Due to her other activities, my daughter only gets to go hunting with me the weekend after Thanksgiving and between Christmas and New Years. She began hunting at 8 and has killed a deer every year, 3 does and a 7 point cull. She really wanted a trophy buck of her own to mount this year. We left for the ranch Friday morning after Christmas. Sunday morning a good buck finally showed up for us. To make a long story short, my daughter knocked this buck down in his tracks. He kicked a while and finally quit moving. We high fived, packed our stuff and got the truck. When we drove back to where the deer fell, he was gone. There was blood where he fell and more where he jumped out of the feed pen. We found no more blood, called in a dog and still had no luck. Best guess is she hit him high and was a flesh wound. We hope he will recover. I don't know who was more disappointed, my 12 year old or me.
She was determined though to keep hunting for a big buck. Sunday evening and Monday came and went with no luck. Tuesday morning was our last chance. We had a couple of does really early, and she asked if she could shoot one. I convinced her to wait and see what else showed up as a strong cold front was moving in. There was a long dry spell and then a spike with 6 to 8 inch horns came to the feeder. With temperatures dropping below freezing and tne wind getting stronger, I wanted her to shoot it, and told her it would be as good as shooting a doe. Thankfully, she talked me out of this one, because 10 minutes later a good heavy horned 8 point appeared. He was really skittish due to the high wind, but after circling the feeder nervously for at least 10 minutes in and out of the brush, he ended up heading right for the blind and down he went. There was no losing this buck. I got a big hug and a thank you Daddy! You Dads know how great that feels. I was so fortunate to get two really nice bucks myself this year and can't think of any better way to top off a tremendous hunting season than for my youngest to get her first trophy.