As I sit and write this we have put three full weeks of the 2012 deer season behind us already. Holy cow, that's the first time I've looked at it that way and it's actually a bit depressing!! It seems like it just got started and now we're nearly through the first month of the season already. I guess I shouldn't be surprised, it always goes by way, way too fast!
As usual we headed into this season with some pretty high hopes and, after last years awesome opening day, we were feeling like it was just a matter of "when" as opposed to "if". The weather was going to be good and the trail cam's were showing us some great pictures including some shots of our #1 target buck this season. We got up to the property the day before the season opened and took care of some last minute chores while discussing how we thought the morning would go and where we wanted to sit to start the season. Hitting the bed that night was easy but getting a good nights sleep was no easy task.
My view opening morning, looking over the plot screen into the turnips.
I spent the first morning of the season in a stand that I was very confident in. The stand we call "The Plateau Stand" is a stand overlooking our largest food plot (the Plateau Plot as we call it) and was producing tons of pictures on the trail cameras. I was a bit nervous about getting into the stand without pushing deer out but thanks to the lay of the land and the plot screen that we planted this year I was able to get to the tree without hearing any deer take off. When I got into the tree my confidence was sky high and I couldn't wait for shooting light to arrive and for the season to get started.
When 10am came and went and the three of us had yet to see a deer we were certainly left scratching our heads. We headed in for a some lunch and spent some time discussing the morning and getting a gameplan together for the afternoon. My brother in-law's younger brother Bradley decided to head back to the stand he had spent the morning in and Chris and I opted for a change of scenery and headed to different stands than we had sat that morning.
Bradley's first buck ever, The Goofy 10, is a buck we knew very well.
The afternoon was moving along slowly and I hadn't seen anything other than a few raccoons when I got a text from Bradley saying he had just shot a buck, his first deer ever with a bow or a gun. I quickly asked for more details and before I could get an update my phone was ringing and Chris was calling me. I figured he was calling to say that Bradley had shot a deer but was surprised to hear him say that he had also just shot a buck.
Turns out that the buck Bradley shot had covered about 450-500yds and ended up 18yds from Chris' tree in a thicker bedding area. Chris could see some blood on the deer and assumed it was Bradleys buck but rather than wait and see if it was going to go down Chris took a shot and was able to drop it within sight of his stand.
It's pretty wild how it all unfolded but in the end it was a great day for Bradley and we were all excited to go get the buck after dark. It was buck that we knew very well and that we called "The Goofy 10". We had several trail cam pictures and videos of this buck going from bases and brow tines to full velvet to hard horn and we were really happy to add the hero shots to go with them.
This picture of The Goofy 10 was taken a mere 20yds from where Bradley shot him.
The next trip up to the property was October 5th through the 7th and while I was able to actually see some deer and had some fun encounters the hunting was still a bit slow. There was a nice cold front rolling through but along with that front came three straight days of high winds. Sunday night the winds finally died just as the sun hit the horizon and within minutes deer were piling into the cut corn field I was sittin on. Unfortunately that was my last hunt of the trip so the weekend would end with some good sightings but still no encounters with any bucks, let alone one of our target bucks.
Getting those first few hunts of the year in the books is always a great feeling. While the hunting was certainly a bit slower than we had hoped, we know it will pick up and we certainly aren't worrying just yet. As of today nobody has hunted our property in 15 days and by the time I am back up there this weekend it will have been 18 full days since the last hunt. Hopefully that time away will have the deer relaxed. There is another great cold front coming in Friday and the cornfield on our south border is now cut so I have a feeling I will be in for a great weekend in the woods.
Three weeks down and 10 to go, it should be a fun ride!!
Take care, and thanks for reading.