By Eric Lindner
VETERAN'S DAY SHOCKER!
The 2013 deer season started with great anticipation, with four nice bucks showing up on the trail camera in Meigs County on a regular basis. With only one of the four being spotted in October, all was not lost because two different bucks were also seen at two different stand locations. October rolled into November with plenty of buck sightings occurring, including the four on the trail cam. The doe population seemed low with only a handful of them in the area, but the ones that were seen were usually being closely followed and chased by multiple bucks at the same time.
With vacation time approaching, the week of Veteran's Day I had scheduled time off November 11-15. A good friend having property in Amesville invited me to hunt the first morning on his land. I have had the opportunity to hunt this farm in the past several years. Big ridges flowing down to open fields, surrounded by thick brush that seem to hide deer like it should, is the best way to describe the property. Several years ago, I took a nice ten point and just last year I took my first coyote with a bow from the same stand that I was planning to hunt on Monday. I have learned from hunting this stand before that you better be standing and ready for action to take place quickly. The stand site is located at the bottom of a large ridge in a semi-wooded open area that separates a thicket from a field. The deer travel from the thick area and use the open area as a staging area before entering the field to feed. The buck I took several years earlier was spotted with three other bucks and wasted no time stepping into my shooting lane, mere inches from the base of the tree. The coyote last year came right off the steep ridge to my left and came into the open area and, for some reason, did an about-face and was passing me heading back to thick woods. When I squeaked with my lips, just as I was drawing my recurve he stopped just as my arrow zipped through him, just a few yards past where the ten point was shot.
Monday morning was finally here and the thermometer read 22 degrees when I left Albany at 5:15 a.m. Arriving at my friend's shop, we made the 15 minute walk down the long ridge, said our good lucks and parted ways headed to our favorite spots. I climbed into my stand, hooked the safety strap, settled into my seat in the dark. As I waited for light, I began thinking of a friend that was seriously injured in the Army while serving our country in Iraq, and then of all our veterans who put themselves in harms way protecting us so we can hunt and enjoy this beautiful land that God has created. It was just breaking light so I was thinking about standing as I knew animals had a way of just showing up at this stand without warning. A quick look to my right, 75 yards on a tractor path, I see the form of big bodied deer walking into the thicket away from me. It was still too dark so I was unable to see any antlers but judging by the size of the body I had little doubt that it had head gear. I stood immediately after he went out of sight and looked at my watch, it was 6:40 a.m.
Over the next 55 minutes I was toasty warm in the cold due largely to the stick on body warmers I had placed on my chest and two warmers in my front pockets. It was very quiet on the ground due to rain we had received just days prior. At 7:35 a.m., the silence was broken with a very short buck grunt that sounded like it was close. I glanced down behind me and at the base of the tree stood a nice, mature buck. Rustling in the leaves in front of me made me glance back around to see a big doe right below me 5 yards past the buck. It really shocked me as to how these two deer had snuck in on me and I had no idea,it seemed as if they materialized right out of the ground. I slowly glanced back and the buck had turned walking 10 yards away from me but had stopped to look at the doe. He needed to take a few steps to his right and the buck would be only 12 yards, in the same spot as the coyote the year before. He grunted as he stepped forward while keeping an eye on the doe, having no idea what was coming toward him as I drew and released, hitting him a little more forward than I wanted, I was kicking myself for such a chip shot but knew I had passed through him. He ran approximately 35 yards into the brush and raised straight up on his rear legs falling with a crash onto his back. The blood trail showed right away an artery had been severed.
It was a short hunt that morning but once again I was very thankful to spend time on this property. For this hunt I used a Black Widow Recurve with traditional Gold tip carbons tipped with 125 gr. 2 bladed Magnus broadheads.