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Width, more width and tag soup!!!
This fall I didn't elk hunt so I was destined to let the local deer feel my grief. Two weeks before season, I tore 3/4 of my left distal bicep tendon so had to drop my bow weight and change up my arrow weights. A few changes and I was ready to hunt. Three years ago I got a picture of a mature wide buck that disappeared during that season and MIA the following year....
This year that wide buck decided to show back up to that same area and I got some great scouting pics of him. I have always wanted a local buck that would go 30" wide as that is like finding a needle in a haystack for these deer and this area. It's really unheard of. Including this buck I've only seen one other in all my years hunting here that was 30". A frame for days....
This picture convinced me I needed to hunt this buck and he would break the 30" mark. This sighting was 10 days before the season and the last time I would see him in person or on trailcam before season. I was worried again he may have left as he was MIA but I decided I'd eat a tag to hunt him and take my chances....
The first three days I didn't see any deer but one doe at last light more then 600 yards away from me. I then got a break when I talked to the rancher who told me where he'd seen some deer coming off a hill, which one he said was a wide 3 point. It Had to be him I thought. I then set up a stand on a well traveled trail and kept my fingers crossed....
The decision proved to be a good one. Within three hours I had a fe does and small bucks walk by me. A little while longer I caught movement approaching and saw three bucks with a wide rack in the back.... I was jacked! As the bucks walked by I got to full draw and with a hard quartering to me shot at 15 yards I placed it perfect into the bucks vitals as it barried close to the fletch. I watched him run 30 yards and crash. I was so excited and pumped!!! Blood trail was a good one... and short one....
Who doesn't like a good blood trail.....
As he lay. Maybe my favorite pic of him....
30.5" outside spread to be exact...
Admiration and respect.... I'm very fortunate to be able to hunt and harvest such an amazing animal. A hunting memory of a lifetime!
As the season continued I scouted an area I had seen another buck the last three years which had great potential.. with trail cams set I soon was rewarded with a pic of him. He had a great frame and great back forks, which is what I named him last year "backforks". This was an area where the oaks Were set along a canyon ridge top and had a ton of deer movement when the acorns started falling....
A couple weeks after I got the picture of the buck in velvet, he shed his velvet and began moving during day light hours in the oaks.....With stand set it was time to start putting in the time....
My first few sits were pretty slow with only a few does seen in the thick manzanita above me. They were here though and this is why...
Next sit had a front incoming and deer moving early. The 5th hour in the stand a nice 2 point and backforks tried to walk by me in an intense moment as he didn't offer a shot. Finally backforks stopped at 30 yards and turned broadside before disappearing into the manzanita. I took my second shot of my Nor Cal deer season.....
A dream season for sure I thought as I was admiring this great buck and what led up to that moment. Scouting year around, putting time behind the glass, time checking cameras, checking wind, wearing down boots, learning deer behavior/patterns from august through October and figuring out transition areas once velvet comes off and acorns start dropping pays off.... few understand this most do not... and that is fine :-) I love bowhunting and live for moments like this!
Happy bowhunter for sure!!!
The meat from these bucks is enjoyed by my family and friends (and rancher who gave me tip on the old wide load buck) through the year.... um I'm gonna go right to the main course and pass on the soup!
Great stuff. Congrats and thanks for sharing!
Wow, what a great season with two great bucks!!!! Congratulations!
Awesome job. I suck at scoring mule deer but regardless of score I like the wide one.
Wow, fantastic season. Congrats on two beautiful bucks!
Thanks gents. Link pm sent
Never ever disappointed!! Love it! Congrats again! Hunt
A couple of good bucks taken in a lifetime. Impossible to imagine taking both of them in a year.
Wow, those are truly great bucks, especially for CA. Congrats. and thanks for sharing.
Congratulations Chris, awesome bucks!!!
That's awesome Chris! Congratulations on two gorgeous bucks! You guys really know how to get it done! Way to go!
Like I texted you earlier today....tag soup my a$$! I didn't want to let the cat out of the bag;>)
Great bucks Chris!! Good luck in Kodiak as well.
Congrats on another great season!!
I've been waiting for this one for a while! Great stuff for sure-- stud bucks and great pics. I love it! Thanks for sharing this, Chris.
What dreams are made of. my best, Paul
Congrats, now to start planning for next year! Be hard to top tho... :)
Jeez Chris!!!! Those are phenomenal bucks. Great season...Congrats.
Well done Chris! A couple monsters
Man, that deer is wide. Congrats on another stellar season.
Congrats on two great bucks. You top every year.... no end in sight. WOW... Ed F
Dang it man!!!!!! I'm green with envy. Those are awesome bucks!!!!! Congrats and God Bless.
Great job! I would have to get a bigger house though, guess I will just keep shooting dinks.
Thanks gents! Appreciate the comments.
Fantastic! Stoked to see such good bucks fall here in California.
Hey homie. Not bad not bad :) let's go kill some Sitka's
They are gonna look Great on the Wall.
Good luck, Robb
Thanks guys! Ben, they're here but you gotta work for them and do your homework. Good luck!
Wow. Great ride, thanks. Love the lucks of your two bucks. Both classics, in their own way.
What kind of oak trees are those, or did you say?
We have five or six species of oaks on our place, but none of the acorns (pronounces akerns out here) look like those.
Michael, these are from Canyon oaks. We also have white oaks and black oaks which produce..
Unreal season buddy! Congrats! Way to strategize and win the chess match on those deer, like you do every year! Hope the luck continues in AK.
Those are two gorgeous animals!!!
Great bucks and season! Congrats!