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WOODS: November 13th was one of those mornings all hunters dream about. We’re in the middle of November here in the Midwest. The rut is on, the wind is constant and the deer are moving during daylight hours. It’s all coming together.
WOODS: That morning we’d seen a couple different 2-1/2 year old bucks pushing does around and some younger bucks, does moving through. We’d selected a stand on this elevator ridge. The elevator ridge, again, it’s just a ridge that goes from the main ridge down to the bottom. It’s the path of least resistance. Deer want to travel on the path of least resistance when they can because they’re lazy. If there’s no disturbance, they’ll almost take that path of least resistance all the time. We enhance that by creating this quiet water, small pond, not moving, not disturbing. It’s easy for deer to drink here versus a creek where there’s noise that defeat their predator defense mechanisms. And we increase our confidence by putting a Reconyx camera over there about 30 yards away. That made us have great confidence that mature bucks are in the area.
WOODS: Sure enough, mid morning a big, mature buck with deeply stained tarsal glands, comes up. And at 40 yards broad side! Pretty easy shot. I’m dialed in out past 40 yards. Camera man saying he’s got him; I’m at full draw. Then, I get greedy. I’m thinking, “He’s gonna come up to the does on the other side of us. He’s gonna present me with a much closer shot and we’re gonna get more footage.” It’s a win-win! Buck is following the plan. Bam, bam. The Reconyx picks him up a couple times as he’s walking by.
WOODS: He’s getting closer and I’m getting more and more confident all the time. But, you know what they say about plans! He’s coming up here, hugging the edge. Mature bucks rarely just walk right out in the middle. He comes to this scrape and works it.
WOODS: Now, he’s quartering a little bit, but I can get both lungs at this angle and I’m thinking, “Man, he’s just gonna work this scrape and come on up!” So, I pass this shot. Number two. But, instead of working the scrape, he cuts downhill, gets downwind, game over.
WOODS: I had anticipated him doing this. Anticipating what a wild animal that is prone to survive is going to do is always risky business. Had I had this shot, it would have been wonderful. “Would have” being the key word! We all know the creed of experienced bow hunters. Take the first available safe shot. I had two. Passed because I was greedy and now I’m eating tag soup. So, thanks for joining us on GrowingDeer.tv. Just a tremendous morning and we’ll be back at it again, soon. So, lots coming up on GrowingDeer.tv.