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Aussie Boys and wheely toys.

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As usual, we arrived at our hunting property like the early bird getting the worm. The boys in front, Shannon and Shannon (no I don’t have a stutter!) picked out a nice camp spot beside the creek before David and myself arrived.
We set up our shelter tarp that one of the Shannons and I would be throwing our swags under while David and the other Shannon (Shan’) set up their new hiking tents for a rigorous test. This was all done in lightning speed as we were all eager to get out for a walk.
I decided to walk with the two Shan’s so I could witness Shannon get his first goat with the bow, David headed off in the other direction looking for any of the multiple game species that inhabit this area.
Now the property we hunt is very up and down, and 10 min’s into our long awaited walk we were all leaning against something breathing like Fat Albert on a stair-master, looking up toward the top dreading the fact that this was going to happen every morning! Well, as big boys do, we sucked it up and pressed on.
After trudging around the side of the hills for a while where Shannon found a nice cast Fallow antler, Shan’ spotted some snoozing hogs down beside the creek. I was carrying the recurve for the day and he asked if I would like first stalk. This I jumped at and proceeded to head off down wind of them. The wind had picked up and couldn’t decide what way it wanted to blow so I did the best I could. I got to within 20m of the bedded hogs before the wind hit my neck, the end result was to be expected, hogs up in a flash and out of there like a bat out of hell! So be it, I was happy with the stalk though.
We came to a nice knob in the hills and sat down to do some serious glassing. Shan’ and I looked through our nice 8x42 bino’s while Shannon sat there twiddling his thumbs as he had none to look out of. It was great, we spied heaps of good Billies for Shannon to have a crack at and teased him by not letting him look at them. The mob of goats had gone over a rise much like the first small rise out of camp. We looked at each other, sucked in a big gut full of air and headed off again toward the heavens.
Shan’ and I took one ridge up and Shannon headed up another about 80m to our west. Half way up I motioned to Shannon that there were some goats in front of him, he then saw them and proceeded to have a stalk. Shan’ and I thought this would be a good opportunity for him to secure his first ever goat so we sat down and watched.
The goats consisted of a nanny and two half grown kids, the wind was in Shannons favor and he closed the gap quite easily to about 20m. Shan’ and myself watched through the binoculars as he knocked an arrow, drew his bow, settled himself, then shot straight over the little fellas back. Out came another arrow that flew under his belly. The little goat was starting to think something was up and started to move off. With his head still shaking, Shannon drew another arrow and as the little meat goat stopped, sent the arrow on its way to find the mark where the first one should have. Shannon had secured his first goat. We took an amount of pictures and removed the back legs and little back straps.



He was rapt and explained that he wanted to settle his nerves on a smaller goat before he was faced with a trophy Billy.
We continued on to the top of the hill to hopefully find the mob of goats that we had originally set off after. This group was spotted in the thicker bush where we then put Shannon onto a stalk for a trophy. Again the wind wasn’t kind to us and threw a spanner in the works during Shannons stalk. We kept hot on the heels of this mob and eventually got another chance to stalk. The lay of the land was on our side this time and Shannon put in a great stalk to secure his first Billy from 25m with a single shot to the heart. The Billy scored 95 DP and we couldn’t wipe the smile from his face.



From here we started to head back to camp via some grunters that we had seen on a ridge earlier during the goat stalks. When we reached the area in question, said targets had decided not to wait for us and the hillside was bare, the wind on the other hand was waiting for us and was cold enough to freeze the ba.............. you know what I mean!
Trudging on (after 8 k’s of up and down) we made our way to the top ridge above camp where Shan' noticed a reasonable group of porkers including a good sized Boar.
We all snuck in, Shannon carrying the vid’, Shan' wanting to smack the Boar with his new ugly Bowtech and myself just wanting to fling an arrow out of the ‘curve. Shan' smacked two out of the group and lost another, I had four shots out of the semi auto curve ( I’d give Mozza a run for his money!) and hit a running sow at 35m through the kidneys. Unfortunately I lost her to the acre of blackberries....I really wanted a photo.



By this time it was dark and we then fumbled down the hill into camp, totally exhausted. Dave told us his story of shooting a smallish Sow and a Goat during his day out, he also showed us some footage of 5 Fallow does that he had seen. A small meal was cooked and we hit the sack early, ready for the morning.

The swag was feeling magnificent when the boys told me to get my sorry backside out and put on my gear. The hunting clobber went on real fast once the very fresh morning air touched my semi naked body (want me to paint a picture?) After a quick breakfast and a replenish of my hunting pack was done, Dave and I set off for a hunt to the back of the property where he and Daryl shot a forty inch Goat last year. This is where all the big ones live apparently.
Dave and I glassed a few pigs and many goats in the distance whilst making our way to the ‘good spot’ After arriving at the area Dave was talking about empty handed, we had great expectations of finding something worthy of putting on the wall. Up came the bino’s and we scanned the area........... zip, zilch, zero, narda. Great spot Dave! And only 4kms. as the crow flies from camp, pity about all the ups and downs in the middle hey.
My tired hunting mate apologized for the lack of game, I said it was a nice walk and that’s hunting. On the return trip we came across a male and female Fox doing their thing, you know, mummy and daddy thing. Dave thought he’d throw in a cold shower in the form of an arrow, clipping the vixen and sending them into the bush not to be seen again.



Halfway back to camp we happened upon a couple of nanny goats. One looked very peculiar, she was on her knees fumbling a little. Closer examination through the glasses showed that she was in bad shape with very overgrown hooves and horns that had grown into her eyes. I shot her to basically put her out of her misery, the photo will tell the real story.



Not long after leaving the nanny we came onto some Billies giving another nanny in season a bit of a touch up. Dave filmed the Billies butting heads and putting on a show not more that 25m from us, during this time I motioned to him that I wanted to shoot the biggest one in the mob, a white one. Dave focused onto this goat and I let fly with a nice sharp Ribby tipped carbon out of my Darton wheelie bow. The arrow hit him high as he quartered away and he took off around the side of the hill. The other Billies kept carrying on as if nothing happened while we gave my arrow some time to do its job.



We found my goat around 60m from where I had hit him. The arrow had done its job spot on. Photos and video were taken and we continued on our now merry way.



http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=xFWOgY_Ea7k

Late that afternoon we were glassing from a high ridge when we spotted some porkers way out yonder, in the other direction from camp. The general consensus was to pull the finger out and make our way over there as quick as possible due to the afternoon slipping away rapidly. 20 puffing minutes later Dave and I had arrived near the pigs. There were four smaller pigs and a good Boar in this group, Dave said I could have the stalk as I had not shot a decent score-able pig. There was a good number of ‘roos and a few Wallaroos that I had to stalk through, the wind was also fickle, this made things challenging.
I picked my way through the living obstacles and played with the wind to get myself into position for a shot. I ranged the quartering away Boar at 37 meters and let rip with another Ribby tipped carbon. The arrow flew true and dropped into the last few ribs. Now I don’t get excited by much...... but I did quite a few air punches as the Boar dropped off the perch not more than 20m from arrow impact. Dave just about shook my hand off as he told me that he had got it all on video. Heaps of photos and video were one again on the cards as I wanted all the memories I could get of this moment. The Boar later measured 23 2/8 Douglas points.





http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=jVgWwOd3jS8

With the now separated head in my hot little hands and darkness falling upon us, Dave and I called it a day and started the 2 km walk back to camp. 300 meters later we stumbled upon a group of grunters that we could just make out in the now rising moon. Dave slipped into 10m. and let the closest one have it. The group moved off 30m. into the clear country and we decided to leave the follow up until the sun was up. Some of pigs in this group did not sound happy! I am brave........ just not in the dark with unhappy grunters!
Dave led me down a ridge back to camp, on the way we saw a nice 38 inch Billy in the light of the headlamps. Dave said he wanted to shoot it, I told him that his dead pig would have to fly before I let him shoot it under the headlamps. Dave is an ethical hunter and would not seriously contemplate the shot anyway.
Finally, after the knee jarring, thigh busting decent we slumped into our camp chairs, contently buggered again. After we retold our days stories it was the Shannons turn.
With a grin from ear to ear, Shannon showed us his 20 DP Boar that he had shot, this is his first ever pig that he has dropped. He then gleefully told us that Shan' had choked on a 200+ DP Fallow stag that was asleep. After a hard stalk through howling wind and open grassland Shan' found himself within shooting range and set himself up, drew his bow, relaxed, and then proceeded to shoot his arrow at 25m. Spot on........ pity the still sleeping stag was at 35m! At the sound of the shot, this deer and his three mates got up and and bounded off. The video footage of these deer jumping a four strand barb fence is magnificent, the look on Shan's face is heartbreaking. I am surprised he didn’t have a bruised bottom lip when he got back into camp, surly with it dragging on the ground he would have been bound to kick it a few times! He’ll get over it, he has shot a number of good Fallow stags.
The last day of our hunt Dave and I set off up the hill again (bloody knob heads) to find his pig. The Shannons went to look for the deer again and a good goat they had spotted the day before. We found Davids pig, a nice healthy sow, no further that 25m. from point of impact.



Many hours and kilometers later Dave started in on a good Billy I thought would be about 110 - 115 DP. Bloody wind was howling again and blew the three stalks that Dave tried. We ended up empty handed on our last day.



The Shannons had no luck on the deer and Shan' shot over the back of the 40 inch Billy they were looking for (his w’end had turned pear shaped). They also came back empty handed. We all had a good feed and sat under the tarp as the heavens opened up. It was nice to go to sleep with the sound of rain falling on the tarp.
The next morning we packed up camp and headed home quite happy albeit some what knackered.

Dale.
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