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CrappieAttitude

Favorite "Let Em Walk" Story

11 posts in this topic

I have hunted for quite a few years and enjoy letting the little ones walk, so I thought I would start a "Let Em Walk" thread and see if anyone else has a story of their own to share.

My favorite "Let Em Walk" story came last year...

There was a fresh coat of snow covering all the woods making it quiet, yet very easy to pick up any sort if movement. I was sitting in my portable about 20 feet up in a big balsam and noticed movement coming from the east directly down the trail. The wind couldn't have been any better for me.

I was in position and I told myself that any deer that walked within shooting range was going to walk unless the antlers were "beyond its ears" as we say at our camp. As I put my rifle up to take a peek, I noticed what I thought to be spikes coming out of his head. Even though I was excited to see the deer, my nerves settled because I knew that I wasn't going to be shooting. So I hung my rifle back on my stub branch and continued to watch this little guy with my binoculars.

My stand was about 20 yards into the woods off a retired 4 wheeler trail. The trail curved in a couple of spots and this little guy was walking directly in the middle.

The first time he stopped, he was directly out in front of me about 20 yards with nothing but air between us. Standing in the middle of the trail, he found interest in my scent wicks that I had out. He stood there for quite a few minutes. He then lost interest in the scent, and started walking directly towards me right on my foot path I took to my tree. He walked right directly under my treestand. In fact I could look down my tree climbers and see his back. (I’m talking 3 yards at the most away from the base of my tree.)

He started walking away and I lost sight of him due to all the balsam branches behind me. I didn't want to move too much in my stand, so I decided to take out my can call and give it a whirl. I was new to the can call, so I thought I would give it a try with a buck that I knew I wasn't going to shoot, so if it spooked him...no big deal.

So I hit the call a couple of times and crash...crash...crash.. He came running and stopped again at the base of my tree. I was looking right down on top of his head and noticed that they were little forks. His ears were cupped straight ahead and he was dialed into any sort of sound that occured. He had no idea I was right above him. smirk.gif

He started walking away from me and crossed the trail and entered the woods on the other side. Once he got about 30 yards into the woods on the other side, I gave the can call another try. On a dime he turned and walked right back towards me stopping periodically to listen. He proceeded to walk right back on the same trail that led him to the base of my tree. I teased this little guy for about 45 minutes and he walked back and forth under my tree 6 different times. Each time he started walking out of sight, I would hit the call and here he came again.

Pretty soon he lost interest or maybe decided that "she wasn't worth it", and continued on his way.

I am not sure if this was just a horned up little buck, or if it was the call, but I know this for certain...it was one of my most enjoyable hunts ever, and I never even pulled the trigger.

CA

WHOSE NEXT??

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This year my brother invited a buddy up to hunt with us on our newly purchased land. We bought 56 acres bordering a major highway and full of mature pines, a 10 acre slough and a high ridge bordering a plowed (bean this year) field.

We hunted hard, logging in over 40 hrs. in the stands each.

We were hunting for does or a buck for the wall. And had cam pics of 2 different bucks that were monsters. One was a drop tined 4X4 and the other a 150 class 5X5. Anywho, the deal was that my brother and his buddy would hunt together in the same stand and his buddy could shoot anything he wanted if my brother chose to pass. I wasn't sure what I was going to do as I had a doe and a buck tag.

Last Sat. I passed on 6 different bucks! (The best day out in my life) I had 2 8pts, a nice 10 pt. a 6 a fork and a spike. My brother passed on 2 does and an 8. His buddy did as well.

Sunday showed us we may regret our decisions. We never saw a deer all day!

As the week went on, I chose to pass on a handful of does and the 6 pt. that became a fixture every morning and evening near my stand.

This past Sat. I had decided to shoot either of the 3 bucks I had passed on before as I had not shot one that big in my life. I never saw a buck, I had 5 does within 50 yards and 3 stayed to mingle and eat in the soybean field for over a 1/2 hour. Sunday morning I decided it was time to take a doe. I saw a doe, but she kept looking behind her, so I waited. I saw movement and moved my scope to the deer behind her. Another doe! I decided to shoot the lead deer, and when I went for her she was in some brush and I couldn't get a clean shot.

I let the walk! That evening was the last...I didn't see a deer! I walked up to get my brother and his buddy and his buddy had passed on a nice 8 and a 6 pt. both being young deer. Even though it was the last night! I commended him on letting them grow and he will be back next year.

I have no deer in the freezer, but the best year I have ever had is behind me. Next year hopefully the bucks we saw all are bigger and those monsters are a little less elusive!

That's it for my "Let em Walk" story.

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I wonder what he'll think about that can in 2 years when you're tryin to call him in to shoot! Those young bucks are always a lot of fun later in season still after a chance at a doe... I always seem to grunt in quite a few during muzzy season.

Pry 3-4 years ago I was hunting over a dry pond with green grass in the middle. It was early November and the rut was starting to take shape. I had a doe and 2 fawns come out and start grazing. Not long after I hear something approaching in the leaves from behind me... turned out to be a forkhorn. Soon as the doe saw him she took off for some nearby thick brush... the buck made a run at the fawns and it got a little crazy for awhile. Soon after he got discouraged and walked away. 10 minutes later he came back and at the same time a lone doe was approaching the pond at the opposite end. They stared down and I told myself "here we go again" but instead they leisurely walked towards one another into the middle of the pond... touched noses and continued on pass another. I thought that was strange especially this time of the year... neat to see though.

I had another young buck early this season that I named Prong. He had really dark almost black spikes with identical kickers on each side. I drew back on him at 8 yds and he hit my boot tracks and started to walk right at me. He got about 4 yds and I said "you're dead!" he looked up at me and about turned inside out. Ran out to about 30 yds and turned around and looked back at me... he'd look over one shoulder then turn his head and look back over his other shoulder. I hope to have another encounter in about 3 years. Just a few memorable "Let em walk" stories...

Good Post

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Here is one from Sunday of opening weekend. I walk through a harvested soy bean field on the way to my stand. As I walked over a hill, I noticed a deer about 75 yards away. It was a 6 point buck. I watched him for about 15 minutes, thinking that maybe his big bro or dad would come out and visit him. He had no idea I was there. He wandered his way to the edge of the woods and was about 150 yards away when I grunted at him. He immediately charged towards me, stopping about 30 yards away. I don't think I was what he expected to see, so he stood there and stared at me for the next 5 or 10 minutes. He was pawing the dirt and snorting at me. I really thought he was going to charge, which would have put him into the "deer I didn't let walk" category. wink.gif He then began to try and get behind me to wind me and watched me again. At that point, I think he figured out that he should get out of there, so he starts to trot away. I hit the grunt again and he came right back to about 20 yards. Again, he snorted and pawed the dirt. This all played out over about 40 minutes. I wanted to get to my stand so as he looked at me, I jumped up and down and said "boom." He took off running and never looked back. I think this may have been the dumbest deer in the county!

I have shot a lot of deer over the years, but this was one of the more memorable experiences I have had in the field.

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I have two great ones.

Several years ago (maybe 4 or 5 now???) I was sitting on the ground leaning on an old round bail and the wind was at my back (none of it could get to me as I was totally behind the bail). A small fork horn came quartering right in towards me through the alf-alfa walking right into the wind. He never knew I was there and walked past me at literally two steps away. Boy even a little buck like that looks awfully big when he walks within 6 feet of you and you are sitting on the ground with him!

The best though was just yesterday morning. I had Jr. with me and he shot his first buck Saturday already so he was just going "shoot back up" for me. Anyway...a little tiny basket rack 8 point comes around the dirt mound he's sitting leaning against at literally about 5 yards from him. He then proceeded to stop at exactly the spot where I put the special golden select estrus urine and stand there for 20-25 seconds before realizing we were there. I was about five-six yards to the left farther from where he came around the corner and a little ahead. When he left I got up and walked to where he stood, 9 steps from me and about the same, maybe even one step closer to my step-son. We both just looked at each other smiling and I said "that was awesome!!!" grin.gif

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Two years ago on opening I had a 130 class 10 point 30 yards from my stand. I let him walk, he had a broken G 3 and about four to five inch split brow tines. Nice buck in most books. He entered the woods on the neighbors property and was out of sight. Then a fork horn came by, I let it walk right down the same path. ten minutes later "BANG", thought my 10 pt buddy got it, to my suprise he came back out and looked at me, went into our woods and I never saw him again that season. Last year a 140 plus 10 point with 6-7- inch split brow tines passed me, went into the neighbor's crp and layed down, never saw him again last year.

Sunday first weekend I did not let him walk and was glad I had the first two years I saw him. He had a tough enough time getting through. Had a healed shot through the top of his neck, and my sisters b friend stuck an arrow in him tuesday before opener.

In all he measures 164 1/8 B&C and has 18.5 spread with 9 and 9.5 inch split brow tines. You can see him on the 07 bucks thread. I let a lot of bucks walk, not tagging one since 2000. Incredible luck, yes, but if I hadn't let him walk, it never could have culminated the way it did!

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Holy Cow those deer were amazing!! Very nice work and way to go on letting him grow.

CA

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I don't have time to go into details now but my most memorable was my first year bowhunting. I shot a Pope and Young the end of October but still had a management tag. Well the next three trips out I saw another buck each day bigger than the one I shot, and had good shots at all of them! I will never forget the body size of one of the deer, still by far the biggest bodied deer I've seen.

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My favorite would ahve to be about 200 yards form my house last year in a no hunting (inside city limits) area. I had brought my camera out to see if I could shoot some pictures of bucks. I walked over a mile without seeing a buck and then as I am getting close to the end of the trail going to my house my mother and sister come walking by telling me there are 2 big bucks with a doe in the such and such area. I start walking over there and I see this little forkie running for the hills. I said I must be close. I start getting closer to my house when I see him. The biggest buck I have ever seen in the wild and I'm standing ten yards away with a camera! I shot over 150 pictures of him, none were clear with nothing between us. Everyone had branches in the way or something. My batteries start dying on me so I start walking down the trail to see a smaller but none-the-less impressive buck standing 5 yards from me and it was the doe that spooked. All heck broke loose. All I heard was crashes and long aggresive grunts for 2-3 hundred yards. I followed them for a ways, it was the coolest thing I had ever seen. I saw more smaller bucks but they never could get within 20 yards of the doe without one of those big bucks nearly killing them. grin.gif

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Just this last weekend, a friend passed on a big 10 point while bowhunting. It was an albino. He hunts in Wisconsin where white deer are off limits. His hunting property is only about 1/8 of a mile from the Minnesota border. No one would have known if he would have shot this deer and tagged it across the border.

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I personally think that's a stupid law, but I guess he didn't have much choice. You can't take a trophy like that illegally & feel very good about it.

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