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Big D's 2011 Journal

Big D

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Western PA - WMU 2E

Well I was able to get my annual early start by heading to PA for their archery opener. The first hour was good weather with temperatures in the 40's. Then the rain started after that and continued all day. Despite that, the deer were moving and I sighted ten by 9:30 a.m.: all does and fawns.

I had a doe tag and was determined to take one if the opportunity presented itself. The first doe of the day was actually in bow range by 7:15. She came in head on to 15 yards so I waited for her to turn. She did, but it was abruptly and she turned straight away....ugh. She was not on alert, just a quick turn to feed and walked away.

All the sightings came to a halt at 9:30 and I climbed down before 11:00. I switched up in the afternoon and went to an old stand about 300 yards away. I bumped three deer, again no antlers on the way to the stand at about 3:00. Those were the first "white flags" of the day.

Nothing came by until 6:00, when a button buck showed up. I left my bow on the hanger, but then saw a nice mature behind him and a doe fawn. I slowly grabbed my bow and she was walking in a good line for me to take a shot. I drew as she passed a medium sized maple and the doe walked right into a lane 20 yards away. WHAP, a good broadside shot.

She actually fell, got back up, and ran directly away from me....towards the steep downhill slope. I waited 30 minutes before climbing down. My arrow was buried in the ground at a 45 degree angle with good blood on the fletching. Unfortunately, I had difficulty finding blood on the ground due to the rain. I walked back and forth all the way to the lip of the hill where the drop off is. Then pulled out as it was getting dark and it was going to be a cold night.

My uncle and I headed up this morning and kicked up a small six point on the way in. We found her about eighty yards from the top of the hill. A field dressing job, quick drag to the road, and then we headed to the butcher. I am on the board for a good start to the 2011 season. :D

My uncle's brother was hunting on the other side of the property and actually saw five bucks, all in the morning. I may have to bring the climber next week and hunt on that side.

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Biz, 2E connects to 2G and is SW. It has parts of Clearfield, Indiana, and Cambria counties. I hunt in Indiana county just east of 119. My uncle and his brothers all hunt with crossbows as well, but I stick with my compound.

It is good to see Fletch from the old site. I know that you will be putting one or more down this year. Thanks to G-Man as well.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks Burt & Zemmer.

Well it has been awhile since my last update. I have been keeping track, but have had limited action up until yesterday. So here we go....

Western PA – WMU 2E – 10/8

It was a nice morning, but turned into too hot a day for whitetails…over 70 degrees by noon. I only had three deer come into range (one doe and two fawns). I hunted until 1:00 p.m. and then headed back to WNY since I was going to the Bills game on Sunday.

Freedom, NY – 9N – 10/15

The NYS Southern Zone bow opener: rain and high winds…did not hunt. Wimped out or played it smart? You be the judge.

Freedom, NY – 10/16

I did make the afternoon hunt despite more rain and wind. I kicked out a small buck on my way to the stand. That was the only sighting on the day. It looks like my old rain gear is shot since I was soaked, so I ordered new rain gear.

Freedom, NY – 10/22

I hunted the upper swamp stand in the a.m. Zero sightings despite good deer sign. Hunted the hardwoods in the afternoon, again booted a small buck walking in.

Freedom, NY – 10/23

I started in the hardwoods in the morning since I kicked a buck out twice in the afternoon. Around 9:00 a.m. a buck started towards me. I grabbed my bow. He turned out to be a small six point. He gave me opportunities at 20 yards broadside and 25 yards quartering away. I let him pass to wait for bigger buck.

Freedom, NY – 10/29

Hunted the same stand in the morning and saw nothing. I took my climber just above the overgrown apple orchard in the afternoon. A doe fawn walked right under me around 3:00 p.m. I let her pass and left the climber in the orchard for Sunday. There was a good sized doe in the field on my way out at dusk.

Freedom, NY – 10/30

It was back to the orchard for the morning…nothing. This spot is usually a guaranteed spot for sightings, but has limited shot opportunities due to the cover. I pulled the climber and moved back to the hardwoods in the afternoon…total shutout.

Freedom, NY – 11/6

BAM!!!! The hardwoods produced a great morning. There were deer everywhere, mostly bucks. I am sure that there were some repeat offenders, but I saw fifteen deer by noon. Only three were does (two adults, one fawn.

At first light I had an eight point across the draw at 60 yards. He looked like he was going to cross to me, but then bedded. A spike came right under me sniffing the scent trail I laid down (let him pass). He walked across the draw and actually sniffed the bedded buck without repercussion. They both walked away and down the hill.

An hour later there were bucks all over at about 100 yards across the draw. Three were crashing after a doe. They all looked small and I could not see clearly enough to count points.

Then a small (very small) seven came by. He gave me a nice broadside shot. He actually looked like a four point, but had four tiny points on the right and three on the left. If it were later in the season, he may have tempted me.

A doe and fawn crossed the draw below me. I planned on taking the doe, but she never turned and they moved on.

Finally, Mr. Big showed up. A really nice eight point was carefully trailing a doe on the far side of the draw. I was hoping they would cross. She did, he did not. Plus the six point I passed up on 10/23 decided to trot in. He saw that big buck and froze to my right. He stood like a statue, probably hoping to avoid a butt-kicking. The doe and buck kept walking away and I never had a close enough shot opportunity.

I then saw three small bucks again far off across the draw at different times. There are some scrapes on the hill. I could not make out what they were.

So I moved the climber for the afternoon and things slowed down. A four point high-tailed it across the field when I moved the stand. After that, I saw a lone spike at last light. What a day.

Freedom, NY – 11/7

I love vacation, but only saw one deer (unidentified) despite being on the stand all day. Hopefully it picks back up tomorrow.

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