I'm a new member to HPA, and wanted to share my archery story from this year. I spent as much time as I could in the woods but college at Penn State and work made it difficult at times. I hunted a fair amount in the fall and saw plenty of little bucks that weren't legal or were basket racks. As archery season ended I was wondering if I shouldn't have been so picky over the legal bucks I did see as I was hunting public land, but I knew I did the right thing letting them walk. I was only able to hunt one day of rifle where I only saw does. I was home on winter break during the late season, so figured I'd take my bow out and give it a shot.
I hunted the first week with no luck. Saw 4 doe in a 5 day span. Needless to say I wasn't getting my hopes up of filling that buck tag. The second week came around, and I climbed back up into my stand. I'm waiting when I hear something breaking sticks about 100 yards out. The sound is coming from a thicket so I cant make out what is headed my way. Right at 60 yards, the deer steps out and I can see he has a pretty nice rack and knew I was going to try and take him if he comes closer. He keeps coming my way and is getting close to one of my shooting lanes. He's quartering away from me at 25 yards and I let the arrow fly. I watched the broadhead penetrate and as he ran away I could see it didn't penetrate the other side. I became worried maybe I didn't make a good shot. I waited for an hour before I climbed down to see what blood I had to work with. There was plenty of blood pouring out of him so I knew the shot couldn't have been terrible. I walked back out to my vehicle, regrouped, and headed back in to track him. He ran back into the thicket he came from so I couldn't see if he fell. I trailed the blood for less than 100 yards and there he was! Beautiful, public land 8 point with a 16 inch spread. What an incredible feeling to have harvested my best buck to date with a bow! To have it happen in the late season was a great bonus!