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Thread: October Sitka Buck

  1. #1
    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Default October Sitka Buck

    I enjoy a good hunt just as much as the rest of us. Roaming through the open old growth timber knowing there could be a buck or bear around any corner really keeps a hunter alert and focused. Hunting October bucks is just that, a focused active endeavor.

    I'm really tickled this October. Folks around Sitka just don't hunt much in October stating "The bucks just disappear". They push out of the alpine vegetation. They are super fat from a summer of eating and as such don't feed as usual. They are gaining range and establishing where the does and other bucks are. The bears are still out. So you have a fat and focused animal hanging out in the steep heavily vegetated rainforest hillsides. This has never been a glass and stalk hunt. I leave the spotter at home.

    So far I'm pleased to say I've brought home two of these elusive October Sitka bucks. I didn't photograph the one last weekend. I really just wanted to break it down and continue scouting an new area. This photo is of the one from yesterday.

    The hunt......

    Well, I boated from Sitka to a semi remote hillside, anchored off shore and used my packraft to paddle in. My partner and I roamed up 1,400ft of oldgrowth timber to a muskeg ridgeline. We didn't commit to the open muskeg though, we roamed the edge and still hunted. It was fabulous. We got into a single small buck who will live to grow. We also got into a group of three does who moved to within bow range because of their curiosity. We stood there just like statues in full camo and they walked right up us and around until they got wind. We did a drive on a ridge top. My partner pushed another doe that he didn't even see. They can be very sneaky. Then on the top of the ridge at 1,800 ft, I found a pair of does bedded and decided to sneak to within bow range of em, just for fun. I was about 20 ft, yes ft from these two when a buck to my left caught my wind and bolted down below me. I only had enough time to chamber, confirm buck, lead and fire. He was cruising so fast that at about 150 yrds I lead him just a bit and still ended up busting him a bit back. The .416 Ruger is my new favorite. It really makes up for foul shooting. Which I'm not ashamed to say happened in this situation. I prefer a cleaner shot situation but when you have been hiking for 8 hours and finally find the buck your after it's boom time. We broke him down in about an hour and took the cape down off the hill. He's got a dandy face. So if anyone is looking for a premium cape, I've got one without damage or blood. We rolled off the hill in the dark and enjoyed a clear moon lite run back into Sitka. October hunting at it's finest. IMG_0767.jpg

  2. #2
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Good stuff! The way you describe this hunt reminds me of my two hunts on Afognak. I've never been on Baranof, but I imagine the topography and vegetation are somewhat similar. We would still hunt through the timber and often have deer within 30 yards when they were first spotted. We also had experiences similar to yours with does at very, very close range. Once we had two feed to within 3 feet (yes, feet...just like you) while crouching next to a tree in full camo. Those are the experiences that make hunting truly magical. I love the high alpine and long distances common to sheep and caribou hunting, but man, still hunting moss covered forests are among my favorite hunting experiences ever. Thanks for sharing this. I'm thinking I'm going to need to make it down your way sooner than later.

  3. #3
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Good on ya!!! That's some interesting stuff to walk around in, especially with grade. Really enjoyed hunting down there and hope to make it back some time. That is a beautiful buck. Would make a wonderful mount.

    Chris

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    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Now that sounds like a fun way to hunt deer!

  5. #5
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    I don't care what anyone says, October is my favorite month to hunt Sitka Blacktails. Sometimes it takes a little work locating them, but it's worth it. And man you can't find more prime meat to eat.
    An opinion should be the result of thought, not a substitute for it.
    - Jef Mallett

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    "We stood there just like statues in full camo and they walked right up us and around until they got wind"

    That's so cool and sounds like a terrific trip. Thanks for posting the story and pics.

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Yup, Twodux, we just got done butchering him up. There was so much fat and no gamey rut smell. Yummy!

    Hoytguy will get this cape and use it for someones mount. I'll ship it out next week. It's really nice.

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    "The .416 Ruger is my new favorite. It really makes up for foul shooting."


    I dont think so, Bighorse.


    Good shooting is Good shooting, 'specially on a running deer.......... I see no foul at all.

    Delicious sucess!
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

  9. #9
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    Nice Deer man!

    I'm gonna be over in Sitka on Tuesday for 7 weeks.....I may have to poach some of your deer

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bighorse View Post
    Yup, Twodux, we just got done butchering him up. There was so much fat and no gamey rut smell.
    I throw that nice white fat in when I'm grinding burger. Love Sitka fat.
    An opinion should be the result of thought, not a substitute for it.
    - Jef Mallett

  11. #11
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    That is a good looking cape.I always save the capes and use them to lower my taxi bill or get a euro mount for free .

  12. #12

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    Very nice.

  13. #13
    Sponsor Hoytguy's Avatar
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    Nice buck Chris, congrats.

  14. #14

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    Nice Job Bighorse...had to give the TI back and go to the cannon huh Congrats on a beauty.

  15. #15
    Member icb12's Avatar
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    A .416 Ruger for Blacktails? Holy Crap.

    Good looking little buck.

  16. #16
    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Grin......Might as well be practicing for spring 2014 when my name comes up again for brown bear.

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