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fishermn

Friday November 2nd, what a day!!

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Friday November 2nd.

I managed to get out of work by 12:30 and was headed to the stand by 1:00. Weather was absolutely perfect for a full afternoon sit, and I knew the pre-rut had begun as I had already seen a few bucks chasing earlier in the week. After considering the wind direction, I decided to try a spot that I had not yet ever hunted. It was an area I had stumbled onto while looking for a wounded doe earlier in the year. A perfect buck hangout through, a small area of high ground completely surrounded by really thick alder swamp. The swamp area was full of buck sign, from this year and previous years. I just had a very good feeling about this particular spot. I started the long hike into my stand location, and as I neared the place where I had to cross through the swamp, I heard probably the deepest most aggressive grunt I had ever heard. I immediately froze and started scanning the immediate area for the source. I could see a small doe headed my way on a trail that crossed within about 25 feet of where I was standing. She was obviously being pushed by a buck that I couldnt see yet. I slowly slid myself behind a big aspen tree and waited for the doe to pass. She trotted on by me with not even a glance at me, even though I was pretty much in the wide open and upwind from her, with only the aspen tree as cover. At that point, I heard more grunting, not nearly as agressive, but definitely a buck with love on his mind. Just then I caught site of the buck about 20 yards behind the doe and closing fast. I just stayed motionless behind the tree and waited for the buck to come by. He stopped right next to me, not more than 25 feet away. A beautiful 120 - 130 class eight pointer, relatively narrow rack with faily tall tines. Because of the rules of this local hunt, I could not shoot this deer, as the hunting area I am in requires you to shoot from an elevated platform. I just stood there and watched as he stood there literally 25 feet away. At this point I was kinda wondering what this buck was thinking, so I slowly pulled out an arrow and nocked it just in case he decided that he didnt like me standing there. However, I dont think he really even knew I was there. At that point, he gave a couple sniffs and took off, he must have finally caught my scent and decided to get out of there quick. Wow what a close encounter!

I continued on to my stand, got set up and proceeded to try every call sequence I could think of. Unfortunately, the buck must have vacated the area or wasnt interested in my grunting, bleating, or rattling. The next 4 hours were pretty uneventful with not a single deer passing through the area. At about 5:30, I gave a couple bleats with the can, and I immediately heard some movement off in the swamp behind me. The deer took a few steps and just stopped. I hit the buck growl once with a fairly deep agressive grunt, and that really got the deer's attention. I heard him make a short charge up out of the swamp, but I still couldnt see him. I hit the buck growl once more and that was all it took. I heard the buck start marching my way like he was on a mission to find whoever was in his territory... He emerged out of the swamp about 45 yards to the North and it was clear that this was a shooter. Probably the widest, biggest rack I had ever seen!! He proceeded up the trail, and directly across towards the swamp on the other side. I was just about to give another grunt, when he hit a trail along the far edge and started coming directly down the trail that crossed 20 yards in front of me. As he passed behind a big group of birch, I drew back and waited for him to emerge. He kept coming, and when he hit the opening directly in front of me I didnt even stop him, I just zeroed in on the front shoulder and let fly. The shot looked really good and was a clean pass through, although I thought it might have been just a touch behind where I wanted it. The deer ran about 50 yards, stopped for a second then took off straight down into the middle of the swamp. Now, the adrenalin hit me like a freight train. I started shaking so bad I could hardly stay in my stand. I knew I had just shot the biggest buck I had ever seen, and it looked like a pretty good shot, even though I didnt see him fall. I just had to sit down for about 20 minutes and get my self composed enough to climb down and find the deer. I immediately went to check the arrow. The blood looked good, although it looked a bit thinner than expected. I went to the spot where I saw the buck last and immediately found a decent amount of blood. I marked the spot and headed out to get help with the search. When we returned, we could only find about 40 yards of the blood trail, after that it just stopped. I figured the hit must have been a bit further back than I thought, so we backed out and waited for morning. Needless to say it was a Loooong night. Saturday morning, we got back on the trail but found no more blood. After about 20 minutes of searching trails in the immediate vicinity, I found the buck piled up about 60 yards away from the spot of last blood. The shot had taken out the very back of the lungs, but the deer still made it 150 - 175 yards from where I shot him. He rough scores 153" and weighed in just a touch below 200 lbs.

07-buck-med.jpg

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Looks like all worked out well. Congrats on a nice job and deer.

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Yikes.. now THAT is a deer!!!! Congrats!

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Perfect rack on that deer. Congrats. Duluth city hunt?

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fishemn, Great buck and congrats on a true trophy! Great story to accompany the photo as well. Makes me want to move to Duluth! Now lets see, sandy beaches, beautiful weather, lots of water, open country. Nope, she just wouldn't go for it. Too far from the shopping malls around the city, plus it might wreck my annual weekend away forays if it was only a couple hours up the shore and into Canada! Great job! Nice picture!

Tunrevir~

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Biff, to answer your question, yes. Thats why I didnt shoot the smaller buck earlier in the day. Hunt rules require shooting from a stand at least 12 feet up.

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Great buck- congrats!

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great story...great buck congrats!

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Great story. Fun to read. I sat Friday as well. Saw four deer and one buck (nice start -- 6 pointer) walked right by me at 12 yards -- did not shoot -- will be a nice one next year.

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