It has been a great Thanksgiving weekend. Here's my New York buck taken Thanksgiving morning at 7:35. He was following 5 does back to a bedding area when I intercepted him. A 10-point (main frame 8 with split brow tines), an 18¾" inside spread 20+ outside. The most impressive thing, he weighed 170 pounds field dressed. He would have been over 200 pounds live weight! That's almost unheard of around here.
I saw four does coming, and scoped them for antlers. I began to relax but then a fifth came along behind -- also a doe. I thought, maybe there'd be another, and here he came. I didn't waste time looking at the antlers. He went right down when I pulled the trigger on my 7mm-08.
This is a very big deer for these parts, especially the body size. His neck was the thickest I've ever seen on a buck around here.
Then, four days later on opening day in Pennsylvania I shot another 10-point, again at 7:35 AM. Just as I arrived at the spot I wanted to watch, a doe got up from her bed about 30 yards away. She must have heard me, but didn't see or smell me. As she stood there looking around, she finally saw me and bolted. I stood there for a minute or two, and a buck walked into view about 80 yards away; then another bigger one. My bullet took off the top of his heart, and he ran about 100 yards.
He's another 10-point; he weighed 140 pounds field dressed.
Where I live, a deer hunter can't have a much better weekend than this -- over 300 pounds of venison, and right around 250 inches of antler in the space of four days.
Every season certainly isn't like this, but I'm thankful for this one. I've never shot a 10-point before, and now I have two. (Anyone know a good, inexpensive, taxidermist?)