This morning found me in my honey hole stand I call the "Flat Stand". In these ridiculous winds I knew this stand, protected by the worst of it, should be a hot spot. I was in the stand by 0700 and settled in...for the ride. Even in this secluded spot, the winds were stiff...and then it start to rain. By 0900 I was getting a little discouraged and with the rain slowly soaking into my under layers with the temps hovering at a balmy 38°, I admit I was whimping out a bit. Lol. When I could finally take it no longer I climbed down, stretched and went for a little walk to check the property and warm up a bit. I planned on getting back in the stand but as I got back a few minutes later the rain started to fall with earnest so I capitulated and turned to head out 60 yards to the trail back to the truck. I got within maybe 30 yards of the trail head that cut along a dense thicket of about 5 acres when the woods in front of me EXPLODED with deer! Two big does burst from the thick cover followed by at least 9 bucks of which I could quickly see at least 6 were legal shooters. These poor does were being run ragged, with the bucks chasing them, grunting and "ROARING" one second and then each other the next. I have never in my life heard such deer vocals at once! Loud grunts, roars, snort wheezes with doe bleats and grunts mixed in. I literally had almost a dozen bucks within 25 yards upwind of me within seconds! I raised my Parker Cyclone and picked an opening in front of a beautiful 8 point and waited for him to come. Not a chance. It was a true fur ball and deer were running in all directions. For almost 10 minutes I went from one shooter to the next trying to get a good shot opportunity, never having a shot. Finally the does worn out from being poked, prodded and bumped from their beds every time that lay down to try to avoid the virtual mugging they were being made to endure, had enough and headed south, past my stand and back into the relative safety of the thicket. I knew I had to get to my stand, which was only 30 yards to my right and after checking to make sure there were no more eyes around I backed up and turned to come in on my stand with the oak tree it was in between me and the thicket. I made it about 10 yards when all of a sudden I notice movement just 50-60 yards south of my stand. There deer were coming back! Luckily I was standing right next to a blown down maple so I hunkered down and hoped a buck would come in range. That's when I saw him. Coming down the main wheeler path I saw the rack first, then a body much larger than even the nice 10 point I almost arrowed minutes before and he was on a beeline right to me. I flicked off the safety and picked an opening at 15 yards and waited. He came at a trot, grunting loudly with almost every step. And he KEPT COMING! As her trotted through my opening I eased the xbow right and grunted at him. He slowed down, looking for the source and at 4 yards as he stared at a smaller buck behind me I squeezed the trigger. He let out a bark and hunched up! I'd hit him back...at the shot, he lunged to run at the other buck and I knew I'd hit him in the liver. He bolted toward the thicket but stopped when I hit my Primos buck roar, standing in the middle of the main wheeler path I'd used to come in that morning. I shed my gear and extra layers and slooooowly recocked my crossbow and ranged him...39 yards, quartering left. I settled down as best I could, got a solid rest on the blow down and put another Spitfire through his lungs. He went another 20 yards and expired within feet of where I stood when this whole crazy sequence of event began. He dressed at 180#, sported 10 1/2" and 11" G2s and has some nice mass. My best PA buck to date.
Big Al's "Take-Em" Style Silhouette Decoys Pro-Staff.