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Made my annual trip to Athens, Ohio this past Saturday Nov. 3. For the past 4 years, I have been hunting the same piece of private ground open to public hunting. However, I learned earlier this year that the entire piece had been leased, and was sub-leased out in small chunks. So after losing my hunting spot, I had some scrambling to do, to find another place to hunt. I got permission on a few small tracts of private ground, and had a great spot picked on a piece of public ground. In my early season trip I passed up a really nice 8 point, probably 115-120 inches on a public piece, and hoped I wouldn't regret it. My dad and I, along with my best friend and his dad arrived Saturday, and hit the woods immediately. The first three days of the hunt, I saw absolutely nothing but a few does, and not a single buck from my tree. After moving twice, I moved to a spot I had hunted breifly before, and had a good feeling about. On my first evening sit there Monday, I saw nothing, and was beginning to get a bit discouraged. Tuesday morning would be different.

I woke up to find 24 degrees outside, and a heavy frost on the leaves. I made the 25 minute walk to my climber, and climbed as high as I could in a very bare and straight tree, putting me right at about the 30 foot mark. At first light, a tiny spike made his way across the bench I was perched above, and right to the base of my tree. He kept shifting his attention from the estrous scent I had laid, to something over the ledge in front of me, and down in the thick bottom of the hollow. Five minutes later, another deer made its' way up a steep drainage, and emerged onto the ledge 35 yards to my left. I took one look and knew right away it was a shooter, and didn't pay attention to much else. Something funky caught my eye as I grabbed for my bow, and hit him with the rangefinder. He started angling away from me, and hit a shooting lane at 40 yards. I already had my pin set at 35 when I drew, stopped him with a mouth bleat, and settled in a few inches below the top of his back. I squeezed off the shot, watched the green nockturnal bury behind his front shoulder, and heard what sounded like someone running over a basketball with a truck. He bounded off, cut sharply to his right, and just as I lost sight, I heard a ton of crashing down to the bottom he appeared from. I called my dad and told him the news, and waited abotu 45 minutes to climb down.

I went to look for the arrow first, and couldn't find it right away, but immediately found tons of lung blood right where he was standing. A few minutes later, I found the arrow and began tracking. I knew he was dead right where I heard the crashing. I followed the blood trail to where he dropped down over, looked over the ledge, and he was laying right at the bottom. When I say he dropped down over, he literally tumbled down a 30 foot almost vertical drop. I made my way down to him, and thanked the hunting gods for the awesome opportunity to take this amazing buck. Its not the absolute giant I'm still hoping to take here in Southeast Ohio, but an awesome 3.5 year old buck, and a very unique rack. Awesome 5 point right antler, with a completely nontypical left antler carrying 4 more points. I'll also be posting some videos I shot with my cell phone after the shot, of the tracking, and recovery that turned out pretty cool. Hope you enjoy!

Bear Carnage at 68# shooting 404 grain Victory VAP 350s tipped with 100 grain Ramcat broadheads. 40 yard shot, complete pass through, arrow stuck 4 inches into the frozen dirt. 55 yard (and 30 ft vertical drop) recovery.

Here's the first video. Hope everyone can see it on my facebook page. I'm going to change my settings so anyone can view my profile, and it should play.

Video 1
Video 2-The blood trail
Video 3- Recovery


 

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That's a sweet buck. Congrats!!
 

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<span style="font-weight: bold"> Congrats on a fine whitetail.....

What is approx. weight of that buck ??</span>
 

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Congrats on a nice buck. You really earned that one with all the ups and downs with the properties. I like how you adjusted to the situation.
 

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Nice rack love non typicals killed one myself this year in PA very simular shape a bit smaller.
What in your opinion causes the non typical side to grow like that just curious.
Congrats great buck!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Typically, an abnormal antler like that one is caused by an injury to the opposite side of the body somewhere. In the case of this buck, I could not find any injuries anywhere. It could also have come from an injury to the pedicle of the antler early on, or an injury to the antler itself during the growing process. Last option is genetics. This antler doesn't really show evidence of that, but it is still possible. He broke off a fifth point from that abnormal antler right near the base, and from the mass of the base of that point, it looks as though it could have been another main beam, or a heavy tine.
 

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Nice job. Love the unique rack.
 
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