So I have decided to make one myself…or let’s say try anyway. I borrowed one last year when I took my boy up there during Thanksgiving and we tried it one time. The thing was heavy, clumsy, and loud to carry in and set up. This one should be light and quiet.
Earlier I bought a one inch foam board and I’m cutting out the deer’s shape now. When I get through with that I’m going to spray foam both sides to make the desired thickness and then starting carving everything out. It’s going to be 3D and after I paint it I hope it looks pretty real. Let’s do it.
Hate to carve it all out though and wouldn’t be able to use it with even 10 to 15 mph wind. Adding 1/4 plywood to one side I guess wouldn’t add too much weight though. It’s a good idea…you don’t think it adds flat weight where wind can get to it more though? Just thinking out loud here.
Don’t look to close at it…no it doesn’t have a fat butt. That’s part of the tail and when I go to foam it I got add a thicker brisket right underneath the neck. He ain’t got much there right now.
Originally it was supposed to be sprayed out of the spray foam insulation I put in some houses now. I think that stuff would be better and the guy said he would spray a big blob of it on both sides but I don’t know for sure what day he could do it. If he calls and says he can do it the next day or 2 I still might go that route. Thinking that stuff would be easier to carve and also be more durable.
You need it to be more rigid in my opinion, maybe some of the corrugated plastic for a backing? I have an old Proghorn decoy made by the Renzo company. It did not perform well out west, but with your added layer it will be stronger. If you can make a base, or two, that isn't too heavy, the frozen/hard ground won't be as much of a challenge(see DSD buck stand).
What's your plan for headgear?
To help the swaying I might put rebar on all 4 legs and maybe spread the legs out a tad further. Deer stand sometimes with a outward bend of their legs anyway so that would look natural. What I have now the legs on the other side will be cut away once it’s foamed. There’s going to be a separation between them.
The base I think I have figured out and I’m pretty sure it’s going to work like a charm. Y’all will have to wait till the end to see that part.
Going to take Brian’s idea on filling a lot of the inside with some of the cut pink foam. Going to wire it to the pipe and then wrap and shape it with the chicken wire before I foam it.
I’m going to foam to the top of the 45s on top of the head but leave it on open where I can slide the horns in. Spread the legs out a little bit so its even more sturdy.
Going to slide rebar up the legs. Together we’ll get this decoy built. Thinking I got to get a coupling and shorten the neck a little bit.
Can’t wait to see the final product… this is getting interesting
Lol Brian I haven’t glued that part yet but life is too SHORT to pass up the things that can give you a chuckle.
Like Brian suggested…filling it with the pink foam now. Going to saw these horns off of the skull right above the eye sockets. About to do that now. If the horns don’t fit down in the pipe right I might run to the store and get bigger pipe for just that part.
Well it’s wrapped in chicken wire and after maybe few more little shaping around the head and nose to make sure I got the room and dimensions right I’m about to start foaming. We’re about to find out if this is going to work.
I like the tilt on the head, make sure the ears are laid back.
Thornton it’s looking like a sheep right now. Ran out of foam last night so I ran to the store this morning to grab a couple more cans. Underneath I got some left to do and as you can see here I got some spots to fill out before I start carving. If I don’t have enough here for the ears I might form a shape out of wire to stick behind his head and foam around that.
Took it in here again and I’m about to do all the measuring on it to see what spots I need to add on too. If you look on the side of the neck head area you’ll see a spot that’s pretty smooth…that area was starting to droop on me so I took a piece of wet cardboard and raked it up.
If I would have had someone helping me it’s possible I could have done the whole thing like that and it would have cut out all the bubbles. But I’ve never done this before so you live and learn. I like how the foam has harden though and it should turn out pretty good.
Right now if you take one hand and lift up in the center between the legs it’s just a little heavier up front so I’m thinking about going with 1/2 or 5/8 rebar on the back legs and sliding 3/8 rebar up the front legs. Should be about perfect then. With the base it’s going to have I really just need to have one rebar on one of the back legs and one on the front.
Now Cat I think it was you that I told kind of how this base was going to be…don’t let that secret out just yet. Don’t want to embarrass myself if it doesn’t work out right.
Earlier I started carving on the head some. I’ll add a lot of detail towards the end. Don’t pay attention to the ears yet…I stuck a piece of wire in the back of the head but the foam still drooped on me. Got to put more foam there and more between the base of the horn and above the eye. Simply didn’t have enough there to carve the eyelid. You’ll see a spot on top of the nose that needs some as well. Going to go ahead and carve out the whole body first though so when I go to refoam I can do it all at once. I might foam the little holes or I might putty or caulk some of them depending on weight.
Not going to show the whole body again until I get it fixed. Somehow the neck grew longer and now this freaking thing looks like a Llama. We can’t have all that so tomorrow after work I got to cut into it and take a section out of the neck and glue the pipe together again. Man that irritates me but it’s got to be done.
Trying to get this done and painted before I go back up there. Also Builders always think it’s hilarious to wait till middle of October and then tell me about a bunch of Septics they want me to put in at the last minute…I don’t find that a least bit funny.
Lol about the builders. I likely won't get a single pronghorn hunt this year due to work piling on. Plan on getting it all done by Feb though for when the snakes start to wake up!
Does your foam seem to set up and stop expanding fairly quickly? Reason I ask is, I sprayfoamed a base for a double whitetail pedestal mount, and added habitat to the base within a few days of spraying the foam. Turned out nice, except the foam continued to expand a small amount, and it developed some small cracks that I had to go back and touch up. Don’t know if that might be an issue on your decoy?
I found out when I cut into it that this thing is going to be very durable. With all that chicken wire with the other foam and pipe it’s very solid. A guy I think could toss this around and not hurt it much.
Here’s what it look like inside. I had tied a wire if you look close to the coupling I had on the neck down to the top of the pipe on his back just for a little more support. Didn’t need it probably but I like things stout. I’ve already got the head back on. Took about 3 inches out of the pipe on the neck…it looks so much better now. I’ll post a few more pics in a few days after I carve on it more.
Thanks for the pics Cat. I was going to lay em back but that 1st pic they’re laid back and also the inside of the ear is turned down. I might try and carve it something like that.
Curious as to what your plan is to address that?
Ray it’s really not that bad but I know the deer will be able to smell it but that’s not bothering me too much. My way of thinking is if it don’t have no human scent on it I’ll be alright. Might even make em curious…I could be wrong though. Even though I don’t believe in too much of the scent control stuff I do like using deer urine and other deer scent. That’s another reason I picked foam too…cause I think this foam will really sink in the deer scent and I’m going to douse it pretty good.
After I put the head back on I had to do some more foaming on it last night so I had to let that dry. I got to work on it some just earlier. Here some sneak peeks James. I’ve got the general rough shape done now but it’s still a little too thick and big so I’ll start shaving it down now. I’ll start adding muscle, tendons, veins, etc. Wanted to get the rough shape done first so I didn’t get one area too small…it’s a lot easier to shave down then try to add to it.
The texture is getting smoother as I work on it. There might be little pockets left but I’ll fill them with light spackling or taxidermy puffy.
Don’t look close at the ears…I still didn’t foam enough last night in the right spot to carve them like I want. After seeing Cat’s pic I want them slightly folded over. I’ll get them there though. On the head I’m going to use plenty of that taxidermy puddy to really shape the eyes and nose. This foam leaves too many holes for fine detail.
You could sell these ya know...did you see what DSD charges?
She’s just smooth chillin right now.
If I ever build another though I’m going to wait on the guy that spray foams my houses. He could probably spray it in about 5 minutes and that foam is probably better and easier to work with.
Brian I’ve already thought about that too. Hopefully it doesn’t get into too many fights…but am hoping it brings them in. Now if it gets worked over by the buck I’m after and I end up getting him…I’ll call that a fair trade.
Troy I haven’t put much thought into the paint I’m going to use just yet but I’m sure glad you mentioned that. Going to test some on a piece of this scrap foam for sure now and let it dry for least a day to see what it does.
Well this evening I have been shaving it down some and it’s getting real close to where I’m about to start putting the putty and caulk on to smooth it down for the paint. Started putting the mouth, nose, and lips on it. It will look better after it’s caulked.
Got to work on the whole thing still but it’s getting there. Going to leave the ears thick right now for durability reasons. Might work on them after season is over but right now time is of the essence. I’m getting that itch pretty bad so we’s gots to go.
I want y’all to tell me something though…should I shave the neck down just a hair? I’ve been looking at it and sometimes I think it’s fine but then there’s a few times it might look a little thick. Somebody tell me something.
BTW….I like the swollen neck and once placed in the beautiful but chaotic natural environment and paint added the mass of the neck won’t be so bold or stark as it is right now in your carving shop?
Jason she’s been pretty patient with the mess I’ve been making but she starting to give me hints that I need to wrap it on up:?)
Another view looking up at it…I’m thinking about one day making a doe decoy bedded down and maybe putting her in front of him.
Yep you guessed right on that one too…they have been a rival for quite some time. They’re pretty bad in football this year as well so we better take this one.
Are you going to "flock" the outer layer, or texture the final application to resemble hair?
You need to be prepared for this(see video at 3:20min mark), and decide if you're going to scare off bucks you don't want to shoot...or let the "chips" fall where they may
Great video Sit! There was something weird on the ground though. Almost looked like water in a slough, but that couldn't be as that's as rare as hen's teeth. Must have been an out of state hunt. Sito, when they spook due to a decoy do you think they get the same fear as when they spook from a human? I've had a bunch of them leave after getting up close to a deek but it doesn't seem to bother them much other than it seemed weird to them.
I was planning on trying to make it look like hair but have simply run out of time. We’re just going to paint it. I might depending on time again do some something with the paint or mark something on there to resemble hair but kinda doubt it at this point.
I sure hope a buck doesn’t do that to this thing the first time out. That was some cool footage though and great videos. Makes me want to hurry up get on the road.
I didn’t want to let this trick out of the book yet but I doubled up a wire and have it tied to the top pipe that is his spine inside. For awhile now I’ve wanted to use a decoy but I always decided not too cause I hate scaring deer away. I came up with this idea and hope it helps…I’m going to have a string tied to this wire loop and when I set it out it’s going to be laid on its side. Probably won’t pull it up until I see an older buck and gauge his action. Might see how he reacts to a grunt first.
Cat I’m used to that look from people and animals. She’s not the first and probably won’t be the last to think I’m a little crazy:?)
You and Cat need to hang around though cause I’m sure I’m going to be asking y’all some questions since I’m not experienced hunting with one. Questions like the way I need to have it facing or the directions bucks most likely take coming in…etc.
Interested to see how the "prop" idea works
I like to put it about 20-30yds in front of me, facing me with the wind in my face. This lets them circle down wind of the decoy (upwind of me), between the decoy and me, with them looking at the decoy (away from me).
I’m just starting to caulk it now and I like how it’s going on. I might just spread a thin layer of caulk all over it. This caulk is supposed to set up hard and not crack…we’ll see.
After I caulk the whole thing I’ll come back and carve a little more…especially around the eyelids, nose, and mouth. Then I plan on sanding it some and then it should be ready for paint.
Brian I hear you and since I’m running out of time I probably need to listen to your advice.
Thane I seen some of that when I got the caulk but what I seen said it couldn’t be painted.
Mike I called my taxidermist friend yesterday to ask about some putty he uses sometimes. He hadn’t seen a pic of yet but I told him I was trying to make it look pretty realistic and that’s what he suggested…putting a tanned hide over it. Now I didn’t think too much of it when he said it but after work when I seen your post I did some thinking on the way home. It would work I bet and the more I keep thinking about it the more I like that idea.
Hopefully tomorrow evening I’ll get done with the caulking and maybe start painting on it Thursday or Friday. I’m going to bed…I’m tired.
Be at the ready…as you may have to shoot one in pure self-defense of your deke, HA! Will be laughing my butt off when your video shows him running off with your decoy stuck to his head. Just hope for the bucks sake he can clear himself of it.
See my video posted on the Pronghorn thread. Your deke is gonna be that guys shoe. Can’t wait to see it and keep up the fine work!
Thanks again everybody. This is the first time I have ever carved a sculpture and since it’s late October it’s been rushed and a little stressful but it’s been fun.
Left before light and got home way after dark from work so I didn’t get much done on it. Would have finished caulking but ran out. Going to buy 2 tubes tomorrow and finish that part tomorrow evening. Here’s the last pics I’ll send of it like it is now. Friday or Saturday evening hopefully I’ll be posting some pics of it being painted.
You're going to have to be careful hauling that thing around so that someone doesn't take a pot shot at you from one of those tower blinds popping up all over the country side.
Decided not to make it look like real hair. It would take too long and I keep seeing this pics of bucks ramming decoys so it’s probably best we don’t spend too much more time on it. I do have 6 different shades of paint I’m working with though.
I got to stop now and go do some things before some places close for the weekend but here’s what the head is looking like so far.
I say we start a GoFundMe, and he starts selling these for about half the price of the DSD's!
Yes Kyle I might be headed to get a video camera in the morning. I’ve wanted one for awhile now and I think I’ve finally talked myself into getting one.
Cat I’m not going to pull him into a standing position on a young en. So hopefully the only way he gets a whooping is by an older buck I would be happy with and I’m hoping an arrow runs through him first:?)
Always got something going on…had to go to the football game earlier. Planning on finishing painting him early in the morning before I run into town. Every year I tell myself that next year I’m going to plan ahead where I won’t be rushed right before a hunting trip. This has been going on for 30 something years now…and never seems to work out.
Well he’s done son…for the time being anyways. Might work on it some more after season but it should for right now. Got to fix the horns where they’re a little more stable.
Got to run into town right quick. Any suggestions on a good camera? Something that’s fairly simple for a guy that’s not very tech savvy can use. I do want a nice one that can zoom in from pretty far away and be clear as well.
I’ll post a few more pics later and show the different shades of paint I used to come to this color in case some of y’all might want to build one some day. I was worried about that part cause colors can be tricky.
The darker color here was the original base. I went over it later with the lighter apricot color to lighten it up some. I left some of the darker in spots so it would have a little variation in it.
No I got aggravated in town. There was a bunch of traffic today and I felt rushed combined with I really don’t anything about the cameras made the trip not very pleasurable. I ended up getting upset and just buying a cheap one. There was some more expensive ones but they didn’t have any in stock.
The guy did say I could return this one if I decided to order a different one online. Thinking about doing that and having it shipped directly up there. I want a camera that I can take still shots and video both. I’ll check on the one you suggested.
Thanks again everybody and thanks for everyone that helped with ideas and tips. I felt like we all built this together and I’m sure glad that I abandoned my first idea I had going. Pretty sure it wouldn’t have turned out as stable.
Troy at the top of his head I had two 3/4 pvc 45’s that I had left open and foamed around it. I took an old dead head I had in the corner and sawed the horns off at the Pedicle below the burr. I then took a grinder and grounded the pedicle down to fit snug into those holes. His right horn I grounded a little too much so it’s a little loose. Might put some tape around it to thicken it up so it will hold in place better.
And Ray I’m pretty sure if you just set your mind to this you could build one.
I’m beyond impressed with how this turned out… that’s better than any decoy I’ve seen on the market.
Ryan my son thought I made the body just a tad too big so I’m hoping the deer I’m after has a body as big as the one you just shot.
It has been slow until yesterday when I seen quite a few. This morning seen quite a few as well but none old enough to bring to “What’s His Name”. Did see a good one yesterday evening that I might would shoot in a week or 2 if I get lucky enough to see him again and if nothing else better happens to wander by. He’s definitely old enough and I’m guessing around 22” wide. I’m seeing chasing by younger ones now and he even chased a little.
Now Randy you just hurt What’s His Name’s feelers. He’s going to show you what’s up:?)
Shane I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a DSD decoy so I guess you could say I was just trying to make it look kinda real. Gots to go I’ll post a few pics of the set up this morning a little later. Good luck to everybody.
Soon as I got him up the hill I went to a cedar and when I turned around I spotted a little young 8 with split G2s bedded on the opposite hill. Couldn’t believe he stayed cause I was pretty much in his view on nearly the whole walk up. My rangefinder said he was only 190 yards away. Only thing I can think of is that he was confused…did I just see a deer float up the hill with 2 legs walking under him:?)
Seen quite a few after that as they were moving all morning long. The closest ones was probably about 70 yards away where a little buck was chasing a doe across the little ravine. Kept quiet cause I didn’t want that little turd coming over.
Next morning with the right wind I’m headed back there. I can already tell I like hunting with a decoy and me and him I’m sure will have lots to learn together but it’s going to be fun. Can’t wait till the next hunt with him.
Good luck tomorrow bud!
You will never catch him in a lie and that just about says it all. Real salt of the earth kind of guy….folks I like to be around. So y’all will have to excuse me at night cause I’m not about to waste any moments with him…love to hear his hunting stories.
Anyway crept in here while the moon was still on the horizon. Very active morning so far. Seen plenty of deer. Watched 2 young’ bucks playfully fight across the creek. One was a mainframe 10 with split 2s. Young little squirt that should come to age in about 3 or so years. Ended up coming right under my tree and went down exactly the path I used climbing up the creek bank at the base of the tree. Didn’t get my phone out in time but managed a video as he got further out.
Plenty of doe and right in amongst them. Got a doe bedded right now in sight. She’s between the gray tree and the dark tree across the creek.
Oh yeah and got a possible shooter out in the CRP bedded with a doe about 300 yards away. Watched him watch a young buck chase around a doe for awhile until he had enough then he intercepted. Pretty sure she was tired cause it didn’t take long and she stood still for him. He mounted her a couple times. Couldn’t tell exactly how big he was but hoping I find out later. He would have to be a real thumper for me to pull back on cause I’m not ready to leave my friend at camp. This is what it’s about folks.
Bow Hunter I don’t know you but you seem to have enough age on you to understand a man doesn’t need to work in November. Only if you call hunting and all that comes with it work I guess…which I don’t:?)
Kyler that pic makes him look bigger but he does have all the right stuff to be something one day.
Well he’s went to sleep already and it’s only 8:00 and I’m still a little wired up so I’ll let y’all know how the day went. Seen deer throughout the whole day. About 40 minutes or so before dark I spotted the possible shooter. This morning him and the doe was on the east side of the row of cottonwoods in the CRP. This evening I spotted him on the west side in the CRP standing guard. Never seen the doe but a couple times he went down in the shallow dip only to return. Didn’t even try with the horns cause the chances him leaving that doe is not good and by that time I was having does coming out from the creek. Didn’t want to run them off either. The inclination I got from the show this morning is he probably just got with her.
Too I got a better look at him this evening and I don’t think he’s quite what I want. Couple times when he was looking my way he made my heart stutter but when he would turn his head his tines didn’t look quite that long. Not sure on his age either but a solid enough deer. Would like to get a closer look at him.
With the full moon still a little bit in the sky in the morning I think I could make my way in from the north real slow using my binoculars. Probably a decent chance I could make it in there to get set up somewhere in that ditch to get closer to that area. It would be a ground hunt but the wind is right so we’ll see. Not sure if it’s worth going through all the trouble if I don’t think I plan on drawing back on him. Another big one could move in though if she just came in and is smelling good.
Here’s a few parting shots with the moon coming up. A couple does was coming across so I snapped a few shots. Tried taking a few of the buck through the zoom glasses but it was a fail…it was too blurry through the branches I was in. Took a few with the flash on and a few with it off. For just a phone I thought they turned out decent. This is looking east and that’s where he was standing about 250 yards away on the hill in the CRP scanning the lower bottom.
People back home think I’m crazy and ask how I pass the deer I pass sometimes. They don’t have a clue on I how I feel up here sometimes. When you pull back and release it’s over till next year. If I would have shot that really wide mature deer the other day I wouldn’t have seen and felt this spectacular view at last light this evening.
Ya’ll Kansas folk know it and seen it many times but some of us other folk don’t get many chances. Yep…one of the last looks of him was him standing in little over knee high CRP with with a row of white skeleton cottonwoods behind him. With the full moon already in the sky over his left shoulder to his side shining through the cottonwoods helping to put some extra light on his horns. All the while the wind has calmed down and does are filtering across in between.
Life is very good and there is a whole lotta things that inspire me and makes me feel really good. Times like these in the tree I’m telling you ranks right with a few at the top. Some people go after money…riches can’t touch this.
Well it’s 7:46 and my fellow hunter went to bed about about 15 minutes ago. He’s got a different sleep schedule than most folk. He goes to bed right after dark but gets up about 2:30 in the morning and starts drinking coffee. I’m like dang man…don’t you think it’s a little early.
Dylan I might know what your thinking on the name but you might have to PM that name to me…I’m a little slow sometimes:?) Kyle wanted Bill Self. Now anybody that knows anything about Kyle knows what he thinks about cheating. Whether it sports or hunting…etc. So yeah Kyle we can’t name him that. I’m pretty sure that’s the camera I’ll end up buying…and if a refurbished one is just as good I love saving money. I don’t like being rushed though and since filming is new to me I went with a real cheap one just to get the feel of it. I brought the camera with me but I haven’t took it hunting with me yet. So far it’s just been this phone.
Update….I haven’t made it back to the spot where I left Ole What’s His Name. I’m still waiting on some of y’all to submit y’all’s names. I stuck him under the tree there cause it was a pretty long tote carrying him, his horns, my rattling horns, and bow to that spot. Never did get the backpack KB suggested. Thought the wind was right the next morning but found out I was wrong later…dang weather people can’t predict too far in advance it seems. Anyway hopefully the cows haven’t got nosy and pawed around on it. If they have I can’t complain cause I could have not been lazy and carried it out.
Yesterday morning went in to a Walk-In place north of where that buck had that doe bedded in the CRP the day before. It’s a little ditch that runs up in there with a few trees. I know deer like to cruise up in there and bed there as well. Got there before light and found a good spot to sit…except for the tree. Had to pick to enough of the long thorns off it’s side for big enough spot for back to lean on. Them things doesn’t exactly tickle by the way. Not much for deer movement but did have a doe come over the horizon around 10:00 and was headed my way. Got hopeful…but no buck behind her. She came across about 9 yards in front of me and if an old buck had been behind her it would have a slam dunk shot…I think I might have even made that shot.
She made it passed me and got to the spot downwind of where I had been watching a bobcat climbing to the top of some trees just earlier. Figured he was still right there on the ground behind the tall weeds. Sure enough she stopped and looked that with and blew a few time before walking straight away from him.
I still haven’t figured out what this bobcat was doing in these trees at the top. I mean these limbs are not very big up there and sometimes was swaying back and forth. Never seen one do that…I seen one time way up a tree that had a squirrel penned out on the end but nothing like this. He stayed a pretty long time the first time moving around up there before coming down. A little later went up the tree I think right beside and did the same…to the top. It was only about 50 yards away but I couldn’t make anything out though like if he was eating anything off of the tree. Anybody with any ideas what he was doing?
Didn’t hunt today. When you offer help to farmers around here they sure will take you upon it…they don’t play around:?) Now on the early October trip somehow they really didn’t need me. Then comes early November and then what do you know…surprise we have a winner:?) No he was real nice and said now I don’t want to take you from hunting but I knew he needed me so it was time to go to work. After the mornings work though of loading a bunch of things out of a barn and headed to take a fence down close to lunch I spotted a big bodied buck on a very slow run across the wide open and headed right behind where we was going to be working. When we pulled in I couldn’t help but say…hold on. I was trying to get a better look to see what was on top of his head. I could feel the urgency in the truck though. I could read the drivers thoughts…we ain’t got time to be playing around with these silly deer. So I said yeah let’s go cause we got work to do. Being a place he said I could hunt…you better believe though I stole a few glances behind me along the creek bottom as I was pulling wire and posts to see if I could catch him sneaking through.
That’s if I can ever can get back to hunting. Late this evening right before I got in my truck to leave he said if I wasn’t doing anything tomorrow afternoon I could go help tear another fence out:?)
Walk to the back of the place which is the south side. I’m just going ease around and head north to keep the wind in my face. Try to ease up to some of these draws without scaring but get close enough to where they can hear the horns. When I get to a spot today I’ll probably sit for an hour or so to see if anything is moving. Probably rattle right before I get up to move to the next ravine for a last ditch effort. Let’s see hit some of these draws and what happens. Bet some of these deer are hunkered down pretty tight in them today.
Well the moon is about to set on the horizon…they say deer movement is best when the moon is straight up or down and fair when it’s setting or rising. Don’t know if that’s true or not but it sounds romantic speaking in deer terms. Going to try and sit here for a couple hours.
Hope your foot is feeling better and hopefully you’re getting to hunt some.
Headed out west again. Seen quite a few deer and bucks was on their feet. The decoy that I borrowed last year that was big, clumsy, and loud I’m taking with me. Left mine at the other place again. Hate this but that’s how it rolls when you’re on the run.
Probably sit for a couple hours where I sat yesterday evening for a couple hours and then grab the decoy and set it up somewhere and hit the horns. Don’t know the place good enough to be setting it up in the dark.
Shows the 13 degrees on my truck so I say she might be cool enough. I’ve still got a lot of junk in my chest and throat but I feel good but now it’s kinda turned into coughing. Hoping this cooler weather will get it all out. Light wind as well so this is about perfect weather. Wow I love this.
Anyways it’s the first morning I’m not feeling quite as bushy tail. Didn’t get much sleep cause last night was the worst as far as hacking up that dirty mucus.
Ella I heard is missing me like crazy and getting very depressed. You know a human understands you’re coming back but a dog doesn’t maybe. It’s starting to eat at me pretty bad now. Might have to lower my standards on horn size. If a deer like that old wide one that I passed the other day steps out it might be go time. Well let’s see what daylight brings us….nothing like sitting in a tree and watching it get light.
6:39…already hear a few birds waking up. A cool light southeast wind and it feels pretty right. An old deer might better think about first before stepping out today in front of me.
Alright I’m going to sign off now…can’t kill a deer yacking to y’all.
I’m cold. Ran out of clean thermal space cos and these cheap rubber boots on this metal stand ain’t cutting it. Don’t see no teasing b for her to walk this way so I’m about to get down and out of this wind. Going to slide east along the creek and find a spot on the ground.
He’s not a high scorer cause he’s just an 8 but he’s wide and white horns. Guessing around 20 wide and mature so he’ll probably work.
Think there is a better chance now if she gets up to make be wander past this spot. They could be really close as we speak. I’m gainer deadfall partly in the shade. I might be close enough to them now where if I do some grunts later he might come check it out. Thought maybe if I could get within 75 yards or so maybe hat might be close enough. But for now we’re going to wait.
There’s a good size rub to my right about 30 yards away. Sure looks nice shining in the sun. Alright see y’all after dark and maybe with a decent story to tell.
Oh yeah seen 2 doe right after that last post. A couple rooster pheasants. Around 2:00 a spike came by and shortly there after a coyote. The pretty thing nearly crawled into my lap…got about 4 yards away before I made a shhh noise to scare it away. Looked like it was to bed in the same deadfall as I was in. Got a video of it but don’t know how to post it. Alright now see y’all after dark.
No deer after 3 but overall it was a good day. Yeah that would have been an easy shot on the coyote. He stopped in sort of a low area where I could see just the top of its back at about 13 yards for awhile. He then got to my 4 or so yards right at the end the deadfall I was sitting in…well it was actually a big limb off a tree behind me that was still attached but laying in the ground. Couldn’t believe he couldn’t see me. The spike came by at about 6 yards…sure wishing he was a shooter cause I love easy shots.
On the coyote though. I can’t make myself draw back or have the heart to shoot them right now. They kinda remind me of Ella and about the last year or so I’ve been feeling different towards coyotes. I guess I’m getting soft in my old age but my dog has done a number on me. I sure don’t care if people shoot them cause they need to be thinned out but I just don’t want to be the one that has to do it. I’ll leave that to ya’ll:?)
Long story short I think I was wrong so I crawled back to my spot as it starting snowing. Now I can’t believe how lucky a man can get sometimes cause the woods are unbelievable to be in when it’s snows. Stayed close to lunch and rattled a few times but nothing came in but it didn’t even come close to dampening my spirit. Love how the horns sound going down the draw as it snows. The snow quietens the area and the horns sound dull but loud at the same time as it goes down the ravine.
Sorry for the excitement fellas but if this weather doesn’t blow your whistle your whistle might be broke…or maybe you’ve lost your whistle. Well folks I gotta go and get back out there…already a few inches on the ground and it’s still falling.
Well yesterday drove to the west place and ran out of snow. Kind of a bummer. But what was more of a bummer I probably had the coolest encounter or exciting thing happen with a buck but I had forgotten and left my phone in the truck.
I was sitting there with some cedars around me. There was a draw in front of me and a young buck had been chasing a young doe around. Little later what look like a 3 year old 12 point with broke brows come grunting in. Little later another 3 or 4 yr old decent 10 came right in front of my tree to my front left that I’m right against.he was probably around 3 or 4 yards and he stopped cause here comes the other 12. The 12 has his ears laid back and coming directly towards me. When he gets to about 7 yards or so I’m not going to lie I started getting a tad nervous cause with me sitting and no tree in front of me he’s looking down and right at me. I would say he got to about 5 or 6 yards away from and he started doing that sideways but angling forwards to the buck just to my front left but the other buck backed down.
Really thought I was about to see a war literally at my feet. If it started there would have been a good chance that once that they locked up they would have swung around and been hitting the little cedars. Probably would have had to jump back to give them room and probably would have been too scared to break up the fight.
I’ve never looked up into a bucks eyes before sitting on the ground at 5 yards with him looking right at you ready to fight. They look pretty dang mean…let me tell you.
Went to that place today…it’s a little draw with a good little pond with plenty of tracks around it when I scouted it the other day. Figured with it being a dry year probably a decent spot and plenty of rubs up and down the ditch.
I’m in no mood to tell the whole story but just to say again I sat all day on the ground but this time it was the same spot and it wasn’t comfortable since it had a slight forward slope. Since it was it was in the shade all day with the wind combined with the excitement of seeing him with the doe just earlier and knew they were probably close made the sit kind of jittery, shivering, and long.
Anyways thought I was closing the deal twice with the first having the release on the loop before lunch. Second encounter with him was about 45 minutes before dark and was even more exciting but bow never got drawn due to what I’m thinking now was bad luck. Last look was him being being skylined after the doe took him that way. Yeah he got to me pretty good.
Been 2 weeks since I’ve been gone and now that I finally found one to go after I’m getting pressure from back home. I guess 9 years ago I had gotten her flowers when I was hunting Missouri…wonder if that little trick will work again.
Good luck on the target buck!
When I first seen the pic JasonI was like come on man I don’t need to be seeing this but after your words thats exactly what I’m thinking. Thinking about telling her I won’t come back in December if I can have another week now.
3:26…and I don’t know exactly what to do…trying to get my brain right. Everything is good before I spot a good one cause I love just watching deer and all the other wildlife. All that goes away though when I see one I want pretty bad. I become possessed and I stop enjoying the actual hunt. Don’t like the person I become and it’s kinda sad but I can’t seem to help it. One of these days I’m hoping I’ll get better. Went all day again without food and water and when I got home the old man said well you should be hungry but I wasn’t…had to force myself to eat one slice of pizza.
Well he’s been up for awhile so I’m going to go drink coffee with him and see what he’s got to say. He’s been hunting a lot longer than me… before cameras he said he tried tying sowing thread up and down deer trails in the woods to try and figure out the direction they were going at different times. Said it might have been stupid but he would try anything to try and figure them out when he was younger.
This morning was good but no sight of him. Had some does come through right after daylight. Later a young broken up 8 pushed a couple of them back through. Around 9 a young one came through walking pretty quick along the draw and then close to 10 a young 10 came along grunting. He cut across the hill though at about 15 yards away. The wind was blowing that direction so I probably knew he was going to smell me. Sure enough I peeked around and shortly he came back around the corner. In these sequences of pics it shows how close he got. The last pic was about 4 yards.
This deer was downwind and closed to that distance. Should have took a video and I was thinking about it but he got so close I didn’t want to make any move to make that happen. He stayed there moving his head up and down then finally turned and decided he better get out of there. So don’t get your nose jammed and buy all that junk they’re trying to sell….just pick up regular coconut body wash and coconut hair shampoo. You can pick it up at the local dollar store. Oh don’t for forget the degree deodorant while your at it:?)
Couldn’t sit there all day today and 11:30 I called it quits. Combine from yesterday my tailbone was starting to hurt…the ground underneath those cedars on that hillside is hard. Don’t like a chair cause when I see a deer that could get close I sometimes get prone with the ground or at least get low as I can. My fellow hunter suggested a cushion but it will just get in the way when I have to curl my feet underneath for the the shot. Going to stuff some extra shirts inside my coveralls on my ass end to soften it up some. Also got cold this morning…only showed 14 but when the wind picked up it didn’t feel all that toasty.
Might go get mine either tonight or in the morning depending on how this evening goes. Might tote mine in there in the morning. Sure would help and I got a plan in mind with using him.
Tomorrow morning planning on going to the other big hill place the opposite direction and hunt that place where my buddy is at. Starting to miss him and I’m going to keep him nearby probably from here on out. He’s really not that hard to carry. Don’t really want to shoot that wide one over there but he looks as old as the hills and if he walks by or if he walks towards Ole What’s His Name then….
I might go ahead and add that the target buck over there where I’ve been hunting is not a giant or anything but he looks old and cool. Good main frame but tines are on the shorter side but he has plenty of them. Probably close to being in the 70s so he’s not like a deer of a lifetime or anything but when I got so close to getting him I started wanting him worse. Long brows too.
I also totally understand becoming obsessed with a deer. Once I find a big one to go after I always go over to my wife, hug her, and apologize for what’s to come over the next few months. Luckily for me she always says “go get him” and listens to my crazy plans.
You’ve never really loved something until you’ve hated it.
I also totally understand becoming obsessed with a deer. Once I find a big one to go after I always go over to my wife, hug her, and apologize for what’s to come over the next few months. Luckily for me she always says “go get him” and listens to my crazy plans.
You’ve never really loved something until you’ve hated it.
Ray I do feel like you know what I’m going through here.
We’ll set up here where y’all have been before. Y’all are going to like this pic here in a bit. I can tell there is still snow on the hillsides. I’ll say it again….gorgeous country.
Do I want to shoot a big deer? Yes I surely do… but it don’t feel right to ask for more this. There is lot of people all over the world right now that is in some unfortunate situations and some are even hungry. So for a man to even think about asking for more just isn’t right at all. Im not saying I’m not going to give it a try but just that I’m in a happy place right now no matter what happens and thankful for what I got.
See y’all at lunch time or after dark…let’s go.
My fellow hunter shot one this evening so I was happy for him.
Well we got 2 days left…told her yesterday that I would probably be leaving Sunday. Since he’s not a giant or anything I’m not going after that one deer anymore but going to the spot where I passed the old deer. Like I said not a high scoring deer but he’s old and I like my chances with him better. Check the camera in that draw and he’s been in there some.
Doesn’t hurt to say that I got lucky and got another pic of a deer that I hadn’t got a pic of since he was in velvet. He has broken one of his brows but he’s still a good one. So I like my chances with hunting an area where that might be 2 that I would shoot now instead of one.
Definition Pip-Squeak: Considered to be in-significant especially because they are small or young.
What those bucks don’t know is that when they come in to take ole Pip-Squeak out….that the vision of him is actually “the death” of them! Future headlines will read…”Pip-Squeak takes out (insert buck name)”….just need that first one? C’mon Pip-Squeak!
Well I’ve pretty much worn myself smooth out. Today was the 18th straight day for me and I think I’m finally Deered out. I got cold this morning and only lasted till 9:00. Seen a few and one decent buck came through the draw but the brush hid most of his body so I couldn’t get an age on him.
After getting thawed out a little in the truck I went straight to a place that sometimes has good deer movement between 10:00 and noon. Crept to the edge and seen legs and lower part of a deer. Crawled to a cedar but it just ended up being this little Pip-Squeak. At 30 yards I think he finally caught sight of me but decided to go all around me to get downwind and then started walking to me. Got to 20 and stared at me for awhile and then blew and ran only to come back and started peeking over the hill at me. Lol they hate it when you don’t move. I just need an old one to do this.
This evening seen a few but not many…a couple of Pip-Squeaks and one doe. Hate to say it but kinda of lost the energy to go tomorrow but we’ll see how I feel in the morning. Not complaining at all….just tired.
I’ll be out in solidarity and the cold with ya tomorrow. If I have service where I am at, I’ll send you a text or two to keep that burnt-out mind of yours occupied…..but you got to get out and hunt! Now go to bed….as the 2:30am wake up call with the old man is gonna come early!
Tough man though…told him yesterday to wait on me and at lunch I would skin his deer and cut it up. When the cold took me out at 9 yesterday I called him and told him I was on my way. He said it was already done. Went out and hung it in a tree by himself and with it being around 12 degrees you know his hands had to get cold on that meat.
He’s leaving after while and I’m going to miss him. We’ve had a really good time and lots of laughs.
Brian I’m at least going out this morning. I don’t won’t to be saying “What if” to myself on the drive home. I’m still buying one of his bows next year…that reminds me I need to call him pretty soon. Now actually hunting with one might be a good while. I don’t practice enough with this compound that I shoot even.
BTW..based on the hours that the old man keeps…you sure he ain’t a VAMPIRE?
When my other boots I used to wear would get wet I would bring a chair just to the edge of the grate of the furnace and hang my boots out over it. Worked well. I forgot one time and walked over it barefooted right after it turned off one time….one time is all it took and I’ve never done it again.
Well your pep talk text helped me this morning. Didn’t see anything at the first sit so mid morning I went to the river place. River was beautiful this morning with ice on the edges. I did a still hunt along the edge. This evening I went back west and hunted the hills. Seen lots of deer this evening. This little toot got fairly close and then a mean looking one came by. His horns was super small but his body was fairly decent size.
Alright told her I’m leaving in the morning which I am…didn’t tell her I’m going to sneak in a quick hunt…hehe. Got to go pick my buddy up on the other place in the hills. I really regret not using him more earlier on this hunt but I was busy hitting other places trying to find a good deer to go after.
So I’m going to go in there earlier than normal. I can drive and get pretty close to him. Going to put him in the truck and go back to the gate. Where I’m taking him is on the other side of the place. It’s going to be a long walk with him to get him set up before daylight just to hunt 1 hour in the morning but who knows what might happen. There’s been 2 deer that has been in that draw in the last weeks that I would shoot now…one is that old wide that I passed. I don’t think I would hesitate on him now.
Got set up downwind of the draws on top of a hill against a little cedar. A little after daylight a young toot came down the draw and spotted the decoy. Came up the bald hill and came around and got about 7 yards from. A little later I rattled and nothing so I looked at my time. Thought I might have time to take it and ease up to the other draw in case they couldn’t hear cause of the wind.
My set up felt good there too so I rattled and nothing came in so with my time up I got up and turned around and across the the ravine upon top of the big hill skylined was the big wide 9. He looked bigger up there skylined for sure instead of down in the draw like he was when I passed him.
He was straight downwind about 150 to 200 yards away. Don’t know if my movement or my smell got him but he turned and ran. Now if I would have just stayed at my original spot I don’t think he would have got my wind. Gosh dang it folks…that’s the way it rolls sometimes though. Here’s the little toot and the second set up and the hill where I seen the 9.
Well this morning was a big change…woke up thinking which spot should I sit today. Realized where I was and then wanted coffee. Told her I was used to having coffee already made for me…Ummm that didn’t go over very well. Probably wasn’t the smartest thing to say:?)
Well we got to wrap this thread up and end it. People might tell me…well as excited sounding as you were trying to shoot that old one on the last day I bet your butt wished you would have shot him when you had the chance. Zero regret fellas.
I go up there trying to take 1st place in trying to shoot a real big old one. So it does sting a little when it doesn’t happen but 2nd place isn’t too bad at all. 2nd place means the buck is still alive to give some enjoyment to other people. Might be at the dinner table one evening with a young boy saying in an excited voice….Daddy I seen a real big buck run in front of the school bus today. Daddy he was wide and it was so cool. It could be an old man at the local restaurant one morning amidst the clanging of coffee cups saying…John I seen a good one down by the creek yesterday evening over at your place. Nice to see a few of them still around. Nope…taking 2nd place and still having an old buck to roam the hills and creeks of Kansas isn’t a bad deal at all.
Oh and by the way I want to say again I really enjoyed hunting with my friend. If you ever find yourself on some gravel backroad in Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, or Colorado and you see dust ahead with you rapidly gaining ground you might want to start slowing down. When you get close and if you see Iowa license plates through the dust with the truck going…oh I’d say around 25mph. There’s a good chance that’s him and you got a good man in front of you. Now you might want to give it gas and fly around him and try to take 1st place in life with whatever you’re trying to do that day. But if you decide to settle for 2nd and just take a slow ride with him that day…you might realize that by the end of the day that 2nd place just turned into a 1st place for ya and that it wasn’t a bad deal after all. Ain’t bad at all.
I’ve been thinking about you…hoping any day I’ll see a pic of you with one of them 2 bucks.