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rcook72

Horror story

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So I am a bird hunter who has always wanted to deer hunt. I bought my bow 2 yrs ago and have practiced enough that I am a pretty decent shot. I have sat in a stand a few times and seen deer never get closer than 60 yds or so. I told my brother in law who is an avid hunter. He told me he could guarantee he can put me on some deer. I told him I want it to be like a TV show where the deer come in and interact with each other and never even know that your there. So here's my story, I will try to give the short version: He puts me on his favorite food plot on a farm that he has been managing for a few years. I get suited up and scent covered real good and am in the stand early. My furthest shot would be 30yds to the far side of the food plot. 5:15 two does come in and cut across plot for about 5 min. 5:45 does come back and enter plot 15 yds to my 9 o'clock. im anxious and want to take my first deer ever. I hang tight and 5 min late a smaller 6pt comes in and chases one doe around for a minute and then starts interacting and messing around with other doe. 10 min go by and 2 more does enter plot at my 9 o'clock again 20yds out. I really want my first deer but was trying to rationalize not popping such a small buck and spending all night butchering a doe when i had to get up at 2:30am the next morning. I just watch take some video clips and pictures. Its starting to get close to dark and decide to use my grunt to see what the little buck does. after not alot of reaction I grunt 3 more times and then in the woods behind me I can here some thing hauling Butt to get there in a hurry. This guy was coming from a ways because I could here him coming at a pretty good pace for about 20 plus seconds. I stand up grab my bow and turn to my 9 o'clock and watch. Mr. 10 pointer shows up and starts sparing lightly with the little guy. They circle each other and check one another out. Now he is broadside at 20 yds or so. I let her rip and whack!! he takes off across the plot crashes throught the trees into a ravine and silence after about 5 seconds........................

Then I am wondering why I didn't get the buck fever everyone talks about. I look down and noticed my knees where shaking like a dog kicks when you scratch him in his sweet spot. I couldnt stop them from knocking. right then I know I was hooked..

So I go look for my arrow.. couldnt find it in the grass it was starting to get dark. Oh well right who needs an arrow when I can get mr. big lying in the ravine 60 yds away. I am waiting for my brother in law to get there since I text him about my success. by the time he gets there its 7pm. ask me did you mark your spot where you shot him.... No I know right where it was at.... we look.. no arrow no blood... Did you mark where he went in the woods yep right at that tree with the white busted limb... Right side or left?... Right side.. you sure?... Yep, I think so.... are you sure?... NO... so now were searching for blood along the tall grass line and cant find anything... we look for 2 hrs... nothing.

He went to hunt that stand this am and told me he will find it.. they usually run down hill in that ravine to the creek...OK I will wait for your phone call and come help you... 4 hrs of looking not deer..... I cant tell you how bummed I am about A) possibly wounding and not killing him. B) Not finding him, my first deer.. it was a buck and I did it with a bow!!! Any suggestions? Nice short story huh?

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I can probably find a similar story on here in a about 12 different places. It happens to the best of us. You will learn from your mistakes, it suckst that they can be so costly, but it really fuels the fire to start taking it even more seriously and doing all the little things right, like marking where you shot it, and where it went into the woods, etc...

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If there erally is a creek in that ravine, I would really check that out. Wounded deer usually head towards water.

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Welcome to bowhunting... great to hear another is hooked. It happens to the best of us. Where did you hit the deer? Not much information on the shot. Did you look out in the food plot for hair? Chalk it up as a valuable lesson learned. Learned the biggest one right away and unfortunately the hard way. Most of us have. Shot placement is huge with archery tackle. In the heat of the moment a lot can go wrong. Climb back up in a tree and really focus on drilling the next one.

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Back to the practice butt! And don't hesitate to shoot a doe so you get some practice in drawing back without being detected, picking out the right spot, hitting it, and then you get some practice following the blood trail. Study deer anatomy and remember you're shooting from above at an angle.

Good luck!

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I would take more time and get out and look for it, it does happen to everyone. You couldn't tell where you hit it?? I'd keep looking and looking if I were you . (I'm not judging you or talking down at all) THis is part of hunting it happens to the best of us so definitely give that animal your best effort. Watch for kicked up leaves broken branches. Circle and circle again. GOOD LUCK

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Take more than one person and go look for it in the daylight. If it rained, you probably lost the blood and the trail. In the future, Look for tracks or kicked up dirt. I've found deer by following their path when there isn't any blood. If you could have, take the morning off of work. I know it sounds like a lot, but we owe it to the animal to try and do our best to recover it. (I am not judging you personally) When I go out and look, I try and take at least 1 if not 2 or 3 more people with me.

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We trailed a little spike muley out in WY last week that a buddy had hit hard, but not centered, with a rifle. It was three legged & had huge wound on it & went approximately half a mile up & down ravines. It was still alive & able to get up when he shot it. It was in very bad shape & other than some initially it bled very little. You very easily could have walked right past it somewhere.

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It is entirely possible that you hit high lungs and caught the opposite shoulder blade preventing a pass through or it hit the shoulder blade on the right side and didn't penetrate fully to reach the vitals. Was there a loud smack after the shot indicating a shoulderblade hit? Bummer of a story, good luck with the search. Might even want to listen for crows sometimes they can clue you in as well.

Tunrevir~

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Ohh yes there was a loud smack... being a novice thats why I thought I hit him so well. And for taking the day off I would have if I could have. Unfortunately there was no way possible that I could have because of crappy circumstances at work (other Key carring managers are in michigan helping open a new building leaving me to run the show)So when I wrote my original post my Brother in Law went back with his dog and looked for hours on his ranger. The next day we both went back looking total he/us put about 8+ hours into it as i WANT that darn deer!! I feel real bad but I am going to go try and fill my tag on Monday with an older 9 pt my brother thinks he can get me on that He has seen on his property while he has been hunting and scouting this past month. I still havent given up though on tues I am going to video for my Brother in Law and I am going early with the 4wheeler to cruise around looking for birds and expanding the search. I figure the coyotes have got him by now but hope I can do a european mount on him if I can find him.

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Also Fyi many lessons learned. I will definetly pay more attention to the small things. Marking the shot, Entry into the woods or angle of escape. bringing some TP to mark blood trails. Hopefully the next time i can get by the excitement and know where I hit him or her. I think I was pretty solid in not rushing the last shot and am confident I know where to place the shot and have practiced 20yd shots from the same ladder stand. Guess I just chalk the last screw up to first timers... will keep you guys posted, thanks for the support and encouragement not to give up looking.

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