The girlfriend and I got to the property at 7:30 Friday evening, and on the way to the cabin I stopped to grab the card out of one of the Cameras. Start unloading all the gear into the cabin and get the laptop fired up to review the new photos. 753 new pictures since last viewing 10 days ago
AND the bigger boys are starting to show up.
For some reason I have the great idea that I need to go check the battery in the feeder. Grab a flash light and start walking down a trail. I get about 120 yards from feeder and spot a pair of eyes to my left at the tree line . I take a better look, 40 yards away is a nice buck with a good size rack. My mind is racing on what to do next and after probably 8 seconds of a stare down, I click off the light and freeze….. No sound from the buck running are alerting the others. I walk back in the direct of the cabin as far as I can without the help of the flash night. Thinking to my self – “why the hell are you checking the feeder battery to start with right now!”
Saturday morning the alarm goes off at 5:30 and we are up and ready to head out of the morning hunt. Because of wind direction (and the flash light encounter) we decide to hunt a spot at the rear of the property. Start walking up a trail that is directly behind the cabin. Do not make it even 25 yards and two deer are bedded down directly behind the cabin. Both start running and one sounds the horn for all the others to hear!
Thinking well hell we are already awake, blood running and dressed, let’s go sit anyways just in case something still comes by. Sure even nothing shows and we call off the hunt at 9 am.
We sit around the cabin all midday think “man we have really spooked some deer, but there was no way of preventing it this morning. We have never had deer bed down directly behind the cabin. We have to go extra early this afternoon for the evening hunt and take the longer way.”
2:00 pm comes around and we head to a different blind, with the wind not the most favorable but away from where we were bust in the morning time. We set up and spray some “tinks #69 hot shot spay” every so often to cover our scent. About 5:00 pm I hear leaves bust direct downwind of us. We both freeze and I’m waiting for us to be busted again. The steps get closer and closer, at this point it sounds as if their 10 feet behind us and I’m waiting on a deer head to pop inside of the blind. They never slow down, and then I see a nice doe from my left enter the feeding area, then a second doe follows. I duck down completely out of sight for about 2 minutes. Hearts racing, hands are shaky and breath gets hard to control. I look up a few times to see where they are staged and when the bigger doe is standing directly broad side to me at 22 yards, I raise up full drawn and sight in right behind the front leg and let the arrow fly. Nail her right behind the front leg but not a pass through. Both deer are off to the races. I watch my doe run into the brush and after what sounds like 25-30 yards crash extremely hard, followed by 5-7 grasp for air, and then complete silence. We sit in the blind for a few mins and start talking about what we are to about to do to find MY FIRST EVEN DEER KILL. About 8 mins go by with no sound, so I come out of the blind to inspect the area where she was standing. No blood, not a single drop. Here comes the minding racing thoughts again. We start checking the immediate area for any signs of blood or a broken arrow –nothing. We search till it’s completely dark and then with flash lights for another 30 mins before calling it for the day.
Get back to the cabin feeling completely defeated and talk about the “what ifs” and “it could be here”. Sun up we resume the search and expand the area. 3 hours goes by and we still find no signs of wounded deer. After a combined 6+ hours of searching by 2 people we call off the search and our spirits are at all-time low. We start loading up the truck and wonder how much we impact we did to our sights in a short 48 hour period . Feeling like failed hunters and having the worst feeling that we injured/killed good meat and did not recover is one on the worst feelings I have ever had – one of the longest rides home of our lives.