airedale Posted November 15, 2021 Share Posted November 15, 2021 Been very slow where I Deer hunt, not having a big Deer population to begin with my area was devastated by the Gypsy Moth caterpillars, they defoliated most of the hardwoods and especially the Oaks and Beech so mast production was seriously depleted. My favorite spots have an almost sterile look and other than something just passing through there is no wildlife activity period. So I moved to some different terrain still hunting and found a small mast grove that was relatively untouched by the caterpillars and had produced acorns and beechnuts as I was seeing Squirrels everywhere. I was sure any Deer in the area would be hitting this spot sooner or later so that is where I have been hunting. Still hunting produced three sightings but no clear shots, my sits I saw plenty of Squirrels but no Deer. Up until today all of my hunting has been in the afternoons until dark, today I decided to get in early and see if my luck would change. It was raining this morning and while I hate getting wet I heeded "Fred Bear's" remark that rain is an excuse to hit the timber and get after them. Well I was not in those oaks long and I spot movement, put the binoculars up and could see a Spike Buck moving through, from the direction he was going I knew if I cut him off he would be coming through an open area presenting a shot as long as I did not spook him, and that is exactly what happened. Now to the good part, the rifle I have been hunting with is a Henry brass frame 357 mag single shot that I picked up a couple of years ago, I did a writeup on it in the gun section of the board. The ammunition was handloads of a powder I have never used (Win 296)and bullets that were being used for the first time, (Hornady 140 XTPs), on paper everything looked good. So at about 75 yards the Buck comes into the opening presenting a broadside shot, the little Leupold 2.5X ultra light's crosshairs settled behind the front shoulder and kerpow!, everything looked perfect! At the shot the Buck took off in a sprint, I see him tearing through the woods for a bit and then nothing. So I went to where he stood at the shot and could see blood right off the bat, a little bit of tracking and there he was piled up. Totally happy with the rifle, the same with the handload and bullet performance. Now for a couple of more firsts, I used a new knife for the first time, a little bitty USA case stacked leather handle straight blade that performed the field dressing as well as anything I have ever used and better than most and after listening to Wolc's praises for the Buttout device I purchased it and Wolc is right on the money that thing worked like a charm. So no I did not kill a monster but I am just a meat hunter and am totally happy with the way the hunt went and with all this new stuff working so well. At 73 years of age I am getting to what I consider bonus time and don't know how many more hunts are in the future. Glad I got the Deer hunting over because them Squirrels are going to be catching Hell shortly. 42 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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