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Favorite Hunting Memory/Story

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  • Favorite Hunting Memory/Story

    Whats your favorite hunting story/memory? Or just something special you have experienced in the field.Feel free to share your stories!

    Good hunting

  • #2
    Nice Columbia Blacktail Buck

    This is my first attempt at posting a picture, hope it works see last line for pic.
    I have lived in Alaska for the past 28 years. My brother invited me archery hunting for blacktail deer in California. I have not hunted blacktail since leaving there for Alaska.
    When I was departing Fairbanks International Airport I ran into some out of state hunters that had just flown in to go caribou & sheep hunting. They saw me with my bow case and thought I had just finished hunting in Alaska. They asked where I had been hunting and how I had done. They couldnít believe I was leaving Alaska to go hunting in California!
    I told my brother when I got there that I was only interested in taking a nice blacktail buck. I didnít have to kill anything and would hold out for a nice one. I had killed my share of bucks as a young boy with my rifle. I would only have about 4-5 days to hunt. Brother had done some pre-season scouting and built a couple of tree stands near some active deer trails.
    First evening we hunted in separate tree stands on different deer trails. I got to my tree stand early to settle in and look things over. I looked at my tree stand, the trails near it and surrounding terrain. There were other live oak trees, a few yellow pines, red cedars, and some manzanita brush. I climbed up the oak tree about 15 feet to the stand. I found only 3 shooting windows available do to the thickness of the oak leaves and limbs. There were two windows on my right and one on the left. The best trail was to the right of my tree stand. One direction came from the south behind me and had a window just big enough see what might be coming up that trail. While the other end came from directly ahead of me. Out ahead of my position the trail forked and went around a cedar tree that was about 25 feet wide and 40 feet tall. First thing I did was to determine the distances to these windows. To the left of the cedar there was 20 yards, to the right side of the cedar tree was 25 yards. The only other trail was to the far left of my tree at 35 yards. This took the guesswork the distance to each shooting window. Just before dark a big forked horn buck in velvet came up from the south behind me and stopped at the 20 yard opening as if to test me, I passed on him.
    Second evening about an hour before dark my big forked horn came up from behind me again and stopped in the same opening as the night before, I resisted the temptation to shoot once again. That evening I told my brother about seeing the same buck again. I think my brother was beginning to wonder if I would be going home empty handed. But thatís hunting and you donít get a big animal by shooting the first buck that comes along.
    The third evening I sat in the same tree stand, saw a bunch of turkeys, a covey of mountain quail and 2 blue jays landed in the tree with me. Then about 2 hours before dark an average forked horn and a fairly nice 3 pointer came along together traveling the same direction that the big forked horn had came from the 2 past evenings. This forked horn stopped and paused in one of my shooting lanes (the 20-yard window). The 3 pointer was more nervous and kept moving at a trot passing through my 25 yard opening, but I had already decided to pass on him.
    Thirty minutes later I heard a slight noise up the trail in front of me. I looked up just in time to see a real nice 4 pointer coming around a corner about 45 yards away at a fast trot. He trotted down the trail toward me in the opposite direction all the other bucks had gone. I knew immediately he was the buck I was waiting for. All he had to do was come to the cedar tree and pass on either side of it into one of my shooting windows. If he passed the cedar going by on my right I would have a broad side shot. The buck kept trotting all the way to the cedar tree on the trail to my right, I knew there might not be much time so I had to be ready when he got there. As soon as he went behind the cedar tree I came to full draw with my bow. For some reason he stopped behind the cedar tree! He sensed something; he then made a right turn off the trail and under the cedar and stopped again! I knew I couldnít let down with my bow or he might see some movement. Also I had to be ready if he stepped into the opening on the left side of the tree. It seemed like eternity but finally he slowly stepped out from the tree. First his head and then step by step he came into the opening. It was not an ideal shot because he was facing me at 20 yards at a slight angle toward my left. I decided it was close enough to make the shot. I waited until he stepped forward with his left front leg, when he did I could see the bone at the top of his shoulder. I aimed about one inch behind it and let go of the release. I saw my arrow hit right where I was aiming. I was a bit surprised to see about 10 inches of arrow still sticking out and in 2 bounds he was in the brush and out of sight. He was running down hill through the trees and brush. I last heard him about 100 yards down the hill and then all was quite. My first impression was that it was a good hit.
    I forced my self to stay in that live oak tree stand for a full 30 minutes before getting down. I sat and thought of how when a nice animal comes along you just know it instantly. I have found that with sheep, bears, deer or most any animal if you have to make him look good, then he probably isnít.
    I got down from my tree stand; there was no blood to be found for the first 50 yards. I moved slowly back and forth across the hill while looking for blood or tracks. The ground was very hard packed. Then about 30 yards from my tree stand I found his tracks and followed them. I could see where he was taking 15-20 foot bounds. I went about another 20 yards and found my first spot of blood on a small limb. I marked the spot with a big stick so I could return to it if needed. Each time he landed from a bound he was leaving a little more blood. After going another 15 yards and the blood increased. This was encouraging! As I proceeded down the hill, the blood trail increased with each bound. He crossed a flat spot by a big water spring. This flat spot was about 150 yards from my tree stand and I found my arrow lying there undamaged. I followed the blood trail another 20 yards and found a magnificent blacktail buck lying there dead. His antlers were in velvet, he had four points on each side with two large eye guards. The antlers were 22inches wide by 20 inches tall, with big eye guards.
    I took this blacktail buck the third week of August 2003 (95 degree temps) in northern California. What made this so memorable was that after all these years I was able to hunt with my brother, on property we grew up on. At the local butcher shop I was told that it was the heaviest buck out of 30 deer they had seen so far that season, it weighed 115 # dressed out and hanging.
    Who would have thought, after 28 years in Alaska one of my most memorable hunts would take place in California!
    Happy Hunting.
    Look here for picture of buck! Hope this works.


    • #3
      That's a tough proposition. Rabbit hunting in Ohio with my grandfather, his brother and son, and my brothers brings back nothing but good memories, even if we didn't get that many rabbits. The 17 day caribou hunt and float trip with my brother ranks right up there. This year's hunt where my daughter took her first big game animal, a nice bull caribou. Every one of my hunts are very GOOD memories, even those we didn't take game. You know what they say, the worse day of hunting is better than the best day at work.


      • #4
        I'm still kinda young, I guess, 25. But just goin from me being on the hunts with my dad and his partners to me and him now being partners is the best thing I can come up with. Plus we put more in the freezer that way. lol

        Lots of good times hunting and fishing trips in PWS, the Yukon and Denali but due to military then startin my own family I really lost out on alot of trips over the past 5 years but this spring should be a new slate since I'm moving back to Anchorage now I can get back to the things I enjoy!! My Yukon trip is probly the best trip I've ever been on. Hopefully I'll be back out there next fall.

        Pic from my 03 Yukon trip.
        We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed


        • #5
          Caribou hunt with my Father

          All my time spent hunting is unforgetable and made up of great memories. I think I would say that my first caribou trip with my Dad is on the top of the list. All the time preparing for the hunt, choosing a load to shoot, shooting at the range, getting gear ready, etc...Then the day flying in. All the game we saw flying in.
          It was such a good hunt and successful one as well. We brought home three animals and two nice racks. We had some major high winds for a couple of days and were tent bound for one full day. Shot ptarmigan right out of the tent. We also caught grayling out of the lake we landed on. Chased one grizzley. Saw a monster moose about 5 miles away. The old man talked me down with WHY I should't go after him. HA!
          All and all it was a great time spent with my Dad.


          • #6
            My favorite memory is a tough choice. Hunting with my wife when we were engaged (for muleys) was sure fun.

            I have to say that being the third son of three brothers each a year apart put me into a competative mood at birth wherein my fathers attention was concerned. I never had much luck winning that until we moved to AK. I have a vivid memory of my father giving my brothers and I identical fishing rods and reels and going fishing. I remember where I was when I decided that this was going to be my "thing" and I would not relent ever!

            In that way it was sort of a triumph to be moose hunting up on Manchu and Skyline out back of Eielson with Dad (Bill #1) and a very good friend of his and the family (Bill #2). We didn't see a thing 'ceptin a grouse that I spotted on a switch-back. Bill#2 said that since I spotted it, I had to shoot it. I had fired my dads .357 and .44 and our .22's and probably others, but never a shotgun (although I had won a nice side by side for eating a huge pepper from my uncle that I lament not having every time I think of it!)

            There I stood attempting a 30+yard shot with a heavy shotgun arching my back like the St. Louis Arch cause the gun was so heavy. They held the barrel up for me kinda (which made aiming impossible for any of us). I blew the shot and watched the grouse head for parts unknown, but my smile had nothing to do with the grouse, or any old moose, and everything to do with being Dad's hunting and fishing buddy.

            I was Dad's primary huntin and fishin buddy for as long as he remained active hunting and (still fishing). A lot of the time I thought that was the only common ground we could find. The moose and grouse may have had a sporting chance, but my brothers never did!
            Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.


            • #7
              My first kill was pretty cool, after a season and a half I finally got a baldplate
              I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.


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