Hunted the finger stand in Annandale Area the evening on 11/24/07. Wind was South/Southwest at 15 MPH with temps in the mid 30's. I checked the small food plot on the way to my stand and it was chewed up. Nearly all of the plants had been eaten to the ground and lots of sign going in and out of the swamp. Got into ladder stand shortly before 2:30 PM and was expecting a good sit. The wind died down to a light breeze around 4 PM and the moon was up around the same time. I heard no other gun shots and zero deer movement. Had a pure white weasel come through from the swamp about 20 yards to the east. Right at last light a large possum came directly under my stand. The possum didn’t even try and hold the 50 caliber. So far my 2007 muzzle loader season consists of no deer sightings and 1 possum....fantastic!
Hunted the big swamp on the north end of the Annandale property on 11/25/07. Wind was blowing 15-20 from the SW when I arrived at the farm around 5:30. The temp when I arrived was 29 degrees and was suppose to reach nearly 50 in the afternoon. I made it to the stand and was sitting by 6:35, legal shooting was a couple minutes after 7 AM. First deer movement was right at 8 AM. I heard deer coming through the woods directly behind me (west side of swamp). I picked up movement as the deer worked their way to the swamp edge about 25 yards to the north. First thing to arrive was two yearlings (1 button and 1 doe). Both deer hit the swamp edge and came directly in front of my stand at 5 yards. Both where looking behind them and moving at a slight trot. I grunted to stop the deer at 25 yards before they made the woods and waited to see what else was coming. A third deer appeared seconds later and it was a mature doe, not the buck I was hoping for. I swung back over to the yearlings and picked out the doe. I took aim and squeezed the trigger. Once the smoke cleared I saw both yearlings staring up at my and wondering what just happened. I didnt see the dead deer I was expecting, I must have shot under her. The three deer stood around for 30 seconds before heading back the way they came. I could have used 30 more seconds as I was trying to re-load my gun without being detected. Talk about humbling and another kick in the gut for the season. That was my first clean miss at a deer with a gun since I was in high school. Hopefully it will be another 12 or 13 years before it happens again.
Exactly 5 minutes later I spotted another Doe entering the swamp to my north about 10 yards further north then the previous deer entered. The deer started on the same path as the first group but then went to the east when she hit a "Y" on the trail she was walking. This gave me a perfect 35 yard broadside shot as the deer crossed the swamp. I put the Omega on her vitals and squeezed off a shot. My shot found its mark and went right through both front shoulders. My third deer of the year was down and I had just turned my second Minnesota Triple Play (Archery, Rifle, and Muzzle loader). This was easily the biggest Doe I have ever taken and she made me work as I drug her to the car. I also bumped another group of 3 doe on my way to the car.
For an extra treat I spotted three Ringneck’s in a bush on my way off the property and just happened to have my shot gun with in the car. Two shots later I had a limit of pheasants to take home with my deer!