Well deer season officially kicked off for us this morning here in FL. It started off a little rocky but ended with sweet success.
My Alarm went off at 4 o'clock this morning. I was out of the house by 4:30 and out to my hunting spot by 5:15. I got to the tree I was going to climb and put my climber up against it and realized something wasn't right with my new hazamore seat. I fiddled around with it for about 15 minutes and couldn't get it figured out and decided it was time to climb the tree and that I would just have to stand for the morning. I was all ready and set up when the sun came up, except I had no where to sit. Right at daylight I catch movementů it's 2 does. They at 25 yards and they stop and know something was up and kind of wandered off in the other direction.
All the while I am sitting up in my stand trying to think of what I did wrong with the seat when it came to me so I messed around with it and got my seat working right. After that the sun was coming up and was beating down on me so I decided I would move my climber over a little bit to get out of the sun. I had my bow in my new thirdhand archery bow holder and as I was adjusting my stand and I bumped my bow and it went crashing 15 feet down into the palmettoes. It made me sick to my stomach. I climbed down and got my bow. I gave it the once over and everything looked okay but it was still in the back my mind something might be wrong with it. I climbed back up and got all settled in again and sat until about 1:45. I then decided it was time to go get some lunch so I hiked back out to the truck and ate my lunch. I decided I would try to be back up and stand by three and decided I was going to a take a little nap in the truck.
I just get my eyes closed when all of a sudden I'm hearing gunshots coming out from the road. I climb up in the back of my truck and stand on the roof my truck. I look through the binoculars and see three yahoos out there having target practice. I tried to call landowner but couldn't get a hold of him. My next call was to the sheriffs department. They gave me the runaround about sending somebody out see what was going on. Finally 45 minutes later a deputy arrived and I met him up there with the guys. They confirmed that they did have permission to be out there and they were just target practicing. He told him to leave and not come back. Now I'm thinking what else can go wrong. I drive my truck back to my spot and park now I'm contemplating whether or not I should go get back into the stand. I look to the north and it's pitch black with rain, thunder and lightning. I decided I better go sit as tomorrow I have to celebrate my wife's birthday and I won't be able to hunt at all and I'm back to work on Monday. So I slink back to my stand climb up and get settled by 4 o'clock. I was messing around on archery talk and the florida sportsman forum when I turn around and see a deer standing there. I slowly look around a little bit and I see two more deer to my left one at 30 yards and another one at 35. I guess I didn't hear them come in due to the light rain. The first deer I had seen I can't see its head as it is standing behind some bushes. The two does sit there for what seemed like forever. I was able to stand up ever so slowly and grab my bow. Finally they started walking to my right and I think this'll be perfect this buck is gonna follow right behind them.
The two does make a hard left away from me and head into a big cypress head. The buck is in their footsteps and I have one little window. He gets into the window and I baaaa and stop him he's quartering away pretty severely at 33 yards. I put my 30 yard in on his back rib and touch the release off the arrow of finds its mark. The buck and two does go crashing through the water. I watch them as far as I can and I see. It is really thick but I can see water splashing and then I see him fall. He gets back up falls again and then the woods are silent. I gave him 30 minutes anyway and climbdown from my tree stand. I tried to track what I could in the knee-deep water. Luckily I saw where he fell. I followed the trail he had taken and found where he had run into a paper tree and left some blood on it. I go a little further and find my arrow. Another 10 yards and there his is piled up.
I believe this is a buck I had on camera at the end of last year. I only got a few pictures of him last year. I believe he is an old deer. He was small and had scars all up and down his neck.
He ended up weighing hundred and 30 pounds on the hook. And I rough scored him at 99 inches gross. He had split brow tines on both sides but he broke off part of one of them on his left side.
My daughter could hardly wait for me to get home. She wanted to shoot him with "her" gun when I pulled in the driveway with him.
Image by e_orlando, on Flickr
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