Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Triple Play....Missouri Style

10/23/09 - BS155, Deep South set, 44 degrees, NW 20-35mph
With the storm front that had brought all the rain over the past couple days passing through and temperatures in the low forties, I decided it would be a perfect Friday evening to checkout of work a little early and get into the Missouri woods. There were several fresh rubs around my set and to two very large sets of tracks heading into the bedding area just west of the set. With the front passing through the wind was gusting from 20-35mph out of the northwest and it had a cold fall bite to it!

I reached the set just before 3:30pm and as I was attaching my safety harness to the tree I spotted a flock of turkeys working over a rise about 200yrds out in the bean field. I’ve had three other encounters with this same flock during other hunts on the farm, so I knew that in the next half hour they would be feeding right by the stand I was sitting in. The entire flock walked into the timber about 70yrds west of the set like they had on every other occasion I’d seen them. Now it was just a waiting game.

The strong northwest winds didn’t relent and for the next fifty minutes I waited patiently for the approaching flock. At 4:50pm I finally spotted the lead birds of the flock workign through the timber. They walked through one of my shooting lanes, I ranged them at 30yrds. The next group of birds was about 5yrds behind the first and when the biggest bird in that second group stopped right in my shooting lane, I touched off the shot. My arrow was on the mark and upon impact the turkey flew into the air, flapped her wings a couple times and crashed back to the ground dead as Elvis.

At this point I realized the high winds were about to be my best friend! The rest of the flock was running around clucking and purring at each other, but because of the wind they had no idea what had just happened. I took that moment of turkey madness to nock another arrow. After a couple of seconds several of the birds began to calm down and go back to feeding and checking out their downed comrade. They had moved off a little further into the timber, but their path was going to lead them across the same shooting lane as before. I let the first two turkeys walk through the lane so I could check the range. This time they were 36yrds out. The next turkey that stepped in to the shooting lane stopped perfectly broadside and my second arrow of the evening was on its way. Thwack....the arrow tracked perfectly and the turkey launched herself into the air and instantly crashed back to the ground within feet of the first bird. I had just shot two turkeys in a matter of 60 seconds. Thanksgiving dinner will be twice as special this year!

After the adrenaline rush started to wear off and I began to settled back down the harsh reality of the strong northwest winds literally slapped me in the face. For the next hour and a half I sat patiently waiting for the first sign of deer movement and trying to keep my mind off the cold wind blasting me in the face and cutting through my clothes. Around 6:15pm the clouds started to breakup and I was treated to an amazing fall Missouri sunset, while I waited for darkness to set in.

For the past 3 seasons I've started to stand up during the first and last hour of every hunt so at 6:40pm when I caught movement 70yrds to the west of me, I was ready. A big bodied 3½ year old buck strolled into the picked bean field like he owned the place. I didn't recognize this buck from any of our preseason scouting or previous hunts. After glassing him and seeing good mass, 9 points with big kickers, and that he was mature I immediately decided that if the buck presented me with a shot opportunity that I’d take it. The only problem now was the buck was 80yrds upwind of me and heading away. I grabbed my custom VECtor grunt call from Vince Crawford (I named it Sass-A-Frass) and began grunting at the buck trying to get his attention. I was making each grunt louder than the previous one and finally on the seventh grunt, which I blew like a high-ball, the buck stopped and looked around but just briefly. As the buck dropped his head to continue walking away the wind literally died down to nothing as if to say “you’ve had enough tonight, here is a break” and I gave the big whitetail one more loud and aggressive grunt. This time the buck locked up and snapped his head in my direction. I could tell he wasn’t happy about the possibility of another buck being by his field, so I made an aggressive snort-wheeze call with my mouth...and the game was on!

The big buck pinned his ears back, puffed up his fur, and walked stiff legged towards my stand looking for the intruder. As the buck approached my first shooting lane at 30yrds he stopped to thrash some overhanging limbs before continuing towards the set. I let the buck pass my 23yrd shooting lane because his path was going to bring him inside 15yrds of the set. At 14yrds I made a soft grunt with my mouth and the buck stopped perfectly broadside...thwaaaaack! I watched my arrow hit perfectly behind the buck’s front shoulder. The big buck wheeled around and charged into the muddy bean field launching big chunks of mud with every step, but he only made it 60yrds before going down in a cloud of mud and soybean stalks! Just then the reality of what had just happened started to sink in...I had shot two MO turkeys and a mature 11 point whitetail buck with my bow…in one evening! It was truly a MO triple play I will never forget.

My "Sass-a-Frass" VECtor grunt call

A big thanks to DeLany for coming to help with the 3/4 of a mile drag! It was fun Chief! And another shout out to Vince Crawford from VECtor Games Calls...I would not have been able to kill this deer without my VECtor!

Monday, October 19, 2009

MN Duck Hunting

We arrived at the cabin around 10:30 Friday night. This weekend Logan, Brady R. and I would be hunting. We set up on the West side of the Mecca Slough for Saturday mornings shoot. The morning started with party cloudy skies, temp around 40 degrees and no wind. The weather report was calling for a west/southwest wind later in the day and it arrived around 8:30 AM. Bill and Ryan B. also joined us for the morning shoot.

The morning start off with a Greenwing Teal streaking into the decoys. After putting him up I made an easy going away chip shot on him. That was followed with a flock of world famous spoonbills cupping up into our spread. I missed the action but Brady, Bill and Ryan added three of the trophies to our bag. The action remained steady all morning. Every 20-25 minutes we would get a group of birds that would work the decoys. We called it a morning at 10:15 and had 9 birds in the bag (4 redheads, 4 spoonbills and 1 greenwing teal) Below is a picture of Logan with Saturdays morning shoot.

Saturday afternoon found us hunting the puddle right behind the cabin. Earlier in the morning we could hear what sounded like a mess of mallards feeding in the little puddle. Saturday afternoon Brady, Logan and I walked the slough for pheasants and to check things out for ducks. While walking the slough we must have kicked close to 5 dozen large birds off of it. We quickly decided this would be our evening hunt location. Below is a picture from the slough which shows how close to the cabin we hunted.

Brady and I found a nice pocket to setup and placed Logan on top of a muskrat house in his thrown. We had a fairly strong SW wind at 15 mph and mostly clear skies. Shortly after getting into the slough I ran into a minor issue, the crotch of my waders tore and I had water up to my thighs. I decided to tough things out for the final 2 hours of the day. Right away I called in a small flock of Gadwall and made a nice shot on a big drake, dropping him 3 feet from Logan and I. That was followed up by another gadwall, a widgeon and another spoonbill. Brady finally connected right before quitting time by making a great shot on a merganser, "That will make for some good eating." By quitting time my legs and feet had gone mum for the cold water which made for an interesting walk in. As we walked back to the cabin we got buzzed by literally hundreds of ducks piling into puddle slough for their evening roost. It would have been fun to sit back and watch if I could have felt the lower 1/3 of my body. Below is a picture of Logo on his muskrat house and another of him with part of the evening shoot.

Only Brady was able to hunt Sunday morning as I was wader-less and Logan’s boots where soaking wet from the night before. Brady snuck into our new puddle behind the cabin and was greeted by hundreds of ducks leaving the slough right after shooting time. Brady made a nice triple on mallards to start the morning and lost a couple more birds in the reeds the rest of the morning. He should have pulled a quick limit out of the puddle but that is hunting. There is a chance we will make it out this coming weekend for our last duck hunt of the year. Below are a couple more photos from the weekend. The first one is the total from the weekend.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Minnesota 12 Pt!

10/10/09 Annandale, MN. Temperature was 24 degrees when I pulled up to the farm. I had clear skies and a west wind at 10-20 mph. The night before we received a ½ inch of snow and it had stuck to the ground and trees. The snow made for a perfect setting as I entered the woods.

I climbed into my new ladder stand which is located about 125 yards straight East of my money set. I bought this stand and set it specifically for a straight west wind. The location would allow me to hunt the core ground on a west or southwest wind. Today was a perfect wind for the new set. Below is a picture of my view from the new killing set.

I was in my stand and set at 6:25 AM, legal shooting time was 6:54 AM. The wind was relatively light to start the morning and the woods were completely still. By 7:30 AM the wind was beating me in the face to the tune of 15-20 mph. I went from being comfortable to wishing I had my insulated jacket and hand warmer. On top of freezing my marbles off the woods were dead. The tree rats (squirrels) weren’t even moving.

I got news from Pete and Brian via txt that the deer were moving down in MO. That helped keep my mind off the cold for a while. Complete school boy on my part not bringing extra clothing. I guess I figured with it being October 10th I wouldn’t need my winter gear. Like I said, school boy.

I had told myself I was going to stick it out until 9:30 AM. At 8:45 I was just going to send Pete a txt saying I didn’t now if I could make it to 9:30. At that moment I glanced off to my northwest and saw a deer stand up from behind a deadfall about 50 yards away. When the deer first stood up I could only see its body, I had know idea it was a buck. I slid my phone back in my pocket and grabbed my bow. Making it to 9:30 would be much easier now.

As I watched the deer standing in the cover I noticed another big bodied deer working down towards the first deer I had seen. The second deer stepped into a clearing and I could tell he was a big bodied 8 pt. I recognized this deer from some pictures I had earlier this summer. The first deer then walked up to the 2nd and I could tell he had a nicer rack than the 2nd deer. After staring each other down for a minute the big bodied deer worked away from me and the 1st deer started towards my stand. It was kind of a cool sight because both deer's backs were covered in snow. I was having trouble telling how big the 1st deer was because of how big the 2nd deer’s body was. I could tell it was a good deer and did have a larger rack than the big bodied 8 pt. Within a minute the deer had worked his way directly in front of me. He turned broadside and started on a trail that would bring him 23 yards from me. Once he got into position I gave him a soft grunt to stop him and released my arrow. My arrow slid through the back part of his shoulder and lodged into the off shoulder. "Lung Buster!" The deer took off and was plowing snow within 10-15 yards. Ole boy went ass over teakettle on two deadfalls before piling up within eyesight of my stand. At that point the adrenalin kicked in and the temp seemed to drop another 20 degrees. After the shakes finally stopped I snuck out of the woods to go get Logan for the track job.

Logan and I returned to woods around 11:30. As soon as I got up to the big fella I immediately recognized him as the 12 point buck I had trail camera pictures of this summer. I am glad he walked out with the big bodied 8pt so I couldn’t tell how big he actually was. This was the deer I wanted to shoot this fall and I got my chance without even knowing it was him. He was well over 200 pounds and I am guessing his rack will score P and Y. The big guy made me work getting him out of the woods. Thank god I only had to drag him 150-200 yards. Below is a picture of Logan with the "Big Boy". I also added a couple of Before and After pictures of the 12 point from this year.



MO Urban Doe Season

10/9/09 - After watching MU get peed on by Nebraska the night before and us getting peed on by the 9+ hours of rain on Thursday night I didn't make it out for the MO Urban doe season opening morning. Around 1pm I slid into the 70 Farm and setup a ground blind on the south point. Shana was going to hunt Sunday and the forecast called for NNE winds all weekend. There was a ton of sign in the field and all the regular trails were warn slick. Brian and I met at the BS155 for an evening bow hunt. I sat in the Deep South Set and Brian set up shop in the Not-too-Tall Set. I had 7 does and minis feeding in front of the set for the last hour of light and finally had to have Brian walk down the field from the north and bump them out, or I might still be in the stand.

10/10/09 - BS 155, NNW 15-30mph, 34-41 degrees

I met Brian at the BS155 around 5:45am. There was a brisk wind and we had our first frost of the MO season on the ground. I sat in the Killing Tree set and Brian sat his newly positioned ladder set. Action was slow to start and I was freezing my boys off getting blasted in the face by the NW wind. Around 7:30am I stood up to stretch and spotted a good 2-3yr.old 10 point feeding about 150yrds across the field. He was a good deer and looked very similar to Brian's buck, but I decided I wasn't going to shoot him if he came across the field. After about 15 minutes of glassing the buck a doe and mini popped out in the same corner and fed about 30yrds out from my set, I let them pass hoping bucks would be moving with the chill in the air. Around 8:30am I got a text from Brian that he'd shot a doe, but the hit didn't look good. We decided to sit until 9am and then we'd go move some stands before taking up the trail. As I was packing up my gear to get down Scott sent a text saying he'd shot a good buck in MN....little did he know it was the deer he'd targeted early in the summer (story coming later). I met up with Brian and we decided to give his doe several hours before taking up the trail. We moved Brian's ladder set and then headed back to the trucks to pickup a couple new stands. It was the MO Urban doe season, so we loaded up the TC smoke pole just in case. After getting my new ladder stand set we headed over to the Killing Tree to cut a few limbs. I was finishing up the last cut when Brian said "deer, coming out across the field". We crawled out to the TC which was about 15yrds out in field with the cart and other gear. The 2 deer were feeding in the same corner as the buck was earlier. We belly crawled about 30yrds more into the field and I raised up for the shot. Brian was videoing with his digital camera (see below) and ranged my deer at 139yrds. I took a deep breath steadied the TC and let the smoke roll. It was a perfect shot and after watching the doe try and hold it for about 15 seconds, it was lights out.

We tracked Brian's doe for several hours but never did find any blood, the arrow, or the deer so around 3pm he made the decision to call off the search.

10/11/09 - BS155, 37-43degrees, NNW 8-15mph, overcast I bow hunted my new ladder set in the AM, but the action was pretty slow. I had a doe and 2 minis cross out front of me about 70yrds away. Around 8:30am 7 turks came into the field south of my set, but never got closer than 55yrds. We looked for Brian's doe for another couple hours and still no sign.

10/11/09 PM Hunt - 70Farm - 45-39degrees, NNE 8-10mph.

Shana and I headed out for her first hunt of the 09 season. We set up int he ground blind on the 70 farm with high hopes of having her harvest her first deer. Around 5:45pm a big doe fed into the field about 60yrds out. Shana was getting ready to take her when we spotted a mini-mini feeding right behind her. Shana elected to pass, because of the mini and we just sat back and enjoyed the show. About that time a swarm of black birds lit into the tree above us and spooked the deer out of the field.

10/12/09- 70 Farm, NE 7-10mph, 45-40 degrees

Since I had the day off because our furnace was getting replaced, I decided to slide out for a quick evening sit. I choose to setup in the ground blind Shana and I sat the night before. After getting settled in a finishing the first Harry Potter book, I was getting worried I wasn't going to see any action since it was already 6:40pm. Right about then I spotted deer coming into the field. A big mature doe and several smaller does and minis started feeding out in front of my setup. I had the video cam with me so I sat back and got some good footage of them first. As camera light was fading I settled in on the biggest doe and let the smoke roll one more time. The whiteout blinded me for a bit but as the smoke cleared I saw the deer clearing the field to the east. I got everything packed up and after 15 minutes headed out to take up the trail. As I got to the area where the deer were feeding I as completely surprised to see my doe laying right were she stood. The TC & 300grain bullet put her down in her tracks with a perfectly placed shot. I was pretty jacked up because not only was I working the camera solo but the footage turned out great, and I had deer #4 in the freezer for the 2009 season.

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Friday, October 9, 2009

Colorado Duck Opener

10/3/09. Last Saturday I found myself west of Brush, CO on some state property with my friends Forrest, Dave and Forrest's lady friend for the 2009 first split opener. We arrived at 4:30 and the four of set out for our reserved pond. We set out our 3 dozen floaters, 2 jerk-strings and 4 robo-ducks and settled in for 30 minutes before sunrise. As we were setting up the birds started moving in and out of our area, which had recently been flooded by the D.O.W. As shooting light approached a sophisticated group of yahoo's were shooting only 11 minutes early, as it was still pitch black out minus the moon light. As the minutes counted down we had 6-8 fully dressed sprigs land in our dekes, very dissappointing they didn't hang around till shooting light.

As 6:21 hit, it sounded like a small war just erupted in Hillrose, CO. The four of us waited patiently for the big birds to start flying. Much to our disappointment the ducks that were working our spread were forced to swing over the corner of another pond and luckily those boys had no problem throwing some steel at everything. As the sun began to rise the birds started to pour in. The first ducks to commit were 3 mallards, luckily for us, none made it out, with the 3 boys all making simple 1 shot kills. While trying to hold of on the 1000's of teal in the area a poor single made his death plunge right at me where he was backpedaling at 10 yrds. 2 shots, 2 kills. Then it seemed about every 5 minutes or so we had new flocks working the spread, with the robos and jerks in full gear every duck wanted into our spot. This lead to 3 widgeons and 2 susies going down in seconds of one another.

By 7:15 we were at 14 birds to our 24 duck limit. Around this time we had a group of 4 mallards working the spread as they commited in 2 broke of to my side, and for the first time in long time I had a two shot drake Mallard double. My day had to end by 8:00 for soccer so as a flock of BWT came across the horizon, it was decided they should meet their end, eventually all 6 did as the lone survivor decided to circle back to check on his brethern, poor decision indeed. I was out at 8:15 and left them 5 short of the final count. By 9:15 Forrest let me know they were all done and packing up the gear. By far my best CO opener and one of the better openers ever as far as shooting and big ducks go.

Monday, October 5, 2009

MO Madness.........

10/2/09 - North MO Property

Ralph and I headed up to our North MO farm Friday afternoon for a quick day and a half hunt, before hitting up the Williamsburg property on Sunday morning. The Friday evening sit was a test of balance and general madness. We had to contend with 30-40mph wind gusts from every direction and they never let up. I was actually a little wobbly once I finally got back to the ground. I've had "sea legs" before, but never "tree stand legs!" Ralph saw a big mature doe and mini come down the north oak ridge right at 7pm.

10/3/09-Poachers Pond Set-WNW 7-15mph-49-65degrees

After all the wind the day before I wanted to get into one of our sets that was out of the wind, so I choose the Poacher's Pond set. There were a lot of fresh tracks on the road crossing into the bottom, so I was pretty excited to sit there for the first time this season. I was in the set at 6:13am and just sat back and waited for shooting light. At 6:48am I caught movement to the left and instantly saw a huge buck with a wide and massive 10 point rack. He was walking down the middle sandbar with his nose to the ground at a steady pace. He made it through my first shooting lane at 13yrds without stopping and started to angle towards the south hillside. I drew back as he walked into the next opening at 22yrds and he stopped, offering me a perfect quartering away angle. It was still pretty dark in the bottom, but I could see my pins clearly and easily pick up the deer in my peep. I settled in and touched off the shot which looked perfect. I heard a solid thwack and my G5 lighted nock briefly disappeared. The bruiser headed south with his tail down and I saw him stop about 30yrds down the bottom, before walking into a draw.

About 2 minute later another nice 8 point and spike came off the road and dropped into the bottom and worked up the south ridge. At this point the adrenaline kicked in and the reality of what just happened hit me....I just smoked a 160"+ BIG BOY!

I waited until 8:40am to get down and go look at my arrow and the disappointment that hit me as I crossed the sand creek bottom was like nothing I'd ever felt. I saw my cock fletching laying in the sand, which was not a good sign. I picked up my arrow and it was totally clean other than dirt and 7" scratch down the shaft. I walked back towards the set and about 3yrds from were the buck had been standing was one twig that bend horizontally over the creek bank. I hadn't seen it while shooting or after the shot when the sun came up for that matter. After looking closer there was pink and orange paint scratched on it. My arrow hit the twig and must have deflected just underneath the buck....what a let down. Ralph saw 3 toms in the north meadow.

10/3/09 PM Sit- The Gash Set-WNW 2-6mph, 65-49 degrees, overcast and cleared to sun

I headed to one of the new sets "The Gash" I hung this year for the PM sit. The wind was supposed to lay down around 5pm and sun was supposed to pop out later in the evening and the weather forecast didn't disappoint. The wind shut off around 5:15pm and the entire hill top came alive with deer. I spotted 2 does working their way into the Gash headed to the corn fields. As I was watching them with the binos I picked up another doe that must have already been in the Gash bedded. She was a big mature slickhead, so I grabbed by bow and was just able to get to full draw as she entered my shooting lane. I grunted and she froze in her tracks. I touched off the shot and watched my arrow fly just underneath her at 33yrds and smoke a big oak she was in front of. STRIKE 2 on the day!!! She ran into the field and the other 2 does ran up on top of the hill. School Boy to say the least!

I was stewing in my own frustration for about 20 minutes when I heard steps coming from behind the set. I spotted a nice doe and 2 1/2yr. old 8 point coming right at the set off the hillside. The doe started to cut behind the set, but changed her mind and cut back up the hillside. She passed my stand at 12yrds. and I grunted at her when she was slightly quartering away. My shot was perfect..tucked in right on the front shoulder, but the arrow hit the off shoulder and didn't pass completely through. She bolted into the Gash and as she climbed the steep wall I could see her already coughing blood.

I got my gear together and backed out to get Ralph. I found her blood trail after about 10yrds and found the fletching end of my arrow in the bottom. From the sign and arrow penetration she couldn't be far....I thought. We proceeded to trail her up and down three big draws, but we were on good to great sign the entire way. Finally after about 250-300yrds. Ralph spotter her laid up under a huge dead fall, still alive. We could tell she was sick because she just laid there with us 12 yrds away.

We decided I would go back to the truck to get my bow while Ralph hung back and kept an eye on Ole girl. When I finally getting back down to Ralph the deer was still alive but hadn't moved. I nocked an arrow and started to slide around for a clean shot, but as I started drawing back she jumped and ran other 30yrds up the hill. I watched her drop again and hurried up after her. After getting a good angle my 2nd shot smoked her again and exited out her throat. She still had enough energy to make one last death run another 20-30yrds before giving up the ghost. I've never seen anything like this in my life. My first arrow smoked both lungs and punched through her off shoulder. She should have been dead in seconds with that hit. I have no idea how she managed to go as far and live as long as she did...other than being one tough nanny!

By the time we got her out and back home it was 12:30am and I had no energy for a proper I went straight old school in the back of the rig!!!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

2009 MN Duck Opener

Logan and I arrived at the cabin Friday evening and had the place to ourselves. We woke up Saturday morning to cloudy skies, spitting rain and winds from the northwest at 10-20 mph. We got down to the Mecca Slough shortly before 8 AM and where shocked to see only a handful of ducks on the pond.

We setup on the north end of the slough, placed 18 duck decoy and a couple geese decoy and waited for 9 AM to start our season. 9 AM came but the ducks didn’t. We ended up not firing a shot until 10 AM. Much different than the 20 minute hunt we had in 2008. Before calling it a day we had killed 3 ducks (Wood Duck, Blue Wing and the Trophy of all trophies a spoon bill) and only shot at those 3 ducks! Logan also got to smack the blue wing on the water while it was gimping around in the decoys. Logan put a nice clean head shot on the teal. It was kind of a disappointing start to the duck season. Below is a picture of Logan with the opening day kill.

Logan and I spent the rest of the day messing around the cabin. Most of that was spent shooting his rifle as he tunes up for his upcoming Missouri Youth Deer Hunt. Logan worked on shooting through a scope and was shooting 10 rings by the end of the afternoon. When the smoke cleared Logan had shot over a box and a half of .22 rounds. Below is a picture of the killer and his first deer!

Sunday morning was cloudy, cool (41 degrees) with a 10 mph wind out of the north. Logan and I set up in the northwest corner of the slough after watching the majority of the ducks fly that area on Saturday. That decision paid off as we had ducks bombing into the decoys first thing in the AM. The only problem was the ducks kept coming in low and it was hard to see them against the reeds and field. Shooting time was 6:54 AM and once the smoke had cleared Logan and where picking up decoys by 7:25. We ended up shooting 5 greenwing and a nice drake widgeon. It was nice to see the Mecca Slough still had some magic in it! Below is a picture of Logan and I with Sundays shoot.

Because of the quick hunt Logan and I where on the road by 9:00 AM. We will be back for another duck shoot on Sunday. Hopefully some new birds move in soon or the season could be a slow one. Reports have been poor for much of the state so I think Logan and I did well bagging 9 birds on the weekend. Below is a picture of Logan with the weekends total harvest.

Below is a picture of Jake and I cleaning ducks Sunday night. Next year Jake gets his first taste of the hunt!

Blue Springs Double Dip!

I arrived in MO around 1:30 PM on Sept 25th for my first taste of the Missouri bow season. We would be hunting the Blue Springs farm this weekend. Pete got home from work around 3:30 PM and we quickly jumped in the truck and headed to the field. We had clear skies and temps in the low 70’s. I hunted the pond set and Pete was in the far corner set. I was settled in my stand and playing yahtzee by 5:10.

Just before 6 PM I had a young 8 pt and two yearling come into my field. The buck was at 35 yards and the younglings where at 30. They feed for about 5 minutes but continued to look back into the woods. I had high hopes one of the BIG BOYS we had seen on the farm would soon be popping out. Instead a nice doe walked into the field. She feed by the younglings for a couple minutes then walked right in front of my tree. I came to full draw and she stopped about one step short of the clearing I was hoping for. I glanced back and noticed the buck had picked me off on my draw. I slowly leaned out around the branch that was between the doe and I and released my arrow. Thwack! The field cleared with all the deer running back where the came from. I quickly sent Pete a txt to let him know we had some doe meat for the long winter! After Pete sniffed up the blood trail we had a quick 50 yards track job and doe #1 of 2009 was in the back of the truck.

September 26th, Blue Springs, MO. Pete, Brian and I all made it out for the morning hunt. I sat the far bean field, Pete was in the killing set and Brian was in his rifle stand. We all saw deer but Pete came the closest the sealing the deal. In the end Pete was out snickered by a doe and no shots where fired. Pete’s unlucky streak of no shot opportunities continued....for now!

September 26th, Blue Springs. MO PM Hunt. Brian wasn’t able to hunt in the PM. I hunted our new ground blind set and Pete was back in the far corner set. It was a beautiful night other than no deer. I did have a skunk at 20 yards but had no tag! Pete saw a couple doe, young buck and a flock of turks but no shots.

September 27th, Blue Springs, MO. Once again it was just Pete and I hunting . Pete climbed up the Pond Set and I hunted the killing tree. I bumped several deer on my way to the stand and saw nothing but bad yahtzee dice once I got settled. I got a txt from Pete 30 minutes into the hunt saying a young doe had found its way into his wheel house. Deer #2 of the weekend was down! I waited another 30 minutes and headed over to help him pull out the deer. Pete made a perfect 15 yard shot one a young doe. Below is a photo of the kill site. Pete hit the deer so hard he knocked the spots off it! That concluded a great weekend of early season bow hunting. I am already counting the days for our 10 day November marathon hunt in Macon and Blue Springs.

2009 MN Bow Opener!

The 2009 MN Bow season started on Sept 20th for me because of an alarm clock issue and a high school soccer game on opening day. Had clear skies a light NW wind from 5-10 and temps in the low 60’s to start the season. Because of all the trail camera action I had, I decided to hunt my money stand. The wind wasn’t perfect for the stand but it would be ok.

I got about 10-15 yards from tree when a doe started blowing at me. It was still 35 minutes before light so I wasn’t spotted. The doe proceeded to walk around me for 5 minutes trying to figure out what she heard. The entire time she was blowing and stomping her feet, but she never spooked. I could hear her within 10 to 15 feet of me several times. Finally after her 20th blow I gave her a snort/weez to try and shut her up. This worked and she finally walked off to the Northeast. A great start to my season.

Once I got into my stand I had action almost all morning long. Twice I had young does at the base of my tree and I actually came to full draw on the second doe. I had her at 15 yards but it was to dark to make out any definition on her body so I passed the shot. I had a third doe walk in on my and then straight away, never once offering a shooting angle. Around 8:30 AM I had a 2 ½ year old 8 pt come in to 30 yards. The buck offered me a nice shot but it was opening day and I had pictures of much better deer. Below is a photo of the 8 pt I let walk.

After spending the afternoon and the lake place I returned to the woods for the evening hunt. The temp was in the low 70’s but the wind was humming at 15-20 mph from the east. My money stand should have been perfect, but once I climbed up I quickly realized the wind was swirling in the woods. I got down and moved to my field for the evening. Nothing moved all night but as soon as I took one step onto the field I had a doe and two younglings starring at me from the southeast corner of the field. I dropped down and watched them for about 10 minutes. At one point a young one started to run towards me but the mature doe quickly stopped that action and retreated the whole crew into the woods. A kick to the balls on the way to the stand and on the way out. Nice start to my season.