[font="times new roman"]Things that start out great can turn sad in a hurry. Friday morning was the coldest morning we have had this season. As I approached the farm at about 6:15 AM a large bodied deer crossed the road in front of me. I just felt I was going to kill my first deer that morning.[/font]
[font="times new roman"] I got on stand nice and early. Waited and waited for light. When I had good light, I hit the grunt tube twice. I was going to wait 15 minutes grunt again and then hit the rattling bag for a sequence. When I walked to my stand, I had pinned an estrus doe wafer to my boot. Before rattling, I looked carefully before rattling, and right behind me, on my entrance trail was a large bodied buck. Then it just disappeared. I have no idea where it went. I wait 5 minutes and hit the grunt tube really soft. The buck comes back right to my entrance trail, but never gives me a shot opportunity. He stomps and starts to walk way. As he gets out of sight, I hit the grunt tube again. He turns and comes right up my shooting lain, and boy is he looking for that other buck. It was so cool. At like 10 yards, he clears the brush, and turns broadside, I let fly with the arrow. He explodes and I watch Him run 30 yards my arrow sticking out of Him. The arrow was a little far back, but felt I had at least liver. I call my wife; she comes and helps me track thinking it will be short and end with pictures. I shot at 7:40, we start trailing at 9:35. At about 2:00, we had followed the trail to a pond, about 400 yards, most of that was on my knees. At the pond we find my arrow, but have no idea where he went. I circle the pond, and begin to crawl through a trail on the other side. I find more blood, and keep crawling. Sometimes just a speck other times 2-3 dime size drops. At 3:00 PM I find where the deer leaves the property. I back out and get permission to go on the other land. I come back to the trail. The other property is a sunflower field. It had just rained so I could follow hoof prints. Sure enough, a drop of blood about every 2-3 feet. But 1/3 the way across the sunflower field the blood stops, I continue to follow the hoof prints, and right in the tall grass where the deer exited the field is a smear of blood. That's the last blood I will see. I again get permission to go on private property, and continue to look. Now I'm just wondering deer trails. At 3:45, I jump the buck in a marsh. He jumps through a small pond about 2 feet deep, and runs for over 100 yards. Doesn't act at all hurt. There is no blood where he was bedded. At 5:00, I had to go to work. I'm just sick. Is there a place above the vital, but below the spinal cord that I could have hit him and not killed him? I found the arrow at the first pond. It was in the water. I don't know how to describe what was on the broad head. It was white in color, but had no odor, and was impossible to wipe off after it had dried. When dry it was crusty and flakey. As I rehearse everything over and over in my mind. I think I have figured out where I blew it. In the excitement of the moment, I didn't pick the exact hair I wanted to hit, I put pin on center of target and shot, just like my bag target. I don't know why I always have to learn the hard way, but even when excited pick the exact point you are going to hit, and complete your full shot routine. Sorry for letting everyone down.[/font]
Hunt safe, hunt often, hunt ethically, and don't forget to say Thank You!