Our bow only deer lease has a history that began in 1885. John Askew joined on for the 1988 season. At this time he and I have bowhunted on the same 1,000 acre deer lease for 25 years. He was a first time bowhunter and hadn’t hunted deer much. I went on my first bowhunt for deer when I was 15 in Florida, so I had some bow/deer hunting under my belt.
That first year John asked me a lot of questions about archery, bowhunting and whitetail bucks and does. And I gave him a bunch of answers and thoughts about hunting on our lease property. A few years back he stopped asking me questions. He had a handle on it.
On opening weekend this year John tagged two does on an afternoon bowhunt. Afterward, he dug in and waited for a mature buck.
One of his stands is called the Gate stand. It is a tripod stand set in the trees adjacent to an old fence line. That particular fence cuts through a major deer travel funnel which is also a hot spot when the rut gets going.
When the rut kicked off John went to the Gate stand and saw a couple of mature bucks but they were just out of bow range. Two days later during an afternoon hunt John saw a nice buck coming through the trees in his direction. John turned in his tripod seat and got ready if the buck gave him a shot opportunity.
Nobody I have ever hunted with can hold still like John Askew can. His torso is rock steady and he turns his head so steadily and slowly it looks like the brim on his cap is sliding around his head. So John was still as stone as the buck approached him. But the buck shifted course a little and came up on the right side of the tripod and stopped. John is right handed so he can’t shoot to the right.
The buck stood in the trees and watched the area across the fence for around 10 minutes. Then he left … disappearing into the woods.
An hour passed and a couple of does walked past the tripod to the fence. Their attention was on something on the opposite side. So was John’s, he saw antlers coming on the opposite side of the fence.
The buck was zeroed in on the does and jumped the old fence and he and the does zipped around the immediate area. And then the buck stopped … 15 yards away … broadside … in John’s shooting lane.
John drew very slowly and took aim. His arrow hit home and the buck went back over the fence and John heard it hit the ground near by. In 20 minutes daylight began to fade and John got down and checked for a blood trail. He found a generous one and followed it to his buck.
He texted me that he had a buck and I drove out to where he was. I took a few pics and we loaded the buck up and took him to the Whaley Deer Processor in Hamilton.
Earlier this season I received some Dead Ringer broadheads and gave John two 3-packs of the Rampage 2 Hybrid broadheads. When we field dressed the buck we were surprised by the wound the broadhead made. On impact the Rampage 2 is a small cut on contact configuration so the entry wound was modest. But once the broadhead passed through the skin the blades opened wide and made an extremely wide cut through both lungs and the opposite side. This new Dead Ringer broadhead is definitely impressive.