Thanks guys! I know ya'll ain't gonna believe this...
When I shot the 8 pt. he did a mule kick and ran over the ridge out of sight. As I stood there in my tree stand shaking with excitement, the doe in heat came into view from my right and walked into the thick brush behind me. I had just filled my two buck tags when the monarch of the forest materialized out of nowhere. I have no idea how many points he had but his rack was about as tall and wide as the 9 pt. that I had just killed with MUCH greater mass. He walked along the same path as the hot doe, stood for just a moment at the thicket's edge, then slowly disappered...
Ammo Used: Handload consisting of W296 and a 300 gr Cast Performance WFNGC
Sex of Deer (# of points if buck): doe
Details about the hunt: I climbed up in my treestand about 4:00 and waited. Around 5:00 p.m. I saw movement to my left about 80-100 yards away. As I sat and waited, several deer appeared to be feeding in that area but all I could see were their hind ends. I waited about 10 minutes to see what they were going to do and finally they began walking toward me. All of a sudden I saw a deer right in front of me, running toward the deer to my left. Evidently that deer had come up the opposite side of the ridge that I was hunting on and topped out on the ridge right in front of me and it had either seen me or caught my scent. Anyway, all of the deer were now on full alert and getting ready to leave out; game over. I looked around and spotted one deer about 75 yards out facing me head-on. I pulled up my knee in my treestand and rested my .44 mag revolver on my knee. I put the crosshairs of the 2X leupold on the deer's chest and it felt very steady so I decided to try the shot.
At the shot, the deer jumped straight up in the air and all of the deer left the area. I made good mental notes of the place that the deer was standing when I shot it and came down the tree. I walked over to the area and immediately found a patch of white hair. This puzzled me since the deer was facing me head-on. I hoped that the 300 grain Cast-Performance bullet had struck the deer in the center of its chest and penetrated the deer fully and that the white hair was hair from its rump. I began walking in the direction that the deer had gone and it began bleeding well. To make a long story short I trailed, and I trailed, and I trailed. Right before dark I actually heard the deer crash off about 50 yards in front of me. Overnight temps were going to be in the 20's so I decided to back off and try again in the morning.
I went back this morning and picked up the blood trail right where I had left off. It was still bleeding fairly well and I trailed the deer right to the edge of a small creek. On the opposite side of the creek, I couldn't locate ANY blood. I could not figure out where the deer had crossed the creek. I finally gave up and began searching the woods blindly on the other side of the creek. About 50 yards from where the deer had crossed the creek I noticed some fresh turkey scratching. I didn't pay alot of attention to it but I happened to notice that the scratching was isolated to a very small circular area and the leaves had been piled up in a mound. I had never seen turkeys scratch in a circle like that. Here is a photo of what I saw:
My mind wandered back to my brown bear hunt in Alaska where the guides had told me stories of brown bears caching their kills, covering them with grass, mud, branches, whatever and coming back later to feed on them. I thought to myself "no way" but kicked into the pile of leaves. My boots touched something solid!
I couldn't believe it. Evidently the deer had laid down and died and sometime in the night a black bear had found the deer and cached it. It fed very little on the carcass, only taking a few bites of the deer's left rear leg, covered it with leaves, and left. I examined my shot and I had missed my point of aim by about three inches, low and left. The cast bullet entered the deer just inside its right front shoulder, clipped the bottom of the right lung, barely missed the heart, traveled through the low part of the chest and abdominal cavities, and out its left rear leg. It had traveled a LONG way and I was very glad to have recovered this deer!
Sex of deer: 1 big nanny and 1 small doe Private land
Details: I get off of work at 5:00 so since I had everything in my truck I decided to go straight to a ground blind on one of my food plots. I got settled in at about 5:15 and the waiting game started. Ten minutes later this big doe and yearling popped out at about 50 yards--thank you Jesus!!! I waited for a good broadside shot to present itself and when it did---BOOM! The big nanny jumped about 6 feet in the air. When she came down she ran out of the plot with her chest barely off the ground. I knew she wouldn't go far.
I reloaded as fast as I could and when I looked back up the small doe was frozen like a statue. Since I make my own jerky it wasn't a hard decision--BOOM! DEAD RIGHT THERE!!!!
I sat there and right at dark another big doe came into the plot at about 70 yards and I thought why not-I need all the jerky meat I can get so I dropped the hammer on her. Clean miss. I don't know if I shot high or low but she just through the flag up and trotted off. Oh well. Maybe she'll show bak up tomorrow evening.
CONGRATS TO THE WINNERS!! Heck congrats to all who actually participated (the son and I may as well not have joined since we didn't see a flippin thing and the weather stopped us from hitting the woods far to often).