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Well the first day was a bust for me. I didn't even see a deer. I had found some great sign on a grouse hunt the Saturday before the season. I decided to set up on that spot and see what would happen. I saw some really big tracks in the snow and knew there was still a good buck around.

My plan was to climb in there and sit as long as I could in the rain. I got pulled in to the place I wanted to park, and started putting my gear on. I pulled out the tote put on my gear, loaded my bookbag and went to pick up my climber. I had forgot to put the seat back on it. It had gotten soaked the first day, and I brought it in to dry, and forgot to put it back on.

So my plan soon switched to just getting on the closest hemlock to the spot and trying to stay dry.

I set off for this spot and made my way to my landmark. My head lamp picked up some refelective eyes in the woods about 15 yards away. My gun was not yet loaded, so I picked up to see what they were. All doe, I just kept walking and hoped that they might make there way past me.

I got to my spot and set up under the hemlock. About 15 minutes after grey light I see a guy an what appear to me a younger kid walking in in front of me. I knew this area was hot and figured since it was a kid, I'd let the guy know where the rub line was, and such. I whistled and made my way over to them quick. I found out it was actually a guy and his girlfriend. I asked where they were going to set up, and told them I would get out of there and let them have it.

I was a bit bummed but it is what it is. I set out across the top of the ridge through some thickets. I was still hunting. I made my way around the top, and set up on a hillside, beside a thicket, overlooking a bench below. There was a reclaimed strip mine behind me, and a large field in front. I found a hemlock to sit under. I was expecting deer to be running the bench below me.

After about 10 minutes of sitting I hear a SNAP. and turn my head to see 8 does trucking in from behind. They were about 10 yards away and trotting along. I picked out the last doe, and did the classic MEH! sound and she locked up, As I pull up my gun I caught movement behind the doe. I look and see a STUD about 17" wide, 8 or 10 right there at 15. He blows a snort, and goes to run. I pull up the gun and the lense is fogged up. I wipe it with the glove quick and got 3 shots off at him, but came up with nothing. About 45 seconds afer I shot 10 shots rang out across the adjacent ridge.

I was discouraged but happy I got on the deer I was after. I decided to walk back to the escape, and go home and dry the clothes. On the way out I flushed 7 grouse, so I was happy to find a new grouse spot.

I called my buddy on the way out and asked if he wanted to meet up around 12-1230 and hunt. He said yes so I went home, dried the clothes, and hung out with the family.

I drove across the strip road that runs between my buddies house and mine to see if any fog rolled in. Boy did it ever. I got to his place and told him we would have to hunt lower. We drove back to that strip road and the fog rolled even farther down themountain. I told him that we should be good over the gamelands. I wanted to hunt a spot by an old fenced in area, but wanted to check if there were any cars in my favorite spot first. I pulled in to the first spot, and told my buddy, "Let's go see if there is anyone down here first"

No one was there so we decided to give it a whirl. We unloaded our gear and made our way back to my spot. There was quite a walk ahead so we were a bit chatty and such on the way in. There is a nice open area before my spot. we were walking about 10 yards apart, walking at a normal speed and talking back and fourth. When...

"Crum, there is a deer right there...Its a doe do you want to shoot it", I ask.
The doe was honest to god just bedded right out in the open. There is an old fenced in area not 30 yards to her back side she could have been in but she was just right there.

"I cant see it, go ahead" he replied.

I put the crosshairs behind her shoulder and "BOOOM!" the 12 ga slug gun hammers her. She got up but made it about 10 yards and dropped. We exchanged some high fives and such. We have been trying to get a deer together since he started hunting about 4 years ago. I was bummed he didn't see the deer, but was happy we shot one together.

Here is a pic of her as we just got to here.







We celebrated, and I got her dressed out. I was showing him how to do it so he could learn, but it was probably the worst job I have ever done. Some how while removing the "Lower intestine" I had a grip on the bladder. I gave it a pull and the bladder explodes, covering me with about 6 oz of straight doe pee.

We both about died laughing at this. I told him to just keep walking down the deer trail and set up about 150 yards down. I would drag mine out, and then push the creek bottom to him on my way back in.

I was dragging for about 5 minutes and I hear BOOM! No way.

I just pulled my doe behind a long and went back to see. He was all flustered and pretty much running around. I got him calmed down and we determined where he was, and where the shot was. We looked for over an hour, and I called it off. Not blood or hair anywhere.

I told him to keep his head up, and reminded him that I had missed a monster at 15 yards this morning. We joked a bit, and I said "Tinks 69 has nothing on me right now man. We are sure to get a buck to come into the way I smell."

We sat for maybe 20 minutes, and the clock struck 3:25. He had to be out at 4 so we made our way back to my deer and the escape. We walked a little but the adrenaline was all but faded, and I got cold. We stopped for a second and I wanted to put on my fleece jacket. I got done and told him:

"Crum, why don't you just shoot one on the way out and we will call it a day"

"Ok," he said.

We continued up the deer trail about 100 yards or so when...

"Crum, there is a deer right there, it is just to the left of the big tree......back up slow, back up slow.....You see it?"

"That tan thing?"

"Yeah its a little doe, do you want to shoot it?"

"Yeah"
"Get on it...........Are you on it?"

"Yeah"

"OK, breath out and shoot.....WAIT, WAIT, WAIT"

Just then another little one started to walk towards the other, it heard me tell him to wait.

"Ok, Crum shoot it."

"BOOOM"

My 30-06 that I let him use gos off. I see the deer buck up and tuck its front leg.

"Crummy you crushed it!"

It went about 20 yards and dropped.

"WWWWOOOOOOO!" I yelled. I was so happy for him that words cant really explain. To be there and coach him through his first deer was just awesome. We went up and got a few pictures.

"How's that feel man?"

"Awesome buddy, thanks so much for giving me a call."



That smile says it all! Not the biggest deer out there, but definetly a memory that I will have for ever. I coached him through the field dressing,and he did it like a pro.

"Crum, do you want the heart?"

"Yeah, Ill try it"

I looked at the lungs and could not find the heart. I checked over the guts, and it wasn't there.

I told him to reach up inside and see if it was still in there. He said it wasn't. I picked the lungs back up and found out that he actually totally blew the heart apart. This brought on more celebrating as he rebounded after his miss, to make a perfect heart shot.

We made our way back out to the escape, passing my doe along the way. I wanted to get my rack packer to make the drag easier.

We went back and I got all of the gear set up. Walked back to my doe and loaded her on the rack packer.



I got my doe out to the escape, and we gave some high 5's. I had to take the picture of both of the deer in the back. LOL Who needs a truck right?



Hunts like these really bring back into perspective what hunting is all about. I pouted about missing that really nice buck in the morning, but if I would have got him, I would not have went out with my buddy. Seeing how happy he was to finally shoot a deer after 4 years of trying. We would not have had this great memory together. In a way I am almost thankful that I did miss that buck.

Sometimes memories are worth more than antlers.
 

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Awesome !
 

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I coined a phrase a few years ago that I put on a collage of photos I gifted 6 friends I have bowhunted with & become friends though we live in various states. It say's "Kills will be long forgotten but Memories of campfire friends will last forever". You have experienced the "best" part of hunting. Congratulations.
 

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spoon & crockpot proud member......killing tomorrows trophys today
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Good for you. You've got memories to last a lifetime. Nothing like doubling up with a buddy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for all of the kind words.

That rack packer works great. I honestly love that thing. The owner just put up a video of him pretty much beating the heck out of it dragging out his giant ohio public land buck. I am a big fan of it because I don't have a truck and the bigger carts wont work for me. I slide it between my drivers seat and rear seat and just hunt.

If I get one I just carry my gear back out to my escape, and then grab the rack packer and go get it. I do not use hang ons but If I had property and was hanging multiple sets it would work wonders.
 

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I don’t hunt for the sport I hunt for the meat
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Amen to that!!!! Too many concentrate on antlers we are forgetting what hunting is really about and that's sharing a sport with someone we care about and enjoying it together. OP congrats to u both



Sometimes??? I assert that EVERY TIME memories exceed the worth of antlers.
 
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