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Well I finally get to add to this thread with my own post. I work away month on, month off on boats so when it lines up with hunting season it’s great. Fly home last Wednesday, took the dog for a run after bunnies. Got all my gear together and planned to stay up at the camp till I got a deer. Cameras weren’t showing a lot of activity after rememberance day weekend, so put some boots on the ground and scouted hard Friday and Saturday. Come Sunday, my cousin and I hung two hang on stands in a couple of pinch points, on active rut lines in funnels off doe bedding areas. Around noon Sunday, after the second stand was put up, got a photo on the cell cam of a nice deer cruising through the pinch point. So that just confirmed I was in the right spot the scouted paid off. I had baited one spot but not the other, deer were just moving through this spot too well. Monday night it turned real cold, and the snow was flying. Woke up in the morning to close to 4 inches on the ground. Climbed into the stand well before daylight, watched 5 does come feeding through that were on the camera all night. Around 7:30 I catch a reflection of antlers coming through the alders. Snow still all over his antlers. The does stared at him hard, he even let out a few grunts while he was coming in. When he showed up on the skitter road, he lipped curled and could see his breath in the sun. Raised the rifle up, put the cross hairs just below the white patch and he was down in a pile. Nice heavy 8 point on the ground. Was by myself at the camp at this point. So then comes the struggle of getting it out, 300 yard drag to the truck. Weighed 181 lbs back at the camp.

Come Tuesday, more of the same. Watched does come funnel through the other stand. But nothing following these does. Had a few big deer on camera through the night going to the doe bedding area. With all the action, my dad and cousin took some time off work to meet me up there.

Come Wednesday, I was back in the funnel stand with no bait. As I had pictures of a big 12 pointer and broken 9 point a couple times rolling through this spot at night. I figured with the weather turning really cold Wednesday night to this morning, they’d be on their feet early. Into the stand well before daylight. Could hear deer walking around but couldn’t see them. Little after daylight, out come two does and a fawn. Had the wind perfect, and they cruised on by at 7 yards, and fed out to the big chopping. Nothing saw anything else for the morning. So went back to the camp for a quick bite to eat, then to sit again for the rest of the afternoon. Was in the stand for 1:15pm, sun was right in my face and was fighting off trying to nap. Received at text from my cousin he just shot a 3 pointer around 2:30 walking to his stand. Was just texting back and forth with him for a bit. I looked up and seen this big frame coming down the trail, opposite direction than expected. My back/right shoulder was tight to the tree. So figured I’d have to shoot left handed, so raised the muzzleloader with my left hand pulled the hammer back, settled the crosshairs mid check and let it fly. Huge cloud of smoke, couldn’t see a thing. When it cleared I knew my season was done as he was in a heap at 50 yards. Wasn’t dragging this one out as I 400 yards in off the road. Got dad to get the bike and we took it out and back home before dark. Was the big broken tine 9 point I got the picture on Sunday cruising
 

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Happy Ending
I know something strange for me not something negative :D:D

Couple of weeks ago I shared the story of my old bud who was having trouble this year deer hunting in his spot that he used for over 40 years with walkers on a new walking trail
His hunting ended after someone took a crap on the top of his chair in his blind and left him a nasty note to leave the poor deer alone and poured something on his apple pile

He was at that stage after putting in weeks every day and night in that blind and never even seen one deer not even a doe this year so gave up and said F'k it you win
Well this week after the snow he decided to walk in and pack up his blind and take it home and just check the snow to see if indeed there was no deer since he uses no camera. I said you best take a gun since you know with your luck you will see a deer na don't care he said

So not sure what day this week but in he goes and gets to the blind apples all rotten and not even one deer track around him. next thing he knows a huge snort and behind the blind a buck standing there looking at him for a minute then off it ran and no gun:(

He walked up about 150 feet behind the blind and there is a well used trail that was never there before full of what looked like buck tracks so he checked it out and it was clear this buck had been coming up behind the blind now, circling the blind for a while checking it out but not going down near it. Like he said god knows what they put on the apples

So the next evening he says I have one bag of apples left and know there is one buck there so going to give it another try. When he gets into the blind this time he realizes when he stopped for a pee he left the bag of apples on the road a 20 minute walk. OHH well lots of time I will go get them so off he goes
Coming back in this time to the blind he says I think I am going to try to walk in behind it this time just in case so does. gets behind the blind and sees what he thinks is just bark flapping on a tree and nope all of a sudden the buck appears and is coming down the trail. He jumps into the spruce and lays on his belly and waits

He figured hours passed but it was only 15 minutes later there was mr buck 12 feet to the side of him. he raised his shot gun ( which is all he has one gun for everything ) and pulled the trigger. Nothing?? dam safety was on went to take the safety off and the buck seen him leaped into the air and bang he said more reflex than anything
next thing he knew there was mr buck Stone dead in his tracks. The old remington slug jellied the two shoulders but as he said 1/2 a deer is better than none and the good news is he got it home without seeing any walkers

He is in his 70's and like he said don't have many seasons left so hope next year the walkers leave me alone since I love that spot and it always gets me a deer

Oh yes sorry it was 6 point and forget pics doesn't own a phone or camera
 

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I'm just too damnned picky. I like to let the small ones grow... and I don't shoot she deer.
Much like me. I've actually hunted a fair amount this year but would only, maybe, shoot a really nice buck if one came along. I don't have any problem with anyone legally shooting does or smaller bucks. Any deer is a trophy. After all younger deer are probably much better eating than older bucks anyway. And, culling the herd balanced across all ages and sexes is probably better long term than bucks only too.
 
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