11 Inch Drop Tine
The morning of November 1st I went into a double ladder stand Natalie(my daughter)and I just put up 2 weeks ago. I opened all my existing shooting lanes way up so she could see more area. This was all in hopes she could sit longer if she could see more. This goes against all beliefs of not disturbing the area after the season starts. My intentions were to see if there were any does near the stand so we could go out after school this week.
I was watching some wood ducks in a creek and a doe with a fawn in the distance. I just finished up a few prayers as the sun came up when I heard a stick break. I Turned around and there was a buck making a scrape 50yds away in some thick brush. At this time I didn't know how big he actually was. I thought he was a 4x4 that I had some pictures of. He then turned and walked away heading toward the corn field. I tried using a doe can call and grunting with no response. Then I snort wheezed at him a couple times (that usually never works for me) and he spun around on a dime and headed at me all bristled up. As he crossed the creek I drew my bow. When he came up the bank on my side he was only 10yds away walking straight at me. As he walked closer my bottom bow limb was nearing the shooting rail of the stand. The only reason I had flipped over the shooting rail is because it was digging into my back. Now I was nervous it would be my adversary. I only had a few steps before the buck walked to where I wouldn't have been able to get a shot. So I stood up straighter, picked a spot, and pulled the trigger. He was 5ft from the bottom of the ladder. Right between two saplings I had cut just 2 weeks prior.
My shot was a mid body entrance, which isn't ideal. He was walking and I didn't want to alert him by calling at him being he was directly below me. But it was however a complete pass through. The buck ran about 100 yards into some thicker cover. He then reappeared did a wobbly circle and returned to the thicket 125 yards away where I couldn't see him. I was ecstatic and couldn't believe what just took place. Now the hard part of giving him time and finding someone help me recover him and drag him out. I don't have a ton of energy yet with just finishing up chemotherapy two months ago. Thankfully Jordan Miller was able to adjust his schedule to swing over and help. Another awesome part was when I called my wife Amanda. She was just as excited as I was. And she was antsy for pictures.
We had an awesome blood trail and the buck was right where I had last seen him. As we walked up to him we couldn't believe it. He was much bigger than I thought and the drop tine was 11" with velvet still on the end. We rough scored him at 166". What an amazing day, I couldn't be more thankful. The side affects of 43 chemo treatments over the past 3 years and a stem cell transplant were absent during this whole encounter. God is Great!