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.