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Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck #7998286 10/05/20 12:08 AM
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so your season won't end to quick or dreaming of a Bigger Buck to hang on the wall, how many times have we all done this and it worked out or ended up without confused2

Last edited by Stub; 10/05/20 12:09 AM.

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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998355 10/05/20 01:03 AM
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Well I am kind of in that boat right now. I haven't hit the woods yet but the best deer I have on camera aint really good enough for me to end my season on right now. The problem is I have hunted this place for 14 seasons now and I know there is about a 80% chance I wont see anything better due to the lack of rain we had this year. I am pretty confident I could go in and kill that deer if given 2 days to hunt him but I am not sure I want to do that. I would almost rather kill a smaller deer later in the year than to kill a nice deer right now.

The last time I was in this situation was probably 10 years ago. I passed on a 5 year old 9 point opening morning and never saw a better buck or even got a picture of that 9 point again all season long. The last afternoon of the season I was packing up my back pack and getting ready to eat my tag for that year when that 9 point showed up with less than 5 minutes of legal shooting light left. Some times it works out and sometimes it doesn't. The odds of it working out like that again are stacked against me so I have a hard decision to make this year.

So far shooting a nice buck and seeing a bigger one later on has only happened twice to me but it sucks and I don't want it to happen again this year.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998476 10/05/20 02:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Stub
so your season won't end to quick or dreaming of a Bigger Buck to hang on the wall, how many times have we all done this and it worked out or ended up without confused2

Lots and more times than not ended up with something bigger or better but never a monster, a book buck.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998570 10/05/20 04:19 AM
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I had a monster-body 120” 8 this morning come by my stand. However, he was at 120yds, not 20yds. I got a very good look at him. We have several bigger, but this guy was at least 6.5. Had he been 100 yds closer my buck season in Mills county was done.


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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998693 10/05/20 12:43 PM
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Only once that I can remember. It was the last weekend of the season when I had five bucks walk past my stand while I was waiting on a hog. Being so late in the season, they had gone back into their bachelor group. One of them was a better buck than I had taken earlier in the season. They were all so close when they walked past my ladder stand that I could have almost spit on them. Still, no regrets. Just part of the game.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 10/05/20 12:44 PM.

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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998773 10/05/20 02:15 PM
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I hunt one-buck counties, so I go through the season with a simple philosophy. From opening bow through early December, I'm only taking a personal-best from that particular property or something "special" (very old buck, cool/unique antlers, etc). Once mid-December rolls around I'll take a nice buck if i see one.

Never once had a regret doing it this way. Although I can definitely see having regrets if I shot a nice buck early season and then saw a trophy afterward that I couldn't take.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998942 10/05/20 04:16 PM
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I generally go by this "don't pass on a buck the first day that you would be happy with the last day" if said buck meets lease/outfitter criteria


"A hungry dog hunts best. Lee Trevino

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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7998983 10/05/20 04:42 PM
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Yeah I think it boils down to personal philosophy. Every buck I have shot is one I would be as happy with the first day vs last day. I try to better what’s on the wall, or go after really old bucks, either way I win.

I also try not to live my life in regret...decisions I make today def affect my future, just as those decisions I made in the past affect today. Trying to change past decisions or affect future outcomes is impossible, so live today using the best decision making I can and just let life live.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Texas buckeye] #7999071 10/05/20 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Texas buckeye
Yeah I think it boils down to personal philosophy. Every buck I have shot is one I would be as happy with the first day vs last day. I try to better what’s on the wall, or go after really old bucks, either way I win.

I also try not to live my life in regret...decisions I make today def affect my future, just as those decisions I made in the past affect today. Trying to change past decisions or affect future outcomes is impossible, so live today using the best decision making I can and just let life live.

x100

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: DQ Kid] #7999285 10/05/20 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by DQ Kid
Originally Posted by Texas buckeye
Yeah I think it boils down to personal philosophy. Every buck I have shot is one I would be as happy with the first day vs last day. I try to better what’s on the wall, or go after really old bucks, either way I win.

I also try not to live my life in regret...decisions I make today def affect my future, just as those decisions I made in the past affect today. Trying to change past decisions or affect future outcomes is impossible, so live today using the best decision making I can and just let life live.

x100

up


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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7999405 10/05/20 10:09 PM
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I have gone a season just looking for that one or two bucks and ate tags when it did not happen. Passed on one 8pt the first day of gun season and again on him the last day I got to hunt. If I passed him the first day unless he is very mature I will try to see what he will be next year. Shoot a couple does along the way for meat then if the horns come through so be it if not that is ok also.


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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #7999472 10/05/20 11:02 PM
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Happened to me last season. Opening day of gun season, 5 minutes after legal light I took a nice mature 10 pt. I hadn't seen on camera. Super excited to have got him, but then the rest of the season I was like... what do I do now. Still went out to hunt pigs and does, but wasn't quite the same. This year I think I may roll the dice and not shoot a buck on opening day unless - he's bigger and better than the one I shot last season. Otherwise going for the spike, dork deer or possibly a doe.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Buccaneer] #8004323 10/09/20 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Buccaneer
I hunt one-buck counties, so I go through the season with a simple philosophy. From opening bow through early December, I'm only taking a personal-best from that particular property or something "special" (very old buck, cool/unique antlers, etc). Once mid-December rolls around I'll take a nice buck if i see one.

Never once had a regret doing it this way. Although I can definitely see having regrets if I shot a nice buck early season and then saw a trophy afterward that I couldn't take.


Same idea here. I have hunted my current place almost 10 years and between that experience and all of the trail cam photos...I have a good idea about what is an opening day deer....or just my one branched horn deer. First two years I was hunting two larger deer all season and ended up shooting a pair of 3.5 year old 7 points (I know you can't change the genetics on a small place by culling, but I still removed them from the genepool.) Third year, it was a 4.5 year old 8pt. that was born and died during a drought, so he scored 130. Fifth year, it was a 6.5 year old that barely made AR but had lots of character/mass/kickers that scored 135. Last several years have been spent looking to get beyond 140 and mature with no success. I have passed at least a couple of mature deer with broken horns (twice it was the entire main beam) and 5 3.5 year-old 10s that would have made 140...good news is my nephew (the landowner) eventually took one of the 10s that I passed as a 6.5 year old 155 inch deer. At this point, I know I will hunt this land until I am too old to hunt...so I enjoy the process WAY more than the kill. Taking to time to match ear notches or throat patches to match a deer from one year to the next and see the potential that we have on our small ranch would be ruined if I shot one of the 130-140 3.5 year old deer that I see opening weekend. Waiting and watching is too fun to finish with another deer just like I shot last year...or especially important...that I could shot next weekend.

....and I have twice seen my 150+ target buck during late doe season. It really fires you up to get out there in the August sun to get things set up for the next year.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #8004329 10/09/20 09:03 PM
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happened last Saturday morning passed a really nice mule deer at 18 yards hope I don't regret it.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #8004335 10/09/20 09:06 PM
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I guess i have always hunted on properties with pretty good/higher deer densities, i have more than one buck tag and i have doe tags. Rarely do i shoot more than one buck, but i dont let the does slide.

Shooting a nice one or my target buck etc. is far from the end of my season.


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Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: redchevy] #8005077 10/10/20 04:48 PM
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Yep. It’s nice to hunt 5 deer (3 buck) Counties. I missed all of deer season last year, was working overseas, but the year before that I filled my tags between 2 properties. The main place I hunt I’ve been on for about 25 yrs and I know what to expect now, so if a good/shooter buck shows early season he’s getting shot. If I see a better deer later he’s probly getting shot too. Though a 3 buck county, I normally only take one or two deer a year off of that place myself, plus a couple for my kids. Those are almost always culls & does. I’d rather one of my kids shoot a good buck. I follow the rules that we agreed to on bucks, but I’m pretty much the only one. I’ve let lots of young bucks walk just to get shot by another member or LO family member. Used to tick me off but now I just shake my head and bite my lip lol. Set rules then nobody follows them, whatever. At this point I’m just trying to keep things fun and drama free.


I have just as much fun shooting pigs honestly.

Re: Early Season Hunting Passing on a Nice Buck [Re: Stub] #8005303 10/10/20 08:42 PM
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I had 2 target bucks for this year for the start of archery season. I saw one of them opening morning but he was in the feed pen and 35 yards from me. He made the decision easy when something got his attention to the west of the feeder and then all the deer left the feeder heading north. I hunted 6 sits and on the 6th one he came in early...6:55 pm on a 88 degree day. About 25 mintues later he made the decision easy when he gave me a broadside shot at 19 yards. I would have done the same thing opening morning had he been at 20 yards or less. I have picked a target buck for the last 8 yrs and hunted that buck till I got him or he disappeared.


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