Another evening out in Loch Raven. I took a different approach to this evening, I planned on seeing nothing. The last several trips out in the woods I have seen either nothing or next to nothing so why get your hopes up right? I was hunting with a good friend of mine as well.
Well, it was a perfect afternoon for hunting, got in my stand a little later than I would have liked, but still in plenty of time. Sat for a while and was falling asleep I was just comfortable in my stand and the sun was hitting me and nothing was moving. About what I expected, when my friend texted me and said a big doe was coming my way! Well, I got ready and a little while later a few more texts the doe walked about 90 yards away into a clearing that was out in front of me and continued to feed. A few minutes later several more does and a spike buck took the same path and went out to feed. After a few more texts I learned there were several other bucks with them as well that were fighting up on top the hill out of my sight line. Finally, a good 8 pointer came across the hill and he too went into the clearing to feed. A little while later a 6 pointer, followed by a 7 pointer all took the same path at 90 yards away and went out to feed and such. Now it was getting to be 4:15 pm and I heard something on the other hill behind me a long way off running. I heard something come crashing into the bottom below me and stop. I got ready in a hurry not knowing what had pushed the deer and how quickly they would come through where I was hunting. I kept looking and a I found that there were 6 does all coming out into this clearing below and headed right up toward my stand. It was perfect and they would walk right by me for a perfect shot.
Well, nothing is perfect in this world. They got about 25 yards away and directly behind my tree ( one place you cannot shoot with a bow) and they stopped when I heard the other deer come running out of the other clearing at the top of the hill. They ran into the woods I was in and stopped 75 yards away. However, this point the group of does on alert. Finally, they went back to eating and the other deer were working back up the hill. I got myself in to position to take a shot and and just needed this one doe to walk 5 - 10 yards further forward and she was mine! Well, the bad luck of the season continued when they one of the other does heard or smelled something threw her head up and took off running about 50 yards. All the other does followed her and then slowly walked across the hill toward my friend. That was the end of my evening they took off and the other deer and gone over the hill and were working further away. I was bummed that I didn't get a shot, but I got real close and saw 12 deer! To make it worse the same group of does finally made it over to my friend after they took off from me, second chance for one of us to get a deer. Well, they finally walked under him and he finally had a shot and drew his bow back and when he did one of the other does spotted him and they all took off. So, we both struck out on the same group of does.
That being said, it was a fun evening in the woods, lots of activity, saw 4 bucks and 8 does. I think that is more deer than I have seen in one hunting trip in a long long time! I'll get back out this week hopefully even with the holidays! Being off work means maybe I'll have time to sneak into the woods 🙂
Anyone else get out today on this first day of late muzzleloader season? How did you do?