I have been on this lease for 5 years running now and for 5 years I have yet to connect on a true wall hanger. I have shot a couple of deer simply because I wanted to or because I grew impatient. I have watched some great deer on game cameras but just have never been in the right place at the right time to connect on them. Well today, my luck finally changed.
The plan was to arrive at the lease around 0930, do some hiking and glassing for mule deer and then go fill feeders, pull camera cards and then sit in a blind for whitetail in the afternoon. It became quickly apparent on the way down that today may not be the day for hunting. Wind gusts up to 40+mph were really going to be an issue making a long shot, so I getting in close on the mules would be the only option. I was pretty successful and locate and group with one shooter 4x4 buck in it but I simply could not close the distance for a comfortable shot. 600 yds was as close as I was going to get and anything closer would put me walking through an open meadow in complete visual eyesight of the mules. By this time it is getting close to noon so I decided to back out and go fill feeders and pull camera cards.
By 1:30 I was done and went to go review the pics on my laptop. I had gone through two cards and saw some nice bucks and decided that I would go sit in one of those blinds. I fortunately took the laptop with me to the blind as well as the 2 remaining camera cards so that I could pass the time looking at more pics. Within seconds I realized that I had a double drop tine buck on camera at one of the blinds on 11/12. He was coming in regularly it appeared but it was gonna take half an hour to go through all 3,000 pics. I backed out and scrolled down to the very last pick on the card and was going to go backwards to see if he was still coming in. No pics of him this morning, however he was there yesterday afternoon at 5pm. I looked at my watch, 3:10. Without hesitation, I packed up my things and literally jogged the mile back to my truck knowing that time was of the essence. Got to the truck, and rapidly drove to the far side of the lease where my other stand is. As I was pulling up, I saw does already eating along the road down towards the direction I was headed. I figured it was worth busting them out but I was hoping not to. Fortunately the wind was still howling and in my favor. However, they did see me eventually and immediately bolted. As I came around the last tree blocking me from my feeder I saw a doe feeding about the same time she saw me turning the corner. We both froze, shared a moment of disbelief and disgust and then she bolted. I hopped in the blind and began the wait. It was 3:45.
While waiting I was truly paying little attention to what was going on and more concerned about keeping my face out of the blistering sun that was coming through the blind windows. Shortly after 4:00 I peaked out the front blind window and there he was. Double drop tine is all I saw beside a mature deer body. He was 20 yds from me and headed towards the feeder. I swung the rifle up to the window, put the crosshair on the sweet spot and squeezed the trigger. NO BANG......lol, I forgot to take the safety off.
By now, he had jumped into the feeder pen and began to feed right up against the hog panels. I had no shot, other than trying to shoot between the tiny square holes in the paneling. I didn't want to risk it so I waited. Something spooked him moments later and he bolted but stopped about 10 steps later. By now, I decided, paneling or not, I will take the shot. He stepped back into view. One more step.......... and I let the 300 win mag rip (yes, over kill but I the original plan was hunting for mule deer). Lets just say it was over quick. Right though the right and left atrium. He went about 20 yds and was down.
I feel very fortunate to have been in a situation to take such a beautiful trophy. This is "My buck of a lifetime". I was so excited it that, I took a bunch of pictures, loaded him up, unloaded it to gut him and was leaving the lease gate when I realized I hadn't even counted how may points he was. So, I stopped, got out counted the points, 12 points in all, got back in the truck and drove home with the biggest smile in the world on my face. Man, I love hunting.
Double Drop Tine 12 point