The last few months have been awesome, I had taken two really nice bucks. The rut was almost here and my Sons and Grandson, and friends, would soon be here to hunt.
I still had two bonus doe tags, one for archery and one on the landowner permit, that allows you to use any weapon.
My neighbor had mentioned to me, that if I ever wanted to bow hunt in South Dakota, that they had an 80 acre parcel, and I would be welcome to try it. I thought that if everything worked out, I’d be able to spend some time hunting there. So, online the permit was ordered, but now it was my Sons and Grandsons turn.
The week before rifle season my Son Mike and his friend Joe each took a buck and doe on their archery tags, I joined them one evening and also filled one of my doe tags, again the Spitfire broadhead did it’s job. I had also talked my Son into using them and his deer were all one shot kills.
Two days after their departure my other Son and Grandson and a friend arrived for rifle season. I was a designated guide for my Grandson, as he was fourteen and had to be accompanied by an adult with a license. I loved every minuet of it, except he was spoiled from the last two years. He had taken two really nice bucks the previous years and wanted to take one as good or better. But as things worked out he finely took a nice eight point . His Dad also took an eight pt, and their friend a five pt. They only had three days to hunt, so actually they did really good. We hated to see everyone leave, but with jobs and school we understood.
Rut was in full swing now, and knew that I only had a short time before it would be over.
Rifle season was still on in South Dakota, I figured most of the deer would really be spooky by now, but still had those few days of rut left.
Thursday Nov. 19th was a day off, kids had worn me out, that 5:00 am every morning had taken it’s toll. Friday I was headed north, it is only about 10 miles to the property they run. They had only 80 acres there and 98 percent of it was pasture. But they had a gully with water dugout surrounded by trees that extended from the property to the north, where a hugh timber bottom connected to it. On the west side of that property was a corn field. I put up my tree stand about 60 yds south of the north fence line, where it all funneled down. Not a lot of timber here, but I could cover 40 yds, to the west and east.
That evening I watched three does north of the fence and a smaller buck, as he chased them till they finally disappeared into the timber to the north. The rest of the evening was quiet, but still it didn’t seem like a bad location for the stand.
The next morning I ran late and arrived there just before sunrise. I cussed myself for being late as I walked to the stand, it would be sunrise in no time.
It was cold, crisp and quiet that morning and as I got to the grove of trees where my stand was, I saw a deer jump the fence line heading towards me. It was a big doe — and jumping the fence right behind her was a wide racked buck. She turned to her left and headed into the grove right by my stand, the buck with his head to the ground right behind her. As he ran up to her , she took off into the pasture to my left and he was right behind. While they were chasing, I got an arrow out, nocked it, and hoped they would be close enough for a shot.
When they ran in front of me I drew down and followed the buck. The doe made a circle, counter clockwise from me, about fifty yards out and ended up going past me only five yards away, never noticing me.
But the buck did!
He made a complete stop and stood there trying to figure out what I was. Now try to imagine your sight pins, ALL of them, plus the top and bottom of your sight guard covering the chest area of a buck. That’s how close he was, I lowered the pins on the chest and released. Thunk! He turned and headed west up and over the hill towards my truck.
As I sat down, the shakes took over and I couldn’t believe what had just happened to me. Everything runs through your mind while your waiting for the time to go by, did I miss?, was it a good hit?. But looking out in the pasture, I spotted the carbon express arrow with the spitfire broadhead, and even from where I sat, I could see the crimson it was covered with.
I picked up the arrow after about fifteen minuets headed up the hill following the blood trail. I had blood, a good blood trail I thought to myself, yet I had gone 300 yards so far, and just as I topped the hill, there he was.
About fifty yards from the top, he had piled up by a small cedar tree. When I reached the buck, I sat there in awe, I have never taken a buck with such a wide span. I knew it would be over 20 inches, and tho the tines weren’t long they would do me very nicely. I was still amazed with the spitfire broadhead passing through the lower part of his lungs and he went that far, he ran on pure adrenalin, but it did the job.
After a lot of tugging and rope pulling I got him loaded in the truck, drove down and took my stand and climbers down and headed home.
The buck green scored 141 gross, span was 23 5/8 inches, wider the length of the longest main beam, so lost some there but will still P&Y around 136 after deductions.
Thank you Lord! This will be one year that I will never forget. Making a three pointer at the buzzer, or making three goals in hockey, I got a beautiful Hat Trick in 09.