December 30, 2011
So far this has been one of the better deer seasons I’ve been a part of. Deer numbers have been down due to many reasons and this is area is buck only in an effort to grow numbers. I refuse to sit over a corn pile and don’t hunt out of a tree stand so I guess I’m somewhat old school for here. I also hunt with a rifle that my great uncle had, then grandfather had, then dad, then older brothers used and I ended up with. It was serialized in 1899 according to Cody and did not leave Winchester until 1905 as a solid frame 33 WCF rifle.
Opening day I moved around and sat throughout the day in different areas and saw five deer, which is very good for here and now. The one buck was a yearling fork and I passed on that having decided the last several years that I’d be holding out for at least a 2 ½ year old.
Day two one of my brothers and I hunted together. I made a small drive for him and we got on a bigger track and scrape from the night before and followed. One guy on the track and one guy going the long way around to where we guessed it would be going or would go if jumped. After a few rounds of this I jumped the animal and only saw tail for a split second. Although I was looking for it to be bedded it was smarter than me that day and we failed to intercept it in the end. On the last push my brother did get this 2 ½ year old to get up slow in front of him and he shot it. It had been arrowed in the front shoulder and through the back this fall by somebody so it was good to get that one and all the walking paid off.
Day three was a miserable rain snow mix. I hunted alone and saw four deer, all bald. Polypropylene, wool and fleece are awesome!
Day four I got the snow plowing and supply run out of the way and went out looking for a fresh track to follow.
I ended up getting close to this deer after a few hours of being on its meandering track but of course jumped it in the real thick stuff and with the snow on everything there was no shot opportunity for me. Outsmarted once again.
Today there were two brothers and a nephew and we were going to cover some ground until we started seeing some tracks, then make drives. On drive number three I dropped my nephew off to post up and went on down farther to a swamp edge. After a time I could hear several deer moving toward me. A yearling spike and doe came through and bunched up in the brush right next to me upwind. I heard a deer right behind them yet grunting all the way as it was running. I saw some decent horns on a decent size deer and got a good broadside view of ribs through the brush and sprouts. The spike buck is probably very happy tonight.
Older deer with a pretty cape. Couldn’t be more pleased with the season so far, hunting with my family and a rifle that still does the job. I load the 200 grain Hornady bullet with the max load of IMR 4064 from their older manuals. It’s not the fastest published load but it seems to be the most consistently accurate one for me. This is the first deer I’ve shot since I started using this old 1886 a few years back; it got me into gun collecting and hand loading to begin with.
Still some group hunting here through the weekend. So far so good in a very memorable season!
December 27, 2007
Thank you for the hunting stories and such clear photos.
Here in western Oregon, we get few chances to hunt deer and elk in snow. One of my most memorable was in my late teen years. Seasons were longer then. We had an extreme cold spell with maybe a foot of snow on the Valley floor. Hunted with my Great grandfather’s ’73. Didn’t get a deer, but enjoyed hunting with that old rifle–still smells unlike any of my other guns. Hunted with a scarf over my face, nose needed sniffing and I thought no deer were near. Took a mild sniff, and Yup, out of her bed jumped a doe. Buck hunting, so she walked off. Excellent hunt.
Thanks too for reminding me of younger hunts.
Congratulations on your Winchester success.
April 23, 2012
December 30, 2011
Thanks guys. It’s really neat to be hunting in some of the same country my family has hunted since the 1930s…and with one of the original guns. Good account of the old hunt From The Woods. Having some snow on the ground sure helps.
January 26, 2011
June 9, 2014
Thank you for the story and pictures of your hunt. I really enjoy seeing other hunters from different areas pics and hear about their hunting stories .Most of my hunting is done in the Desert S/W so seeing pics of the Big woods of the Great North Country are especially Cool to me. How can it get better than that? to hunt ground your family has hunted for many yrs. with one of their old rifles. Keep up the Tradition and pass it on. Good Luck with the rest of your season,,,,,,,,DT
June 11, 2014
December 30, 2011
Thanks guys. I’m looking forward to butchering this buck. This hunting season has been just what the doctor ordered for me too.
March 23, 2010
December 30, 2011
When I was skinning the buck I ended up finding only one leaf of lead left behind. Bullets went clean through intact otherwise…yes, bullets. Not really the fault of the load however. My best view was at my first shot, I aimed for ribs and I knew I hit him. After gutting the deer and seeing some lung damage that is where I think it was hit. On the way out I think it went through just under a shoulder. Ideally this was fine and the buck was going to die. However in the moment I thought my shot could have deflected on wood and the since the buck was not going down right there with a lung shot he got a couple more slugs through the brush. The deer had turned around to run, one went through the same front leg below the shoulder as the previous exit wound and I think and one went clean through the spine. I attribute these to “buck fever” or perhaps bullet deflection since I was now shooting through some stuff. I still got quite a bit of meat off of it, thankfully no gut shots, and I guess one thing about lower velocity with this particular load is that there weren’t huge exit wounds.
Most Users Ever Online: 628
Currently Browsing this Page:
Guest Posters: 1234
Newest Members:Max Greene, Jose Sandoval, Paul Martin, Charles Pekor, Roger Stockbridge, Rex Boehler, Northwoodneil, Eric Reaves, James Leeper, Roger Burke