Hunting Washington Forum

Big Game Hunting => Deer Hunting => Topic started by: baldopepper on May 03, 2021, 06:42:22 PM

Title: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: baldopepper on May 03, 2021, 06:42:22 PM
Decided to put up a few sets that have good memories for me. One is the first buck I ever shot, one the last my father shot, one is one of two twins my brother killed with one shot. All are nice bucks, but now I can sit and recall all those hunts which brings on memories of other good hunts. Hope I've got a few more in me
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Buckhunter24 on May 03, 2021, 06:55:09 PM
Looks really nice, some dandy bucks too  :tup: wish I still had the first buck I shot still, woulda made a nice hat hanger for 2 hats  :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: redi on May 03, 2021, 07:21:18 PM
Looks great. A lot of character on those racks. Enjoy the memories.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: elksnout on May 03, 2021, 07:40:38 PM
That's what it's all about right there. You have a fantastic collection of "trophy memories" to be damn proud of.   :tup:

Elksnout
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on May 14, 2021, 02:07:38 PM
Well I have a few, the one that stands out the most is probably the big one my dad killed back in the 60,s that a bunch of game guys got wind of and came to our camp to weigh him and look him over. I remember sitting there with my dad freezing with hours to go before shooting time, fog rolling in and out, about 6-8" of frozen, crusty snow on the ground and somewhere in the single digits, miserable. We were in a spot that my dad loved to sit when migrations were in full tilt. He would sit there and see nothing but does and small bucks come through by the hundreds in a 2 day spread, he would then let it rest for a couple days and get right back in there and here would come the big boys, like clock work. Well that particular year was no different, we had seen plenty of does moving through a few days prior, we layed off and on the third day dad said lets get in there. Its a couple hour hike getting to the spot, all up hill, we left camp at about 1:30/2 o'clock in the A.M, got there and sat for what seemed like forever. I remember a bunch of does and small bucks moving through the draw at a 150 yards or so away, in and out of the trees. My dad said to sit tight, more were coming, out of the trees came a group of some real nice bucks and more does, I couldn't figure out why dad wasn't shooting, a couple of the bucks were dandys. I can't remember actually how many deer moved through there over about a 10 minute period but it was a lot, probably 10-15 bucks of all shapes and sizes, then it piddled out, they all eventually worked their way through a saddle and disappeared. I whispered, why didn't you shoot, Dad said there was more coming, he "had a feeling" he said, those on here that knew my dad know exactly what I'm talking about. Maybe 10 or so minutes had passed, fog rolling in and out when at the bottom of the draw we could see deer in the fog, moving up towards the saddle, in and out of the trees and fog, we could see horns on a few but could not make out the size. My dad still whispered, don't move. After a dozen or so more deer (along with a couple more dandys) had moved out of the fog and were headed towards the saddle another lone deer was coming out of the trees, we could only see a shape and movement with another fog patch moving through. The buck got to where he was almost straight across from us when he came out of the fog, it looked like an elk. It was huge, looked twice as big as the other deer who had moved through that exact spot earlier, its head was down, swaying side to side as it walked, very slowly, all I could see as far as horns was a huge birds nest of antlers, too many points to count before he eventually would disappeared into the saddle. Dad raised his rifle and put a round right behind the shoulder, the buck didn't even flinch, just dropped, a kill shot we all hope to make every time out, the buck never knew what hit him. The buck had over 20 countable points and bases that a grown man couldnt get his hand around, ill never forget that hunt or that buck, some on here know what the Game department weighed him in at, I will decline to comment, it was big to say the least.


And yes, I did post a picture of him on here with my great grandma standing next to it, its the only set of antlers my dad ever saved. He always said, "hell, ill shoot another one" . I think he knew he could never top that fella so he kept those :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Griiz on May 14, 2021, 02:32:13 PM
My most memorable buck was a non-typical drop tine blacktail. My late grandpa had given me a Savage model 99 300 savage that belonged to his brother Fred. Fred had bought 300 savages for his dad, two brothers and himself while working in Alaska. The bluing was all worn off mine from Fred's many hunts in Alaska. I can only imagine how many animals he harvested with it. I was honored to get one. The year after my grandpa died, I set out to harvest a mature blacktail with it. I ended up harvesting a big black bear and that buck two weekends apart and both were under 30 feet when I shot them. I felt like grandpa was there with me that year.
My second memorable buck was a mature 3 point blacktail. My other grandpa had given me his old grandpa mountain bike. The year he passed, I decided to use his bike so I could pack my buck out on it. I harvested my target buck the 2nd weekend, put it on the bike whole and pushed it the 3 miles out to the gate. I knew grandpa would be proud and laugh at that sight. Again I felt like grandpa was on the hunt with me.
Third most memorable, was hunting with my brother a few years ago and we both harvested 25" mule deer. I shot mine in the morning and my brother got his in the evening. I heard my brother shoot as I was getting my butt kicked packing my boned out buck out. I then dropped back into the canyon and helped him. It was a long memorable day. My dad was pretty worried when we got to camp so late.

Great Memories!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on May 17, 2021, 11:07:47 AM
Another memory of a big buck was one we actually didn't kill but was probably one of the biggest bucks(rack size) I've ever seen, at least in the top 3.

It was back in the early 70,s I think, the season was over and dad and I went over to do some post season scouting and get some 8mm film and take some pictures. It was the week before Thanksgiving and we went into an area my great grandma actually named, some on here that know me know the spot and I have shared this story with another person on here in more detail so that person knows exactly where this happened.  There was a foot or so of fresh powder on the ground and we went to this spot that acts like a funnel for migrating deer, they will enter into this area from 3 different migration routes and this spot draws them all in to one. Back in the day before the Methow went in the crapper it was nothing to see hundreds of deer in a couple hour time frame funnel into this spot and then a couple hours later another wave, this is a spot I seen over 800 deer move though by 11 o'clock in the morning and the biggest Bucks were spikes and 2 points. A good friend of my great grandmas went out there the next day and killed a monstrous 5 by 5, that was traveling in a group of around 60 and 9 of those were big bucks. A lot of this information was written on the backs of pictures, my great grandma was a stickler about writing on the backs, details etc, she also wrote in journals, a lot of them are faded or smeared but some are still readable.

 Anyway, my dad and I got to this spot to see what was moving through and to hopefully get some pictures. The snow was cut up with tracks coming into this "funnel" from 3 different directions. We stopped by an old snag and I threw my binos up and immediately seen a lone buck slowly making his way into the funnel, all by himself, not another deer around, it looked like the majority of the migration had made its way through days prior. The buck was about 100 yards away give or take and it was walking straight away from us, IMHO bucks always look bigger in this position but this one looked dang near unreal, almost cartoonish it was so wide and heavy. It was quiet, no birds, no chipmunks, just cold and quiet with all that powder on the ground, eerie. My dad threw out a whistle and we had the camera rolling, the buck stopped, turned and looked directly at us while my dad filmed, it stood there just looking at us. After 3-4 minutes it quarters from us and started into the funnel(which was actually named something else by my great grandma 100 years ago and is still called by that name today), it lowered its head and slowly walked, head swaying, big white face, roman nose and a sway back that made him look like he had been rode for far to long. Some who know of this buck know he was well over 30" wide, my dad guessed him at over 3 feet and I would agree. The buck would stop from time to time and just look at us, never panicked or ran, like it could care less about us. I remember his body being way past its prime, he looked as old as I've ever seen a deer, old and broke down, his back left leg had an injury because he had a limp, I remember my dad saying "I'm glad we are seeing this, he won't make in through the winter, this may be the biggest buck you'll ever see, remember this"

I had a private conversation with a member on here, we were sharing stories of deer that keep us up at night, or deer we see in our dreams. Ive seen this buck in my sleep more than any buck I've killed or seen, I've often wondered where he died and how long he lasted. We went into the area for a few years after, its vast country with jack pine thickets and rock bluffs, we never found him.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: JakeLand on May 17, 2021, 12:08:17 PM

Another memory of a big buck was one we actually didn't kill but was probably one of the biggest bucks(rack size) I've ever seen, at least in the top 3.

It was back in the early 70,s I think, the season was over and dad and I went over to do some post season scouting and get some 8mm film and take some pictures. It was the week before Thanksgiving and we went into an area my great grandma actually named, some on here that know me know the spot and I have shared this story with another person on here in more detail so that person knows exactly where this happened.  There was a foot or so of fresh powder on the ground and we went to this spot that acts like a funnel for migrating deer, they will enter into this area from 3 different migration routes and this spot draws them all in to one. Back in the day before the Methow went in the crapper it was nothing to see hundreds of deer in a couple hour time frame funnel into this spot and then a couple hours later another wave, this is a spot I seen over 800 deer move though by 11 o'clock in the morning and the biggest Bucks were spikes and 2 points. I good friend of my great grandmas went out there the next day and killed a monstrous 5 by 5, that was traveling in a group of around 60 and 9 of those were big bucks. A lot of this information was written on the backs of pictures, my great grandma was a stickler about writing on the backs, details etc, she also wrote in journals, a lot of them are faded or smeared but some are still readable.

 Anyway, my dad and I got to this spot to see what was moving through and to hopefully get some pictures. The snow was cut up with tracks coming into this "funnel" from 3 different directions. We stopped by an old snag and I threw my binos up and immediately seen a lone buck slowly making his way into the funnel, all by himself, not another deer around, it looked like the majority of the migration had made its way through days prior. The buck was about 100 yards away give or take and it was walking straight away from us, IMHO bucks always look bigger in this position but this one looked dang near unreal, almost cartoonish it was so wide and heavy. It was quiet, no birds, no chipmunks, just cold and quiet with all that powder on the ground, eerie. My dad threw out a whistle and we had the camera rolling, the buck stopped, turned and looked directly at us while my dad filmed, it stood there just looking at us. After 3-4 minutes it quarters from us and started into the funnel(which was actually named something else by my great grandma 100 years ago and is still called by that name today), it lowered its head and slowly walked, head swaying, big white face, roman nose and a sway back that made him look like he had been rode for far to long. Some who know of this buck know he was well over 30" wide, my dad guessed him at over 3 feet and I would agree. The buck would stop from time to time and just look at us, never panicked or ran, like it could care less about us. I remember his body being way past its prime, he looked as old as I've ever seen a deer, old and broke down, his back left leg had an injury because he had a limp, I remember my dad saying "I'm glad we are seeing this, he won't make in through the winter, this may be the biggest buck you'll ever see, remember this"

I had a private conversation with a member on here, we were sharing stories of deer that keep us up at night, or deer we see in our dreams. Ive seen this buck in my sleep more than any buck I've killed or seen, I've often wondered where he died and how long he lasted. We went into the area for a few years after, its vast country with jack pine thickets and rock bluffs, we never found him.
wow ! You should seriously think of writing a book WITH pics and stories of the experiences you and your family ! Please
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Buckhunter24 on May 17, 2021, 12:37:20 PM
I remember some pics you've posted bigmacc, a book would be cool I would buy one
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bearhunter99 on May 17, 2021, 02:05:09 PM

Another memory of a big buck was one we actually didn't kill but was probably one of the biggest bucks(rack size) I've ever seen, at least in the top 3.

It was back in the early 70,s I think, the season was over and dad and I went over to do some post season scouting and get some 8mm film and take some pictures. It was the week before Thanksgiving and we went into an area my great grandma actually named, some on here that know me know the spot and I have shared this story with another person on here in more detail so that person knows exactly where this happened.  There was a foot or so of fresh powder on the ground and we went to this spot that acts like a funnel for migrating deer, they will enter into this area from 3 different migration routes and this spot draws them all in to one. Back in the day before the Methow went in the crapper it was nothing to see hundreds of deer in a couple hour time frame funnel into this spot and then a couple hours later another wave, this is a spot I seen over 800 deer move though by 11 o'clock in the morning and the biggest Bucks were spikes and 2 points. I good friend of my great grandmas went out there the next day and killed a monstrous 5 by 5, that was traveling in a group of around 60 and 9 of those were big bucks. A lot of this information was written on the backs of pictures, my great grandma was a stickler about writing on the backs, details etc, she also wrote in journals, a lot of them are faded or smeared but some are still readable.

 Anyway, my dad and I got to this spot to see what was moving through and to hopefully get some pictures. The snow was cut up with tracks coming into this "funnel" from 3 different directions. We stopped by an old snag and I threw my binos up and immediately seen a lone buck slowly making his way into the funnel, all by himself, not another deer around, it looked like the majority of the migration had made its way through days prior. The buck was about 100 yards away give or take and it was walking straight away from us, IMHO bucks always look bigger in this position but this one looked dang near unreal, almost cartoonish it was so wide and heavy. It was quiet, no birds, no chipmunks, just cold and quiet with all that powder on the ground, eerie. My dad threw out a whistle and we had the camera rolling, the buck stopped, turned and looked directly at us while my dad filmed, it stood there just looking at us. After 3-4 minutes it quarters from us and started into the funnel(which was actually named something else by my great grandma 100 years ago and is still called by that name today), it lowered its head and slowly walked, head swaying, big white face, roman nose and a sway back that made him look like he had been rode for far to long. Some who know of this buck know he was well over 30" wide, my dad guessed him at over 3 feet and I would agree. The buck would stop from time to time and just look at us, never panicked or ran, like it could care less about us. I remember his body being way past its prime, he looked as old as I've ever seen a deer, old and broke down, his back left leg had an injury because he had a limp, I remember my dad saying "I'm glad we are seeing this, he won't make in through the winter, this may be the biggest buck you'll ever see, remember this"

I had a private conversation with a member on here, we were sharing stories of deer that keep us up at night, or deer we see in our dreams. Ive seen this buck in my sleep more than any buck I've killed or seen, I've often wondered where he died and how long he lasted. We went into the area for a few years after, its vast country with jack pine thickets and rock bluffs, we never found him.
wow ! You should seriously think of writing a book WITH pics and stories of the experiences you and your family ! Please
:yeah:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: blindluck on May 17, 2021, 09:10:58 PM
Dang, this is Awesome
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: HntnFsh on May 18, 2021, 05:54:41 AM
Bigmacc, when you start telling a story I need a heads up beforehand so I can get a campfire going!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on May 18, 2021, 12:23:43 PM
Another that stands for me was a buck I killed  while my brother was with me, he had just retired from the military and if he wouldn't have been with me, I would have probably not found this buck. I have been very blessed to have never lost an animal but this particular day would have been the day if he was not with me.

We had went into another area that is a convergence of small migration routes, deer will stage in here for awhile then move on to winter range. We had spotted a couple nice bucks on the way in and one was a buck I would have taken in a heartbeat but all we got was his silhouette going over a ridge, don't know how many points but a big, wide rack. We kept going and got to the spot, the migration kicked in about 2-3 days prior, weather had been dumping snow and wind in the summer range for about a week and I figured this particular spot may start to have some visitors. We weren't there more than 5 minutes when I spotted a group of does about 300 yards out, watching them through the binos you could tell they very skiddesh. About 2-3 minutes later a big 4 by 4 came out of the aspen thicket chasing a doe, he was big. He turned broad side and I took the shot, had a good rest, waited for the does to clear, he turned, cross hairs on his shoulder, my brother watching through the bino,s, BOOM! buck drops out of sight, about 14 does bust out in all directions, we both got or binoculars,s on the chaos, watching the does to make sure we don't have a wounded buck, nothing, just does bouncing off. We watched the area for a good 10 to 15 minutes, getting our bearings where the buck dropped etc.

We walked up the ridge to the exact spot the buck was standing when I shot, there was tracks everywhere because of all the deer that had been milling around in there for who knows how long, we looked and looked, no blood, not a drop, we fanned out, did circles, did criss/crosses, stood on our heads, crawled on the ground, you name it, we spent over 4 hours in that area and covered every inch of about a 2 acre chunk of ground, no blood, no dead deer. We stood there trying to figure out what the hell just happen, we both seen the buck drop, we watched all the escape routes to see if he came out, we waited and glassed all around to see if he was still alive. We went back to the spot where he stood when I shot, we replayed it over and over, the buck turned broadside, offered a good shot, I squeezed the trigger, buck drops into the brush, one thing that happened that I will mention later that is a one in a million circumstance that resulted in this ordeal.

We started walking to an area we figured he would have tried to get to if he would have tried to give us the slip, we seen a few of the does go this direction but not the buck, we gave it a shot anyway. We crossed a big meadow, looking for blood, walking in and out etc. etc., nothing, we kept going with ours eyes to the ground looking for something. Another couple hours had passed and we came to the bottom of a draw that skirted a big hill, we stood there for awhile at an old game trail that came out of the draw and went around the hill. We were about to accept the fact that I had just lost my first animal, I was gut sick, no tracks, no blood, no nothing. My brother who is retired SF, looked down and by his boot was a drop of blood the size of a pencil eraser on a small aspen leaf, dry, but not to dry. We started fanning out again, I got about 20 yards out onto that old game trail and found another drop, we walked about another 50 or so feet and another drop, just a drop every once in awhile and spread out 20 - 50 feet apart. We got a few hundred yards out around this hill, still on the game trail, now it was starting to open up, we were getting out of the rock and gravel for the most part and the trail was becoming more dirt. We could see where he was trying to go up the hill, he would go up 5-10 feet or so then looks like he would slide down, we could see what looked like someone dragging sticks in the dirt, we figured he had a bad leg :dunno:. We kept following, more and more attempts to go up hill, then a disturbance in the dirt/gravel like he couldn't make it. We had went a good mile and a half or so around this hill when we came to a huge rock outcropping, we had still only seen a drop of blood here and there, but lots of attempts to get up the hill. We stopped, I told by brother, "I got a feeling he's right around this corner, in front of this bluff, he obviously can't get up it". I took my rifle off my shoulder and slowly went around the corner, there laying about 20 feet from me was a huge 4 by 4 with a head and face like a herford cow :yike:, just laying there looking at me, I raised my gun and the buck reared up on its haunches :yike:, I fired, hit him dead center in the chest, he dropped, I walked up to him, his nostrils where still flaring, I put another shot at close range into where I figured his heart was, dead. My heart was pounding, we both couldn't believe that thing had stood up like a horse, his hooves pawing at us, what the hell. Thats when my brother said, "look at his back legs", both back legs were gone at the knees, each still attached by a piece of hide! What had happened we figured was when I shot, the buck jumped up to mount a doe, just as I squeezed the trigger I seen him lunge forward, it was just enough to where my bullet hit both back legs(sawed them both off at the knees, chances of that?), it didn't bleed much because the bullet just went through bone and hide I guess. That buck had dropped into that  rock and tall brush that was maybe 3 feet tall or so and totally gave us the slip, while we were glassing all those does busting out in all directions, he must have been crawling on those stubs, he had went out a totally different way than we figured but eventually got to the spot we figured he would have tried to get to if we had wounded him. He had dropped into a swell in the ground and actually came down it almost straight towards us about 100 yards then hung a right behind a big bench, we never would have seen him and we never would have guessed him to go that way, we never noticed it until the next day when we went in to try and figure how that thing got from point A to point B without us seeing him, it had us both completely baffled. We got it figured out all right, we re-inacted the whole ordeal, topography can play tricks on the eyes when all hell is breaking loose, throw in rocks, thickets and benches and swells along with a will to live and thats how it all happened. If we hadn't have ended up at that exact spot where our paths came together and If my brother hadn't of found that little drop of blood in that spot that big ole buck would have been coyote food and I would still be sick about it to this day. We figured he crawled about 3 miles on those stubs, in a small swell  that was a totally unnoticeable from where we took the shot but it was enough for him to get out in a direction neither of us thought of or would have guessed. Thanks brother, thats a hunt I doubt either of us will ever forget :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: baldopepper on May 18, 2021, 01:17:07 PM
Good example of "memory bucks". You look at that rack on your wall (no matter how big or small) and those past trips start flashing back. Doesn't matter if it's one you got or one someone close to you got. As you get older and some of those close to you have passed on those memories can be bitter sweet, but mostly sweet.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on May 20, 2021, 01:52:32 PM
Good example of "memory bucks". You look at that rack on your wall (no matter how big or small) and those past trips start flashing back. Doesn't matter if it's one you got or one someone close to you got. As you get older and some of those close to you have passed on those memories can be bitter sweet, but mostly sweet.

Absolutely... :tup:..... One more of my favorites then I'm done. Your post just flared up another memory.

My great grandpa hunted into his 80,s, I was with him when he killed a few bucks in those later years of his life but one stands out. Grandpa had a spot he had found back in the 1920,s, he killed many deer in this spot(those on here that know me know this spot), once again a migration route that to this day only a few know of, its not easy to get to and even if you did stumble into this area you would walk right out as fast as you went in, you can't see anything! The spot has a vision area ofless than 30-50 yards in any given direction with thick jack pines that go on forever but, it just happens to be in a hell of a migration corridor, deer know they can pass through for miles, unseen, it truly is an amazing place.

Well, I took grandpa in there when he killed his last buck, his hands had increasingly become crippled by arthritis and this was going to be his last trip to "grandpas tree". We got in there a couple hours before sun up, started piling old limbs and brush around us where we sat at the base of the tree, something grandpa had did at least once or twice every season for over 70 years, building a blind. We got situated and had time to let things settle. It was about 20 or so minutes before shooting time when we started to hear limbs snapping in the jack pines below us. There are over 4 different routes that meet up to make up this particular corridor, some merge about a mile or so away then come in together in the jack pines, some converge in the jack pines and another comes in about a mile or so behind us then they all become one and end up in a winter range about 6-7 miles away as the crow flies.

We sat tight, grandpa had an opening in the makeshift blind to shoot through, we could hear the deer getting closer as they were getting ready to come out of the trees about 30 yards in front of us. About 12 or so does came out first along with a few small bucks, they split and went around us on both sides about 40-50 yards away, then more, and more, somewhere around 70 or so had made their way around us and disappeared again into the jungle when we heard more limbs cracking and snapping, although this sounded a little more serious this time. Out walked 2 big 4 by 4,s, both slowly went to the trail to the right of us, grandpa readied for the shot and dropped the trailing buck with a shot from his 270 and his old Redfield 4 power scope that he had used for what seemed like forever (I still have that old 270 and the scope).

That was the last buck he ever killed, I posted a picture of him with that buck on here and his hands looked like claws, it was a dandy of a buck for sure. I wasn't there when he killed his first of many, many bucks, but I was honored and blessed to have been there for his last....Thanks for conjuring up another great memory for me baldopepper :tup:

Once again for those that know me, this is the place my dad took my mom when they were first married, those that know me know the story well, my dad used to love to tell it, dad said a group of deer with a big 6 by 5 had come out of the jack pines, mom was set with her 30-30, she ejected 5 rounds on the big fella as he bounded off into the thick, never once pulling the trigger :chuckle:, its also the spot my dad had a doe come in behind him, sniffed him through the blind and blew snot all over the back of his neck :chuckle:, lots of old memories revolve around that tree, all are priceless.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: blindluck on May 20, 2021, 05:59:55 PM
Snot on the back of the neck, I love it.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on May 25, 2021, 10:33:07 AM
One more, a buddy asked me to tell this one since he is the star in this story :chuckle:. This is just not a "good memory buck" but its really good memory BUCKS.

I may have told this story before or maybe parts of it and names and places will be different of coarse to protect the innocent :chuckle:

The north cascades pass had just opened a year or two prior and it was our first trip over it to get to hunting camp that year. We had gotten over the pass and we were somewhere between Klipchuck and Early winters, one of my partners had to use some toilet paper so we pulled way back into a trailhead area and he dropped over the side. Not more than 30 seconds later he was flying back up the bank and said to grab a rifle there was a huge buck down in that hole. There were 3 of us in this old ford pick up, wall tents, wood stoves, supply boxes etc stacked cab high in the back, everything was buried except my rifle that was in the gun rack. We had left home at about 3 A.M and now it was smack dab in the golden hour. I went to hand him my rifle and he said no, you go ahead I got to s#$t :chuckle:, I ran down the hill about 50-60 yards or so into pretty thick stuff and kept going towards the bottom where I had a clear view of the side of the hill where my buddy said they were going when he jumped them. I no sooner got to the bottom when I seen a bunch of deer standing about 50 yards or so away in a huge open area with tall grass and brush, 6 does and 2 bucks, one was a real dandy 3 by 3, tall and heavy. Just about the time I got down on my knee to shoot, they exploded out and were running directly away from me, the bucks head going up and down in the brush, then he for some reason took a sharp right and was broadside now but the grass and brush was so tall I could only see his head popping up then disappearing. I put the crosshairs on his head and on one of his upstrokes I squeezed the trigger. This all happened so dang fast it was crazy, I hit him right in the back of the head actually, shattered his skull, killed him deader than dead. We figured we would get to town and my buddy wanted to take a few shots at the rifle range and I would finish gutting and cleaning him up there (still had to get the lungs, etc out) while he took a few shots. Well, we ended up pulling into the rifle range around 9AM or so, on opening morning, it was packed. My buddys found a spot on the far left and grabbed the spots and waited for a cease fire, I proceeded to finish up my buck, oh ya, did I mention he fell off the tailgate right in front of where the old John Wayne building used to be? He did. When we dragged him back to the truck there was nowhere to put him so we dropped the tailgate and tied him on using some twine, bootlaces etc, anything we could find behind the seat to lash him down with, everything else was buried in the back of that truck, he stayed there until I made the turn in front of the building and started up the hill, off he went right in the street :chuckle: Those that remember old Winthrop know the spot I'm talking of. Well a few guys came over to look at the buck(26" wide and 27" tall if I remember right, big heavy 3 by 3) while I was finishing him up , I told them we just stopped by to let my parter take a few shots then we were going to head to our area about another hour or so away. I was sitting there talking and working on this buck while shots were going off, guys were yelling "range is hot", "range is cold" etc etc etc, maybe 20 or so minutes had went by, more folks pulling in to the point it was a zoo. My other buddy walks over to me as I'm just finishing up my buck, he says come and look at this but act like nothing is going on, I walk over to their spot down at the end and my buddy hands me his binos, says look under that lone pine tree about 200 yards out on the side of the hill, I do, there lays a beautiful 4 by 4, just laying there by himself chewing his cud, half asleep, about 150 yards or so to the left of the range :yike:. Everyone is shooting so my buddy puts in a couple rounds, turns slightly to his left, we have our binos on the "target" and he fires, deer slumps, drops his head, lights out, no commotion what so ever. We wait about 10 or so minutes and some one called for a cease fire, we walked down range to check "our target" but veared a little to the left, we looked back and there were a few guys watching us go up the hill, we got to the buck, grabbed his antlers and started dragging him down the hill, we got about half way and about 50 people had their binos on us :chuckle:. We got him down there and no one could believe it, we gutted him, thew him on the tailgate with the other one( a guy there gave us a bunch of rope :chuckle:) and off we went, we got to our camp spot about an hour or so later, you should have seen the look on the faces as we pulled into our camp, we just backed up to the meat pole and had 2 big bucks hanging before we even had our tent up. My other buddy killed his buck the next day, we did a lot of fishing that year :chuckle:. If I remember right we had a total of 19 deer hanging in the little Bellingham camp that year, I think 2 folks didn't connect.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: hunt4life on May 26, 2021, 08:13:46 PM
What does it take to see some of these awesome bucks you have killed? Would love to see a few old time pictures!!!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on June 09, 2021, 10:48:05 AM
This isn't a buck of mine or our camps but it is a buck that carries a lot of memories and a story that is pretty wild to go along with it. I may have told a short version of this story before.

I think it was back in the late 70,s or early 80,s, the weather was warm and the first part of the season was nothing but local deer to be seen. We had around 12 or 13 hanging I believe and a few were decent bucks. One day the game fella we knew came into camp and told us there was reports of people going into camps at night and stealing deer off of game poles, just cutting them down and taking off. There had been a half dozen or so reported if I remember right. Well that particular year Boeing was on strike, more people were finding out about the valley because of the opening of the pass a handful of years earlier, it was the perfect storm for a lot of people, about a day or two into the season there was more hunters than I have ever seen in that valley, it was plain nuts, many of them it was their first time in the valley, heck, for many it was their first time hunting. Like I said by mid season, it was a total zoo! People were camped in turnoffs in the roads, anyplace they could pitch a tent or park a car, it was crazy. Well, two fellas put up a tent on a knob up above us, about 50 yards away, they eventually came down and introduced themselves, yep, they were on strike and heard about hunting the Methow from a coworker and yes, for both it was their first time hunting, thought they'd give it a try :chuckle: They basically asked us where they should go since we had deer hanging, they actually wanted us to draw them maps :chuckle:. Back then even without a migration happening there was still a very healthy local population of deer at all elevations, it was still nothing to see 100 deer a day along with 10 or so bucks a day if you knew were to go. These guys seemed like good people so we sent them to an area that was no secret, easy to get to and easy to get a buck out of if they did get one, there was another road at the bottom they could basically role him down to, only thing was they may run into a bunch of people with the amount of hunters that were in the valley. We were up at about 2 A.M to get into our area, about an hours drive then about a 4-5 mile hike in, those guys were still out at their fire sipping hooch when we left camp. We got back around 8 o'clock that evening, only to pull into camp and our headlights hitting a huge buck hanging on the ridgepole in the "2 fellas" camp. They were sitting at their fire, shirts and pants all bloody drinking beer, they proceeded to tell the story.

Apparently they were up late the night before :chuckle: :chuckle: so they didn't get up till about 9 A.M then drove to the spot we told them of, by the time they got there there was no one around they said. They made it out around the hill and the sun was beating down on them, it was about 11 o'clock, they spread out and sat down on the hillside, took off their coats, boots etc and fell asleep. They said they woke up a couple hours later, one of the guys sat up and stretched, as he did he looked down hill, there about 50 yards down was a huge buck, laying there looking away from him, he slowly grabbed his 30-30 and started shooting, that woke up the other fella. Now they were both blazing away while in their stocking feet, they figured about 15 or so shots were fired and the buck had been hit multiple times, finally they said it dropped. They rolled and drug it down the hill to that other road we told them of where eventually they hitched a ride back to their rig, drove to camp and hung the deer. I don't remember exactly how big this buck was, it was a heavy non-typical that was real wide I remember(maybe 27-28), just a beautiful buck. We never would have guessed they would have killed a deer, but they did and it was a dandy, now we had to tell them the story the game fella told us since they were camped right next to the road. We told them to keep an eye open because someone was swiping deer off of game poles, especially camps next to roads. Well, we went to bed only to get up at around 2 again to see one of the guys sitting by the fire with his 30-30, standing guard :chuckle:. We got back around 8 again that evening to see they had went to town to pick up "some" chain and paddle locks, that buck must have had 30 feet of different sized chain and about 6 paddle locks holding him to the tree :chuckle:, nobody was getting THAT buck, nobody :chuckle:. That was a weird year for sure, don't remember if they ever did catch the deer thieves. Those guys only got that one deer that year but it was a dandy, they came down to thank us before they left, we never did see them again.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Skyvalhunter on June 09, 2021, 11:48:39 AM
Thats a funny story. Did you see them back there the next year?
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: trophyhunt on June 09, 2021, 12:12:39 PM
great stories, but books with pictures are sooo much better!    :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on June 09, 2021, 01:43:55 PM
Thats a funny story. Did you see them back there the next year?

Never did see them again, one and done I guess, I sure wish I would have taken a picture of that buck with the two of them standing next to it with all the chain and locks, that would have been a heck of a picture for the album, it would have went great with the big buck my great grandma and her sister "lassoed" ;)
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on June 30, 2021, 12:30:04 PM
Sitting around thinking of an old cowboy friend of mine who is now in a home, this is his story of a "good memory buck", he told this story many times around the fire, he said, that to date, it was the biggest buck he had ever seen and he had dreams of this event that played over and over in his head.

It was towards the tail end of the Methow hay-days(late 70,s/early 80,s), Walt(not his real name) and his wife were up in the high country rounding up a few strays, Walt was sitting on a hillside glassing the bottom of a big canyon from about 300 yards or so away looking for the strays. Walt and his wife had already filled their deer tags a few days prior before heading up to do the roundup. Walt said the weather was blue skies but bitter cold at about 7,000 feet or so, no storms had come through yet and no snow on the ground. After a few minutes Walt noticed a lone rider coming from the right moving to the left, he and his horse had heads down just walking, the cowboy had his collar up around his neck and hands crossed holding onto the saddle horn, Walt and his wife watched him for a bit when Walts wife tapped him on the shoulder and pointed downhill, Walt looked and there going slightly up hill away from them was a HUGE buck, by itself. Walt could not count all the points, he said later that his wife said there were at least 10 on one side and 8 or 9 on the other, it was thick and wide, he said it was the biggest buck he had ever personally seen, and he lived and worked in the valley his whole life. Well, Walt said there was a pretty good sized aspen thicket in the bottom of the canyon and there was a trail that went right through the middle of it, Walt had rode it many, many times. The thicket was about 50 yards or so by about 70 yards, almost "squarish" in looks, the rider was about 75 or so yards from entering it on the trail. Now, the buck was also heading for the same thicket, from the bottom, it to was 75 yards or so away. Walt said the rider had a rifle in a scabbard along with an orange vest over his coat so he figured he was hunting, he told his wife, "were about to witness a hell of a wreck" :chuckle:. He said the rider was still in the same position, head down, hands crossed on the horn, Walt told his wife "I think he's asleep!", his horse just staying on the trail, also head down, still on the trail, heading for the thicket. Walt shifted his binos to the huge buck coming up from the bottom, head down, swaying side to side, Walt said it looked like he could barely support his horns by the way he was walking. He told his wife, "get ready, this is gonna be a commotion!" The rider entered the thicket and disappeared, a minute or so went by and the buck entered the thicket and disappeared, Walt said he and his wife waited for all hell to break loose, nothing, not a peep or even a branch breaking. Soon the rider and his horse exited out the other side of the thicket, both with their heads down, everything in the same position as when they entered. A few seconds later Walt moved his binos to the thicket again to see the monster buck come out the top, head down, swaying side to side, walking at the same pace he was when he entered the bottom, heading up the hill as the rider was heading the other way, no wreck, no commotion, no nothing, both were oblivious to each other, life just went on and Walt said if he and his wife wouldn't have witnessed it, would it really have happened, kind of like a tree falling in the forest type deal :chuckle:.

Walt said it was the only time in his life he had wished he had a fancy camera and lens to snap a picture, thats how big that buck was. He said "I've seen plenty of big bucks in my lifetime, dead and alive but nothing ever like that one". Those on here that know "Walt" know that he has seen and killed some real dandys, some have been with him(myself included) when he has taken us out to show us some monstrous bucks, he knew where they hid. He took me into a "pocket" one year to show me where a bunch of bucks were holed up after the rut was over, I remember it was just before Christmas, we were over visiting him and his wife, we got up one morning, he threw me on a horse and off we went, we got into an area I knew about and we got into a little pass and went around the side of a hill where it opened up a bit but was surrounded by nothing but rocks and big benches. There scattered through the benches was nothing but bucks, just laying around, probably 10-12 that we could see, ALL big fellas, All rutted out, just resting. A couple were real nice bucks, easily in the 30 inch category, it seemed every time you'd move your binos you'd pick up another buck back in the rocks laying under a tree, very cool. The way Walt talked about the buck he and his wife seen walking into that thicket must have been big, knowing Walt and all the bucks he's seen along with not being a bragger, it was probably, actually bigger.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 01, 2021, 01:52:22 PM

Another involving my old cowboy friend, I was actually with him when this "good memory buck" happened. Sorry, like I said I have a few that pop into my head from time to time, could be a picture I see, a story I hear or like today, watching a neighbors kid throw a lasso around a dummy steer made of a small log with a cut up broomstick for horns :chuckle:

I may have told this story on here before so ill keep it short. I was visiting "Walt" and his wife one year, we were taking a ride checking out deer after the season had ended, we went to a particular pond that was in the process of drying up over the past few years, the shore area around the pond was pretty muddy/sticky and had the consistency of molasses basically. Walt knew of a big buck that was hanging in the vicinity past the pond and wanted to show it to me, we had to pass the pond to get to the area the buck was in about another hours ride or so away. When we got by the pond we seen a nice big buck who was stuck in the shore mud of the pond, beautiful rack and in his prime. The buck was stuck about belly deep in the muck and looked like he had been there awhile by the looks of the surrounding area and him being covered in mud. We sat there awhile pondering how to get this buck out when Walt grabbed his rope and proceeded to try roping the buck, if I remember right it took a few attempts and the buck was so tired it just stood there basically. Walt ended up getting the rope on him, it basically got tangled in his antlers, Walt tightened up the rope, wrapped his saddle horn, put his horse in reverse and pulled the buck out of the muck, the buck didn't come out easy, he caught his second wind and fought Walt. The rope got more tangled in the bucks horns but eventually was on dry ground. The buck would thrash a little then stand still then repeat, Walt ended up just cutting the rope to let the buck loose, It had a birds nest of rope in its horns and a tail of rope dragging on the ground as it hopped off. Walt and I looked at each other as the buck went up the hill joking about the reaction someone might have if they found those sheds :chuckle: Long story short, we knew where the deer in this particular area wintered, I,ll be darned if Walt didn't find those sheds the following spring about 3-4 miles away, those sheds with all that rope sat in a pile by his wood stove. I don't remember what ever happened to them, I would have loved to have gotten them down the road.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 01, 2021, 04:18:28 PM
One more and I'm done for awhile, I tell my kids to take pictures of these stories because eventually I,ll be gone, won't remember them or Ill just mix em all together to the point they won't make sense :chuckle: :chuckle:

I believe it was back in the 80,s or possibly late 70,s(some on here may have heard about this and know exact dates :dunno:). My dad and I were over doing some post season scouting, I'm thinking 3rd week of November. I remember it being cold and about a foot of snow on the valley floor and bumper depth around 3500feet. We drove the old Bronco till we were pushing snow then we,d park and hoof it into certain spots, trying to stay under the tree canopy since we didn't have snow shoes, it was a pain in the azzz to say the least. The first day of hitting a couple different spots I remember we seen around 300-350 total in those two areas, a few nice bucks but nothing great. Dad was wondering out loud "where all the big fellas were". We were beat the first day and went back to camp, on the way back, on the hill about 250 yards off the dang pavement was a HUGE buck, we stopped and put the glasses on him, he was curled up, by himself just lounging. We figured him at about 30-32 inches across, perfect 4 point if I remember right(could have had a fifth on one side :dunno: don't recall), long heavy tines, just a real specimen. We were over for 4 days I remember, we would come out of the hills, wet, cold and tired and drive by that same spot, pull over and look at this buck, over and over again, it was just a magnificent buck. He would be laying in the same spot, out in the open on state land, all by himself, we never seen any other deer around him. Well, we stopped by Walts place(he had been out of town)after he and his wife returned. We told him of the buck and where he was, Walt said he already knew of it, hell half the valley knew of it, it had been hanging around that area for a couple weeks. Dad and I were over there another couple days, ended up seeing over a thousand or so deer(yep, good ole days ) and on our last day we drove to get another look at the "big fella", we pulled over in the same spot we had the last  dozen times we stopped to look at him. Well, this time we put our glasses up where he was only to see all kinds of blood in the snow, looked like a dang murder scene with the headless body laying there, dad and I were gut sick, just emotion after emotion running through both of us from sadness to being pissed to sadness again that such a beautiful animal went out that way, just sickening. There were no "quality tags" back then, the season had been down for a couple weeks, humanity at its finest :bash:(pissed off sarcasm). We went down to report it, someone already had. I remember they couldn't find any human tracks in the snow around the kill, many rumors of a helicopter being involved etc. :dunno:......It was a beautiful buck, almost pretty looking it was so perfect, just a shame........A good memory buck that could be also a "bad memory buck" 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: gee_unit360 on July 01, 2021, 09:04:39 PM
Well I have a few, the one that stands out the most is probably the big one my dad killed back in the 60,s that a bunch of game guys got wind of and came to our camp to weigh him and look him over. I remember sitting there with my dad freezing with hours to go before shooting time, fog rolling in and out, about 6-8" of frozen, crusty snow on the ground and somewhere in the single digits, miserable. We were in a spot that my dad loved to sit when migrations were in full tilt. He would sit there and see nothing but does and small bucks come through by the hundreds in a 2 day spread, he would then let it rest for a couple days and get right back in there and here would come the big boys, like clock work. Well that particular year was no different, we had seen plenty of does moving through a few days prior, we layed off and on the third day dad said lets get in there. Its a couple hour hike getting to the spot, all up hill, we left camp at about 1:30/2 o'clock in the A.M, got there and sat for what seemed like forever. I remember a bunch of does and small bucks moving through the draw at a 150 yards or so away, in and out of the trees. My dad said to sit tight, more were coming, out of the trees came a group of some real nice bucks and more does, I couldn't figure out why dad wasn't shooting, a couple of the bucks were dandys. I can't remember actually how many deer moved through there over about a 10 minute period but it was a lot, probably 10-15 bucks of all shapes and sizes, then it piddled out, they all eventually worked their way through a saddle and disappeared. I whispered, why didn't you shoot, Dad said there was more coming, he "had a feeling" he said, those on here that knew my dad know exactly what I'm talking about. Maybe 10 or so minutes had passed, fog rolling in and out when at the bottom of the draw we could see deer in the fog, moving up towards the saddle, in and out of the trees and fog, we could see horns on a few but could not make out the size. My dad still whispered, don't move. After a dozen or so more deer (along with a couple more dandys) had moved out of the fog and were headed towards the saddle another lone deer was coming out of the trees, we could only see a shape and movement with another fog patch moving through. The buck got to where he was almost straight across from us when he came out of the fog, it looked like an elk. It was huge, looked twice as big as the other deer who had moved through that exact spot earlier, its head was down, swaying side to side as it walked, very slowly, all I could see as far as horns was a huge birds nest of antlers, too many points to count before he eventually would disappeared into the saddle. Dad raised his rifle and put a round right behind the shoulder, the buck didn't even flinch, just dropped, a kill shot we all hope to make every time out, the buck never knew what hit him. The buck had over 20 countable points and bases that a grown man couldnt get his hand around, ill never forget that hunt or that buck, some on here know what the Game department weighed him in at, I will decline to comment, it was big to say the least.


And yes, I did post a picture of him on here with my great grandma standing next to it, its the only set of antlers my dad ever saved. He always said, "hell, ill shoot another one" . I think he knew he could never top that fella so he kept those :chuckle:


Post the pic again!! I’m 40 and missed the elite hay days… do me a solid!! Great stories by the way.
Title: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: jackelope on July 01, 2021, 09:24:00 PM
I’ve got a couple.  First and foremost the first special permit I ever drew here in Washington. 2010 and WDFW put out late mule deer permits for the Blue Mountains. My wife’s family is from there and we’ve spent a bunch of time down there recreating over the years. I was super excited for this trip. The hunt was less than amazing but I had a crazy stroke of luck and managed to kill a cool old buck with some good buddies. Shot the buck along the road while we were road hunting a whiteout blizzard. Even had my buddys dog magnum in the truck with us. Mag passed away this past week which makes the trip and that day a little more significant  memory at this point.

(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20210702/8dab0ca15ee7b5ec87dff805e071c14b.jpg)


The other one that stands out in my hunting memories was the first time my daughter was along and we got to tag a nice whitetail together.  This was also down in the Blues after we had to make a quick trip back to her grandmas house for some hot chocolate and popcorn. She was 8 years old at the time. In the top pic you can see the dead buck lying at the skyline behind her.

(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20210702/6359ddc79041a4dc85e945c423df2190.jpeg)

Her and “our” buck.

(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20210702/72d5860eafb0166befbf24025d528f84.jpeg)

She got a good pic of me and our buck too.

(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20210702/52db0c5c0f6f00865f292362fd72650c.jpeg)
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: hunter399 on July 02, 2021, 05:11:35 AM
I can share one from last year........
My son and I up at first light,driven down the road aways.
He wanted to go to unit 124 where he could shoot a Doe.
So on the way I kinda know of a few different spot that may hold a small buck or something.
I turned off and said hey let's go up here instead for the day.
This is an area that has many walk in oppertunitty.
So the first gate at first light ,walking in we catch a few deer standing in the road right in front of us. But they jump the road and head into the creek bottom. Before we could get a good look at them. So we continue a mile or so in till we get to a few clear cuts .Sat and watch that area most of the mourning ,kinda hoping that maybe them deer at first light would show up . Well no such luck.
So it's about midday not seeing anything since first light,hiked back out to the truck. Headed down to the next gate. Nobody parked here ,so let's walk in here.
So we start walking in ..........
I can see drag marks and deer hair in the road ,I'm thinking great somebody has already got a deer out of here.
But at the same time I'm seeing few sets of a pretty nice buck tracks. I'm thinking man somebody got a decent deer out of here already. So I'm like screw it ,we are already here afternoon daylight is burning ,might as well walk around a bit. So we walk back a mile or more ,again watching clear cuts ,after sitting for awhile .I tell the boy ,hey we are gonna get off the road and kinda cross country are way back to the truck ,down this ridge that leads back that way . So it had snowed a few days earlier, and still some patches of snow with some bare spots. So I tell him stay very close to me ,we are gonna go real slow and steady ,mainly cause I didn't want him to slip on the snow with his rifle.
We are walking along slow and steady.We come to a deer trail ,and are starting to see more and more tracks in the pockets of snow. We finally make over to this ridge that will take us slowly downhill and back to gate where the truck is at. The back side of this ridge is like all reprod trees with cat roads going down the ridge every 50 feet or so. And the wind picked up blowing pretty strong as well. We are walking along and I'm just kinda checking each cat trail as we are slowly headed to the truck. I see this buck down one of the trails just standing in the cat road ,it looks up at me and goes right back to eating. I did check him out with my own rifle real quick to make sure what I'm seeing is real.I had already punched my tag a week back .Diffirent story there.
I get the boy over there ,I point down there tell him there's a buck right there. He gets his rifle up and starts looking through his scope ,and I will never forget this part.
He tells me he can't see it in his scope,my jaw and balls and poop in my pants hit the ground. At this point the buck has stoped eating but still just standing there very still.
So he is still looking through his scope ,I very slowly grab the end of his rifle ,he didn't even have it close to where the buck was at. And get him pointed in the right direction. I ask him can you see it now .He says ya I see him. I tell him take your time ,he isn't going anywhere,squeeze a shot off.
So he shoots!!!!!!!!
Deer takes off ,and with all this stuff going on before the shot I couldn't tell if he hit him or not.
The backside of this ridge was very steep ,so I make him unload his rifle,but I kept mime loaded.
We walk down the ridge ,down the cat road and get to where the buck was standing. So I just start tracking in the patches of snow .He was kinda tripping up but didn't really look to be slowing down.We are going super slow I even lose the tracks a few times cause of the patches of snow . Then the boy says hey dad isn't that blood right there. Holy crap I thought for sure he missed it ,such a nice buck and all. So I just keep tracking real slow and all ,seeing a few drops of blood here and there in the tracks ,I still thank God for the patches of snow. All of a sudden this basterd jumps up about ten feet from us from behind a down tree. I'm like ooh @$!#  we are gonna be tracking this buck for the next 20 miles now.
Not a very good blood trail and not knowing where my son hit him.
We see him go down again maybe 40 yards away and he is still kicking but not on his feet. I get my son into position and we just sit and wait very quiet and I tell him if it stands up put another round in him.
We wait about 30 mins I would say and didn't see anymore movement ,so he finally expired.
We walk up on this buck ,and I'm like you did it pal.
You got a giant ,some high five,some pics,I get in a hurry gutting him and poked one of my fingers with my knife.
Got in a hurry cause I had to go to work that night,and had a ways to drag before dark.
Anyway I ended up calling in sick to work and got him out before dark.
My son was 14 at the time and his first nice buck,he has only shot one other small buck.
But all the target practice,all time,and to have everything come together was and still is one of my proudest moments.
His buck ended bigger than mine and I'm happy it turned out that way.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: jstone on July 02, 2021, 11:05:57 AM
Nice whitetails. I think that’s what I am going after this year in Montana. One animal I don’t have on the wall
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 02, 2021, 03:47:01 PM

Great stories and great bucks hunter399 and jackelope :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 02, 2021, 05:07:45 PM
Had someone ask me to tell this one so here it goes. Its an old story and I will try to tell it best I can remember, I posted the picture of this buck on here years ago, it was one of my dads favorites, along with the hunter, in fact it was one of the photos that was being copied(from what I heard) along with many of the others that I eventually took down. My great grandparents loved telling this story because Gabe was such a character but just one of many who were part of the "little Bellingham Camp. Some I was fortunate enough to have known personally, some I just heard stories of from when I was just a boy, this is one of those. I remember as a boy wondering what this myth was of Gabe(his real name) because everyone who spoke of him always laughed, or had a smile. Grandma always called him the gentle giant, so this may be not only a memory of a great buck but also of a great man.

Gabe started hunting in the camp back in the 30,s, my great grandparents started it in 1917, there were friends my great grandparents would take over that they trusted. Gabe along with many other friends and family eventually made up the camp that eventually numbered around 100, give or take on any particular year. I posted the pictures (for anyone who wants to call B.S  :chuckle: :chuckle:) of meat poles with 20-30 bucks on one pole, then you would walk about 50 feet to the next clan and they would have their meat pole with another 20 or so bucks, thats just the way it was back then, yep, good ole days, all friends and family. Yes, my great grandparents knew many of the original valley familys, they took them to Alaska to fish, hunt and recreate and became lifelong friends.

Gabe eventually ended up working in Alaska, doing work for fish and game up there in his later life. Gabe was a huge man to say the least, about 6.5, country strong and somewhere around 270lbs give or take but my dad said he wouldn't hurt a fly. Dad said he was out with Gabe many times as a boy back in the 30,s and 40,s, dad would say you had to twist his arm to get him to kill a buck :chuckle: He loved to hunt, just didn't like to kill anything :chuckle:. Well one day back in the early 40,s word was flying around camp that Gabe had killed a monster buck, dad said the shots came from where Gabe was at and one of the gals that was in the area along with my great grandma came back to camp to get help, dad said if Gabe couldn't get a deer out of the woods by himself, they knew it must have been big, grandma didn't say a word but had a special look on her face dad said. Well, a bunch of guys(including my dad) went out the trail(those on here that know me know the trail :tup:) and went out about 3 or so miles, when sitting along side the trail was Gabe, jet black hair, jet black beard and a big smile, next to Gabe was a giant deer, dad said it looked like a cow with antlers. A bunch of them took turns and drug him back to camp. I won't say how big the deer was, some on here know, and a lot of you seen the picture when I posted it, it was truly a monster, the picture I posted out of our album was of the deer hanging on the pole with Gabe standing right next to it, it made Gabe look like a little boy. I am very blessed to have been part of a family with such history and to have been able to have hunted in a time that our herds were actually being managed, the “Game Department “ wasn’t perfect by any means but predators were kept in check and they did try to put forth a quality product for hunters.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 08, 2021, 05:07:20 PM
Heres another that I remember, the man in this story was an old fisherman friend of my great grandparents, he was based in Bellingham but did most of his fishing in Alaska, he was actually up on Kodiak when Pinnel and Gustafson killed that big bear(record at one time, Morris was a cousin of my great grandma) that I posted the picture of, its the Kodiak that my great grandma used to call "the 55 ford" because it looked like a car moving through the brush when she had seen it days/weeks earlier.

Anyway, Paul was another character, only I was actually able to "observe" his myth in person since I was just a boy when he was around camp, old enough to remember him in his older days but not his prime as my dad did. Paul(his real name) was another big man, in fact his nickname was "The superman of the Methow", he was slavic and had a thick accent,  forearms like Popeye (from pulling nets his whole life) and built like a fire hydrant, dang near square(those on here that knew Paul will vouch for that :tup:) Paul was known to "drag" deer only to come to the conclusion in his early days, that was to much work, so, he would cut their legs off, field dress etc, then just throw the deer over his shoulder and walk it out, much easier. Well Paul, "The superman of The Methow" was out with my great grandma one day, the spot they were hunting was a spot that a few days earlier produced about 300 head that was on the move during the first kick off of a migration. Paul had "a spot" that was in an area where about 4 routes converged, they had to cross a river, and then once on the other side would meet up with another route where they would "stage" for days or more before weather would move them out, then move approximently another few miles or so where 2 more routes would meet up with those. Paul had figured it out in the infancy of "The Little Bellingham Camp", to this day its a spot hunted by our camp but no where near what it was because of the way the seasons are set AND the lack of deer.

Paul and grandma were there a few hours before light, grandma had said they could hear deer moving up on both sides while they were sitting in the dark, grandma said it sounded like an endless herd of cows moving up the draws, only seeing shadows every once in awhile. Grandma said by the time it was light she would have guessed maybe 150-200 had come up the 2 draws on either side of "Pauls spot", it went on for a couple hours. Grandma said once you could see, there were deer everywhere, on both sides, some moving, some feeding but everywhere. They stayed quiet and still, some deer were literally 20 yards from them, grandma said they knew each other well enough that Paul was going to shoot one way and grandma the other. Grandma said Paul whispered "3", grandma picked a buck on her side she liked, knowing Paul had his, counted to 3 and they squeezed the triggers. Grandma said that it was a stampede, deer running everywhere, grandma said she couldn't even guess as to how many. Grandma said that she eventually seen many bucks spurting out of the draws that were much bigger than the 2 bucks her and Paul had killed(after the fact).

Well, that all happened when my dad was a young boy,  I heard the story many times, seen pictures of Paul (The superman of the Methow) packing out 2 nice 4 points, one on each shoulder for "the camera", I tell no lies. Paul was never the same after that deal. When I was a boy Paul was still "The Superman of The Methow", he still had forearms like Popeye, still strong as an ox, only he walked slumped over, his back shot. Paul would still get out of bed at 1 o'clock every morning, drive his Tote-Goat into everyones camps to make sure they were up, yelling (in his slavic voice) "there on the move, its snowing, you fools should be there already". The last year Paul was in camp was a year I will never forget, We had to shovel snow off the wall tents every half hour, never seen so much snow. I had finally hit the sack thinking "ill get an hours more sleep" when I heard Paul coming , in his red long johns, a 44 mag in his Alaskan across his chest, on his Tote Goat flying INTO OUR TENT flaps yelling "You boys still in bed, theres deer on the move".....Yep, good ole days. We killed 5 huge bucks that morning, thanks Paul :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MADMAX on July 08, 2021, 05:20:52 PM
Great story’s 👍
Back in the day

So sad nowadays
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 08, 2021, 06:10:10 PM
Great story’s 👍
Back in the day

So sad nowadays

Yes sir, some of these young folks on here have no idea what this state was at one time :tup:....yep.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MADMAX on July 08, 2021, 06:12:13 PM
Even 10 years ago it wasn’t bad
I bet 50 years ago it was heaven
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 09, 2021, 10:02:24 AM
Even 10 years ago it wasn’t bad
I bet 50 years ago it was heaven

Yes sir, now try 60 or 70 years ago, thats when my dad was in his prime cruising the valley(born in the 30,s), then 80-100 years ago when my great grandparents were doing their thing. I was very fortunate, both my great grandparents lived long lives, my great grandpa hunted into his 80,s and my great grandma into her 90,s, I was around to hear the stories first hand. My grandma wrote things on the backs of many of the pictures also, some are readable but unfortunately most are not but when my dad was still alive he would clarify a lot of the pictures. I was a boy when the hay-days of the camp were starting to wind down (50,s and 60,s), there were still about 60 or so people in the camp and man those times were great for seeing deer, it was pre cascades pass, a lot of the original valley families still around, some of the original great characters were still in camp, it was truly fantastic. Today, this valley is practically unrecognizable from the way I remember it just 50-60 years ago as far as the deer situation goes and even the valley itself along with its people, its politics and its charm has drastically changed IMHO, I wonder what my grandparents would think if they were around today and compared it to when they first hit the valley back in 1917, well I've heard stories and seen pictures and it wouldn't be "practically" unrecognizable, it WOULD BE unrecognizable.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MADMAX on July 09, 2021, 11:19:54 AM
The spandex , soy and man buns have taken over
We still go over
My group loves it still
Will see how the chewuch late tag does this year for our young guy
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 16, 2021, 03:39:53 PM
This is a story of another Paul, an Ironworker friend of my dads who hunted out of our camp for over 25 years. There were many Ironworkers in our camp through the years, I knew many of them as a boy but sadly none are around today, only one of them actually died of natural causes, the rest all dieing in on the job tragedies, Paul was one of those.

Back in the 70,s Paul looked like Wyatt Earp, hair over his ears, big mustache and movie star looks, the guy could have been a star :chuckle:, my dad always teased him about why in the world such a good lookin guy was walking the iron when he could have a cushy job in Hollywood, hence the nickname, "Hollywood" :chuckle:.

I had only seen Paul kill one buck in those 25 years, a 2 point, not because he didn't hunt hard, not because he couldn't see etc. I just don't know why, its a mystery. Dad would send him into different spots and areas that always produced, Paul would be in there at prime time(weather, migrations etc) and come out with nothing, only seeing some does(his words). I would go with him, my dad would go with him, it didn't matter, we would see does, thats it. The next day someone would go to the same spot and kill a dandy, it was like he was snakebit. Just plain weird. Well, one day during a really good season, all the stars were aligned, (we thought :chuckle:) for Paul to get a nice buck, the weather was prime with storm after storm hitting the high country for over 2 weeks. The snow was 2-3 feet in the summer range and a nasty wind had been blowing in from Canada for a couple days(my dads trigger was always the wind and where it was coming from), dad had a particular spot in a particular route that was in a particular corridor that he predicted Paul would kill a monster AND have his pick of multiple monsters. Paul started in at about 1 A.M or so, another fella in camp was with him, it was only about 2 miles in but all up hill and a nice drag/role down hill after he killed the big fella. They were in there until dark that night, I was to pick them up on a road around 8 P.M. They were there, by them selves, no buck! On the way back they said they seen around 30 does all day, they were tired and disgruntled to say the least. Paul said he was going to sleep in the next day and wondered if I would give him a ride to town the next day to pick up some coffee, I said sure. I already had my deer so I slept in also, we headed to town about 9 or so, we went not more than 100 yards out of camp when going around the first turn in the road was a 2 point, Paul killed it as it ran down the side.

The next year the weather was perfect again, snow, cold, wind, perfect. Paul was going into the same spot my dad had sent him in the previous year, only this time he was going in the night before. He took his sleeping bag, some visqueen, a few cans of chili and of coarse, his coffee pot, back then we drank out of all the creeks so water was not an issue. We dropped him at the trail head around 2 in the afternoon, he said to pick him up in 2 days. It was around 7-8 o'clock the next night when we seen a human in the dark coming into camp, when he got closer the firelight let us see it was Paul, he walked by us with a weird look on his face, threw all his stuff into the back of his truck while we were all sitting there asking "whats going on", the only thing he said as he got in his truck was "ill talk to ya all later", then he left, we were all puzzled to say the least. Paul was always a loner and a bit aloof but this was even strange for him. A year went by and Paul died in a horrific accident in San Francisco, some may know about it, it was national news. I asked my dad years later if Paul had ever told him about what happened out there, what made him come back early etc., dad said Paul never gave an explanation, didn't want to talk about it and whenever dad brought it up Paul would act strange. The only thing that Paul hinted at was that "he seen something", to this day I myself don't know the story but I believe my dad did and out of respect for Paul, he never shared it, I just don't know, Ironworkers have a bond and my dad never broke it as far as Paul was concerned. I did get to see Paul kill his buck though, R.I.P my friend.


Like I said, "Good memory bucks", yep I have a few :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: High Climber on July 16, 2021, 05:59:30 PM
Bigmac what did you speculate Paul saw out there? Thanks again for sharing your stories! Incredible stuff you guys lived up there back in day
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 16, 2021, 06:12:10 PM
Bigmac what did you speculate Paul saw out there? Thanks again for sharing your stories! Incredible stuff you guys lived up there back in day
i don’t know, to this day it’s a mystery, myself, my brother and a couple others remember that whole deal, Paul didn’t look right but he went about his business until the accident. My dad talked with him many times, not always about what happened of course, but dad would bring it up time to time. Paul died, I believe my dad knew something, he never did go into detail, all he ever said was “ something must have happened “ , like I said, Ironworkers are a different breed, they hold things close. I myself do not know, his family does not talk about either. I sure as hell don’t want anybody bringing up Bigfoot, not cool.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: blindluck on July 16, 2021, 09:00:53 PM
Hmmm, very interesting
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 22, 2021, 04:06:53 PM

My last for awhile, those that know me know this story.

1961, we were caravanning it out of camp, one road in, same road out. A few of the pictures I posted were from that year, we had 20 or so rigs single filing it out of camp, cold, snow on the ground and multiple deer tied onto each rig. Where the old "Little Bellingham Camp" was we had about a 3 mile drive until we hit a fork in the road, an old skid road that guys with jeeps and tote goats would frequent(today its actually a gated road, one of the many my dad helped to get closed during hunting seasons) and on this day out of camp, somewhere around the 1st week of November the lead rig heading out(it always had folks in it who hadn't killed a deer that season) came to a stop. My dad, mom and myself were 4 or so rigs back, I remember a friend of grandmas from Lynden(won't say the name) jumping out of the passenger seat and running down the bank. She had a 30-30 and was firing as she left the truck. I remember my dad saying something like "what the hell", those that know dad know that he didn't get to excited unless he was "poked with a stick" :chuckle:, then you better run. Well, the second rig and a couple more rigs had people bailing out, eventually my dad calmly stepped out and said something like(using my dads lingo for those that know him :chuckle:), well, hell, thats not a bad buck! Eventually, after a whole bunch of shots a pretty nice buck was killed by the gal from Lynden(with some help :chuckle:). A few on here remember this story, it was a dandy and there may be some on here that remember it because it was the talk of the valley back then, dang thing was 31 inches wide, had 13 total points and took 13 bullets :chuckle: to finally kill it. Another buck that reminds me of the old camp, killed in "the fork in the road" ;)
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 22, 2021, 08:46:57 PM
One more :chuckle:

Im thinking around 1963 or 4 because this fella died a few years later(ironworker), We will call him Mike( because that was his name :chuckle:). Mike was a diabetic, bad, couldn't go anywhere without his shots, he had a little bag with all his syringes and always told everybody if he hit the ground to just stuff a candy bar in his mouth :chuckle:. Well, Mike was a tough S.O B, about five ten and tougher than Whitey( those that know me know who im talking about) and half as ornery. Dad brought Mike into camp the same year that Paul was there. Mike wanted a buck, Whitey had taken him hunting in Wyoming a few years earlier(thats where dad, Mike and Whitey met, putting up towers outside of Sheridan). Well, Whitey is the fella I've told stories of that was kicked in the face by a mule when he was young, lost an eye and had a box full of fake ones, for every occasion. Ive already told that story. Dad took Mike into an area that he had been having conversations with some Game guys about, they knew there was some routes that moved through a particular area, BUT, there was another "corridor" that they knew my family knew of and were in the process of doing some homework for some tagging. Mike was on a hillside 2-3 hours before light, when the sun was coming up he heard movement behind him, he flashed his light to see 2 Game guys, they asked him have you seen anything? he said no, how did you guys know about this spot? they said probably from the same guy you heard it from :chuckle:.Mike killed a buck a few years later, a nice 3 point and then passed away, not from diabetes but from a fall...R.I.P Mike.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 22, 2021, 09:07:16 PM
Hey "brother" take pictures of these, I aint gonna remember them forever :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: High Climber on July 22, 2021, 09:28:36 PM
Great stuff :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 26, 2021, 04:37:54 PM
This is a classic involving my dad and a good friend of mine, this story usually comes up around the fire every year, its a memory of my dad and, (what I've heard) was quite a big buck. When my friend and my dad came back to camp my friend who was actually known for downplaying the size of deer pulled me off to the side and was damn near shaking with eyes the size of saucers while he was telling me what happened.

This took place when my dad was in his late 70,s, those that knew my dad know he has killed plenty of trophy mule deer in his life time, he himself only kept one set of antlers and that was the big non typical he killed back in the 60,s that a bunch of game department folks came up to camp and asked if they could look it over and weigh it. Later in my dads life I actually started saving some of his antlers before he had the chance to give them away :chuckle:. After hearing about this buck, I'm sure it would have been one of those sets I would have kept him from giving away.

My buddy and myself had already killed our bucks along with the majority of the camp, most folks had actually headed home, I believe there were around 6 or 7 of us left at camp. The snow was falling in the high country and had been for about 4 or 5 days, my dad wanted to go into an area he hadn't been into in years, he had one of "those feelings" he was famous for. It was at around 6,000 feet and we knew it would be a tough hike in because of the snow but my dad wanted to go in, my friend went with him and I went into another route with another friend, we were about 4-5 miles away from where my dad and buddy were. The hike they had to get to this particular spot was only about a mile, but a bit sketchy with some rock bluffs and shale to go through to get to the spot. My buddy said he and dad made it not more than a few hundred yards in when they spotted a shadow laying in a thicket. The snow was about a foot deep where they were at but fine powder, really quiet to walk in. They stopped and my buddy put his glasses on the form laying in the thicket, he said right away he could tell it was a buck and that it was BIG! My buddy told my dad "its a buck but I can't tell how big", ( it was either the 1st or 2nd year of the 3 point rule), my dad then put his scope on the buck which was about 100 yards away, my dad and my buddy kept watching for him to turn any direction so they could count points, the buck was just laying there in the thicket with limbs and branches dangling all around him. My buddy said my dad kept calmly saying "man thats a dandy, I just can't count the points", my buddy said the rack was thick and very heavy with at least two long tines on the drivers side that he could see, the way the buck was positioned in the trees he couldn't tell the rest. After about 5 minutes or so the buck stood up, my buddy said he whispered to my dad "HOLY S@#T", my dad put his rifle back up and had him in the scope, my buddy whispered again "HOLY S@#T, shoot!" My dad calmly said "is it legal, I can't tell", my buddy said "YES, its a HUGE 3 point, shoot", my dad very calmly again said, I only see 2, my buddy said they went back and forth while the buck started nonchalantly walking out the back side of the thicket, my buddy still saying "SHOOT,SHOOT" while he was watching the buck in his binos. My friend said the whole ordeal lasted about 10 minutes, my dad finally seeing the "3rd" point as the buck dropped over the edge into a jack pine thicket said calmly and I quote "well I guess that was a pretty nice buck". We went into the same area for the remaining 3 or so days of the season, all of us spreading out, my brother and his friends, everybody, we wanted someone in our group to kill this buck. My friend who was with him said it was an absolute monster of a 3 point, he said when the buck stood up and turned his head to the point he could count them all and got a good look, he said the tines were probably 16-17 inches long and super thick, then the buck turned all the way around and walked out the back, my buddy said he had his ears flared straight out and the rack went about 2-3 inches past each ear. We never seen that buck again, it still haunts my buddy, he really wanted my dad to kill that buck. Every time my buddy would bring up the story my dad would just say at the end "oh well, I'll see another one". You know what, he's seeing plenty of them now :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: blindluck on July 26, 2021, 10:09:02 PM
bigmacc, I always say only if you could see the bucks this tree has seen over the years. Your dad is one of those trees.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 27, 2021, 10:36:24 AM
bigmacc, I always say only if you could see the bucks this tree has seen over the years. Your dad is one of those trees.

Thats a true statement and I agree, thank you.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 27, 2021, 01:27:54 PM
My dad used to love telling this one, it was one of his favorite stories to tell of my great grandparents, there were many hunting stories involving these two with lots of pictures scattered through our family but this one as I said was one of my dads favorites.

It was a bluebird day, sunny and a bit warm and grandma and grandpa came back to camp early and left a note for my dad to let him know they were going to make a lunch and take a hike, they took one rifle. They were going into an area that they hunted back in the day, back when it was private, belonging to one of the original valley familys but now it was owned by the Game Department, it would just be a nice hike topped off by a nice lunch enjoying a nice day going into an area they first hunted in the early 1900,s. On the way in they needed to pass by some areas that folks camped in, camps just scattered around and once through they would go through a big swell and over a really large knob and drop into a beautiful big bowl. They got through the camp area, skirting around one side and headed into the big swell when grandpa started hearing "motor type noises" ahead of them in the distance, there were no roads in that direction so they were both a little baffled, they kept going. When they got close to the top of the knob the sound was getting louder and more distinguished, sounded like motor bikes. They slowly made it to the top of the knob to see a couple young boys driving around the outside of the knob on old Honda trail bikes. They sat and watched them awhile going round and round, the circle they were doing was maybe 75 yards give or take in circumference, maybe a bit larger,  :dunno:. After a few minutes grandpa noticed some ears and antlers in the thick brush, there was a buck laying there apparently trying not to give himself up, thinking his only chance was to lay low. Grandpa motioned for the boys to come over, dad said they were in their early teens maybe younger, grandpa told them there was a buck laying in there and wanted to know if one of the boys wanted to shoot it, they told grandpa that neither had tags and there parents were all out hunting. With everything quiet and all of them whispering the buck must have got nervous. It stood up and grandpa killed it right where it stood only for a second one to bust out running, grandpa handed grandma the rifle and dropped it with one shot(she could outshoot anyone I knew back then and even today) which was no surprise with her shooting ability and background. Well, they had 2 nice 4 points on the ground, could have been twins except I believe one was 26" wide and the other was 26 1/2" wide, a half inch difference :chuckle:, beautiful bucks. Dad got back to camp later that evening seeing 2 big bucks hanging on the pole and grandpa and grandma cleaning up, blood to their elbows, dad jokingly asked "whats this all about", grandma answered, "well grandpa decided to ruin our lunch" :chuckle: :chuckle:....They were two pees in a pod, married over 60 years and did everything together, those on here that know them know they were inseparable, hunting and fishing together was their passion, whether it be caribou and moose in Alaska or mule deer in Washington, they were quite a pair.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 30, 2021, 12:29:34 PM
Heres another great memory buck. This fella was another Ironworker friend of my dads who died in an on the job accident about 25 years ago, his name was Nick but we all called him "Neek the Greek" because of his Greek heritage, both his mom and dad were born in Greece. Nick was around 6'6" tall and 280lbs or so, had olive skin and jet black wavy hair. Nick was a great husband, father and friend, he worked with my dad all around the country "walking iron". He was an impeccable dresser, always looked sharp whether in his street clothes, work clothes or hunting attire, when out hunting he always wore red long johns, 2 perfectly pressed hickory shirts, wool pinstriped pants, red suspenders topped with a Black Bear wool coat and an orange crusher hat and a pair of Hermen Survivors on his feet. I remember the outfit exactly, he wore the same garb every hunting season since I was a small boy. His Ford trucks were immaculate also, he always bought new and when he would trade them in they looked like they had just left the showroom floor, he kept log books of everything done to everything he owned from his vehicles to his lawnmowers to his firearms, if you ever purchased or traded anything with Nick, you got a great deal, trust me!

I hadn't seen Nick kill too many deer over the years, he hunted hard, ethicaly and was always the last to return to camp. He killed a few 2 points and 3 points through the years but could never connect with a big fella, he didn't care, he loved to hunt, he loved the camp and the people. Grandma and grandpa took a special liking to Nick over the years, grandpa would share many "spots" with Nick and one of those was "grandpas tree" which I've told other stories of on here. Nick was honored when grandpa took him to the tree one day, not easy to find, a godforsaken hole that many would just pass right through(if they did happen to stumble onto it) but grandpa had learned something about this spot back in the 1920,s and to this day we still pull bucks out of it, sometimes 3 or 4 in a season, and gods truth, we have never seen anyone else in this area, ever.  Nick felt honored as I said and hunted it every day when grandpa got to the point he couldn't make it in there anymore. Nick would see plenty of deer including bucks but it was a tough place to hunt and learn, you basically had one shot, it was thick with just a few shooting lanes, everything had to come together when you sat in the pile of old limbs and brush you would stack around yourself. Well, one year Nick hiked back to camp, about 5 miles or so, he had been gone since around 3A.M and now it was around 6 P.M, Nick didn't look his dapper self, he looked a little "different", he said he was going to take his truck and go fill it up and make a phone call to home, he would be back. Dad said, something didn't seem right, he and his wife were about to have another child so dad wondered if he may just be worried about that :dunno:. Nick had been gone about 2 hours when he pulled into camp, he got out of his truck, came and sat by the fire, we asked if everything was ok at home, he said "just dandy", everything was fine and they were hoping the baby would be there in a couple more weeks, on schedule. Nick finally walked over to his truck and dropped the tailgate, there laying in back on an old sleeping bag :chuckle: was a real nice spike! Nick had killed him at grandpas tree, he was like a kid on Christmas morning. He was so proud of that buck, he killed a few more bucks at  the tree over the years until he died but none that he was more proud of than that spike he killed that broke the ice at "grandpas tree". R.I.P "Neek the Greek"
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Skyvalhunter on July 30, 2021, 01:30:41 PM
 :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: teanawayslayer on July 30, 2021, 01:32:58 PM
You need to write a book bigmacc. Good stuff! Thanks for sharing. Always makes for a great read!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on July 30, 2021, 03:40:42 PM
One more about my dad and a buck that amoungst a handful of other ones haunted him until the day he died. He was just a boy when this happened(I think he was around 9 or 10) and he and my great grandma(my dads grandma) had jumped a buck. It was an ordeal that could have ended very badly but didn't. My dad could have cared less, he was just upset about the buck, grandma and grandpa had a different view :chuckle: I will try to tell it the best I can remember it because I wasn't  there but did hear the story many times from my dad, not because of the "ordeal" but because of the buck :chuckle:

Dad and grandma had went into an area that when deer were moving, back then, it was nothing to see 2-300 a day move through. Dad and grandma made it to the spot, almost, when they were starting up an old sheep trail they jumped a bunch of deer, about 10 or so bolted out of a thicket with the last one out being a huge buck. My dad said they had no idea how big it was when it busted out, all they seen was an azz over 2 feet wide carrying a bunch of antlers as it went over the hill about 50 yards in front of them. Dad said he took off after it when grandma said "hold on, he aint gonna wait for ya", she told him to sit tight and they would let the dust settle a bit. After awhile they went way out and around the bench he had went over and came into the area from a completely different angle, there he was again, by himself. They all locked eyes about the same time and he blew out like he was shot out of a cannon. This time grandma sent dad around a different way where she thought the buck may end up(about 2 or 3 hours had passed by now), miles had been covered, but grandma thought she could outsmart this buck :chuckle:, that was the way she was and believe it or not, more times than not she would come out on top. Well, dad went around another big rock outcropping, grandma went another way but in the same area, she told dad when he made it to the creek to stop there and she would meet up with him, they were literally in the same turf, just different elevations. Dad jumped the buck on his way. Dad decided to chase the buck. Dad ended up who knows where but ended up being found the next day 11 miles from where they "jumped the buck", just wandering down an old logging road :chuckle: It wasnt funny for sure when it happened, great grandma always stuck to that story, but my dad had a totally different take, "the buck was HUGE", years later, that was the only thing grandma would acknowledge to the point she agreed with him about and said "I probably would have chased him for 11 miles too, he was that big" :chuckle:
 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 10, 2021, 01:58:19 PM
Looking through some old pictures I came across another of my dads old Ironworking buddies, his name was Roy, he passed away in an on the job accident back in the 80,s, fell 12 feet off a ladder hitting a false floor made of plywood, another foot or two in either direction he would have made the ride to the ground of 56 stories, instead only fell 12 feet and died of internal injuries a few days later while in intensive care, you'd think landing on that false floor would have saved his life, Landing on his tool belt full of spud wrenches did him in. R.I.P Roy.

Roy was one of four of my dads closest friends who were part of the camp for over 25 years or so that died on the job. Roy was about 5'8 and weighed in at about 200lbs, a solid 200lbs. He was an ex Marine, full of tattoos and til his last day sported a high and tight flat top that any leatherneck would appreciate.

Back in the 70,s my dad had one of his "feelings" he was famous for, we all had our bucks except for Roy and another fella. Dad wanted to go to a particular spot thats about an hours drive from camp and about a 3 hour hike in, my dad, an uncle, myself and Roy left at about 2 A.M. The spot is a corridor my great grandparents discovered back in the early 1900,s, in fact back in the 50,s and 60,s many Game Department folks would pick their brains about this area compiling data and for future studying of migratory routes. Well, I remember it was COLD, it never got above 10 degrees the whole season, in fact until mid afternoon it never got above zero. We started into the area, heading for a boxed canyon, when the sun came up we were seeing literally 100,s of deer laying back in the openings of thickets, just laying under trees out of the snow, not a horn to be seen, all does. We figured it was 10-15 below, we were at about 5500 feet with a foot or so of snow on the ground, we had our coats, or scarves pulled up over our faces because it hurt to breath hard if exerted, it was so cold. We eventually made it to the canyon, its about 400 yards or so across and maybe a little more than that deep. It goes up from the bottom about another 4-500 yards in the back of the canyon. Its filled with thickets, benches and rock with 3 escape routes out of it, one at the bottom and two across the back at the top. We parked Roy at the bottom, put him in between two big blow downs, I remember him saying something like, "its like I'm in a dang fox hole" :chuckle:, he was so short and square that once we got him wedged in there about all you could see was his head sticking out :chuckle:. The other 3 of us went way out and around the canyon and started up the backside where we then split up, my dad heading for one of the other escape routes and myself and an uncle headed for the other. By the time we reached the top about an hour or so had passed by since we left Roy in the "fox hole", no cell phones back then so we basically told him when we left to wait for all hell to break loose in about an hour or so, we were right on schedule. We started down both escape routes, about 150-200 yards apart, we were rolling rocks down the benches and into thickets then we would stop and listen, you could hear the deer busting loose headed for the third escape route. After 20 or so minutes of rinse and repeat we heard the BOOM. We eventually made it to the bottom seeing Roy standing over a dandy 6 by 5, about 27 inches wide. He said "man that was easy, the hard part was picking which one to shoot". He said probably about 150 deer had blown by him on each side, he said about 14 or 15 were bucks, but he was wedged in so tight he could only shoot comfortably and ethicaly to his right :chuckle:, he said there was a bigger one that went to the left but he couldn't get his rifle on it, something I guess we should have figured in while concocting the ambush I guess :chuckle:. My dad was pretty proud of that day, everything went according to plan and a dandy buck was down.


One day I will have to tell the story of how Jim Croce almost ended up in our hunting camp, yep he did a little Ironworking before he made it big :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Skyvalhunter on August 10, 2021, 02:39:49 PM
I didn't know Jim was from this area.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 10, 2021, 02:53:49 PM
I didn't know Jim was from this area.
He wasn’t Sky, he was from back east, New York or Jersey, I don’t remember, somewhere back east, my dad worked all over the country( even a few places abroad), putting up  towers, skyscrapers, dams you name it, he met and worked with a lot of characters during the years. Oh boy! I already told the story of the guy from Wyoming, he met while putting up towers outside of Sheridan, he’s the one who was kicked in the face by a mule when he was young and lost an eye, later in life he had a whole box full of fake eyes, he had one for every holiday, an eye with a shamrock painted where the pupil would be that he wore on st paddy’s day, one with a flag he wore on the fourth and on and on, he must have had 20 different eyes in that box. My dad talked him into moving to this state back when construction was booming here, last I heard he moved back to Wyoming a few years after he retired. When I was younger I met some real dandies that became good friends and part of our camp, Never did meet Croce though, my dad worked with him at a couple different jobs, I remember dad saying he heard a few of his songs before he was famous , he would play his guitar and sing while on lunch break or when they’d go out for a few beers. Dad had invited him to come to Washington to just be in camp for vacation, he could sit around the fire and play and sing his songs. I don’t remember what happened but he never made it, next thing I know he was on the radio👍
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 13, 2021, 04:20:07 PM
Had someone on here ask me to tell this one, I wasn't there when this happened but my dad was and he used to get a kick out of it, it was a "hell of a buck" from what my dad said but it never ended up on our pole.

Back in the 70,s and 80,s I had a buddy that had moved up from Arizona for construction work, he hunted with us for 20 or so years until he moved back to Arizona. Randy was born and raised in the desert, loved hunting, in fact he had a pretty impressive photo album himself, hunting northern Arizona for everything from mule deer to coues deer to elk to mountain lion(what we call cougars) to wild pigs. The story I told years ago of my friend and his brother that killed 2 domestic pigs(turned feral) after a live stock truck went on its side, well that was him. Randy was and is a great guy, I still communicate with him from time to time, he still kills big desert mule deer(antlers anyways :chuckle:) and still remembers this story better than I do for sure, because he was there.

My dad had an old 72 ford Bronco(still wish we had it :bash:), it wasn't my dads first Bronco, this one he bought in pieces and kind of put it back together for hunting, his first Bronco he bought at Brien Ford, it was a 71 or 72 I don't remember, anyway he fell in love with it, brand new on the showroom floor and baby blue with a white top, I was with him. He paid cash for it and we drove home within an hour, $2,700. Man we hauled a lot of deer home in the back, top and tailgate of that thing. Sorry, back on the story. This "other" bronco my dad had purchased years later that he put together was in our camp for a few years, it was used basically for my dad doing his "midnight rides" :chuckle:. My dad would sit and stir in camp like a little kid the day before Christmas if weather was moving in, if it had come in a week earlier, it was snowing, it was raining, the wind was blowing, there was a moon, there wasn't a moon, it didn't matter with dad, everything revolved about when, where and how much the deer were moving. He had Randy convinced also, along with the rest of us. After all, he's killed a few bucks.

I remember sitting around the fire one night, we were just about ready to hit the sack, it was snowing pretty good and it was cold enough we were keeping our eggs and milk etc close to the fire to keep everything from freezing, some of you may remember that, it was cold! Dad said "I bet deer are moving through @#$%^, who wants to go and check out some fresh tracks"(he used to either drive roads at night when it snowed or just sit at certain places and watch them move in the headlights). Well, we all went to bed except for Randy, he was already asleep in a chair by the fire with snow packed all around his head and collar, did I mention Randy had a sleeping disorder? Randy would fall asleep pretty much anywhere at anytime, everyone was concerned including his wife, we have many pictures of Randy at hunting camp in all kinds of poses, he never knew what hit him, he was asleep. Sorry for rambling.

Well, dad grabbed Randy, woke him up and said "lets go for a midnight ride, we,ll find out were these deer will be before those *censored*es will" (meaning the rest of us :chuckle:). Dad and Randy jumped in the old pieced together Bronco, one problem, there was only 1 seat, Randy had to sit on an old Craftsman toolbox, dad said just hang on.

Dad said he was talking to Randy, snow was falling, the old logging roads were slick and he noticed Randy wasn't talking or answering. Dad looked over and Randy was asleep, on the toolbox, leaning up against the window. Dad said HE seen about 200 or so deer moving that night, along with some pretty nice bucks. They made it back to camp, Randy was awake and went to bed. We were up in an hour or so, dad told us where HE seen a bunch of nice bucks moving through, we knew where they'd be holed up for the first couple hours of daylight before they would start moving again. Dad took Randy with him, they hiked in a few miles into a certain staging area, they sat down at an hour or so,  later out of a thicket, jitterbugging up the hill was a big 4 by 5, Dad nudges Randy, says "shoot". Randy wakes up! and says "shoot what" :chuckle: The buck was gone, my dad said it was one of the bucks HE seen the night before and it was a dandy. Randy never did see that buck let alone get a shot at it. Randy ended up getting his sleep disorder taken care of, he's on different therapies now along with c-pap etc, it was a bad deal but he's ok now. When we talk with him about that season he says "oh ya, I remember hearing about that buck, heard it was pretty big" :chuckle: :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 20, 2021, 04:17:53 PM
This is a hell of a buck, not our camps per say  but one ill never forget. In the Little Bellingham Camp there were friends or relatives that folks would invite over from year to year, all were sworn to secrecy of coarse :chuckle: and even then they weren't shown the "ace in the hole" spots :chuckle:. I remember being a kid when my great grandmas sister had some friends come to camp that were from Anacortes, if I remember right there was a mom, dad and a couple kids around my age at the time(12 or 13). In the later years they still camped in the same spot but were always very to themselves. They would still hit the bonfires and make the rounds etc but that was about it. The dad was a fisherman, short, stout and I remember as a kid looking at his boots/feet, they were HUGE! Anyways, he hunted one area and one area only, it was a short hike out of camp, maybe a couple miles or so but an absolute jungle, my dad always said, "if you ever shoot a deer in there, make sure you got plenty of matches, salt and pepper cause yer gonna eat him right there".

I think I was in my 20,s or so when word was flying around Little Bellingham that Bill(we'll call him) had a BIGAZZ buck down, word also got around that he didn't have any salt or pepper with him :chuckle:. I remember dad saying something like everybody get some rope and knives. We walked out the old skid road about 2 miles, there about 300 yards down hill in a creek bottom supposedly was bill, we couldn't see him through the jungle, if it wasn't for his buddy knowing where the buck went down hill neither would have been found to this day :chuckle:

Apparently Bill and his buddy had rounded a corner in the old skid road and there standing in front of them was the buck, Bill shot him at about 30 yards, the buck crashed over the bank and into the jungle, they waited after hearing what sounded like a truck driving through the jack pines, then they said it got quiet. They went after him and found him dead in the creek.

We cut that buck up into I don't know how many pieces, about 10 of us were in on the ordeal, throwing pieces over our shoulders and painfully walking them up that hill that a goat would have avoided. All the pieces made it up the hill, it was a big deer, they weighed all the pieces, I will not say the weight. The memory of this buck I will never forget was its antlers, it was a 29 point buck(eastern count :chuckle:). Yep, it had 2 points on one side, the 2 points were huge, long tines and on the other side was a "mass" about the size of a softball with 27 points about an inch or so long coming out of it, looked like a pin cushion, I kid you not!

That buck was talked about for many years, not just because of its size or its antlers which was something worth talking about, it was talked about because ole Bill didn't bring his salt and pepper  :chuckle:. He only made it to camp a few more years and I believe passed away from a heart attack, til this day that buck and that ordeal is still talked about in camp.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Jingles on August 20, 2021, 05:08:06 PM
Nothing like BigMaccs but my memory buck involves my little brother and Tink's 69 buck lure just after it came out.
Living on a farm back in MI we could go out to the "back 40" and sit along the edge of the field between the corn and the woods.
Well we decided to go sit in a position just over the hill/ridgeline from the house and being young, dumb and full of c-m we decided that a drop or 2 on our clothes wouldn't hurt and mask the human odor. After sitting there for about 2 hours my younger brother about 5 at the time decided it was boring and wanted to head back to the house, being as we were just over the top of the hill/ridge from the house we both agreed it would be hard to get lost as he could see the house from the top of the hill, so he started for the house with me remaining where I was and could see him until he dropped over the hill. And that is where it got interesting for him as  buck must of been inspired to investigate this little human that smelled like a doe in heat. My brother said it had a huge set of horns and kept circling him and getting closer with every circle. I could not see this happening as it was one the far side of the hill/ridgeline. To this day you can not get near my brother with any kind of buck lure and that happened close to 60 years ago.
Funny now but at the time as a 5 year old probably could of been a bit on the spooky side.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 21, 2021, 03:42:52 PM
Nothing like BigMaccs but my memory buck involves my little brother and Tink's 69 buck lure just after it came out.
Living on a farm back in MI we could go out to the "back 40" and sit along the edge of the field between the corn and the woods.
Well we decided to go sit in a position just over the hill/ridgeline from the house and being young, dumb and full of c-m we decided that a drop or 2 on our clothes wouldn't hurt and mask the human odor. After sitting there for about 2 hours my younger brother about 5 at the time decided it was boring and wanted to head back to the house, being as we were just over the top of the hill/ridge from the house we both agreed it would be hard to get lost as he could see the house from the top of the hill, so he started for the house with me remaining where I was and could see him until he dropped over the hill. And that is where it got interesting for him as  buck must of been inspired to investigate this little human that smelled like a doe in heat. My brother said it had a huge set of horns and kept circling him and getting closer with every circle. I could not see this happening as it was one the far side of the hill/ridgeline. To this day you can not get near my brother with any kind of buck lure and that happened close to 60 years ago.
Funny now but at the time as a 5 year old probably could of been a bit on the spooky side.
:chuckle: :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on August 27, 2021, 04:57:27 PM

Heres one that got my memory going by whats happening in the world today.

My Uncle Larry had been out of the Marine Corps for just a few years, he was my moms younger brother. He idolized my dad who was of coarse much older than him and kind of followed in his footsteps, my dad was also a Marine. Well, when I was 15 or 16 my dad was Ironworking up in Alaska, every time he had the opportunity to work up there he would jump on it, he loved the state and had worked up there off and on since he was just a kid when my great grandparents had some fishing interests up there. He worked on the pipeline for years(another whole box of stories :chuckle:) but this was a different job and it would keep him away from hunting camp which tore him up. He wanted to make sure I made it over, mom was working for Boeing at the time and other relatives would be bouncing in and out of Little Bellingham, dad wanted to make sure I got there. Grandma and grandpa said they would handle it but the problem was I was on the wrestling team and couldn't miss any school or matches(I went to state that year), and dad didn't want them driving back and forth with me, enter Uncle Larry.

Uncle Larry hadn't did much hunting in his life but wanted to, he had been overseas for years and in Viet Nam. Now was his chance :chuckle:. Dad told him over the phone what to take, where to go depending on the weather, wind, etc, etc, etc., Uncle Larry soaked it up, him and I planned our trip, what to take, what to eat and on. Well, Uncle Larry had a red Volkswagen Beetle, we crammed everything into that thing and on top. I thought we were staying at Little Bellingham but oh no, dad had other plans for us. The weather was at the point that dad figured a certain spot would be the place to be, he told Uncle Larry that you got to be in there early and since we only had a weekend he said it would be best if we just camped in there, we did. The very first morning I killed a big 2 by 3, we cut him up, hauled him to our little camp, we later drove down to Little Bellingham to share the story. There were 15 or 16 deer hanging at grandma and grandpas camp, the firelight was perfect with all the bucks hanging head up. I remember Uncle Larry just being mesmerized by the people and the camp, it was truly a classic deer camp, complete with history, characters and stories. He had heard the stories my dad had told him and they were all true, he loved it, he soaked it all in, he was hooked. We drove back to our little place up at $56&*9(some on here know the spot) and hit the sack. We had to leave the next afternoon in order for me to be back in school on Monday for a "wrestle off", my coach said not to worry about it but the guy that was challenging me was a friend, I owed it to him I felt. We went out and hunted the same turf I had killed my 2 by 3, we sat there for dang near 4 or 5 hours :dunno:, we seen around 50 deer or so if I remember right, Uncle Larry said something like, isn't that weird that there was no bucks. We went back to camp, loaded everything into that VW including my cut up buck! We headed down the road, we got no more than a mile or so down the road when a 2 point jumped the road, Uncle Larry hit the binders, the buck went down a steep hill, Uncle Larry jumped out trying to get his rifle out of the back seat, he did and he had bullets handy, the buck went a few hundred yards downhill, Uncle Larry killed him, I remember him saying, "Your dad is gonna let me have it, he told me not to shoot a deer downhill" :chuckle:. Well, we got him up hill, in a few pieces  :chuckle:, Uncle Larry was very proud of that buck as was I, as was my dad, its still talked about. Uncle Larry never made it to camp again, he was diagnosed with Leukemia a year later or so and passed away a couple years after that. I wish he and I would have had many more years to hunt together. R.I.P Uncle Larry
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 10, 2021, 04:51:31 PM
 Just got back from my sons place over in eastern Washington, most all of our families hunting memorabilia, pictures, mounts etc are all in his mancave, a 20 by 40 foot building he built just for the "stuff". Walked around and looked at a lot of pictures we had blown up and framed years ago, looked at piles of antlers he has stacked in corners, euro mounts galore and a few head mounts, it came out better than I could have imagined. Lots of pictures of the Little Bellingham bunch going back to the 1930,s, some he had colorized, really neat. My dads and my grandmas old Black Bear hunting coats, Filsons, fishing poles from Alaska, old binos, scopes, suspenders, crushers and boots, just amazing. Every item conjures memories.

Walking around I noticed a picture of a couple fellas who weren't actually part of the Little Bellingham camp but they always looked forward to us pulling in and us the same with them. They camped a hundred yards away from us, hunted hard and would always come to one of our fires every night to BS and look at our bucks, we always had them hanging, head up and the firelight would always conjure up stories and they would sit and listen to them for hours, if we would have let them :chuckle:. If I remember right, both worked for the postal service at the time(late 60,s-70,s), I remember one was named Bennet but can't remember the other fellas. They camped next to us for over 25 years, we never seen a buck hanging at their camp, ever. One year they came back from the evening hunt, grabbed a shot of coffee/whiskey and strolled over to our camp. We had just killed 3 bucks that morning and now had 14 hanging(thats the picture we took of them) that particular year. We all sat around talking when one of my pardners asked if they seen anything today, I think it was his pard that replied "nope, nothing", it didn't faise me until Bennet said(this is gods truth) "I've never even seen a doe over here". Yep! I asked him, for as long as you been coming over here you've never seen a doe? He said never, his pardner had seen a few but that was it, we were all baffled to say the least. They said the only reason they come over every year was to see what we would kill and maybe they would bump into one also. It took a lot to believe these guys had only seen a few does over 25 years or so, they hunted hard, guys would see their rig at a trailhead before daylight and see it still there after dark, baffling. One year, one day they were setting up their camp, my pardner and I said lets send them into a spot they can kill a buck, we walked over and welcomed them and talked awhile. We told them of a spot my great grandma hunted time to time and she said it was ok with her if we sent them in there, we did. It should be automatic to kill a nice local deer, they were always there, little spindly horned 2 and 3 points, should be a slam dunk. They got back to camp about the same time as usual, only this time they pulled right into our camp, didn't stop to get their coffee/whiskey, Bennet got out of the truck and said it would be an honor to hang their buck with ours :dunno:. A couple of us walked over to the truck and when they opened the back there was a hell of a buck, not a spindly 2 or 3 point but a big ole roman nose 4 by 5! We got him on the pole with ours, helped them get him cleaned up and skinned and took a picture of them. They were like old veterans now, years after, they would come into camp and now they had a story, they told it every year, they never killed another buck. Right place, right time I guess, Til this day, I don't know if they could see :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 12, 2021, 04:17:19 PM
I have been corrected  :chuckle: :chuckle:, the “postmen” ( which is what we used to call them), actually killed a few more bucks, in fact 3 to be exact, I stand corrected 👍If Bennet and his buddy are on this site, I’m sorry. Thanks to another member for pointing that out👍
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 17, 2021, 05:01:51 PM
Ok, I've been asked to tell this story, its of the buck with the collar on it that I've told in other topics, now "heres the rest of the story"

It was 40 or so years ago, my dad had an ironworker buddy who had dropped dead of a heart attack, he had a son who was an apprentice at the time. My dad felt obligated to take Larry under his wing so to speak and watch over him. Larry was in his early 20,s and had never been hunting in Washington, he was from a whitetail state and was looking forward to chase mulies. He hunted with the little Bellingham camp for a few years, killed a few small bucks here and there when one year Larry had a cast on his arm from an on the job injury, he still came hunting. One day he and my brother who was in his teens at the time went into an area where they killed the collared buck(not going to tell that whole deal again), a big old buck who's batteries had went dead a couple years prior, well, Larry decided to celebrate back at another camp (not part of little Bellingham) and proceed to forget about where he left my brother AND forgetting to wait for him and bring him back. Hours had passed, my dad and I finally tracked down Larry, drunker than a skunk, had a huge buck, but no brother/son. Needless to say, my dad was not happy, S@#T pretty much hit the fan, the excitement of Larrys buck wore off in a hurry. My dad, myself and 4 or 5 other guys from camp went out in the dark to try to find my brother, going off of where Larry last seen him :bash:, we went into a particular area and fanned out, snow on the ground and snowing. Someone came in and got a couple of us, someone had picked my brother up on a road miles away. A couple guys waited at a rendezvous spot to let the others know he had been found. My dad got back to that camp, wet, tired and let Larry have it, I thought he was going to drop him where he stood, he did not.

It was a huge buck with a cool story and that was memorable enough, but another reason I remember this buck is because of the other story. Larry and my dad didn't talk for awhile and my dad regretted that because a couple years later Larry got into a bar fight, they took it outside, the other fella jumped in his rig and ran Larry over in the parking lot and killed him, now you know the rest of the story of the collared buck....R.I.P Larry.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: OutHouse on September 17, 2021, 08:13:11 PM

Heres one that got my memory going by whats happening in the world today.

My Uncle Larry had been out of the Marine Corps for just a few years, he was my moms younger brother. He idolized my dad who was of coarse much older than him and kind of followed in his footsteps, my dad was also a Marine. Well, when I was 15 or 16 my dad was Ironworking up in Alaska, every time he had the opportunity to work up there he would jump on it, he loved the state and had worked up there off and on since he was just a kid when my great grandparents had some fishing interests up there. He worked on the pipeline for years(another whole box of stories :chuckle:) but this was a different job and it would keep him away from hunting camp which tore him up. He wanted to make sure I made it over, mom was working for Boeing at the time and other relatives would be bouncing in and out of Little Bellingham, dad wanted to make sure I got there. Grandma and grandpa said they would handle it but the problem was I was on the wrestling team and couldn't miss any school or matches(I went to state that year), and dad didn't want them driving back and forth with me, enter Uncle Larry.

Uncle Larry hadn't did much hunting in his life but wanted to, he had been overseas for years and in Viet Nam. Now was his chance :chuckle:. Dad told him over the phone what to take, where to go depending on the weather, wind, etc, etc, etc., Uncle Larry soaked it up, him and I planned our trip, what to take, what to eat and on. Well, Uncle Larry had a red Volkswagen Beetle, we crammed everything into that thing and on top. I thought we were staying at Little Bellingham but oh no, dad had other plans for us. The weather was at the point that dad figured a certain spot would be the place to be, he told Uncle Larry that you got to be in there early and since we only had a weekend he said it would be best if we just camped in there, we did. The very first morning I killed a big 2 by 3, we cut him up, hauled him to our little camp, we later drove down to Little Bellingham to share the story. There were 15 or 16 deer hanging at grandma and grandpas camp, the firelight was perfect with all the bucks hanging head up. I remember Uncle Larry just being mesmerized by the people and the camp, it was truly a classic deer camp, complete with history, characters and stories. He had heard the stories my dad had told him and they were all true, he loved it, he soaked it all in, he was hooked. We drove back to our little place up at $56&*9(some on here know the spot) and hit the sack. We had to leave the next afternoon in order for me to be back in school on Monday for a "wrestle off", my coach said not to worry about it but the guy that was challenging me was a friend, I owed it to him I felt. We went out and hunted the same turf I had killed my 2 by 3, we sat there for dang near 4 or 5 hours :dunno:, we seen around 50 deer or so if I remember right, Uncle Larry said something like, isn't that weird that there was no bucks. We went back to camp, loaded everything into that VW including my cut up buck! We headed down the road, we got no more than a mile or so down the road when a 2 point jumped the road, Uncle Larry hit the binders, the buck went down a steep hill, Uncle Larry jumped out trying to get his rifle out of the back seat, he did and he had bullets handy, the buck went a few hundred yards downhill, Uncle Larry killed him, I remember him saying, "Your dad is gonna let me have it, he told me not to shoot a deer downhill" :chuckle:. Well, we got him up hill, in a few pieces  :chuckle:, Uncle Larry was very proud of that buck as was I, as was my dad, its still talked about. Uncle Larry never made it to camp again, he was diagnosed with Leukemia a year later or so and passed away a couple years after that. I wish he and I would have had many more years to hunt together. R.I.P Uncle Larry

That was a great read bigmacc!   :'(
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 24, 2021, 04:40:20 PM
Heres one concerning a deer killed by my nephew in a certain spot, his dad(my brother) killed a nice buck in the exact same spot years prior, before my nephew was even born, 2 deer died for sure by these two but the circumstances could not have been more different :chuckle:

My nephew was looking to kill his first buck, I think he was 13 or 14 and it was a year the deer were moving in waves. The weather would hit up high and a couple days later we would be in certain areas and kill 4 or 5, seeing 40 a day give or take, then, like someone turned off the spicket, nothing. This was in 2010(I think). I had killed a nice buck in this particular spot, I talked with my brother and said Cletus(well call him in this story :chuckle:) may get another one there if I could take him. Well, my brother brought Cletus to a spot we agreed on meeting at, he and I started out in the dark, well before daylight, about a 4 mile hike into this particular spot, a spot that a friend of my great grandmas used to sit, her name was Milly, she killed some huge bucks off this spot back in the 1930,s-40,s, she later went to war as a nurse and when she returned, never went hunting again.

Cletus and I got to the "rock" about 2 hours before daylight, it was cold and I remember the wind blowing out of the north. I told Cletus that my dad(his grandpa) could gage a deers movement by the wind, not necessarily by snow and cold but by the wind and where it came from. Something thats been pounded into all of us since the get go, wind. I won't go any further. We both layed back for a nap, everything we had thrown over the tops of us for warmth, till this day none of us use the "fancy" clothing :chuckle:.  I remember waking up and seeing it real light out, I looked at my watch, we had missed the "golden hour" by about an hour. I remember putting my binos on a spot that was well past where I would usually start glassing, thinking while we were sleeping they would be "right about there" :chuckle:, Ill be danged, soon as I put my glasses up(Cletus was just awakening  :chuckle:) I seen about a dozen or so does, I ducked back behind some cover and told Cletus "get your eyeballs on", theres a bunch of big migrators down the hill, all black as coal and heavy but I don't see no horns, "just kick back and be ready", he chambered a round, a few minutes had went by, I slithered up to the edge and peeked over, now we had a "pack string" of about 20, single filling up this trail, I told Cletus theres gonna be a buck in this bunch, maybe two, but be ready to shoot because one of them is gonna be a big fella. I layed there for about 5 minutes or so, bringing up the rear was a nice 2 by 3, then a spike, then a  nice 3 point (that actually was smaller, bodywise than the does) then another 4 or 5 does :dunno:, and one more buck, head down, trailing the rest of them. I asked Cletus, "you ready", yep, I said get on your belly and crawl over here, he did, I said "get him in your scope, he's the last one", he did. I said "put it on his shoulder and squeeze", he did. Buck down, a monstrous 4 point, ( I posted pictures before of this buck), He's gonna have a hard time with bettering himself after this guy. The buck was displayed at a prominent sporting goods store for 1 year I believe( :dunno:) it was a dandy for sure. Of coarse this buck is still talked about in camp, he's the one that we had a picture of with another pardner standing next to it with a sawsall acting like he was cutting the horns off :chuckle: :chuckle:I,ll have to talk with his dad and see if I can tell the story of him when he killed his buck off "Millys spot", its a good one :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: LDennis24 on September 24, 2021, 04:54:51 PM
I sure wish your old posts were still on here. I would love to see some of those big ole boys you talk about having pics of. I'm sorry for the BS you have endured when telling these old stories about big bucks on other threads. That one about Larry I sure won't forget. Thanks again bigmacc!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: teanawayslayer on September 24, 2021, 05:43:07 PM
I sure wish your old posts were still on here. I would love to see some of those big ole boys you talk about having pics of. I'm sorry for the BS you have endured when telling these old stories about big bucks on other threads. That one about Larry I sure won't forget. Thanks again bigmacc!
:yeah:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: LDennis24 on September 24, 2021, 06:45:57 PM
Not to thread jack or get this off course but uh.....

There needs to be a bigmacc story thread. You sir, should write a book!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 24, 2021, 08:43:20 PM
Not to thread jack or get this off course but uh.....

There needs to be a bigmacc story thread. You sir, should write a book!
I appreciate that sir, thats why I'm putting these stories on here, you all can enjoy them and the folks I know can save them, theres a few family members on here that know these stories from front to back, they know. I have many more, I just need permission to tell them because the culprits are still alive :chuckle: :tup:....between all of us, theres pictures to back up all the stories. I posted about 30 or 40 pictures years ago.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: High Climber on September 26, 2021, 10:35:28 PM
Not to thread jack or get this off course but uh.....

There needs to be a bigmacc story thread. You sir, should write a book!
I appreciate that sir, thats why I'm putting these stories on here, you all can enjoy them and the folks I know can save them, theres a few family members on here that know these stories from front to back, they know. I have many more, I just need permission to tell them because the culprits are still alive :chuckle: :tup:....between all of us, theres pictures to back up all the stories. I posted about 30 or 40 pictures years ago.
BigMac, please find a way to put a digital watermark or something on your photos and post them again! Don’t let the A-holes ruin it for you (ruin it for us)
I would buy your book  :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on September 29, 2021, 09:24:46 AM
I recently read this thread through and really enjoyed it. It seems like Bigmacc is doing the heavy lifting though. I thought I should add a story. This thread has been pretty centered on the Methow so I will diversify it out. This took place on the Humptulips side of Quinault Ridge, specifically on the Phillips Cr rd. The area is all overgrown now because the forest Service has given up on logging but at the time there were still pretty big clearcuts that attracted deer and elk. Time frame is the mid-80s.
There were three big clearcuts and one small one at the end of the road and Dad and I decided it was a likely place for a morning hunt. We weren’t the only one though as when we approached the fork in the road near the end there was a pickup sitting waiting for daylight. We got out to talk to him and it was a local guy we knew. Of course he planned on going the same place we were settled on. We all agreed he would hunt that fork of the road which was two big clearcuts separated by a recently logged strip that had blown down. We went the other way which was a big clearcut and a smaller one. I was going to go down a middle ridge that divided the cut into two big canyons while Dad walked the road down one side and through to the smaller cut.
Where I left the road, the ground kind of humped over for a ways making it hard to see very far, extenuated by three and four foot tall fir trees. I barely got started when I jumped a buck and he was out of sight in an instant. I knew he was a nice buck, turned out to be a three point. I ran down the hill to where I could see a bit better and after a while I saw him sneaking up the other side of the canyon. On that side it went up to a ridge that kind of broke down in three benches. He was just coming up onto the highest bench. I took a rest on a stump and when he stopped on the bench squeezed one off. About a 200 yard shot. He dropped and laid there. I knew when I crossed the draw he would be out of sight for quite a while so I sat still and watched him for several minutes. No movement so I finally got up and headed down into the draw. Maybe five minutes later I gained the other side and there he lay. I poked him with the rifle barrel. Behind me there was a chunk so I turned around and laid my gun down on it and turned around to dress the deer. At this point the damn thing jumped up and took off. He went downhill and over the bench and out of sight. I grabbed my gun and raced after him. When I got to the edge of the bench he was right at where the next bench ended. I hastily threw the gun up and the damn scope was fogged over. I fired a shot anyway and of course missed as he went out of sight over the bench. I hurriedly gave chase but was cleaning my scope this time as I went. I got to the next edge and there he was a couple steps away from going over the last bench and out of sight forever as there was doghair below this. This time I could see though and shot him through the ribs quartering forward. I had succeeded in chasing him to the farthest point from the road but at least he was down for good this time. As I remember right the first shot had hit him high and found that point just below his spine and high on the lungs. He couldn’t breathe well or he probably wouldn’t have stopped twice for me to shoot at him. I made a pack out of him and dad came down and packed my gun out.
We never heard a shot from the other fork of the road so I dare say if we had went where we wanted we would have went home empty handed that day.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 30, 2021, 01:01:49 PM
I recently read this thread through and really enjoyed it. It seems like Bigmacc is doing the heavy lifting though. I thought I should add a story. This thread has been pretty centered on the Methow so I will diversify it out. This took place on the Humptulips side of Quinault Ridge, specifically on the Phillips Cr rd. The area is all overgrown now because the forest Service has given up on logging but at the time there were still pretty big clearcuts that attracted deer and elk. Time frame is the mid-80s.
There were three big clearcuts and one small one at the end of the road and Dad and I decided it was a likely place for a morning hunt. We weren’t the only one though as when we approached the fork in the road near the end there was a pickup sitting waiting for daylight. We got out to talk to him and it was a local guy we knew. Of course he planned on going the same place we were settled on. We all agreed he would hunt that fork of the road which was two big clearcuts separated by a recently logged strip that had blown down. We went the other way which was a big clearcut and a smaller one. I was going to go down a middle ridge that divided the cut into two big canyons while Dad walked the road down one side and through to the smaller cut.
Where I left the road, the ground kind of humped over for a ways making it hard to see very far, extenuated by three and four foot tall fir trees. I barely got started when I jumped a buck and he was out of sight in an instant. I knew he was a nice buck, turned out to be a three point. I ran down the hill to where I could see a bit better and after a while I saw him sneaking up the other side of the canyon. On that side it went up to a ridge that kind of broke down in three benches. He was just coming up onto the highest bench. I took a rest on a stump and when he stopped on the bench squeezed one off. About a 200 yard shot. He dropped and laid there. I knew when I crossed the draw he would be out of sight for quite a while so I sat still and watched him for several minutes. No movement so I finally got up and headed down into the draw. Maybe five minutes later I gained the other side and there he lay. I poked him with the rifle barrel. Behind me there was a chunk so I turned around and laid my gun down on it and turned around to dress the deer. At this point the damn thing jumped up and took off. He went downhill and over the bench and out of sight. I grabbed my gun and raced after him. When I got to the edge of the bench he was right at where the next bench ended. I hastily threw the gun up and the damn scope was fogged over. I fired a shot anyway and of course missed as he went out of sight over the bench. I hurriedly gave chase but was cleaning my scope this time as I went. I got to the next edge and there he was a couple steps away from going over the last bench and out of sight forever as there was doghair below this. This time I could see though and shot him through the ribs quartering forward. I had succeeded in chasing him to the farthest point from the road but at least he was down for good this time. As I remember right the first shot had hit him high and found that point just below his spine and high on the lungs. He couldn’t breathe well or he probably wouldn’t have stopped twice for me to shoot at him. I made a pack out of him and dad came down and packed my gun out.
We never heard a shot from the other fork of the road so I dare say if we had went where we wanted we would have went home empty handed that day.

 :tup:....Great story, as if we were there. You ever do any hunting up around Camp Grisdale? My grandpa (my moms dad) logged for Simpson back in the day, the last of the real "logging camps", grandpa and grandma lived up there for 15 or 16 years I believe, back in the 50,s and 60,s, man they killed some big elk and blacktail up in there. Once again, great story :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Kamo2112 on September 30, 2021, 01:33:57 PM
Not to thread jack or get this off course but uh.....

There needs to be a bigmacc story thread. You sir, should write a book!
I appreciate that sir, thats why I'm putting these stories on here, you all can enjoy them and the folks I know can save them, theres a few family members on here that know these stories from front to back, they know. I have many more, I just need permission to tell them because the culprits are still alive :chuckle: :tup:....between all of us, theres pictures to back up all the stories. I posted about 30 or 40 pictures years ago.
BigMac, please find a way to put a digital watermark or something on your photos and post them again! Don’t let the A-holes ruin it for you (ruin it for us)
I would buy your book  :tup:

 :yeah:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on September 30, 2021, 05:57:54 PM
I recently read this thread through and really enjoyed it. It seems like Bigmacc is doing the heavy lifting though. I thought I should add a story. This thread has been pretty centered on the Methow so I will diversify it out. This took place on the Humptulips side of Quinault Ridge, specifically on the Phillips Cr rd. The area is all overgrown now because the forest Service has given up on logging but at the time there were still pretty big clearcuts that attracted deer and elk. Time frame is the mid-80s.
There were three big clearcuts and one small one at the end of the road and Dad and I decided it was a likely place for a morning hunt. We weren’t the only one though as when we approached the fork in the road near the end there was a pickup sitting waiting for daylight. We got out to talk to him and it was a local guy we knew. Of course he planned on going the same place we were settled on. We all agreed he would hunt that fork of the road which was two big clearcuts separated by a recently logged strip that had blown down. We went the other way which was a big clearcut and a smaller one. I was going to go down a middle ridge that divided the cut into two big canyons while Dad walked the road down one side and through to the smaller cut.
Where I left the road, the ground kind of humped over for a ways making it hard to see very far, extenuated by three and four foot tall fir trees. I barely got started when I jumped a buck and he was out of sight in an instant. I knew he was a nice buck, turned out to be a three point. I ran down the hill to where I could see a bit better and after a while I saw him sneaking up the other side of the canyon. On that side it went up to a ridge that kind of broke down in three benches. He was just coming up onto the highest bench. I took a rest on a stump and when he stopped on the bench squeezed one off. About a 200 yard shot. He dropped and laid there. I knew when I crossed the draw he would be out of sight for quite a while so I sat still and watched him for several minutes. No movement so I finally got up and headed down into the draw. Maybe five minutes later I gained the other side and there he lay. I poked him with the rifle barrel. Behind me there was a chunk so I turned around and laid my gun down on it and turned around to dress the deer. At this point the damn thing jumped up and took off. He went downhill and over the bench and out of sight. I grabbed my gun and raced after him. When I got to the edge of the bench he was right at where the next bench ended. I hastily threw the gun up and the damn scope was fogged over. I fired a shot anyway and of course missed as he went out of sight over the bench. I hurriedly gave chase but was cleaning my scope this time as I went. I got to the next edge and there he was a couple steps away from going over the last bench and out of sight forever as there was doghair below this. This time I could see though and shot him through the ribs quartering forward. I had succeeded in chasing him to the farthest point from the road but at least he was down for good this time. As I remember right the first shot had hit him high and found that point just below his spine and high on the lungs. He couldn’t breathe well or he probably wouldn’t have stopped twice for me to shoot at him. I made a pack out of him and dad came down and packed my gun out.
We never heard a shot from the other fork of the road so I dare say if we had went where we wanted we would have went home empty handed that day.

 :tup:....Great story, as if we were there. You ever do any hunting up around Camp Grisdale? My grandpa (my moms dad) logged for Simpson back in the day, the last of the real "logging camps", grandpa and grandma lived up there for 15 or 16 years I believe, back in the 50,s and 60,s, man they killed some big elk and blacktail up in there. Once again, great story :tup:
I have done quite a lot of hunting across the river from Grisdale, actually downstream where the Ring of Fire bridge crossed the gorge. In fact I have a memorable buck story I will write out from there. I applied for a job at Grisdale in 1973 but never was hired. Later on after Grisdale was gone I logged on the upper Wynoochee the last sales that Simpsons walked away from. Mayr Bros bought the left overs but the enviromentalists stopped about half those sales because of Spotted Owls.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on September 30, 2021, 07:10:42 PM
I recently read this thread through and really enjoyed it. It seems like Bigmacc is doing the heavy lifting though. I thought I should add a story. This thread has been pretty centered on the Methow so I will diversify it out. This took place on the Humptulips side of Quinault Ridge, specifically on the Phillips Cr rd. The area is all overgrown now because the forest Service has given up on logging but at the time there were still pretty big clearcuts that attracted deer and elk. Time frame is the mid-80s.
There were three big clearcuts and one small one at the end of the road and Dad and I decided it was a likely place for a morning hunt. We weren’t the only one though as when we approached the fork in the road near the end there was a pickup sitting waiting for daylight. We got out to talk to him and it was a local guy we knew. Of course he planned on going the same place we were settled on. We all agreed he would hunt that fork of the road which was two big clearcuts separated by a recently logged strip that had blown down. We went the other way which was a big clearcut and a smaller one. I was going to go down a middle ridge that divided the cut into two big canyons while Dad walked the road down one side and through to the smaller cut.
Where I left the road, the ground kind of humped over for a ways making it hard to see very far, extenuated by three and four foot tall fir trees. I barely got started when I jumped a buck and he was out of sight in an instant. I knew he was a nice buck, turned out to be a three point. I ran down the hill to where I could see a bit better and after a while I saw him sneaking up the other side of the canyon. On that side it went up to a ridge that kind of broke down in three benches. He was just coming up onto the highest bench. I took a rest on a stump and when he stopped on the bench squeezed one off. About a 200 yard shot. He dropped and laid there. I knew when I crossed the draw he would be out of sight for quite a while so I sat still and watched him for several minutes. No movement so I finally got up and headed down into the draw. Maybe five minutes later I gained the other side and there he lay. I poked him with the rifle barrel. Behind me there was a chunk so I turned around and laid my gun down on it and turned around to dress the deer. At this point the damn thing jumped up and took off. He went downhill and over the bench and out of sight. I grabbed my gun and raced after him. When I got to the edge of the bench he was right at where the next bench ended. I hastily threw the gun up and the damn scope was fogged over. I fired a shot anyway and of course missed as he went out of sight over the bench. I hurriedly gave chase but was cleaning my scope this time as I went. I got to the next edge and there he was a couple steps away from going over the last bench and out of sight forever as there was doghair below this. This time I could see though and shot him through the ribs quartering forward. I had succeeded in chasing him to the farthest point from the road but at least he was down for good this time. As I remember right the first shot had hit him high and found that point just below his spine and high on the lungs. He couldn’t breathe well or he probably wouldn’t have stopped twice for me to shoot at him. I made a pack out of him and dad came down and packed my gun out.
We never heard a shot from the other fork of the road so I dare say if we had went where we wanted we would have went home empty handed that day.

 :tup:....Great story, as if we were there. You ever do any hunting up around Camp Grisdale? My grandpa (my moms dad) logged for Simpson back in the day, the last of the real "logging camps", grandpa and grandma lived up there for 15 or 16 years I believe, back in the 50,s and 60,s, man they killed some big elk and blacktail up in there. Once again, great story :tup:
I have done quite a lot of hunting across the river from Grisdale, actually downstream where the Ring of Fire bridge crossed the gorge. In fact I have a memorable buck story I will write out from there. I applied for a job at Grisdale in 1973 but never was hired. Later on after Grisdale was gone I logged on the upper Wynoochee the last sales that Simpsons walked away from. Mayr Bros bought the left overs but the enviromentalists stopped about half those sales because of Spotted Owls.

 :tup:. I think my grandpa retired out of there in the late 60,s, possibly very early 70,s :dunno:. I remember as a boy(50,s/early 60,s) walking around town and seeing elk in the garages during elk season, some hanging off dozer shovels etc, man some of those of those big Rosies were the size of big horses back then. I remember once when there was 6 or 7 big roses all layed out on the old outdoor basketball court that had the roof over it, by the old school. My dad took a picture of them but I don't know where the picture went, probably in a box we haven't been through yet, who knows, they were all monsters. My dad worked up there for a couple years when he got out of the Marines, cool place, I remember driving the old dirt road from Grisdale down to Montesano to get supplies, at night you were dodging elk and deer crossing that road for miles, you could only go about 20 or 25 because the road was in super bad shape so not to much of a danger running into one :chuckle: I remember we had to stop  one night and let over 100 head of elk cross the road, we watched em for about 20 minutes, dozens of bulls and a few dandys. Good times. Looking forward to your story. :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on September 30, 2021, 07:17:33 PM
Wynoochee buck as promised above.
This was the biggest buck I ever got and I think ever saw and I missed him.
Right where the 7400 line heads up the hill there is a hill that I have killed four bucks on. It's all growed up to brush now but in the day it was my favorite spot to go. They logged units on it in three different years and the last time they logged, the part right along the mainline going up the hill was logged. The rest being growed up by then. It's a couple miles to bike in past the gate.
On the third day of season I was there at the bottom of the hill in the morning. I cut up a ridge to a middle spur road and was walking the road back. Walked out a short spur that had a narrow triangle between it and the main road. I'm talking maybe 150 feet wide at most. It was thick with second growth hemlock maybe three feet high. As I walked by, a flock of blue grouse flew up so my attention was drawn to the place. I walked on out, looked over the hill and started back. I glanced over this narrow triangle and there was a deer and then a buck with horns like I had never saw before. They must have been bedded down when I first walked by. He was walking straight away from me following the doe. A pretty difficult shot but I had my shooting sticks so I tried to shoot over his back and hit him in the head. Three times I tried and missed every time as he nonchalantly walked over the hill and out of sight. I was just sick, the biggest buck I had ever saw and I let him get away. I assumed I had shot high as I didn't have much room and didn't want to hit him in the rump. I was pretty upset with myself though.
I kept hunting up in the area and about a week later I was walking down the road about mid-day and of a sudden there is a buck walking down the road straight away from me. I think a two point. Close too, like 100 feet. I set up on my shooting ticks and attempted another over the back shot. At the shot he bailed off the road and was gone. I could not believe I had missed. That did it. I hopped on my bike and headed for the truck and went home and then to the pit. I'm not sure how the scope got off but it was shooting three inches to the right. Elevation was 2 inches high which was alright but I decided to just center it. After doing that I thought I will probably see a buck at 300 yards tomorrow.
The next morning found me waiting in the dark at the foot of that hill where the 7400 goes up. At first light I snuck out to the edge and on top of the ridge at 300 yards was a doe and that monster buck silhouetted against the sky and broadside this time. I set my shooting ticks up and dropped him with the first shot.
How many times do you get a second chance at a great buck? 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on October 01, 2021, 02:33:50 PM
Another story from the same unit as the above story.
Right where the 7400 line breaks up the hill from I think the old 600 line (I don't normally pay much attention to RD numbers) is my favorite unit. I guess if you have good success in a place it becomes your favorite. :chuckle: At the bottom of the hill on the south edge there is an old skid road coming down the hill that was a pretty good trail and as my usual habit I headed up that trail at first light this morning. It was a stormy day but as I climbed that ridge it became worse as the wind blew the rain sideways from the south. About halfway up the ridge flattens out with a shallow draw to the south that climbs to a higher ridge on the other side of the draw. As I looked across the draw into the wind a deer broke up the hill and across. I soon saw a second deer following and I was sure it must be a buck based on the size and the way it was acting following the lead deer. I pulled my scope covers off and the scope was immediately covered in water from the driving rain hitting me in the face. it was difficult to see through the scope and a swipe across the lens seemed a wasted motion.  I followed the second deer all the way across the clearcut straining to see horns to no avail. As the deer reached the upper corner of the cut where an upper road met the doghair from a previous clearcut the doe or I assumed it was a doe went behind a big old growth fir stump and out of sight. The second deer stopped just before the stump and looked back towards me. I think the doe stopped behind the stump and was blocking his way. He stood there for several minutes but try as I might I could not see horns. As he started to go he swung his head, I saw horns and pulled the trigger and he was gone. It all seemed to happen in the same split second. I was sure I got a good shot off but I never saw anything after. I stood there watching for a while but for better or worse it was all over. I finally got going and walked over. About 20 feet above the stump and maybe 12 feet off the upper road was a very nice 4 point with eyeguards laying. One of the biggest bucks I had ever taken and one of the easiest packs out too. Still a bit over two miles to the car but I went and got my deer cart and by midday I had him loaded in the truck.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: redi on October 01, 2021, 02:43:07 PM
Hump. You need to post some pictures
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on October 01, 2021, 04:35:47 PM
 Well I'm gonna tell this story, without permission :chuckle:, he can sue me I guess :chuckle:.

My brother had just gotten out of the military after a 20 year career, retired with all kinds of "specialty type training" under his belt and one of those involved "shooting". My brother has always been a good shot, even when he was just a boy he was shooting deer with open sights, calm, cool and collected. He's killed deer at 100 yards and even 200 yards with open sights, this, before he was even out of high school. Lets just say, he's a good shot, best I've ever seen, bar none.

Now fast forward. He retires, comes to hunting camp for the first time in years, he was doing tours all over, half the time nobody knew where he was because of what he did. He's pretty excited to be hunting again after many years, him and I go to "Millys Rock". She was a friend of my great grandmas who hunted out of the Little Bellingham camp back in the 30,s and 40,s, her and her husband Dave hunted an area that did, still does and will always(hopefully) produce some good bucks, between the two of them, lets just say they killed a lot of memorable bucks, ill leave it at that. We only have a couple pictures of them because they weren't actual family. My dad told some very special stories of these two, they were great friends with grandma and grandpa and also spent a lot of time with them up in Alaska fishing and hunting.

My brother and I are sitting on the rock, its pouring rain, then fog, then more rain, then clear, then fog on and on. Im trying to glass a trail that leads to a bench between the fog and rain rolling in and out. My brother is watching our backside that holds another trail, both will eventually meet a mile or so away then move on to another staging area. We and "Milly" are in the sweet spot. After about an hour or so of playing games with the weather I spot a big fella, by himself moving up the trail, head down, sniffing everything he could and not familiar with his surroundings, he's a migrator, dark, heavy coat and lookin for fun. I tell "Derwood"(we'll call him in this story), Hey, we got a good buck here, he comes my way, by this time the buck has come up onto a bench about 200 yards away, moving but not running. I give a bleet, he stops, looks in our direction, Derwood is already set up, buck is broadside, I'm thinking "how cool is this", he shoots, BOOM!......buck doesn't move but he can't see us, Derwood fires again, BOOM! buck still hasn't moved, I'm looking through my binos, Derwoods asking calmly, "where my hittin", I say calmly "I don't know, I can't see anything kickin up", he chambers another, BOOM, then another, BOOM, how many BOOMS do I have :chuckle: Any way there was a total of 5, buck still there, hasn't moved, I have no idea where these shots are going, my brother looks at me and says "I didn't think of this but I only got one more round in my pocket"(I have a rifle with me but don't want to butt in :chuckle:)
 He flies a Hail Mary and for the love of god and Milly :chuckle: he drops the buck! I will not say what he said to me after the buck dropped like a sack of spuds, it was said calmly and cleanly, just as he's always been, nothing bothers him :chuckle:. The buck was down and it was a dandy, wide and heavy 3 by 3, not his first buck and not his last buck but for me, one of my favorites......Good job bud, love ya :tup:



Now if you do decide to sue, ill tell the story of the four by two :chuckle:, well hell, that rhymes  :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on October 01, 2021, 07:00:27 PM
Your brother has company. I once shot seven time at an elk. First shot killed it but I got off 6 more before he fell over and never touched a hair on it with those 6 shots. Sometimes excitement gets the better of you. That is a story for memorable elk though, wrong forum.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on October 29, 2021, 04:59:05 PM
Well I'm going to throw another on here, its not an oldie, just happened this year but its  Good Memory "Bucks" that I won't forget and I'm sure my son won't either.

It was a goofy season for sure this year, myself having a lot of things on the plate, my sons wife having family weddings going on clear across the country and my lifelong hunting pard having to deal with a sick pup back at home. I actually ended up putting on a ton of truck miles during this years hunt and not a minute was devoted to "road hunting" :chuckle:. I knew we were going to have to get the job done ahead of time in a hurry because it was going to be a circus, we knew it going in. We all put our heads together trying to figure out "the best bang for the buck" with a season that held no migration, no weather, no wind and not a lot of deer, period.  We ended up in an area we knew bucks would be, nobody bothering them, pretty much ever. We came up with a plan that involved myself, my son and my pard, it would not be easy, the terrain was rocky, dense and straight up and down. We would come into it 3 hours before shooting time, exactly the way my great grandma taught me decades ago. We did, we all hit our spots after about a 4 mile walk in(left at 1 A.M), spread out about 100 yards between my son and I and about 400 yards between my pard and I, me being in the middle. We hunkered down as we've done many times in the past when the circumstances called for it. I woke up first, looked to my right at my son, who is only 100 yards away but were watching totally different terrain, my pard to my left I can see in my binos, all of us ready.

About an hour goes by and theres a "blindspot" that grandma used to tell me "get on your belly and crawl there, never silhouette yourself", I did. Took me a couple minutes but I got there, flat as a pancake, peaked over and about 200 yards downhill there was a couple dandy 4 points traveling together, headed for a bench that led to a saddle, once there they got to that saddle they would be gone. We never use any electronics when we hunt, I won't have it, no phones, walk talks  or anything, we use hand signals, period! When I'm gone I'm sure that will change :chuckle: and probably happens when I'm not out there :chuckle:. Im glassing these two bucks for awhile now, just moving, feeding, don't even know I'm there. I get back to where I can give a signal to my son, he gets it with my hands, "2 bucks, both good, get here", he's there in under 2. We both get ready, he picks the one he wants, I put the crosshairs on the other, we count down from 3. We shoot at the same time, he shot at the lead buck, it spun then dropped, mine took about 10 steps then dropped. We watched them both tumble head over ass down this canyon, we knew not to take our eyes off them until they piled up. My daughter in law was in the escape route and could also see a secondary entry to this spot, she heard the shooting, hustled over but nothing else moving. We all sat for an hour or so, not wanting foul up my pards hunt a few hundred yards away. We signaled him we were gonna head down, after 20 minutes or so of sliding down(steep shale) we kicked up a big 2 point, nothing for the DIL. We kept moving, found my sons buck, thick, heavy  4 by 4 (26"wide) when we heard a shot, BOOM, close, a few people know of this spot but not many,(we hunted it all week and never seen another person), we were 400 yards or so down the chute when we heard the shot. I told my son, "thats @#$%), he said "sure sounded like him". we all hunkered down, AGAIN, waiting. We let about a half hour go by when we seen my pard come around and under a big rock bluff, he signaled "nothing going on here". We evenually made it to our meeting spot, we had 2 bucks, 2 dandys, both 4 points and both beautiful animals, probably twins or siblings. We asked my pard what happened, he said he watched us go down another chute, he knew we had both shot so he just sat and watched. He seen the big 2 point come up the bench then about 5 minutes later he said, and I quote, "I seen the second largest deer I've ever seen come up not more than 30 feet under where you guys were sitting" The buck stood there, my pard had one shot, he seen the bullet smash rock behind the buck, the buck took a couple hops and was gone. Dang thing must have been bedded directly under us in the rocks, we were probably shooting over him when we were shooting the other two :dunno: We went in later and spent into the dark looking for blood. My pard said he seen the "second largest deer" because he has killed the largest since the mid 80,s, its known as the "$&*^$%@# BUCK". Any ways, this was a memorable buck for me this year for a few reasons, my brother and I had killed bucks in this spot years ago, my nephew and I the same,  my great grandparents, the same, we've all killed bucks here. This was the first time we've actually killed 2 at the same time. All my years of hunting with my dad, it never happened. I feel blessed, one of my best seasons bud, love ya.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on December 22, 2021, 03:09:31 PM
Early 1970,s, I had a buddy who moved up here from Arizona, he is my age and was just about where I was at the time, freshly married and starting a family. He is an avid hunter, hunted Arizona his whole life up until this point, everything from Couse deer, to desert mulies to Kaibab mulies to wild pigs to domestic pigs turned farrel, years after a livestock truck tipped over during a snowstorm up around Flagstaff, a couple hundred pigs escaped after the wreck and became BIG and farrel after a few years, not to mention reproducing, they were tearing up prime elk a deer winter range and Arizona fish and game opened up a season on them but thats a whole other story, the pigs he and his brother killed were unbelievably huge.

Leon moved up here and immediately wanted to hunt, he became part of the little Bellingham camp and was welcomed by all, the camp was just a fraction in size of what it was during the hay days but he was welcomed by all. Leon killed a lot of big bucks over his 20 or so years in camp but one will stand out in my mind above all the others he killed, even the 2 bucks he killed that were closing in on 30" while part of our camp and the many big Arizona bucks I seen pictures of that he and his family killed. This one was special.

I remember it being a really cold season, not a lot of snow but I don't think we made it out of the single digits the last 10 days or so of the season, everything was freezing, eggs, milk, you name it. We had to keep things in the tent in ice chests to keep everything from freezing, we have pictures of beer cans all around the bon fire to keep the beer from freezing, a few nights it was 8-9 below zero where we were. We had 8 big bucks hanging and Leon had opportunities but he wanted a non typical, all the nice big bucks he had killed in his lifetime(Arizona and Washington)had been beautiful "typical" framed bucks. I think we had a couple days left in the season, I had killed my buck a couple days prior and asked Leon if he would mind another set of eyes, he welcomed it. We went out an old trail directly out of camp, an area the old-timers swore by but we youngsters :chuckle: just never put a lot of time into, it was literally a trail that led right from the tent flaps and ended a couple miles out. It was a jungle, it did have cover, water and feed with a boatload of cover and cover, did I mention jungle :chuckle:

Leon and I got roughly a half mile out when we noticed movement downhill, this was an area you walked, a step at a time then listened. We actually seen this buck, we could see antlers and a huge body, slinking through the jack pine jungle. Im guessing he was maybe 60-70 yards downhill when Leon gave out a mouth bleet, stopped him in his tracks, I put glasses on him and told Leon you might want to take a look at this, he lowered his gun(he was waiting for me to whisper shoot :chuckle:), he put his binos on him and (ill never forget it, said "thats a weird one") he brought his rifle back up and within seconds, just like that we had a buck down. We walked up on him , sliding down some of the steepest, thickest crap you'd ever want to be in. When Leon gave the bleet that buck had froze in the only shooting lane on that hill, I swear! We got to him, a big bodied one by twenty seven! :chuckle: :chuckle:, yep, about a foot and a half long spike on one side then a mass of antler on the other, about the size of a softball with 27 points coming out of it, looked like a pin cushion! :chuckle:. The Game guys would always come to camp to see what we had hanging, when they came up that time, they asked if they could bring a bio up to get a look at him, they weighed the 3 pieces(we cut him into 3 pieces to get him up the hill), guts out of coarse, legs cut off at the knees, all this weighed by the Game department on their scales came to 227lbs and that was with the hide off of the 3 pieces. I won't say what they figured his live weight at but that wasn't the memorable part of this buck, it was a 1 by 27, each of those 27 "pins" sticking out of the cushion was an inch or more long!...... Leon is back in Arizona now, but this buck was one of his and my favorites :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: HntnFsh on December 22, 2021, 04:48:34 PM
Cool stories. Thanks for sharing!
Always enjoy them!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on December 22, 2021, 05:31:43 PM
Cool stories. Thanks for sharing!
Always enjoy them!
Thank you. I’ve said it before but I’ve forgotten more than I remember, there’s still some that I will never forget, hopefully 👍
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Ghost Hunter on December 25, 2021, 10:51:26 AM
Great stories for a Christmas morning.  Not sure how I missed this, had to come off the mountain, I guess. 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on December 25, 2021, 12:42:03 PM
Yep, I love this thread. Sitting here waiting for Christmas dinner so I guess I'll add a story.
My Brother-in-laws business limits the time he can get away to hunt so we were out on his last day trying to find a buck. I had already been successful so was sans firearms. No luck the entire day. I don't remember if we saw any deer but no bucks for sure. We were headed home and I remembered a small place I had seen quite a lot of sign in and said what do you think of giving this place a look. He was game for one last chance.
We had to walk in about a half mile. I had never hunted the spot because it was so small. The place was a small patch they had logged barely 200 yards long by maybe 200 feet wide completely surrounded by brush, road going right down the center. There was a big pile of brush they had stacked near the end of it. Not sure what I was thinking but I walked around this pile of brush from my Brother-in-law and up jumped this buck. Shot straight away and my Brother-in-law got a shot off as it went in the brush. It was going away and as it turned out he hit it in the shoulder but not in the chest cavity.
It was gone but there was a good trail going into the brush. We followed it out. Shortly it forked and my Brother-in-law went out the left-hand fork which was better traveled. I went out the right-hand fork, not really expecting to go more than a few steps, I was looking for blood. Just to the side there was a long butt and sticking up behind it was some horns. Things started happening fast then. Knife in right hand I grabbed his horns with my left and pulled him over the stump and cut his throat. I hung on as he struggled to get up but never gained his feet.
It was a respectable three point and one of several last-minute bucks my Brother-in-law got.
 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: ChelsieLim on December 28, 2021, 05:57:54 PM
The first buck I shot is still in my memory. It was a beauty, and the second one was even better - wish it were time for me to get another hunt again!

Deerhuntingfield.com (https://deerhuntingfield.com) is the premier site for information on deer hunting and deerhunting! I'm proud to say it was my first deer out of bow, since that was the one I drew it with.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: AL WORRELLS KID on December 31, 2021, 11:34:26 PM
[quote author=bigmacc My dad took an old timer back in "67" that was a monster. The fish and game fellas said it was the biggest buck they had seen at the time, figured him at over 400 lbs. on the hoof (mule deer), the darn thing only had one tooth left and they figured he never would have made it through the winter, (they said my dads buck was 12 1/2 to 13 1/2 years old.)
[/quote]
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Humptulips on January 06, 2022, 10:38:27 PM
[quote author=bigmacc My dad took an old timer back in "67" that was a monster. The fish and game fellas said it was the biggest buck they had seen at the time, figured him at over 400 lbs. on the hoof (mule deer), the darn thing only had one tooth left and they figured he never would have made it through the winter, (they said my dads buck was 12 1/2 to 13 1/2 years old.)
[/quote]

Geez I bet that SOB was tough.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on January 07, 2022, 09:33:24 AM
[quote author=bigmacc My dad took an old timer back in "67" that was a monster. The fish and game fellas said it was the biggest buck they had seen at the time, figured him at over 400 lbs. on the hoof (mule deer), the darn thing only had one tooth left and they figured he never would have made it through the winter, (they said my dads buck was 12 1/2 to 13 1/2 years old.)

Geez I bet that SOB was tough.
[/quote]

Ha, yes it was Humptulips :chuckle: I posted a picture of it on here a few years ago with my great grandma standing next to it, a HUGE non-typical with a face only a mother could love :chuckle:. My great grandparents were raising hunting labs and German shorthairs at the time, we ground the whole thing into burger so we could doctor it up with different recipes to eat it and the dogs ate good that year too :chuckle: :tup:. No waste :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: gee_unit360 on January 07, 2022, 10:23:04 AM
Hump. You need to post some pictures

Agreed!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on January 07, 2022, 04:45:31 PM
I believe it was 1946 or 47 :dunno: We have the pictures. A fella by the name of Henry #$%^ was at camp. Its not a memory of mine, but my dad used to tell stories of this buck, my dad killed many himself but this one was killed by another and was one of his "Good Memory Bucks"

Dad had said Henry was a friend of grandma and grandpas, he loved to hunt, they met in Alaska. Henry was at camp when my dad was in his prime. I remember dad saying that grandpa told him "you got to watch and learn how this guy shoots". Henry shot on the same trap team as my grandma and grandpa and was a hell of a shot, both eventually shot on the USA Trap Shooting Team. After a few years Henry had come down with cancer, he still made it to camp. Dad said that one day, Henry, my great grandpa and my dad went to a spot that Henry wanted to go. It was a day my dad said he'd never forget. The three of them sat on a hillside, a foot of snow on the ground. It was cold. Dad told the story of a big A$$ buck walking from behind a bench. Grandpa asked Henry If it was the one he wanted, no answer. Henry just raised his rifle and killed the buck, a nice heavy 2 by 3, its in one of our albums. Henry passed before the next season. My dad said it was one of the best shots he had ever seen, about 200yards with peep sights.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on January 08, 2022, 07:45:38 PM
One more. I think it was in the 40,s maybe 50,s :dunno: Looking at the picture as I type. Paul, another friend of grandma and grandpas. Ive told many stories of this fella, a Slav Fisherman, tough as nails, worked for the grandparents up at Kodiak. Packed deer out on his back, yep, it was his downfall.

Ok, this picture is of Paul standing next to a big 6 by 7, can't tell, grandma only wrote "Paul" 1940?..., big buck on the back". Paul was around in camp when I was able to actually know him. Arms like Popeye from pulling nets, (my dad used to say, "look at his arms, their like Popeyes" :chuckle:. I remember coming into camp one night(it took us 6-7 hours to drive from Everett) and seeing the "Bellingham Bunch" sitting around a fire that looked like it was a house on fire! Back then, maybe 50 or so people gathered, then another fire with another clan with dozens around it. I have told the story and posted pictures of 20 bucks on one ridge pole, then another picture of 20 more, then another and another. We have pictures of 40-50 bucks hanging between all the camps at Little Bellingham in its hay days. This was during Pauls "hay days". He and grandma used to hunt a lot together, they would have each others back. Paul was in a picture I posted years ago, it was him and another big buck that was actually a buck that I still have the antlers of. My grandma was a hell of a shot(already told that story), one day she dropped two bucks(it was ok back then), Paul was on a rock that was in a spot probably a lot of folks would know now days, only its owned by another, now. Paul and grandma pulled these two deer for a couple miles, Paul finally said, "G@#$%^, we got to get out of here", dad told the story of the two of them moving through thickets, moving downhill and coming to a stop, they both looked at each other, now what do we do? They laughed, looked at each other and said, "this is gonna cost us a bunch of money" :chuckle: Well, there was a well known family in the valley that made you buy a jug of cider, IF you drug a buck though their property. Back in those days, they knew us, we knew them, they knew we would be living on cider during hunting season :chuckle: :chuckle: Well grandma and Paul got down to the spot where they would need to "pay the toll", This fella was there to collect. He said something like (my dads story) "well hell, thats a big boy" "well hell, you got 2 big boys!", they all stood there, contemplating "a deal", they did. Dad said that grandma told Mr L*&^%$% that she would buy 10 jugs of cider for a lifelong pass :chuckle: :chuckle:He accepted. Paul and his clan pulled over a hundred deer through that turf over the years, our bunch did too. That was the best investment grandma ever made :chuckle:. We still bought cider from these folks every year. They in fact came to our camp for dinners until he and his wife passed. Those really were the good ole days. There are some still left on here who know exactly who these folks were. Man, I miss those days. 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: baldopepper on January 08, 2022, 09:00:06 PM
Your stories sure bring back memories. My early years were in Utah, while a different location stories are similar. 50's and 60's permits were all otc and was common to see camps of 40-50 people. Most camps were 3 generations of families and assorted close friends. The deer camp was the annual family reunion, men bragged about having enough senority with the company to get vacation during the week of the deer hunt..Schools closed the Friday before opening day because attendance was so low with all the kids leaving with their families to go deer hunting. All the big sporting goods stores had a biggest deer contest with the main one (Wolfes sporting goods) actually announcing and showing the winner on television after the hunt ended.  First prize was a new jeep. The deer hunt went beyond just a hunt, it was a time when families and friends got together and renewed old memories  and friendships. Every kid hoped one day he'd be able to brag about the big buck he shot or at least tell the story of the big one somebody else in the camp got. Obviously you were one of those kids Big Mac, as I was. Like you, I really miss those days, but your stories help keep the memories alive.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on January 10, 2022, 04:38:32 PM
Your stories sure bring back memories. My early years were in Utah, while a different location stories are similar. 50's and 60's permits were all otc and was common to see camps of 40-50 people. Most camps were 3 generations of families and assorted close friends. The deer camp was the annual family reunion, men bragged about having enough senority with the company to get vacation during the week of the deer hunt..Schools closed the Friday before opening day because attendance was so low with all the kids leaving with their families to go deer hunting. All the big sporting goods stores had a biggest deer contest with the main one (Wolfes sporting goods) actually announcing and showing the winner on television after the hunt ended.  First prize was a new jeep. The deer hunt went beyond just a hunt, it was a time when families and friends got together and renewed old memories  and friendships. Every kid hoped one day he'd be able to brag about the big buck he shot or at least tell the story of the big one somebody else in the camp got. Obviously you were one of those kids Big Mac, as I was. Like you, I really miss those days, but your stories help keep the memories alive.

Thanks baldopepper :tup:. You speak the truth, I remember even here in this state some of those same examples. I remember taking a note to my teacher letting her know I would be absent for 10-12 days and if she could put together assignments for me to do while in camp, it was signed by my mom. Couldn't even imagine that now days, I remember the teachers writing the assignments on a return piece of paper along with a request of some venison :chuckle:. This was in western Washington, like I said probably pretty rare to do that now days on the west side. I remember dad and I going up to Bellingham and help the grandparents get everything packed, a lot of stuff was in crates and buried at camp so they wouldn't have to haul it back and forth, man we have found some treasures over the last 10-20 years of stuff that was forgot about. I to remember we would stop by Yeagars Sporting goods up in Bellingham, we would buy our ammo etc and get our names on "the biggest buck" board, yes sir, I too really miss those days. I remember after the season there would be a big get together at the Masonic temple up there, it would usually happen a month or so after the season, I remember crowds of a couple hundred at least, all from different families and clans, some were from our bunch who hunted the Methow, some were families that hunted the Chelan area and so on, they all brought food and different venison recipes, a big ole deer meat pot luck :tup: I remember seeing all the pictures, the slide shows guys would put on, the stories and the dozens of racks folks would bring in to show off, it was incredible!!  Man the racks people brought to those pow wows were something else, I remember prizes being handed out for biggest and so on. Did I say I miss those days? Yes I do :tup:

Ive said it before, I feel very fortunate to have grown up in those days and to have a family with such a hunting history AND to have hunted in an area and in a time where our deer herds were taken care of, they are what sold licenses and tags, the healthier the herds, the more that were sold. The "Game Department" (yep we actually had a Game Department back then) put those herds and their health as priority number 1.  As I've said many times, the Methow herd at one time was the largest migrating herd in the country, numbering between 35-40,000 head, those days are long gone and we will never see them again, its only a shadow of that now days, if even a shadow.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 04, 2022, 04:49:42 PM
Called an old friend today just to check in on him, the conversation eventually moved to the past hunting season then onto seasons from long ago, after about an hour long conversation many old memories were conjured up.

I told the story of the time we had 3 big bucks loaded in the back of the truck before we even had our tent set up, one of them was killed about 100 yards to the left of the 200 yard targets at the rifle range, while probably 20 or so people were blazing away :chuckle:. Well this was another buck killed the following year by the fella that killed the "rifle range buck".

We went into an area that was not known for seeing a lot of deer but if you did see some, chances are they would be big. My great grandma and my dad when he was 11 or 12 killed an absolute monster in this turf back in the late 30,s, grandma told the story of them walking up on the 9 by 7 and looking down at it, she said dad looked at her and said "grandma, were gonna need some help" :chuckle: :chuckle:. Anyway, three of us we went into this spot, about 3 inches or so of fresh snow on the ground and snowing but no sign of any deer or any life for that matter. We were about 5 miles in when we decided to spread out along some rock bluffs, looking down into a maze of benches, fingers and draws, just beautiful, in fact to perfect I guess. We were spread out about 100-150 yards apart, the fella to my right was just about 150 yards away and a bit above me watching an escape route that came by on his right. A few hours went by when after not seeing a thing I looked up at my buddy that was to my right, I put my glasses on him and seen movement in the rocks about 40 feet or so above him. It was a long tail moving side to side, then I seen the head in between a couple rocks, it was a cougar, looking at my buddy. I gave out a yell to "look behind ya" as I'm waving my arms, my pard spun around as the cat took about a 20 foot jump going to his right, by buddy brought his rifle up but never got a shot off. My other pardner who was to my left walked over to me and I told him what was going on, we walked over to our buddy who when we got to him was white as a ghost, pretty shaken up. We sat there and he said "I felt like someone was watching me" he said he kept looking back behind him but couldn't see anything, he was a little freaked out to say the least, who knows how long that thing had been sizing him up and watching him. We got our wits together and took off out of there going out the back way. We came to a big boulder field that was part of an old rockslide, it was probably about 300 yards across and went down the hill a few hundred yards more, the rocks are the size of small cars but easy to navigate through. Once we got through the slide we headed for a saddle that would pop us out on the backside of the ridge, when we got close we started smelling what I can only describe as cat piss, real strong ammonia type smell. It got all of our attentions. I remember all of us had the hair standing tall on the back of our necks, heads on swivels we headed for the saddle. There was a cave to our left heading for the saddle, we had to look :chuckle: I remember my buddy unholstering his 357, we walked towards the cave, the smell getting stronger. We were all standing about 10-15 feet from the opening which was about 5 feet or so high by about 8 feet or so wide, it was a big, dark hole. We through a couple rocks into the opening, nothing, then my other buddy pulled out his flashlight and walked a little closer, shining the light in we seen a lot of bones and a set of antlers that was pretty phenomenal a 4 by 5 that was about 28 inches wide and had been gnawed on, looked like it may have been in there for at least a year. We seen carcasses in all different stages of decay, I couldn't even say how many, at least 4 or 5 skulls. We ventured out and up towards the saddle when we found another cache about 50 yards or so from the cave, another nice buck with bleached out antlers. Another dandy but one side was really chewed up. We were starting to get even more freaked out as we were trying to get out of there, our minds were messing with us now and we were looking for cougars instead of deer :chuckle: We made it through the saddle and we all sat on a big deadfall, we sat there for about 20 minutes or so talking about that morning and what we had experienced. My buddy that had the cougar watching him whispered "don't move", he was looking downhill from where we had just come from, there was the cougar about 200 yards to the left of the trail we had just come up but he wasn't looking at us, he was looking opposite of where we were, laying in an opening, tail moving side to side like a house cat ready to pounce on a mouse. Well, we looked down hill in the direction he was looking and my buddy spotted a buck about another 100 yards down hill, a big 3 by 4 with heavy dark antlers. My buddy got set up, the deer and the cat were in a stare down, neither were paying any attention to us. My buddy shot right over the top of that cat and dropped the buck, that cat exploded out of that clearing like it had been shot out of a cannon, it happened so fast he couldn't get a shot at the cat. Back then it was a rarity to see cougars, in fact it was pretty cool if you did see one. I remember our whole family seeing a handful of them the whole time they had been hunting back in the early 1900,s, there were bountys on them etc so they were kept in check and if you did run into one, well, you had a story to tell that would gather a crowd around the fire :chuckle: It was a dandy buck for sure and we killed it right out from under that cat, I guess we corked him during his hunt, not very good hunter ethics I guess, shame on us :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MADMAX on February 04, 2022, 05:40:47 PM
Great stories bud
Thoroughly enjoy the good old days
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 04, 2022, 06:25:13 PM
Great stories bud
Thoroughly enjoy the good old days
Thank you MADMAX, I have another of this fella I will tell one day. One that happened with my friend from Arizona, the two of them never seen eye to eye AND they didn't like each other :chuckle:, perfect combination :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: HntnFsh on February 04, 2022, 07:41:17 PM
Can't wait. Don't leave us hanging too long!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 07, 2022, 04:55:59 PM
Im thinking it was 1980 or 81 :dunno:, I didn't write a date on the back of the picture. My buddy who had moved up from Arizona years prior is a great guy and good people, he would basically give you the shirt off his back. Leon is the guy who has a family photo album kind of like ours only all Arizona stuff going back to the 1930,s. He's the fella I told the story of who purchased a special tag to hunt domestic pigs that had turned feral AND reproduced to the point they were destroying key winter range for elk and deer in northern Arizona. A livestock truck had turned on its side and a couple hundred pigs got loose, after a few years our so they were wreaking havoc on the winter range, they figured they would die of or get picked off by cats and other predators but no, their numbers grew and so did the pigs, Leon showed me pictures of 2 pigs weighing more than 2000 lbs total(I want to say 2200 or 2300 :dunno:), they squatted his half ton Chevy pretty good, lets just say that :chuckle:

There was another fella in camp (we,ll call him Fred) who didn't get along with everybody lets just say, Leon was one of those. We never could figure out why, Leon is still one of the most friendly, giving people I have ever known or will know for that matter, he's just one of those kind of guys. One day myself, Fred, Leon and another pard went into an area that we figured we could knock down a couple migrators, the deer had been moving for a few days and we figured this spot would be ripe. We got in there well before sunup so we could get spread out and let things settle for awhile before shooting time. We were all watching different routes and turf but were all within sight of each other, only being 50-100 yards apart. Leon and Fred were maybe 50 yards apart, Fred watching one direction while Leon watched totally different turf in the complete opposite direction. It wasn't more than 5 minutes after shooting time when I heard a BOOM, sounded like Leons 300 Weatherby, I've heard it many times. I look in his direction to see him in the prone position looking down hill like he was gonna shoot again, he instead layed his rifle down and backed away from the ledge as to not silhouette himself, he then motioned for Fred to "get there quick", Fred beat feet and got to the spot, I'm watching this whole deal through my binos, when I see Fred sneak up to the ledge, get prone and BOOM, this whole thing transpired over about a 4-5 minute chunk of time. No more shooting. The two of them sat there for a few minutes, I seen them shake hands and then Leon motioned for me to come over, I made my way over to the two of them. When I got there Fred kind of pulled me to the side as Leon started making his way down the old chute, we knew it would take him awhile because of the rough terrain, Fred stayed at the top for a bit so as to guide us to where the bucks were. Before I headed down Fred made a cheap shot comment sayin "that buck I just killed was a dandy, I'm sure Leons is bigger, he wouldn't have left that thing for me", I took it with a grain of salt and headed down the hill, I eventually caught up with Leon and we followed Freds hand signals to the bucks. The first buck we got to(about 400 yards or so down the hill) was Freds, an absolute beautiful 4 by 4 that we tapped later at 31 and a half inches wide! Just a beautiful buck, almost pretty, still to this day one of my favorite bucks. We then went about 30-40 yards to the left and slightly up hill a tad and we came upon Leons buck! Oh boy! Leon looked at me and said "do you think this might sway that sourpuss to maybe like me a little :chuckle:" Leon then bent over and started gutting his 2 by 2 with a whopping 9 inch spread, outside :chuckle:. I said Leon, that was pretty cool of you to do that for him, he said "lets see what Fred says". We motioned for Fred and our other pardner that we had located both bucks and signaled for them to head on down. They got to us first, you should have seen the look on Freds face when he seen Leons buck laying there. We then walked over to Freds monster. He shook Leons hand and said "why the hell didn't you shoot this guy?", Leon looked at him and said, " I never thought twice about it". Fred is no longer with us but that day a fence was mended that let Fred see the real person Leon was, he is the kind of guy who walked that talk through his whole life, "he never thought twice" about doing a good deed.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: HntnFsh on February 08, 2022, 06:18:02 AM
Another incredible story. Leon is the kind of friend everbody should be, and needs to have!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Skyvalhunter on February 08, 2022, 06:30:57 AM
I need me a few Leon's in my hunting party I seem to have too many Fred's.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 08, 2022, 12:03:39 PM
I need me a few Leon's in my hunting party I seem to have too many Fred's.
:chuckle: :chuckle: :chuckle: :tup:.......Yep, "dont be a Fred" :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MADMAX on February 08, 2022, 02:42:55 PM
Bigmacc
You really should write a book
The glory days of the Methow
Awesome story
Thank you again
RIP Fred M from the valley
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 11, 2022, 05:11:42 PM
I may have told this one before in another thread, its not my story but one that was told to me by an old friend, it was not of a buck he killed but was of multiple bucks AND does who were killed by mother nature, who can be very cruel when she wants to be, I will tell it the best that I can and as close as I can as it was told to me, I seen a few pictures of this that were unbelievable AND incredible to say the least.   The friend who witnessed this and told me this story, unfortunately is now in a home. We will call him Woody(not his real name) in this story, I may have called him another name in the other thread.

Woody and his wife were taking some fisherman up into the Pasayten, I'm thinking 1960,s maybe early 70,s :dunno:. It was springtime, and they were many miles in when Woody told his wife he knew a shortcut into some lakes that they were taking these folks to. It would cut miles off the trip and Woody figured it would be passable. It involved going through a canyon I remember. Woody, his wife and the fisherman made the decision to take the shortcut. They made it about half way I believe when Woody decided it was time to make camp and go in the rest of the way in the morning.

They got up, tore down camp, saddled up and made there way to the lakes. Once they started into the canyon Woody said he "started feeling weird, like something wasn't right", his words, by this time with him telling me the story sitting around a campfire, I was also starting to feel "weird" and a little spooked :chuckle:. Woody said they got about half way in when he started noticing skeletons up on the hill sides on both sides of them. Bone piles up under trees, bleached and some not, some still with hair, some not, no rhyme, no reason, no consistency, just bones, carcasses and horns. If you knew Woody, he never let an "incident" get in the way of entertainment, he went to work :chuckle:. He told his wife and clients that they had stumbled onto the very turf that hundred of men over many years have been trying to find and at "no extra charge" they were all experiencing it, the place old mule deer go to die, the mule deers graveyard :chuckle:. Woody said that there were maybe 100 or more carcasses, some piled up 2 or 3 deep, mostly under trees, some had huge racks, some bleached out, some still brown, he figured the ordeal happened that previous winter, what he figured was a migration was in full tilt, a storm hit, deer couldn't get out of that canyon and died, most were piled under trees indicating they were trying to get out of weather, snow and wind and that was the end for them. Woody never touched anything, he took a few pictures, I seen them, it was eerie to say the least, some huge bucks died in that ordeal, they never touched them or disturbed them, I still get goosebumps thinking of this, even now.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 14, 2022, 07:09:52 PM
Another story of a great buck that was told to me by "Woody", it also happened sometime back in the 60,s or 70,s, he told me the story in the early 70,s so it was a few years prior to that that this happened I believe. Once again, I may have told this story or partially told it before, ill try to go into a bit more detail this time, at least as much as I can remember.

Woody, his wife and another hand were rounding up some strays that they never got out of the upper elevations that were part of their summer range lease, it was either during the high hunt or during the general season, I don't remember. He said they were on top of a ridge glassing a big basin where they figured the strays might be, I remember Woody saying it was cold and spitting snow off and on. Woody said They glassed up the basin but no cows, only a huge lone buck and a hunter who was on horse back. They all had tags but just watched, not wanting to cork the other hunter. Woody said they looked closer at the buck who was by himself walking towards a thicket, head down, on a mission. The rider was coming into the thicket from the top, moving downhill, the buck was coming in from the side moving left to right. Both were spaced to about hit the thicket at about the same time Woody said. They couldn't believe the rider was not seeing the deer and vis versa, until further inspection of the rider, he was asleep :chuckle:. Both hands on the horn, head down, hunched a bit, Woody said he was either asleep or dead :chuckle:. They all sat there watching this as buck and rider were about to enter the thicket, Woody said "keep your eyes open, theres gonna be a hell of a wreck happinen" :chuckle:. Woody said they both entered, buck, head down, not a care in the world, rack swaying side to side, rider, head down, hands on the horn, he too swaying back and forth. They both disappeared into the brush and trees, Woody, his wife and hand waited for the wreck. After a minute or so the monster buck came out the other side, head down, swaying side to side and disappeared into a big rock canyon, shortly after the rider popped out the bottom looking the same as he went in and disappeared down the trail. They took out after the buck but never did find him, Woody said he was well over 30" and they did not know how many points, it had a lot is what he said.

Now, they recognized the "rider" by what he was wearing and the horse he was on, he was a local and they ran into him a few days later. Woody asked him if he was out hunting in this particular area on this day, he said, sure was. Woody asked him if he ever seen anything, the fella replied, a few does. Woody said he didn't have the heart to tell the young man what they had witnessed, to this day I don't know if they ever did tell him. Woody said, hell who knows, maybe the buck was asleep too :chuckle:

As I said, Woody is now in an assisted living home, doesn't know folks anymore, I sure do miss him. 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: hunthard on February 14, 2022, 08:59:04 PM
Bigmac,
love the old hunting stories you share, just curious though, what were the popular hunting calibers back then?
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 15, 2022, 09:44:27 AM
Bigmac,
love the old hunting stories you share, just curious though, what were the popular hunting calibers back then?
Well back when I was young(50,s and 60,s) I remember a lot of 06, 270 and 30-30,s. I remember my dad talking about Springfields, Remingtons and of course Winchesters going back into the 1930,s and before. Not sure what the popular calibers were but I’m sure 30-06 and 30-30,s were in camp. I remember in the 70,s people going to magnum rounds but most stuck with the 06 and 270 etc, I still shoot a pre 64 270 to this day, it belonged to my great grandpa, thing is still a tack driver, couldn’t even tell you how many bucks that rifle has killed. Thinking of retiring it this year and get another 270.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: HntnFsh on February 15, 2022, 12:57:04 PM
Don't jinx yourself!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 15, 2022, 01:06:03 PM
Don't jinx yourself!
Good point :tup: :chuckle: :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 16, 2022, 04:21:33 PM
About 30 years ago or so my pardner killed one of the prettiest bucks I have ever seen, bar none. Its a buck that he had mounted, the only buck he has ever had mounted and he's killed some real dandys over his years.

My pard and I went into an area we figured may be "the spot" during a season that had been on the slow side up until this particular day. The weather had been a mixed bag up high for a couple weeks but the last 4-5 days had been what migrations were made out of. It dumped snow heavy for about 24 hours straight or so at elevations above 6000 feet in fact at about that level we had snow that we were pushing with the bumper of a 72 ford bronco. Then the temps dropped and the wind started blowing, oh the wind, right out of the north, perfect recipe to start some deer moving. We had a spot that we figured would be perfect but it was about an hour or so drive from camp then about 4 miles or so on foot but we figured it may show some life. It was the spot that I've told stories of before, the family found it, studied it and learned it back in the early 1900,s, actually it was about 1918 when my great grandma and grandpa stumbled onto it during one of their "hunting hikes" :chuckle:. I remember sitting in this spot back in the 1960,s and when everything aligned for a migration to be triggered it was nothing to see 3-400 deer move through before 10 o'clock. My dad remembers when he was a boy seeing a thousand move through during a day of sitting by a stump with grandpa. My pardner and I agreed, lets get there.

We got to the spot a couple hours before sunup, then we waited. It is a series of benches maybe 400 yards across that looks down into one of the 5 best migration corridors around in my opinion. At least it used to be. By about 9 or 10 o'clock  :dunno: we had seen 2 big groups move though about 300 yards below us consisting of around 80 deer total. Then by noon we had seen another 50 or so in one big bunch, only about 5 or 6 bucks total if I remember right and those were all spikes and 2 points. This didn't really surprise us because of the timing. This is the place I may have told a story of where I seen 800 or so move through over a couple day period and never saw a horn, all does, fawns and yearlings, the bucks showed up a few days later. Anyways, I decided to walk over to my pardner (I was about 300 yards away) and discuss maybe giving it a few more days. I got there, we were standing on the bench, looking down the hill, BS,n and coming up with a plan to use in a few days, we were standing there talking for about 15 minutes. We turned around to head for the trail when my buddy put his hand up, I knew to stop, don't move and to keep my mouth shut :chuckle:. I seen the direction my buddy was looking, I slowly looked in that direction, in about a 10 foot by 10 foot opening about 70 yards uphill was a buck and just that fast he was dead. We walked up on him and we both were amazed at his coloring, his hair was almost a light brown/tan like an antelope, he had two throat patches and his antlers were almost a antique white/light tan color. He had a classic mule deer head and face along with one of the best roman noses I have ever seen. If some of you seen the roman on that buck I killed a couple years ago before I pulled the picture, it was classic, this nose made him look like a greenhorn :chuckle:. We gutted him, propped him open put him under a tree and went back to get help. We came in the next day and cut him up, took out 4 pieces plus the head and cape. We got back to camp and weighed all the pieces, 211 lbs, we figured if we put him back together with his guts and all the garbage we left on the hill he would have easily went over 320. A game fella took a look at him and figured him about 7-9 years old, right in his prime, just a pretty buck. My buddy and I and other family members will still go into this spot from time to time, we don't see nearly the amount of deer because of the way the seasons are set and the fact that there just isn't that many deer left over there, just a fraction of a shadow but we still go in there because oh my god there are some memories of some big bucks there, this was and is one of them. When we do go in there we always look behind us in that little open patch, haven't seen a deer there since :chuckle:

Forgot,......... 6 on one side, 7 on the other, 29" wide and the back tines were 23 1/2" tall, just a specimen of a mule deer.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: O. Nerka on February 16, 2022, 04:30:32 PM
Thanks for another good story bigmacc!  With all of the fires in the Methow recently have you noticed a difference in deer behavior regarding their migration paths?  Do they show a bias to avoid recently burned stuff or use it more?
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MtnMuley on February 16, 2022, 04:40:21 PM
30 1/2" back tines?
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 16, 2022, 04:53:03 PM
Thanks for another good story bigmacc!  With all of the fires in the Methow recently have you noticed a difference in deer behavior regarding their migration paths?  Do they show a bias to avoid recently burned stuff or use it more?
Its hard to tell, there just aint that many deer left there to really get it figured out. I guess thats why they put collars and electronics on them, back in the day they used to just sit around in a vehicle, with a clicker/counter and counted how many deer crossed a piece of pavement in a 5 day period, sometimes 2-3000would cross a particular road north of town, then you had a report that another 2000 had crossed a particular road 20 miles to the south.. Or they would post up some college kids in different spots(migration corridors), pack them a lunch and give them a clicker/counter and you had your counts. All of it a lot more accurate than the way its done nowdays, just my opinion. As far as fires, they been going on since the beginning of time, the only thing thats changed is how the fires are fought and how the forests are managed (My Opinion). Wildlife AND deer are, oh well, I won't go on.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 16, 2022, 04:53:52 PM
30 1/2" back tines?
Yes sir.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 16, 2022, 04:58:27 PM
Sorry, 23 1/2,  Sorry. :sry:.....Just verified on the back of the photo. And just changed it in the story :tup:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: MtnMuley on February 16, 2022, 04:59:23 PM
Just checking :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 16, 2022, 05:03:52 PM
Just checking :chuckle:
Thank you :tup:.......Yep, id like to see that guy myself :chuckle: :chuckle: :chuckle:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: baldopepper on February 16, 2022, 05:19:43 PM
Thanks for another good story bigmacc!  With all of the fires in the Methow recently have you noticed a difference in deer behavior regarding their migration paths?  Do they show a bias to avoid recently burned stuff or use it more?
Its hard to tell, there just aint that many deer left there to really get it figured out. I guess thats why they put collars and electronics on them, back in the day they used to just sit around in a vehicle, with a clicker/counter and counted how many deer crossed a piece of pavement in a 5 day period, sometimes 2-3000would cross a particular road north of town, then you had a report that another 2000 had crossed a particular road 20 miles to the south.. Or they would post up some college kids in different spots(migration corridors), pack them a lunch and give them a clicker/counter and you had your counts. All of it a lot more accurate than the way its done nowdays, just my opinion. As far as fires, they been going on since the beginning of time, the only thing thats changed is how the fires are fought and how the forests are managed (My Opinion). Wildlife AND deer are, oh well, I won't go on.
deer counts used be the usual way of determining how the herds were doing, then it seemed to change to buck/doe ratio. Some units dropped numbers dramatically but were said to be ok because the buck/doe ratio was good.  Wish they'd go back to the actual count system, but I suspect the numbers might be scary.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Twispriver on February 16, 2022, 06:27:56 PM
The winter range in the Methow is forever changed and we'll never see the migrations or the deer numbers the way they once were. What used to be large private holdings are now small parcels each with their own homes, fences and free range dogs. Throw in predators and its no wonder you see more deer in town than in their historical haunts.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 17, 2022, 11:43:32 AM
The winter range in the Methow is forever changed and we'll never see the migrations or the deer numbers the way they once were. What used to be large private holdings are now small parcels each with their own homes, fences and free range dogs. Throw in predators and its no wonder you see more deer in town than in their historical haunts.
This is a valid statement and I will add that when we no longer had a "Game Department", this was a huge factor also. Ive said it many times that the downfall of this particular herd (IMO) has been multi pronged. Predators and how they have been mis-managed, lack of management of the herd as a priority(when we had a Game Department it was) and like you basically said, encroachment. The Methow herd like I've said numbered and fluctuated anywhere between 30,000-40,000 head in its hay-days, they say now its in the 14,000-17,000 range, others who know this herd, have a history with it, including myself may tell you those numbers may be a tad high.Some say a more realistic number is in the 12,000 range(give or take). I myself tend to agree with the later. Ether estimates are a drastic decline of this once historic/famous herd. It truly is a shame to have witnessed those hay days first hand and see it where its at today, the memories of seeing 100,200,300 or more on any given day or seeing herds of that many or more migrating through a saddle or down a draw, all in one bunch during hunting season, are just that, memories. :twocents:
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: Twispriver on February 17, 2022, 06:16:02 PM
The loss of all the bitterbrush in the fires over the last ten years has really changed where I see deer in the winter up the Twisp River drainage and along the old Twisp Carlton road. I think that was an important food source for them and it seems to be really slow to grow back.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: OutHouse on February 18, 2022, 11:33:34 AM
The loss of all the bitterbrush in the fires over the last ten years has really changed where I see deer in the winter up the Twisp River drainage and along the old Twisp Carlton road. I think that was an important food source for them and it seems to be really slow to grow back.

I think this is spot on as well as many other accounts here. I remember reading something about how crucial the bitter brush is and the fires to include the Carlton Complex ruined a lot of that.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 19, 2022, 11:56:23 AM
The loss of all the bitterbrush in the fires over the last ten years has really changed where I see deer in the winter up the Twisp River drainage and along the old Twisp Carlton road. I think that was an important food source for them and it seems to be really slow to grow back.

I think this is spot on as well as many other accounts here. I remember reading something about how crucial the bitter brush is and the fires to include the Carlton Complex ruined a lot of that.
It definitely is a big issue that comes back to kind of what I said earlier, we don’t have a “Game Department” anymore so the herd is not priority number 1. My dad used to tell stories and I remember it also that after fires in areas the Game Department would hand out bags of bitter brush seeds to folks who purchased a deer tag, heck I remember Game fellas we knew coming up to camp and handing out packs of seeds to everybody, my dad remembers areas that he and other relatives seeded, he would point to a hillside full of feed and say, “Little Bellingham Camp did that”  :tup:, like I say, back when we had a Game Department.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 25, 2022, 04:40:51 PM
I talked with a buddy the other day, he still hunts with us but is a bit younger. He hunted a lot with my dad back in the day and has a bunch of stories about my dad and him, this is one he still gets a kick out of. This is another story I've probably told in bits and pieces in other threads.

It was back in the early 90,s we think. Dad and Steve(we'll call him) went up into an area that they could get to by road and then would have to bail out and go the rest of the way in by foot. My dad had hunted this particular area when he was a boy, decades prior but hadn't put much time into it since, its an "area" that another "famous" buck was killed a few years later :chuckle:. Another story :chuckle:. Dad and Steve got to the spot dad was going to drop him at, dad was going to go a few miles farther and dump out there, both had about a 4 mile hike to the spot they would meet at, then take a short cut out to the road. Dad was in the 72 Ford Bronco that was missing the passenger seat(that many know about) :chuckle:. My dad wore his usual hunting attire, starting at the bottom. 2 pairs of wool socks, a pair of Herman Waterproof Survivors(weighed a ton), Longjohns, a pair of Carharrt rigging pants, a pair or "Ironworker" suspenders to hold them up and on top was 2 hickory shirts with a Black Bear Wool shirt thrown over the top for his coat. Topped off with a 50 year old Balaclava wool hat, stunning.

Dad drove up the road not very far when going around the corner of the old skid road seen a buck coming off the bank and crossing the road. The buck stopped dang near in the middle of the road maybe a couple dozen yards away :dunno:. Dad said "we were in a stare down at that point", my rifle is in the backseat, by rounds are in my front pocket, lets see who blinks first. Dad said that he slowly got out of the Bronco, stepped back and opened the back window, pulled out the Weatherby and slowly reached into his pocket to grab a round. My dad said their eyes were locked, to the day my dad passed when ever he told this story he said it was "really weird" that the buck never took off. It was a huge buck, those that know/knew my dad know he didn't exaggerate. He killed some big deer, Game guys would always come to our camp to see what we had hanging, they would bring BIO,s to pick our brains, they took him on rides to learn migration routes, I could go on and on. Dad and the buck stared at each other, dad said, "one of the biggest bucks he had ever seen". He had the Weatherby,s bolt open, going for his shirt pocket to grab a couple rounds, the buck still staring him down. Dad fiddle farted around trying to get his fingers on those bullets, he could feel them as he was in the stare down. He said (his words) "the dang thing stood there, like what the hell" The buck then dropped over the other side, walked into a thicket yards down the hill like nothing was wrong as my dad finally found his bullets. They were in shirt number one, the first hickory shirt he put on that day, then number two went on then the Black Bear, he could feel them as he and the buck stared at each other. Him and Steve hunted that area for the remainder of the season, my dad would never have committed to that (hunting it the rest of the season) if that buck would not have been "a dandy". 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: hunthard on February 25, 2022, 06:10:18 PM
Great story Bigmac
 I always wanted to ask what kind of meals did you mom and dad, grandparents make with all the deer meat?
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on February 26, 2022, 03:30:33 PM
Great story Bigmac
 I always wanted to ask what kind of meals did you mom and dad, grandparents make with all the deer meat?
Lots of ground meat recipes, spaghetti, killer meatloaf made out of breakfast sausage and ground meat mixed, chili etc. Then my grandparents would make some great roasts, simmered with onions, carrots and spuds. We would also make ground meat shaped like hot dogs, cook batches of them in the oven all seasoned up and put them on big hot dog buns or hogie rolls :tup:. Thats just a few of my favorites. 
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: johnbmyersii on February 26, 2022, 03:57:49 PM
Love these stories bicmacc thanks for sharing. Reminds me of the stories my grandpa and his friends tell me about the good ol days
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: hunthard on February 26, 2022, 04:53:00 PM
WOW, I love meatloaf, wife thinks i'm crazy lol, i have a buddy in the midwest and they make hotdogs for the kids in 40lb batches.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on April 08, 2022, 04:34:41 PM
Picture says "1946, Uncle Bud with another monster".

I remember my dad telling stories of Uncle Bud, he was my great grandpas brother, I was around camp as a boy when he was still there. I remember him looking just like my great grandpa only much taller :chuckle:, those that know my family know what I'm saying,  Bud was probably 6.6 or more. He was long and lanky, very soft spoken just like grandpa.

A few of the things I remember about Bud was he always had the coolest rigs in camp, he had neat old jeeps, cab overs and all kinds of stuff he'd bring down from Alaska, had the neatest camp stuff(back then) and he didn't shoot many deer but when he did bring one to camp it was something to talk about!

My dad said Uncle Bud ran a bunch of my great grandparents stuff up in Alaska when they weren't there (home was Bellingham but much of their work and business was in Alaska) and through him many of the characters who ended up in "Little Bellingham" found their way. Folks from Fish and Game guys, to authors(another story), politicians and to government hunters and then it led to their families and clans and the rest is history. Little Bellingham came to be from the beginnings back in 1917 to its hay days of the 30,s - the 80,s. I wish I could mention real names but I won't.

1946. Apparently Bud had went out to his usual spot, it was a place he and Paul, (Paul number 1 if your following :chuckle:) the slav fisherman kind of shared, it was of mutual respect that when Paul was done at this spot Bud was next up :chuckle:. Paul and grandma had killed a couple big fellas out there a few days prior, both real dandys. Dad said Bud was making a plan to go to the spot in two days but he wanted to let it rest, back then when migrations were in swing they were a day "on" then a day "off", sometimes depending on weather and wind it would be a day on then 2-3 days off or it could be non stop for 2,3 or even 5 days or more, I've sat in routes back in the 60,s where the migration was in full tilt for a week or more, every day. It all depended on many different variables and still does, at least whats left of "the migration". Uncle Bud made it to the spot, dad said the migration was still in motion, about 10 or so big bucks had come into camp over the last day or so. Dad said the day went by and no Bud. It was dark and as they were getting together a group to head out to help, a person appeared in the firelight, it was Bud, dad said, walking to the fire, rifle on his shoulder, quiet as usual. My great Grandma actually asked (according to dad) "wheres the buck Bud? Its out there, "dead as usual". A bunch went out to bring in the monster. "1946, Uncle Bud with another monster" is what the back of the picture reads.  Its a nice spike by 2 :chuckle:, "per usual", like my dad always said.
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on April 23, 2022, 06:46:20 PM
This is a story and memory of not only a buck but of a friend of mine who passed a few weeks ago, some on here know who he is, some on here know how special he was and some on here know, they just don’t make guys like this anymore.

I will call him Willy, not his real name of course.

Willy would stroll into camp starting back in the 70,s ( I think) and sometimes would be driving an old truck, sometimes on horse back but he always made sure to show up. Willy spent a Christmas or two at my wife and I,s house, we had many special times at their place, great dinners and great conversation. None more special than him and his wife’s trips to our camp. He had stories of huge bucks in the Pasayten, to “ mule deer graveyards” to bobcats under the house and , yep, a cougar under the house, with multiple pieces of collars and bones. Stories of yelling for his wife to “GRAB THE 30-30, WE GOT ANOTHER BOBCAT UNDER THE HOUSE! To, “you should have seen this non typical, I know he died within days of me see’n him, he was that old”, to “ hell, I could have shot the damn thing but I had no idea how I would have gotten him out”. To “ I know darn well that buck was an alien deer, he didn’t look right, it was almost like he was flot’n”, to “ well, I was looking di-rect-ly at him and tha damn thing layed down right in front of me, hell I couldn’t shoot him at that point”, (me asking) Hey Willy, how big was it? “ “about 3foot across, I’ve seen bigger”.

Oh boy I could go on and on, the tarantula we made out of a pine cone and dropped from a tree at night around the fire, using fishing line and set the thing right on the armrest of his camp chair, dang near killed him! The time he told us about taking some pretty famous people into the old migration routes to get some pictures and a magazine article, only to have a pizzed off stinky buck charge the photographer and ended up hitting the truck, priceless.

We always asked him if some of the bucks he seen and killed were special, he said yes, many were but they always weren’t the biggest or the most elusive. Willy had killed many big bucks, seen many big bucks during all his trips to the high country but the one that stuck out the most for him was a buck he killed with a particular relative, it wasn’t the biggest or baddest, but was the one he said he will never forget. I could go on but I won’t. He had tears in his eyes when he told me the story of this buck and that’s all you need to know about this “ good memory buck”.

Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: JakeLand on April 23, 2022, 07:26:30 PM
Bigmacc you should really consider writing a book or memoir WITH pics ! It would be a top seller for sure
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: teanawayslayer on April 23, 2022, 09:14:39 PM
Bigmacc you should really consider writing a book or memoir WITH pics ! It would be a top seller for sure
:yeah: I’d buy one!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: sagerat on April 23, 2022, 09:30:02 PM
Bigmacc you should really consider writing a book or memoir WITH pics ! It would be a top seller for sure
:yeah: I’d buy one!

 :yeah:  Same here!
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: bigmacc on June 13, 2022, 09:04:12 PM
1970 something 😆. A fella (who is still in camp) and I were taking a stroll. We ended up in one of the old family haunts, it was warm for November but the wind was blowing. We dropped down onto a bench and sat there for a bit. I told him to watch from the right, it’s the way the deer move in this particular area, right to left. The migrations would come from the north, then stage, then depending on weather would continue, some would move miles to the north and some would drop right into our back pocket, if we could be patient. We were there for maybe an hour, both layed out on the hillside and benches, about 150yrds apart. I fell asleep. I woke up and looked at the sun, it was a few minutes away from setting, I looked over to see my buddy standing straight up, rifle shouldered, pointing almost straight down hill. BOOM, I get up and head over, on the way 2 more shots. I get there and find a beautiful buck laying about 50 yards underneath my buddy, I asked “ 3 shots?” , he said “there was 3 bucks!  I missed the first 2”😆 I sat and glassed the other 2 while they were cresting a bench, both silhouetted , two nice 4 points, the one my buddy got was the same. Those 3 bucks must have been bedded together , when he shot about 30-40 does busted out to the opposite direction. The three bucks went opposite, all she wrote. He said he couldn’t get his eyes focused after he woke up, when he looked down hill he said all I seen was horns and eyeballs!😆
Title: Re: Good Memory Bucks
Post by: High Climber on June 13, 2022, 11:42:30 PM
 :camp: good stuff Bigmacc sounds like a magical place
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