And #3

VTHunter08

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Had another amazing outing chasing whitetails yesterday. With two doe in the freezer, I was dead set on trying to find some early season bone. I was not disappointed!

Saturday morning was junky weather so caught up on a little sleep, and off to a 4yo's bday party. Was back home around 3 and heading to the woods by 3:30, about an hour later then I wanted but take what you can get. I was about 100 yards from where I wanted to set up and saw a guy in a treestand, so I backed way out and went to another area. Ended up being kind of a wasted evening but always nice to get out.

Sunday morning. With it forecasted to be in the 30's and a north wind my plan was to sit in a place that still has a few acorns and I have 6-7 different bucks on cam. So far all the bucks have been night pictures but figured with getting later into october daytime movement should start to pick up. So I'm driving up the road at 5:30 heading to my spot when out of know where standing on the side of the road is what looks like a nice buck. I go up the road, turn around and head back down to where he was and can just barely see him walking down the edge of the field heading to a block of woods out behind my neighbors sugar house. Decision time, do I stick with my original plan and risk there not being a deer within a square mile of my area? Or do I try and get in front of this buck, knowing as soon as he steps in the woods he'll be within 300 yards of me. Never leave fish to go find fish, so time to run and gun.

I drove over to the next road about 1/2 mile away, and headed into my neighbors property. Two years ago he did some logging out in there and this one area was mainly pine so there is a 5 or so acre basically clear cut in there. I chased some birds through there this spring and I found a spot on the backside of the clear cut that I thought looked "deery" so that was my plan. Get back in that area and see what happens. I walked in the pitch black, found a tree that I thought was at the back of the clear cut and up I went. When things started to lightening up I quickly realized I was not in the spot I was hoping! What I thought was the back of the clear cut was really a small stream crossing and there was more clear cut behind me. Down the tree I went (so nice to hunt mobile), and moved 200 yards straight back. Went about 40 yards behind the clear cut and was in the spot I had found in turkey season. Had a couple logging roads coming through heading to the clear cut, thick hemlocks behind me, mixed woods in front of me. Found a scabby old maple and up I went. I just set my last step, reached behind me to grab my platform, glanced out in front of me and there he stood 35 yards in front me! Panic time, biggest buck I've ever had a chance at in vermont, and my bow is still on the ground! I slowly started to pull my bow up and he'd just walk, and stop and stare at me, but then he'd start to walk again. I finally get my bow up to me, he's 30 yards away broadside, I don't have an arrow nocked, my release is in my pocket, my bow rope is still through my cams and attached to my stabilizer, and I don't know the range, and he's about to walk into the last opening before he's in the thick hemlocks. I quickly undid my bow rope and let it fall to the ground and he stopped. While stopped and behind a tree I was able to nock an arrow, grab my release and a quick range of the tree in front of him of 30 yards. Moved my pin and was ready to go. He started to step into the opening, I came to full draw and just as I was about to stop him he turned and started quartering hard to me. He walked to about 26ish yards and stopped still quartering hard. I'm hunting with my elk arrows, and have practice this shot a lot so I have alot of confidence in this shot. I put my pin (still set on 30) a little low just inside his near shoulder point and squeezed it off. At the shot he ducked slightly but my arrow still impacted basically where I was aiming and I saw the entire arrow enter into him. He spun and crashed off the same way he came. 10 seconds later silence. I waited 15min then quietly backed out to call the reinforcements.

I shot him at 8, and we went back in to look for him at 11. I knew with a high frontal shot there was the possibility of very little blood. The first 30 yards we followed his running tracks, and then we found our first bit of smeared blood on a yellow birch that he ran into, and found the arrow there as well. The arrow was coated in blood from head to fletchings. The next 50 yards was mainly running tracks with pin drops of blood on his impacts spots. at around the 80 yard point you could tell he started walking but the blood was way more constant. 20-30 yards later we layed eyes on my buck.

Couldn't be happier with this buck. Biggest buck I've had the chance at in vermont. Was super happy with my arrow build, and the performance of my set up. 525gr arrow, 16%FOC, 100gr exodus head. Entered just inside the nearside shoulder, traveled the whole length of the body, and exited out the rear hammy. But honestly the best part of the whole day was tracking the deer with my father, best friend, and my 12yo daughter. Whole day was full of excitement, great memories, and lots of laughs!

8 pointer, 161lbs

I'll get some pictures downloaded
 
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Fixed blade

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Had to go back and reread this. How long did it take on your recovery? I ask because from the description it sounds like a tough track job for much of it. The buck I shot was 10 yards quartering away perfect shot. I had great blood at impact but for 30 yards pin head sized spots. When he finally did open up I could see him piled down the hill. I guess what I’m saying is no matter how perfect you hit them you can get these zones of little to no blood and when your bow hunting you need to be prepared for that. I only bring this up because there may be newer hunters reading this and great for them to be prepared for their situation.
Congrats on a great buck and awesome hunt!
 

VTHunter08

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How long did it take on your recovery?
Honestly it wasn't an easy track but he still went maybe 100-120 yards. We started on the track around 11, and found him around noon. I was fortunate enough that myself, my buddy, and my dad are very experienced in tracking wounded deer, and have worked together on these tracks numerous times. Honestly we would have found him probably a little quicker but we had my daughter with us and we really used it as a teaching track job for her, on what we're seeing, what we're looking for, how to track with no blood, and how to mark last blood. she was our TP girl on this track. When I saw the arrow completely disappear inside of him between his neck and shoulder I knew he was a dead deer, its just putting the pieces together after that for a quickish recovery. The three of us track together a handful of times every year but we also help others and its amazing how green alot of grown hunters are at tracking deer. More often then not we find with those hunters the instant the trigger is pulled or the arrow is released the next 10 seconds is a blur, and thats the most important 10 seconds. As soon as I shoot I try to make mental notes on the escape path but more specifically he went by that rotten stump, in front of that big rock. Also body language of the deer, and once they're out of sight sit tight for atleast 5min and just listen. With this deer I knew he went right back the same way he came, and made a note of where he crossed a logging road in front of me. I also witnessed he was not bounding, he was stretching out with his head halfway to 2/3 down, and I couldn't tell which one but one of his front legs was not stretching out as far as the other. He was also crashing which isn't normal for a normal fleeing deer. All of these notes were important because we didn't find our first blood for probably 30-40 yards, found the arrow at around 50 yards still running tracks, he didn't stop running till around 80-100 yards where he started walking and turned down hill (knew it wouldn't be much further at that point). Thats when I think his cavity was completely filled up with blood and he finally started to bleed out of his entrance wound. 30 yards later or so we found him.

Also a big tip I tell most green archery hunters is most of us have a 3d target at home. Literally every deer I hit with a bow the first thing I do when I get home is go to my 3d target and shoot it from 10' at the angle the deer was at the time of the shoot and try to recreate the elevation angle. I then study the angle of the arrow impacts the target and try to project that arrow into the deer and what vitales may be impacted. For instance you may thing you double lunged a deer, then you go home and replay it with your target and you may find, jeesh he was quartering toward me slightly and I might only get one lung and liver and I may find darker blood then what I initially would have expected, maybe I'll give that deer maybe another hour or two then what I would have at first.

I knew this deer was going to suffer trauma to arteries, lungs, liver, and guts. I knew he was probably dead 30sec after the hit. I waited 2-3 hours mainly get my friends and loved ones with me to experience the recovery with me.
 

VTHunter08

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Great Vt buck. So much for bow hunting the rut.
Yeah I'm a little bummed I wont be bow hunting the rut, but I plan to live vicariously through my wife as I try to put her first buck in front of her. I have a spot with a few acorns left and I have 5-6 different bucks regularly using this area, one nice 6 with no brows, and a nice 8. She sat there sunday evening and had quite an experience with a very bold black bear. Bold enough when I got to her just after shooting time I could tell she was shook, and she goes a bear came in! and its still right there! Sure enough a 100ish pound bear stood at 40 yards and watched us pack up the climber and work out of the woods. never had one do that before. I went back last night to see if it was still around and possibly wounded or something, but didn't see any sign of it.
 

Shooter Buck

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Great deer and write up. Congrats..

What set up are you using for your sight? Single pin right? What yardage do you normally set it at? I switched to a single pin a few years back and I was leaving it at 25. I would shoot anything under 30 with it set there. Just aim a little higher or lower depending on range. Anything over 30 I would range and adjust my sight.
 

Pine-lock

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Awesome write up of how you attack blood trailing. You seem to have a great method and experienced group.

Our group has learned that no matter how experienced the hunter. The one pulling the trigger is usually to amped up to be focused on the track and finding pin drops of blood. Getting an experienced, and calm second set of eyes can be a huge advantage. Awesome getting the kids involved too.
 

VTHunter08

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Our group has learned that no matter how experienced the hunter. The one pulling the trigger is usually to amped up to be focused on the track and finding pin drops of blood. Getting an experienced, and calm second set of eyes can be a huge advantage.
absolutely normally when its just my father and buddy, whoever did the shooting is the TP man and while the other two are looking for blood he's in the back hanging TP and scanning out front. But definitely agree with you the shooter is usually way to pumped to look for blood on a tough blood trail.
 

VTHunter08

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What set up are you using for your sight? Single pin right? What yardage do you normally set it at? I switched to a single pin a few years back and I was leaving it at 25. I would shoot anything under 30 with it set there. Just aim a little higher or lower depending on range. Anything over 30 I would range and adjust my sight.
Yeah so I shoot a Spot Hogg Fast Eddie XL double pin. So its a single post with two pins in it, and on the yardage wheel it has two pointers to show the yardage both pins are. The way mine is sighted in I keep my top pin at 20, and my second pin is at 34-35ish. Its nice because it atleast gives you a second point of reference. I had a few seconds to adjust my sight in this scenario, and shoot accordingly after, but if things happen quick and i'm at 20 & 35 and that deer comes in at 25-28, no need to quess just evenly gap the pins like a fixed pin sight. after the normal 20 & 35 settings they tend to be a difference of 10 yards, which works good. I like the single post so it doesn't clutter up my sight window but having the two points of reference is optimal I think b/c we all know especially with deer and how they move that range can change quick.

 

VTHunter08

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Great job and nice buck VT! You are all tagged out and I am just starting, LOL. Wish your wife success!
I got one more tag in my pocket as vermont moved from 3 deer annual limit to 4, but only one buck. I have an early season doe tag in my pocked for muzzleloader that starts on thursday. We don't necessarily need any more deer but I'd like to try out my new barnes and blackhorn loads I've worked up this year.

Good luck this year Arlow, you always seem to put a good one on the ground and I enjoy reading your write ups.
 

Shooter Buck

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Yeah so I shoot a Spot Hogg Fast Eddie XL double pin. So its a single post with two pins in it, and on the yardage wheel it has two pointers to show the yardage both pins are. The way mine is sighted in I keep my top pin at 20, and my second pin is at 34-35ish. Its nice because it atleast gives you a second point of reference. I had a few seconds to adjust my sight in this scenario, and shoot accordingly after, but if things happen quick and i'm at 20 & 35 and that deer comes in at 25-28, no need to quess just evenly gap the pins like a fixed pin sight. after the normal 20 & 35 settings they tend to be a difference of 10 yards, which works good. I like the single post so it doesn't clutter up my sight window but having the two points of reference is optimal I think b/c we all know especially with deer and how they move that range can change quick.
I haven't seen that sight before. I think I like it even better than what I have. Sounds like a good set up. Congrats again on the deer.
 

sneaky_pete000

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DUDE.....AWESOME.

This is great for so many reasons. I love the mobility of the saddle, I love the setup allowing you to take the shot you did, the blood trailing strategy - every...damn...detail. Congrats.
 




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