brother shot a yearling buck that weighed 172 lbs. field dressed? Are you shure about that? Did you age the jawbone? That seems awfully big for a yearling.

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ranwin33
 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 2:12 pm
Location: Kansas and Missouri

RE: November Report

Postby ranwin33 » Tue Dec 02, 2008 8:45 am

My nephew shot the buck.  Sorry I transposed the numbers, the buck weighed 127 field dressed. 

Here is another picture.  My nephew is a big kid, 6'4" so the deer looks a bit smaller than it actually was. 

I did not age the jawbone, but the young ladies from the MDC at the processing place looked at the teeth and said 1 1/2 years.  Given the rack it had some good genetics. 

Now I have to go edit the other post.

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“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
Aldo Leopold

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JPH
 
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Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:28 am

RE: November Report

Postby JPH » Tue Dec 02, 2008 10:03 am

Okay. 127 makes more sense. That is an awesome yearling. Tell him congrats!


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