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09 PA Buck Down!

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09 PA Buck Down!

Old 10-09-2009, 04:55 PM
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Default 09 PA Buck Down!

Honestly, there isn't much to tell of the hunt so I'll give a little background. The property I was hunting is a property that I have had permission to hunt for several years now. I share permission on this and several neighboring properties with some really great guys, some not-so-great guys, and a former Amish guy that has been described as "slippery." After several years I've determined that the best way to approach hunting this property is to hit it hard early and then lay off until the rut. The bucks adjust very quickly to the pressure and turn on their night lights until the ladies start coming into season.

So my plan for this week was to hunt a hedgerow on opening day to get an idea of what was going on and use my scouting and some trail camera info to determine what to do next. The opener was fairly uneventful as I was sick as a dog and did not go out to sit in the rain in the morning, but sat the evening and saw some deer movement in areas I expected.

Up near the barn where we park is a small apple orchard that draws deer in at night once the apples start falling. I put a trail camera up there and sure enough there was a ton of traffic, but of course mostly at night since it is near occupied buildings.

Armed with this information I decided to sit a large oak ridge that is also bordered by a hard edge where the open woods meets brushy cover. The deer will follow the brushy edge out the ridge and enter the open woods to stage and munch acorns down the hill where they cross the road heading to the apple orchard at night and do the reverse in the morning after they get their fill.

On Wednesday night I went out and sat a great tree I had found. It is an oak tree that is great for a climber, perfect size and diameter. Right next to the oak is a beech tree that has branches that envelope you and give you great cover. The night found me enduring 30-40 mph winds and at times holding on pretty tight. I have to admit there were a few moments when I was scared. The hunt was pretty uneventful except for a doe that I saw right as it was getting dark. I'm guessing the deer were holding pretty close to cover with all of that wind. I did break up a deer party at the apple orchard on the way back to my car, so they must have known the wind would have a lot of apples on the ground. I left my stand on the tree with the plan to hunt the same stand in the morning.

Thursday morning came and I got out to the spot nice and early. Instead of parking by the barn and having to pass the orchard with the risk of blowing out deer, I parked at a pull off on the side of the road. This also saved me about 500 yards of walking as well. I got up to my stand and could hear deer in the woods above me. I climbed up as quietly as possible and was settled in and ready to go by 5:30. I used the moonlight to try to catch glimpses of movement in the woods while I waited, but all was still. At 6:35 I looked at my pins and could see I still had some time to wait for shootable light. Sunrise was around 7:05 meaning that it was legal shooting time, but I wasn't shooting much in that light. A few minutes later I caught movement to my right in the inky grayness of the morning. I caught a doe coming straight to my tree at about 30 yards. She came to within 3 yards of my tree yet I could barely make her out through the branches and leaves between us. Since she had come straight to me I didn't stand for fear of getting caught. I would catch glimpses of her moving now and then and I could hear her breathing and crunching acorns right underneath me.

After a few minutes I heard something behind me and to my right. I slowly turned my head, trying to wrap my eyes around so hard it made me dizzy. Once I could focus I saw buck about 30 yards away, a good buck. I immediately recognized that this buck was bigger than the 2.5 year olds I have on trail camera in the area, but did not recognize him from my pictures. It didn't matter, after looking him over I knew that all the boys that hunt this property would be jealous of me and that a ride in the back of my truck was in his future if I did my part. Now I had to get to my feet and get my bow in hand with him very close and a doe 18' under my boots. I admit I was a little caught off-guard by the doe and should have been better prepared, but I didn't expect action so early. I slowly inched my way to my feet, simultaneously sliding my hand to my bow. Once I was standing the doe did a quick jump-hop out and away from me. I think she was concerned with the buck because she never looked at me, but was staring at him and he stared back at her. This allowed me to get my bow off the hook and get set. The buck stepped behind a tree about 20 yards away and I drew back. He stepped out about half way and his vitals were exposed, but the tree was pretty close. Close enough forward that I did not take that shot. I stayed held back and he proceeded forward and slightly down toward me. He stopped broadside at 15 yards. A chipshot to be sure, but my cover was working against me and I had to bend at the knees to get down below some branches. Doing this and still at full draw I re-settled and put my 20 yard pin low on his chest with his front leg forward and the release popped without me thinking about it. Oddly enough the buck dropped where he stood and started thrashing around. He stopped thrashing behind another tree and with the branches and tree I only had a shot at the rear of his liver and guts. I needed to get another arrow in him so I took that shot and he expired within 90 seconds.

I could see my entry and was very surprised the deer dropped the way it did, but I'll take that kind of track job any day.

From hear the texting frenzy began. My thumbs are tired from all of the texting and I'm still cleaning blood off my keys. Between my local buds and forum friends I had a lot of news to spread.

I initially thought this buck was a short-tined 9 point with a short G4 that I was hoping to hold off on this year because if he can run the gauntlet of this season he has promise next year. I have over 250 trail pictures of this buck and know him well. Seeing the tiny G4 sprouting on this buck I thought it was him and I had underestimated his tines, but on reviewing my pictures the G4 on the buck in the pics is on the left beam and this buck's is on the right. So I was happy to see that, and I have no trail camera pictures of this buck at all. Just goes to show that the trail camera is a tool, but only one tool in the arsenal.

Without any further delay, the pics:





The "GregH pose":



One with the kids:



I never would have guessed this shot would be a spine shot:

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Old 10-09-2009, 05:04 PM
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WTG, very nice buck. I'll bet your sone cant wait till he can get out there with you after seeing that nice buck.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:08 PM
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Congrats! Nice buck.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:10 PM
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Congrats ! Good story and nice buck.
Thanks for sharing.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:14 PM
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Nice deer Congrats!!!!.....Quick question...Whats with the pink arrow?
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:15 PM
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Hey congrats on a nice buck down. I guess this means we're on the board. I share the same strategy hit it hard in the beginning and lay off till rut.

CONGRATS AGAIN!
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:17 PM
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Bry, I just saw this. Way to go dude. Awesome buck! Very happy for you! Great story and pics as well!

Shane
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:20 PM
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Congrats on a great great Pa buck! Very good pics.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by solocamcan View Post
Nice deer Congrats!!!!.....Quick question...Whats with the pink arrow?
The pink arrow is for the Pink Arrow Project which is a special program by Victory Arrows for breast cancer funding and awareness.

Here is a link with a little information:

http://www.victoryarchery.com/VForcePink.aspx
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:58 PM
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nice looking buck, congrats
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