Mentoring Program Produces Blacktail Doe and a Big Smile

by SM2

Here's the story...

I'll start by saying I've been saving my points for 3 years so I could be sure I would draw my doe tag this year.

The day started out at 5:30 am, my wife goes to wake my son, whispers "are you ready to shoot your first deer today?" He sits straight up in bed, "yep, I'm awake, lets go". We head to my in-laws to meet up with my father-in-law and head out. We leave just at the legal light.

See a number of deer on the way. That's a good sign to me. We go through the process of opening and closing gates to access the property that we hunt (about 200 acres of private property).

Just as we pull up we hear a gun shot that sounds like it is up on top of the hill where we were going to head (trespassers are a constant problem).  We opt against hopping on the 4-wheeler to investigate and begin hiking in that direction.

At this point the wind is at our back, but we figure it's really windy, so working the wind will be really hard.  Slowly, we get to the top of the hill and the wind was straight in our face, "that's more like it".

We begin slowly walking through one of the clear cuts on the property, looking both for deer and trespassers.  As we exit the cut and enter a section of tall timber, we spot deer off to the left but we were spotted first and they are bounding away with no shot. 

We stop and watch for a few minutes but they continue out of sight, we continue on.  About 50 yards down the path we see 3 more deer taking off.  We watch and they are heading up higher on the hill, we move slowly and watch the deer move to a large grassy area with large rocky outcroppings.

As we start getting out of the timber we can see the deer up high watching us. It's a pretty open shot, so I pass the rifle to my son and tell him to shoot when he's ready, but if he's not, grandpa can take it and we can wait.  He responds by pulling the trigger.

The deer is hit hard with one shoulder broke. He really wants to run after her, but we tell him to sit tight for a few.  We then slowly make our way up the side of the of the meadow. 

As we get to where the deer was hit, we spot the other two deer.  My father-in-law asks which is larger.  Before I can answer, one goes over the top and out of sight.

He takes a head shot at the one that is still standing there and drops it.  We go over to tag it since there is no tracking involved.  We get closer and the deer looks smaller, and smaller. Doh! He took a button buck, horns not even through the skin.

We begin looking for my son's doe, find great blood, then even better blood, she left a great trail.  We get to a spot where she stopped- it looked like a massacre. Then there is nothing.

We do a circle and nothing.  Finally we find a drop towards the button buck.  I begin to think maybe it was that doe that was with the little guy. We looked for about 20 minutes and nothing. 

My father-in-law says he will look on the other side of the hill on the way to the quad, asks me to dress his deer, I said, "sure".  Just then, it starts hailing, awesome.

We get done with the deer and my son is shivering.  I tell him let's walk to get him warmed up. We walk in the opposite way the deer was moving- didn't make it 10 yards and I could see her under a tree, she was down for the count!

We tag her and drag her out of the woods just as my father-in-law got there. After looking at her wound, I can't figure out how she made it that far. We were at home before 11:00 am... gave my father-in-law crap all day for taking that little one.

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