Friday, November 9, 2012

Another morning in the tree...

  Beautiful still morning.  About five degrees warmer than yesterday.  Too warm.  I went in and rattled at about 7:00.  Nothing that I saw.  At 8:00 I climbed down and rattled again.  At 8:40 a beautiful doe, probably the one who came yesterday, came right to the base of my tree and sniffed my plastic horns.

  I'm quiet in the woods but an alert deer makes me sound like the circus rolling through.  Most of it is foot/ground contact.  Four deer feet equal the square inches of ONE of my heels...or less.  And they are careful with them.  They are built for the brush- long and sleek instead of upright.  Still, it is amazing how little noise they make.

  She circled away and disappeared into the brush.  I'm certain she is a doe in heat looking for Mr. Big.  After about 20 minutes I decided to move to another tree about 300 yards away and pick up the cards off two trailcams en route.  I came down my screw-in steps and stopped at the bottom to roll up a cord I had dropped.  Was standing there quiet and still and a nice, legal 8-point walked right up to me.

  He never alerted or even stamped a foot.  15 feet away, max.  I think he was so focused on following the doe that other considerations didn't count.  My rifle was hanging on my shoulder.  I was more tempted to go for my iphone and camera.  He was very handsome but far below the age and size of anything I might be interested in.  After a minute he followed the doe's trail out.  Never even flagged his tail or snorted.  I did have the very slight breeze in my favor.  It's about as close as I have ever been to a live buck in the woods.

  Gathered up my horns and headed for the other tree.  Coming across the powerline I saw a deer move away from the cornpile and cam.  I pulled that card, checked to see if the decoy was still up, put a Carnegie Hall-level horn-rattling performance out and climbed into my seat.  On the card reader I was that I was about three minutes behind a nice buckcrossing the creek.  On the OTHER card, from the corn pile, I saw a very nice deer- the one I had run off.  He looked shootable on the little screen.

  But nobody showed.

Kids built a stand.  They also have a feeder that is vomiting out corn.  Just up the creek.

Mr. Styrofoam.  He's gotten a reaction out of every deer that sees him.  I use him to multiply the coverage area,  Deer that see him snort, approach, et.

This mornings doe.  You can see my rattling horns interlaced just across a log from her.  The little buck I bumped into when I came down walked as close as she is or a little closer.


She's in this photo on the left side.

This little buck rattled up yesterday evening.  I'm about 40 yards to the left watching.  He came in on the decoy side and walked right up to it, sniffed noses.  I think this is the buck I had so close to me this morning at the other tree.

Still nursing, like most doe are.

The only animal uglier than my decoy in the bottom.

This MAY be the same doe I saw at the other stand.  All alone.  Her fawn, if its a buck, may be in his first rut.

VERY little buck.  Might be following mom.

Nice buck in the creek at my crossing.  I was about three minutes behind.  He came from upstream to the left and climbed the far bank up my trail headed to the next cam and corn pile.

At the corn pile.  He left when I came out of the woods on the far side of the powerline.  Nice 8-point.  I know him from previous years.  Not a great rack but it got heavier.  Probably a 3 1/2 year old.

Larabar.  Old on that had been to Camp Perry several times, Canyon de Chelly twice, North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Shiprock.  Not bad.   


Anonymous said...

Beautiful photos and narrative. My dad was a hunter and I always loved deer hunting season. Was raised on venison. Love shooting and target practice, though I have never been on the actual hunt. I view wildlife from the seat of my bicycle in
AZ. Coyotes, bunnies, road runners, lizards, etc.

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