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Thread: I had a... bad good weekend (It's a novel)

  1. #1
    Senior Member Genesis 9:3's Avatar
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    I had a... bad good weekend (It's a novel)

    Thursday the wife and kids left to go celebrate my mother in laws birthday... which means I spent every moment in the woods I could, making for a good weekend...

    Friday night I was on a property I just got access to a year ago. It was my second time here and I had picked a new tree to shoot from. The night before I had cleared shooting lanes of all the saplings and Friday after work I went right to it with my climber and saw, slowly making my way up and taking off limbs (and the skin on my knuckles) on the way up. I had picked a nice beech tree, the kind you carve yours and you girlfriend initials on... lots of limbs to trim and some awfully smooth bark to take a climbing stand up by the way! But none the less, I got up high enough, about 20-25ft or so and got comfortable.

    Pretty soon I had convinced myself I was stupid for hunting that spot and was wasting my time. However, with a half hour left of shooting light I saw some deer on the edge of the field... I grunted at them and they slowly made their way into the woods in my direction. To my surprise, they never looked up at me, wondering what it was up in the tree. Instead a nice doe finally made her way to my shooting lane and turned quarter to me.

    I was excited, but under control. I had good form, with my trigger elbow tucked up behind my ear. I didn't jerk the trigger and my sights were just right. I sqeeeezed the trigger...

    Naturally when you shoot a bow all the deer jump and scamper off, it's to be expected. I didn't expect them to all come back, but they did. Being in Hancock Co. I can take two deer... so I lined up my sights on another. I speculated that I missed the first by aiming too low, so I compensated on this one. Same as before, good form, heart rate was excited buy steady, sqeeeeeze the trigger...

    Again, all the deer jumped and ran a little ways... but slowly came back. There were at least 6 or 8 of them... at one point a doe and her fawn made their way down the path I walked to get to my stand. I assume they were trying to figure out what that new scent was. There was even another doe that lined up for another perfect shot, but as it was Hancock Co. where I can only take two deer... well I figured I might have shot two already so I can't try for a third. Sure wish I had known then what I know now!

    Once they all made their way off into the blackness, I got down, walked to my truck and drove in to where I thought I might have two deer waiting for me. I fired up my coleman lantern and found my first arrow...

    Crap! No blood... well at least I didn't just wound it. Next arrow... "Come and get em, free haircuts!" No blood, a little meat and a few hairs... that was strange. I followed where I thought it went and found a blood trail... I followed the blood trail about 30 yds, and found where it looked like it laid down or stopped for a little bit. Beyond that, nothing but leaves and trees. I looked for another half hour but couldn't see any blood, tracks or trail.

    I went home and shot my bow out of my bedroom window at the dimly lit target in the backyard... maybe 2-3 inches high at that angle... well at least my sights weren't off that much and I had a good group!

    The next morning I went to another property and busted some more knuckles taking off limbs. A little before true sunrise I saw a few deer out in the field... again I called them in with a grunt and took aim at one, only 20yds out or so. Good posture, excited but controlled heart rhythm, sqeezed the trigger... I think for some reason I tried to compensate and aim higher... which made for 3 broad-heads that need new blades and nothing to show for it. I could have sworn I saw the arrow go into that deer... but I was wrong.

    I went home again and shot at my target with the practice broadheads and a few now-dull real ones... still dead on...

    Last night I had a 4pt come in... I drew on it and started thinking abut it... it was Sunday night, I had work in the morning... it was only a 4pt...

    I'll be kicking myself all season long if I never get another shot at buck...

    I have never seen so many deer in a weekend... nor have I ever missed so many in a weekend...

    I had a good bad weekend. (Hopefully it wasn't too long... I didn't even talk about Saturday night!)
    60# Bowtech Destroyer 340

    Team Gutpile '12-13

  2. #2
    Senior Member mrbb's Avatar
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    well misses happen
    BUT if you know you hit the one, I think you should have gobne back the next day to look fsome more
    if a deer only went a short distance and laid down, even without a lot of blood, that means it hurting
    and could just be bleeding inside
    a better search in day light is something all bow hunters should do, rather than just give up?
    NOT bashing you, just saying, if it was me I would have gone back the next day and gave it a hard look, and even brought help if I had anyone to help
    I have found many deer that didn't bleed much, but doing a grid search

    best of luck and still a LOT of time left to fill your tags, hang in there, it will happen!

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    I agree with mrbb you have search till you find or your sure it didn't die. I've went back twice the next day and found both deer.
    Not a bashing

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    Are you sure you are not forgetting to use your peep when you get excited shooting at a living target. It happened to me on the first deer I ever flung an arrow at. I did not realize it until later... but will more than likely have you shooting right under them.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Big_Holla's Avatar
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    Hard to say what caused the misses. Others mentioned the need to go back and double check on the one you hit and I agree. I know you mentioned having proper form but did you bend at the waist to keep that form from your bow arm to your head and anchor? It sounds like some practice from your treestand is in order. Something to keep in mind too, beech trees are notorious for being hollow in the middle and often are the trees you see broken off half way up.
    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.
    - Thomas Edison


  6. #6
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    Like others have said you have to go back the next day and keep looking. I have had to help others look the day after. We have had mixed success but we have always found more blood the next day.

    Not sure what is causing the misses. Are you sure of your yardage when you are shooting? Also what big_holla said beech trees are not the best idea in a climber due to hollow middles. Also I will use a climber on a tree with smooth or shaggy bark it is just asking for a tree ride which I like to avoid.
    I don't partake in assembly-line convenience. I don't say that killing things is bad while I hire people to kill things for me. ~ Ted Nugent

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    I definitely would have went back and looked again. I'm not bashing you, but we as hunters, need to know that the shot that were going to take is going to be dead on and not be guessing on what we need to do to make sure were dead on.
    Is there anything better than being in the woods?!

  8. #8
    Senior Member MJH's Avatar
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    I would agree with others too! Either miss judged distance or something off when shooting from stand. Got a buddy who does same thing when he shoots at deer and it was his form! Keep arm and torso at a 90 and bend at waist! Get your form in line in tree then bend towards deer

  9. #9
    Senior Member Genesis 9:3's Avatar
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    I might have been wrong not to come back in the morning, I can accept that. I will say that I have a good bit of confidence I did not kill it and here's why. When I initially found my arrow, all I saw was a few hairs imbedded in the tip... no blood (to me that's a huge sign, as every deer I've ever passed through left either bubbles on the veins/shaft for a lung shot or smeared blood for a gut shot). Later that evening as I was cleaning the broad head off, I realized there was a few pieces of meat smeared down the arrow. When I aimed high to compensate for shooting below the prior deer and, as arrows fly high when shooting down, I believe I took a small slice out of it's back. That night I did spend a good bit of time walking a grid with my Coleman lantern putting out plenty of light and found nothing past the 30yd point. There was a blood trail... so I certainly could be wrong.

    On Saturday I did some elevated shooting and had no problems hitting the target. My limbs didn't hit my stand when I shot at the critters either. Thinking back I think I might have convinced myself I did everything right when I really aimed high on the last two deer to compensate for the first low shot. I also think I may have hit a limb on the first shot, pushing it low. The final thought is that there's a decent chance that as soon as I shot I pulled my head up to see where my arrow went, instead of following through with the shot.

    In regard to the beech trees, I've seen that as well. Is the concern that it's going to fall on me/over with me on it, cave in while I'm climbing it? Maybe this topic should be a new thread...
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Big_Holla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Genesis 9:3 View Post

    In regard to the beech trees, I've seen that as well. Is the concern that it's going to fall on me/over with me on it, cave in while I'm climbing it? Maybe this topic should be a new thread...
    Good question. The only thing I would do is be aware of it as you climb. If you notice rot where limbs used to be or holes into the tree in any way then it may be good to switch. Does every beech tree break off and fall over, no but thought I'd mention as that's the first thing I think of when looking at one to hang a stand. How hard was it to climb with that slick bark?
    Last edited by Big_Holla; 10-29-2014 at 06:08 PM.
    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.
    - Thomas Edison


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