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>>DANIEL: (Whispering) Kicker 10. You on him?
>>DANIEL: That is my biggest buck to date! Oh, man.
>>DANIEL: The strategy of hunting this utility easement during the rut has been very effective. And that’s because it’s primarily a sanctuary. We just can’t get in there and hunt during the early portion of bow season because of the slope and winds tend to swirl. This location was a great place for Raleigh and I to kick off the 2021 firearms season.
>>DANIEL: During the opening morning Raleigh and I saw a lot of deer in the powerline including a yearling buck that was pushing does.
>>DANIEL: Throughout the morning Raleigh and I saw several other groups of does and fawns crossing the powerline, and it was a great example of how many deer you can see if you’re overlooking an area where deer feel secure.
>>DANIEL: Based on the number of deer and the activity we saw that morning Raleigh and I decided to return that afternoon.
>>DANIEL: After the sun had set behind the mountains, we spotted a doe. This doe was moving fast because a buck we call Lefty was right behind her.
>>DANIEL: Unfortunately, Lefty didn’t stop for Raleigh to take a shot as he followed that doe into the timber.
>>DANIEL: Raleigh and I opted to hunt another location the following day and she tagged a great buck we call Potential.
>>DANIEL: I was thrilled Raleigh had punched her tag and I was excited to get behind the Winchester and return to the Boom North powerline during the afternoon of November 16th.
>>DANIEL: That same morning, November 16th, MALE had tagged a great buck out of the Boom Glade. A native vegetation area.
>>GRANT: Man, yeah! And I am thrilled!
>>DANIEL: It had been fairly cool that morning, and typically on those cool, sunny mornings, deer like to get out in that native vegetation, where that sun is hitting, and it warms them up. It’s very pleasant for them.
>>DANIEL: But during the day, it started warming up. We had temperatures in the mid- 60’s. Which is well above average this time of year. We also had a strong south wind. And I suspected, because of that strong wind and those warm temperatures, deer were likely not in native vegetation but on those north slopes trying to stay cool and out of that wind.
>>DANIEL: The Redneck at the Boom North powerline met all those requirements, and I was excited to see what would happen that afternoon.
>>DANIEL: It’s the afternoon of November 16th, HuntStand says it’s 64 right now and that sun is already starting to go down the mountain.
>>DANIEL: This afternoon we’re looking down a powerline easement. There’re acorns in the area. Deer are just going to be crossing. It’s cool. They’re out of the wind. We’ve got strong winds from the south. I suspect the wind is just going to go right over the top of these deer because it’s so strong.
>>DANIEL: That’s a strategy that worked last year. I’m hoping it works again this year.
>>DANIEL: I was enjoying the hunt and I had to wonder if old Lefty was in the area and going to cross that powerline again, or if we’d see another buck.
>>DANIEL: During the summer of 2019 we started getting Reconyx images of a good-looking buck. He had a kicker on his G2, mainframe ten. We’re really creative with names around here and we called him Kicker Ten.
>>DANIEL: Even though he had a great set of antlers, based on his body characteristics, we estimated Kicker Ten was three years old.
>>DANIEL: And as we studied the trail camera photos throughout the season, we realized that Kicker Ten was fairly active around a portion of the Proving Grounds we call Boomerang Ridge. But he also traveled several ridges to the south.
>>DANIEL: During the summer of 2020 we started getting images of Kicker Ten. And boy did he look good as a four-year-old buck.
>>DANIEL: During the late summer and early portion of hunting season Kicker Ten was once again active around the Boomerang area. And then mid-October, early November, he started bouncing back and forth from Boomerang to the southern portion of the Proving Grounds.
>>DANIEL: Studying trail cameras is a great way to kind of figure out where deer are moving. But sometimes you’ve got to read between the lines, look at those gaps and try to find those travel corridors between your camera locations. And that’s what we were trying to do.
>>DANIEL: We suspected that old Kicker Ten was spending a lot of time crossing the 50-acre ridge just south of Boomerang.
>>DANIEL: During the morning of November 30th, 2020, Grant was hunting the 50-acre ridge when he heard leaves crunching. It was Kicker Ten and he was headed south.
>>DANIEL: Unfortunately, Grant never had a shot opportunity. But that encounter provided some great information about how Kicker Ten was traveling through that area.
>>DANIEL: Boy, when Kicker Ten showed up this past summer, he’d gained a lot of mass and he looked good. Once again, Kicker Ten was on that pattern. Active around Boomerang and then kind of moving south throughout the fall.
>>DANIEL: However, it seemed that Kicker Ten was a little more active during daylight.
>>DANIEL: On November 11th and the 13th, Kicker Ten visited a small pond on the Boomerang ridge. And then later that night, on the 13th, Kicker Ten was pushing a doe through the Big Boom food plot.
>>DANIEL: What we didn’t know was that on November 15th, old Kicker Ten had moved north. He was still on that Boomerang ridge, but he walked through a food plot we call Boom Back. And he was only about 180 yards from the Redneck blind at the Boom powerline. This was the furthest north that we’d gotten photos of Kicker Ten.
>>ANNOUNCER: GrowingDeer is brought to you by Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s. Also, by Reconyx, Green Cover Food Plots, Winchester, Lacrosse Footwear, Thlete Outdoor Apparel, Morrel Targets, RTP Outdoors, Fourth Arrow, HuntStand, Scorpion Venom Archery, Case IH Tractors, Burris Optics, G5 Broadheads, Prime Bows, and Redneck Hunting Blinds.
>>DANIEL: It had been a quiet afternoon in the blind and as that light started to fade, I spotted a deer at the bottom of the mountain. (Whispering) Doe.
>>DANIEL: (Whispering) Yeah. There’s another one behind her.
>>CARTER: Yeah. That’s a doe. First one’s a fawn.
>>DANIEL: This does, and fawn crossed the powerline and went into the timber. And I was excited to see if any more deer would cross that powerline before dark.
>>DANIEL: I didn’t have to wait long.
>>CARTER: (Whispering) Who is that?
>>DANIEL: (Whispering) Kicker Ten. Ready?
>>CARTER: (Whispering) Ready.
>>DANIEL: (Whispering) You on him?
>>DANIEL: Holy cow! Holy cow! Kicker Ten is down, man.
>>CARTER: Yes, sir.
>>DANIEL: Whoo! Oh, my word. That is Kicker Ten. That is a big, mature, ten-pointer. I gotta tell you, I like this Redneck. I really like this Redneck. Man, the second deer, two years in a row, back-to-back, tagging a mature buck out of this Redneck. This is awesome.
>>DANIEL: The old 6.8 Western. Wow. Love this gun. All right. Let’s go get our hands on that deer. Yes!
>>DANIEL: As Carter and I were packing up, I looked down the powerline and I noticed a dark figure. It was another deer working towards Kicker Ten.
>>DANIEL: I couldn’t tell if it was a buck or a doe, but it served as a great example that a harvested deer can be a great attraction to other deer.
>>DANIEL: Deer don’t associate a harvested deer with hunters and if you remain in your stand, it can be a great attraction. In fact, we’ve shared hunts where we’ve harvested bucks that were standing over a doe that we harvested earlier during that same hunt.
>>DANIEL: Once that deer drifted off, we climbed down, drove around the mountain and came up the powerline to get our hands on old Kicker Ten.
>>CARTER: Oh, baby. Oh, baby.
>>DANIEL: Oh, my word, man. Look at that mass on this guy. How he holds it out. All the way out here. Just rub that, dust that one off. That’s why we call him Kicker Ten, right there, that little kicker. Right off his G2. But I mean, the mass on it. He’s just a heavy, heavy horned dude. And he’s sliding down the mountain here. Golly.
>>DANIEL: Folks I don’t know what to say. This is an absolute, incredible deer. I am — I’m so pumped. This is my biggest deer to date.
>>DANIEL: Man, when he walked out, came down on that trail, and when I looked through the Burris scope, he looked straight at me the first time I saw him and when he turned just like that, I saw that mass and those tines and I said, Kicker Ten. Man, what a deer!
>>DANIEL: It’s November 16th and we’re kind of, the peak of the rut is right there. The 15th, give or take a day or two and getting texts from guys like, “Man, what’s happening. It is slow. Haven’t seen a buck.” And that’s — that’s because so many does are receptive, and bucks just don’t have to move as much to find receptive does.
>>DANIEL: And being able to find a travel corridor or an area that you can look and find those bucks in between does or where they’re going to chase a doe through; that’s when — when it gets slow you — you can tag some deer. And that is exactly what happened this afternoon. I am — I am thrilled to death.
>>DANIEL: The Kicker Ten hunt and others that we’ve enjoyed from this location provide some great hunting lessons.
>>DANIEL: Being able to overlook and hunt an area that’s a sanctuary during most of the year can result in seeing a lot of deer and some very nice bucks.
>>DANIEL: It’s also important to consider other factors; not only the wind.
>>DANIEL: For example, if it had been extremely cold that afternoon, I likely would not have seen deer on that north slope. Because it would have been very cold. I probably would have been spending the afternoon watching deer cross the mountain on that south slope that was receiving more sunlight because those deer would have been enjoying the warmer location.
>>DANIEL: However, that day and afternoon was much warmer than normal. The temperatures were in the 60’s. Average was in the 50’s. So, deer were more likely to be on that north slope trying to stay cool.
>>DANIEL: Understanding deer biology, behavior, weather conditions and other factors, can help you make wise decisions on where to hunt.
>>DANIEL: I hope you get outside to enjoy creation this week. Maybe do a little hunting. But more importantly, I hope you slow down, take time, listen to what the Creator is saying to you and the purpose He has for your life.
>>DANIEL: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.