Hunting the peak of the rut sure is exciting, but there’s no getting around the fact that as a hunter, you are completely at the mercy of the women – does! That’s a lesson that was reinforced this evening when a beautiful 135-class 8-pointer showed up trailing a doe. When the doe walked into a thicket along a field edge and bedded down, you can guess what the buck did. He bedded down too, about 60 yards out, and all I could do was sit and watch. After about 15 minutes, he got up, moved to about 40 yards and made a scrape, after which he walked into the open field and proceeded to thrash a shrub before moving back to the thicket’s edge and bedding again.
Although the buck was within bow range for a time, dense timber prevented a shot. Situations like that are maddening, because you are so close, yet you know the only way that buck is EVER going to get shot is if the doe gets up and walks by your stand. She controls everything, and if you’ve ever been in a situation like that, you know that rattling, grunting, bleating, etc., is not likely to do anything to convince that buck to come over and investigate. Heck, you can’t blame them – a smart buck doesn’t leave a doe to find a doe.
After about 40 minutes of this, a cow in the pasture I was set up next to came down to the fence line and spooked the doe. When she went running back the way they had come, he was hot on her heels, and my hunt was over.
Tomorrow morning I am going back to the river crossing where I saw two shooters, only this time I am taking my Summit climber in there and moving closer to the actual spot where the deer are crossing so I can (hopefully) take advantage of the funnel. With a little luck, I’ll get a crack at a decent buck. And with a lot of luck, maybe I’ll see a buck like this on the wall here at Riverbottom Bucks.