I have had a great season this year. Plenty of new memories and I learned some lessons, good and bad. My season started with the ealy archery doe season in 5C. I saw plenty of deer but never had any good doe within range. I did have a few different buck right by me so that at least gave me something fun to watch. Once the regular archery season began I put in alot of time in the stand. I ended up seeing some more doe out of range and I saw 5 different bucks but I never ended up getting one. I tried to call in a really nice buck, but he wanted nothing to do with me and ended up high tailing it the way he came. I also wish that 5C had a fall turkey season. I had the same flock come by me on three different occasions.
My first deer of the year came in the early muzzleloader season. I was hunting in 5C on public land on 10/21. I still hunted around a big corn field. I jumped one doe along the first edge and then another unidentified deer along the back side. I cut back through the cornfield to a big long grass field that borders the edge of the woods. I sat there for the last hour and a half. Towards the end of the day I spotted a nice sized, lone doe step out along the edge of the woods. She fed her way through the field towards me and then cut up to go to the cornfield. She paused broadside at around 75 yards and I took the shot. After the shot she takes off running towards the corn and it was obvious she was hit hard. She piled up just inside the edge of the corn. A nice big doe. On a plus note my grandpa, who is 74, ended up getting a doe with his crossbow the same day I got my doe. I was happy he got a nice doe especially after he had a double pneumonia scare earlier this year.
I did go up to Potter County to hunt the last few days of the muzzleloader/senior doe season with my grandfather. We had a lot of fun but neither of us got a deer.
Me and my grandpa hunted the first day of the rifle season up in Potter. It was a nice snowy opening day. I still hunted and sat off and on, but I did not see any deer the first day. Me and my grandpa hunted all day monday, tuesday, and wednesday. Thursday we started hunting after lunch. During that time I saw a handful of doe and 4 bucks. The bucks were a 3pt( that I saw still hunting and was within 30 yards), a 4pt that I jumped with a group of does on public land, and two very nice legal bucks on seperate occasions that I did not have a shot at. Friday I was hunting alone. I got dropped off and began to still hunt some of the ridges and side hills. Towards the end of the day I saw a lone doe work its way out on the other side of the valley I was in. I cut straight down the hill I was on and cut the distance down. I laid on the ground to get a steady shot at the doe that was broadside. Just as I shot the doe had turned its head to lick or scratch itself. The bullet went right through the head and then double lunged her exiting on the other side. I got nervous when I first got up to her because as I got closer I thought it might be a button buck, but a quick look down below confirmed it was a doe.
The second tuesday of the season I headed back over to hunt on some gamelands that we have become very familiar with. My aunt use to live near this gameland and this is where me and my cousin got our start. It was nice to be back in the area that had been so kind to us in the past. I parked at the start of the gamelands and I still hunted my way up the hill on the right side of a big hollow. As I was getting to the bend up top I spotted a big doe on the bench most the way to the ridge. I snuck a little closer and spotted a small doe bedded down near the big doe. I watched them for awhile but could not see any other deer with them and I had already filled my doe tag. After a bit I decided to just go ahead and keep going since I couldn't spot anything with them. I made it just a little further and the big doe picked me out and took off. I watched the big doe run up over the top and saw her little one follow her and then caught another movement. I got the scope on the deer just as it was going over the ridge and saw that it was a buck with antlers wider than it's ears. Seeing another buck that I didn't have a shot at started digging at me a little but with good snow on the ground I knew where I was going to try to find the deer again. I finished walking up the hill and circled the ridge that the deer were on. Once I was on the other side I slowed down again and crept along to see if the deer were still up there on the other side, the whole while looking for tracks to see if they crossed. I was about halfway back a trail that leads to a saddle when I came accross the fresh tracks of the deer. The tracks cut straight across the trail and down into a big valley. I back tracked about 50 yards and snuck through the beech brush to the edge where it drops off into the valley. I scanned the side and bottom of the valley below me. I didn't see anything at first and then spotted a deer laying in some of the beech brush. I got the deer in the scope and saw it was the buck hiding watching his back trail. I saw it was legal and fairly wide so I sat down and used my knee for a rest. At the shot the buck jumped up, spun around and took off running. He was hit hard, double lunged, but still made it another 75 yards. He was a nice wide six point with a couple little tines that weren't quite legal. Another nice buck taken with my 30-06. He had a nice big body to him and I enjoyed every bit of that drag out of there. It was a long season and it finally had paid off. Some of the other bucks I had seen during archery and the first week of rifle were bigger, but I wouldn't trade this buck for anything. My grandpa came over to my aunts the next day and it was great to see him so happy.
I got him all cleaned up. I still have to make a stand for it but that won't take long.
I gave my grandparents most of the meat from my Potter doe. And I made a nice batch of deer bologna the other day. All in all I had a great year while hunting and I have plenty in the freezer. Now it's time for some more pheasant hunting
Thank you for reading and looking. Good luck to those hunting the late seasons.