08/27/07 08:09 PM
Proud To Be Back
Loc: Memphis,Tennessee U.S.A.
Man, maybe the finest trip yet. Can becoming so aquainted with an an unreal climate, restaurants, and 9000 acres, get any better.....just maybe. |
As we were approaching Clayton on Thursday evening, just about 15 miles from the hotel the temps had been in the mid to upper 90`s all the way.
The last 15 miles got interesting. We met the sweetest cold front I have ever seen. I looked at the thermometer in the truck and saw it at 88 degrees as the super dark cloud to the north began giving hard gusting winds.
The temp dropped quickly and was at 70 degrees in about 5 minutes.
It didn`t stop there as we were greeted our stop in the parking lot of the Days Inn, to an unbelieveable 68 degrees.
The weather was as good as the hunting, lows in the low 60`s and highs in the mid 80`s Saturday.
I had a great time hunting, and was glad to see both of my invitees killed out opening day with David having a great time, and a hard earned trophy. He made a great shot I`m told, and the proof was a beautiful speedgoat, one to be surely proud of.
Hard work with the handloads, and a great rifle, and rest are the ingredients for success.
Carlos killed a nice youger buck that he was rushed to pick out of a running herd he had been stalking that got spooked by a lone coyote.
There were 2 nice bucks in the croud, and the juvenile, just the juvenile separated himself for the opportunity and Carlos didn`t waste the chance.
He seemed a bit down as he stayed and hunted with me Sunday as my opener was not as glorius, as I had several missed shots, by trying to dope the winds that were gusting to 30 mph. Over compensation is my excuse, along with too many empty Bud bottles.
I was 389 from a grand old buck on Saturday afternoon, that required a LONG stalk up a TALL hill to gain an advantage.
The plan worked like clockwork, but my confidence was down to nothing with the hard gusting crosswind.
I had time to think things over Saturday night, and was feeling goofy.
I had asked myself just how long will that bullet be it the air to be affected? At 3620 fps and 389 yds, I got to rethinking the holdoffs.
I held way to much into the wind for that shot. Sunday was a new day and not letting myself get down on me or my equipment I just went out there like it was my turn.
Only me and another hunter left and possible 15 bucks running around is very little reason to be sad.
Especially with a good frind along.
Sunday was a very good day as Carlos and I pulled onto the property right at first light and drove in about 1/2 mile to the crest of the first rise and peeked out into the South pasture, it was coverd with antelope. You could hear them calling to each other, in several different groups.
I made a stalk but quickly saw the sun to my back and me on top of that crest made it very easily to be spotted.
Carlos saw a lone buck entering the South pasture and I liked my odds with only 1 set of eyes.
I grabbed my stuff and went after him. Rangefinder, binoculars, and the 7/338 in tow.
I walked a cow path, way down low near the fence for 1/2 a mile and started up into the pasture stopping and glassing every 100 yds or whenever the land made me feed I needed to.
I got to the center and highest ground and saw to my left a group of antelope.
The lone buck must have joined these as he stood out as the best of 3 in this group.
He was charging the other bucks and running them off as it looked like the rut was sure kicking in with the cooler weather. When he returned to his does, he bedded down, luckily facing away from me.
This was the sole reason I was able to stalk close enough.
I got a reading at 592 before the stalk, but was very dissapointed I could never get another reading of him laying in the grass with me also laying in the grass.
I kept trying to get closer as the does were steadily feeding away from him and giving me even more confidence to move.
I got as close as I dared, after about 45 minutes of watching, sneaking, crawling to position, and he just laid there.
For 10 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, close to an hour.
I tried dozens of times to range him with no luck at all.
I was turning my rifle sideways on the bi-pods, and resting the rangefinder on the elevation cap and was very steady, but no reading.
That buck finally stood up, and I was so nervous, I couldn`t hold steady enogh for a reading for 2 more tries.
I finally said to heck with this and turned the rifle to him, steadied it held about 2 inches into the lighter wind of 10/15 mph and let the 7/338 speak.
That 140 Accubond found its mark, and he turned away and ran a few steps with his legs looking like spaghetti trying to hold him up.
The shot was one I am proud of as the entrance lightly clipped the rear of the front shoulder putting it tucked in just rite.
The distance with his death run was 448 yds.
Already looking to next year.
The moral of Saturdays hunt is to keep the hunt itself as the goal, and not get caught up in the partying before. Too many beers is not the recipe for success on such a special time out there. I`m glad I could make up for that on Sunday. I`m fixin to be 51 and act like I`m still 19. Anniversarys are just once a year tho, this was #28 for me and the Missus.
You cannot argue with STUPID
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