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buck fever

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reading the threads on "close distance shots" and reading/laughing at the stories of close distance misses, i thought id bounce a thread off the topic and start a "buck fever" stories.

I dont know if it was buck fever or just a dumb mistake, but i was muzzy hunting and i had a capper tool that held my musket caps. well i seen a group a bucks and made my silent approach to cut them off. The bucks were not big by any means, but i was excited and about to get my first muzzy buck.  i get into position, lift the gun, try to fire, and nothing happens,  I look down at my gun and my musket cap had fallen off. However, when i started my silent approach, i had dropped my pack in excitement of making this stalk. And my capper tool was still in my pack.  The game was up and the deer left me standing there wondering what had just happened.

Years ago, my dad told me a story about the time he went deer hunting with his lifelong hunting buddy named Mac… (this was before I was old enough to hunt). Dad and Mac seemed to have a competition of sorts, and had taken many big deer over the years. Dad took great pride in NEVER spending more than one round to harvest an animal, many at great distances. Yet, Dad admired Mac’s skills as well…As the story goes, Mac and Dad saw a typical shooter, and Mac proceeded to take aim. Just as Mac was set to fire, Dad said that he never lifted his eye from the scope and ejected EVERY round out of his bolt action ‘06 onto the ground while the buck walked away…. Mac told Dad if he ever repeated this event to anyone he would kick his arss up over his ears.— I was sworn to secrecy…. They are both gone now, so I think it’s safe to share!!  :chuckle::chuckle:

Archery deer hunting I had a great buck at 30 yards destroying a bush.  Nocked an arrow, drew back, counted the pins, 20, 30 squeeze.  Right over his back but he doesn't move, he is intent on dislodging this bush from mother earth.  Nock another arrow, draw back, 20, 30 squeeze.  Right over his back.  I grab my range finder which gets his attention.  I range him.  30 yards right on the money.  I nock another arrow.  He goes back to his task of giving this poor bush the business.  I draw back, make sure the anchor is solid.  20,30, Pick a spot, aim small, squeeeeeezzzze. Right over his back.  I am done, I suck, off he goes.

Two things had gone wrong.  Number one I was using my hunting bow, not the target bow that starts with a 20 yard pin, my hunting bow that starts with a 30 yard pin.  The other thing is it was late in the season and my beard had come in pretty strong, just enough to throw off my anchor point a little.

Had I not had buck fever I would have thought after the second miss, just aim lower.

Good times.

Where do I start? I've had some pretty spectacular buck fever occurrences!

Late archery in the Nile area. Climbing out of a steep draw, hand over fist in the snow. Come around the end of a thicket and there is a big fat cow standing broadside uphill 20 yards from me. This was pre range finder days, but didn't need it, I knew that distance. My release however was frozen shut from climbing in the snow. Managed to knock it loose, clip onto my string pull back to 20 and let fly, right over her back. In my fluster and frustration I didn't account for angle.

Also late archery in the Nile, came upon a nice buck terrorizing a bush like Rainier's buck above. This was in fact the first deer that I'd ever come upon archery hunting like this. I was 16 I think. I was inside 20 yards and he was oblivious to me. All I had to do was draw and shoot. But my buck fever stricken brain told me to find cover. I hid behind a bush trying to decide if I could shoot or not until he winded me and ran off. Never even drew my bow.

Hunting in Wyoming when I was 18 I stumbled onto a bachelor group of bucks, 2 very nice bucks and 2 average bucks. I was literally 40 yards from the 2 nicest bucks in the group just standing there looking at me. I was shaking so bad I couldn't have hit a Buick at that distance, so I tried to rest on my pack standing upright. That wasn't happening either so I laid down on my pack. That was too much for them and they started trotting off. I jumped up and fired 4 shots at the big buck as it trotted off, all clean misses. One of the average bucks stood there so I grabbed a shell from my pocket and loaded it, firing at him, and missing. At this point I was frantic. I reached in and grabbed another shell and was trying to load it into my rifle to no avail. Finally after what seemed like forever I looked down and realized I was trying to load my chapstick into my rifle. Oddly, this calmed me down as I laughed at myself out loud. I grabbed a shell, loaded it, and dropped that buck in his tracks.

Late teens, general deer season I was hunting solo behind my parents house on the national forest. It's middle of the day and I spook a pretty typical average sized 4 point up out of his bed. Beautiful deer, broadside, 30 yards. He stares at me probably for about 30 seconds then takes a couple hops. Now he is staring at me broadside from about 50 yards, again for about 30 seconds. The whole time I'm just standing there, rifle in hand, thinking to myself "this is so cool, this is the kind of deer I've been looking for". He realizes I'm obviously no threat and sort of wanders off. As soon as he is out of sight I suddenly realize I probably should have taken one of the many opportunities and shot that deer. I was heartbroken at the time, now it's kind of a fun story.


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