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This is a long story

Old 09-28-2009, 03:09 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Duluth Mn
Posts: 15
Default This is a long story

Alright sorry if this is to long for some of you guys but below is a story about my trials and tribulations over the last 24 hours. Please take the time to read it maybe you will learn something.

This is taken from a local forum I frequent so I'm copy and pasting it over here.

Well it happened tonight.....I had a big buck come in broad side at 20 yards I put an excelent shot on it and it mule kicked and ran at mach speed tail down threw the woods. I watched the arrow enter the deer and if anything it was a little high......I called a friend who came over and we went to the spot where I took the shot and looked for sign by the time he got there it was pitch black and raining with huge wind gusts. We didn't find a drop of blood or my arrow.......on top of that I lost my sd card out of my pocket some how that had a pic of the deer about 2 seconds before I shot.....the way the deer acted I have to believe I made a good shot. I'll be back out at sunrise doing half circles in every direction to try and find something. Wish me luck......this will be the 1st deer of 7 I've shot at that I may not recover......it just happens to be the biggest buck I've seen alive in the woods....all the tramping around is going to ruin my spot for the year not to mention my confidence maybe I should take up bowling.

We looked for about 3 hours tonight I made the shot at 6:50PM my buddy got there at 8PM and we quit looking tonight at 11PM we are meeting back there at 6:00AM tomorrow to look some more. I'm sick to my stomach because I feel this deer is hit well enough to die.....I'll keep you all posted and I'm praying I find something from our grid search tomorrow I've pretty much given up looking for blood because I searched on my hands and knees from where I took the shot for about 20 feet and not even a hair or drop of blood plus with this rain it will probably be gone anyway. The darn wind was blowing so strong I could only hear the deer for a second then it was gone. I never thought I even would see a deer tonight with the high wind speeds. I shouldn't have even shot nowing it was drizzling and night was only a few minutes away. I could have waited and I'm sure the deer would have been back at some point.

Well,,,,,,,got up and out the door at 6AM this morning........went to the scene of the crime and started there again with my buddy......to make a long story short we didn't find anything not a single strand of hair or spec of blood not to mention my arrow I was on my hands and knee's looking and I covered the first 30 yards the deer ran on my hands and knees and didn't find squat the steady rain didn't help with that. I searched for 3 hours this morning high and low checked tree's and branch's up high where it may have rubbed against looking for beds with any sign it laid down and nothing. On the map I posted last night I searched pretty much that whole area and 2.5 hours last night. I'm going to go back again after work for one last effort.....I must have only had a single lung shot and if I could even find one drop of blood I'd be happy at this point maybe I'm way off base and I missed him completly I've ran the scen threw my head at least a 1000 times. My worst fear with this situation is a buck running around with an arrow hanging out of him poor deer is either laying some where dead or suffering as I type this.......my confidence is shot and I may not hunt again for a couple weeks.....middle to end of October with all the walking around I've done in the woods it's going to take at least week I figure to settle down. I've shot at 8 deer in my 3 years of bow hunting last year I hit a doe that was being chased by a dog (I didn't now the dog was after her until after I shot) left a very faint blood trail that I followed for 400 yards or so I found were she bedded twice and got back up without a problem so I was confident that deer made it okay. The other 6 piled up with in 50 yards and now this deal I feel bad for the deer and feel it's my responsiblity to do everything in my power to find this deer but without a blood drop to be found, no arrow to be found and no hair to be found I'm at a loss,,,,,,,I'm putting my tail between my legs and crawling under my desk here at work.

Thats another problem I encountered.....trying to find tracks is almost impossible the ground is so hard that there just isn't any I also looked for overturned leaves broken branch's and hair caught on sharp branch's and any other signs even where I knew he had walked before and after the shot but even right where he was standing when I shot there just isn't any tracks. At this point I'd be happy to just find a track. Heading back up to my land in 3 hours or so when work is over to reset my camera and spend some more time looking then I'm going to give it up and concede defeat by the time I'm done tonight I'll have close to 8 hours of searching in and at that point I can look myself in the mirror and say I've done everything possible and it's time to move on. I'll watch for crows to see if that helps. Let the woods sit for a day or two then get back at it. Thanks to all who have given words of incouragment no one understands this predicament more than a fellow bow hunter.....my wife gave me a half hearted "you'll find him in the morning" but she just couldn't understand my frustration I could tell when I was telling her the story. Heck maybe this is a bad dream and I'll wake up. Happy hunting all.

Just shot my bow here in the office.........only 10 yards but dead on I'll shoot again later when I can shoot 20 yards outside. Like I said earlier maybe I missed him completly and I've just run the scenario threw my mind so many times I've altered my sense of reality but one thing I now is that I heard that arrow it the deer and I know what that sounds like. This is gonna haunt me for years but I'll get over it eventually.

Well after another 2.5 hours of searching this afternoon for a total of 8.5 hours since 8PM last night I'm convinced that deer is either alive and well or laying dead some where a long ways away much beyond my reach. I hate to give up but the fact is I don't have a drop of blood to follow and I've covered every square inch of land in a completed half circle from 0-300 yards of the shot. I shot my bow to make sure everything is good there and no problems it's dead on. I am going to put this one in my memory bank cause in all honesty I have to admit I think I hit that deer high and I was aiming to high and one lunged him and he took off back in the direction he came and kept going for a long way and without a single drop of blood because the shot was high and trying to find him in an ever growing circle is like finding a needle in a haystack when you don't have any clues as to his were abouts. I'll hopefully be out in my stand tomorrow and watching and listening for crows. I'm also making an equipment change. I practiced with Rages all summer and then a week before the season I pulled out my Montec's and they flew perfect so I changed my mind and hunted with the Montecs don't ask why I'm not sure just one of them things....still think there a great head and I've killed 2 deer with them over the last 2 years but I'm going to pull out the Rages and use them more for confindence than anything. So I'm aiming low at the next deer I shoot I'd rather hit low and have a blood trail or miss completly underneth than hit it high and have nothing to go by.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:17 PM
Typical Buck
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Location: Shawnee, KS
Posts: 774

Does Minnesota allow you to track wounded deer with dogs? I reckon that would be your only chance in finding that deer now.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:20 PM
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Location: Duluth Mn
Posts: 15

Can't use dogs in MN.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:53 PM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: NY
Posts: 549

first off i should say that almost every bowhunter has fealt what you are feeling now. If you bowhunt long enough you are goin to lose a few along the way-thats reality. Anyone who says they have never lost a deer has not shot at too many. You did everything you could to recover the animal-thats all you can do. The sleepless nights,nausea and constant replaying of the scenario over and over again is something we have all dealt with at some time and will unfortunately probably will again. Whats important now is not to give up because of a bad experience. A good hunter takes failure and turns it into determination and fuels the fire to go back out. As far as the hit goes-a high hit is usually alost cause. There is that dead space between the top of the lungs and bottom of the spine which i refer to as no mans land. When i first started bowhunting i lost several deer to high hits. I didnt know or have anyone to tell me i needed to aim low sometimes. (valuable lesson learned). The bright side is your deer is probably still alive. That high hit does not hit anything vital and the deer should be fine. They are an incredibly tough animal. Ive butchered hunters deer for 17yrs and have found countless broadheads stuck in spines and shoulders, birdshot, 22 rounds in rear ends and the deer had healed up and go on like nothing happened. If you searched as long and as hard as you say i would say imo that deer is still alive. definitely wiser and smarter. I would probably suggest moving to another spot as he might take a while before he goes back there again. Then again i know guys that wounded bucks one day and shot them a day or two later in the same spot. They are totally unpredictable. Dont give up and get back out there and kill that buck. This all will just make for a better story when you do get him. Good luck!!
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:57 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,621

Where do the deer bed in your area?

Are there any areas with thick brush?

Were you in a tree stand shooting down or on the ground?

A deer hit from above with no exit wound coming out the bottom will bleed internally and will leave very little blood trail if any at all.

Chances are if you missed, you would find the arrow if in a tree stand.

I understand te going in circles but "d reccomend going in the direction he ran. How far did you hear it run after the shot?

That "mule kick" has me wondering.

I've tracked a lot of deer and have seen lots of stuff. Found a few others gave up on.

Tracked many without recovering too.

If you can pull together some friends (wife) spread out and search for a body. The meat may be spoiled by now but maybe you can salvage the cape for mounting if it has been cool in your area.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:58 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Southeast Indiana
Posts: 122

Well said RH, I know I had that feeling three years ago and I cant think about deer hunting or shooting without replaying that night in my head. Just let it be fuel for that passion you have for bow hunting.
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Old 09-28-2009, 04:11 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Dover, De
Posts: 1,125

Well said RH, i shot a Big Buck a couple years back that i didnt kill, I shot him Opening day a couple years ago and hit him high and tight to the sholder where ther is a pocket that is just tissue and blood..I blew threw the deer and had some blood for like 10 yards and then its stoped, i looked far and wide for 3 days then had to give up..Well in the late ML season my buddy shot him. and he had heeled up perfectly and looked healthy..So get back out there and Kill him IMO he is still alive..Good luck

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Old 09-28-2009, 04:17 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Posts: 2,335

This happened to me last year. It happens to everyone.
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Old 09-28-2009, 05:37 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Duluth Mn
Posts: 15

Thanks for the words of encouragment guys I'm heading back out tomorrow to get back at it.....on the bright side when I went out this morning to start looking again I grabbed the sd card out of my camera and found I had 3 different bucks and a few does on the camera after I left the area last night after searching so I'm keeping that in my mind. Another factor last night that I didn't realize until I thought about is the fact that the wind was blowing at 25mph and gusts higher and I could not hear the deer after the shot..had it been calm I may have been able to distinguish which direction the deer went it could have only gone to directions.
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