Mountain Hunting, Second Year For Me...need opinions

Southern

Ten Pointer
A deer in the mountains is like a cow. He is going to build his own road and follow it around contours. Its fun to strategize about mountain deer but in my experience, they will show you where they travel. Mine particularly like to drop off ridges to any open or even slightly open meadow areas. If there are zero open areas then just start following contours on foot and you will see highways. I dont buy too much into fall patterns for bucks. Find the traffic paths now and the does will be there and you know what that means.
 

Winchester 73'

Six Pointer
I finally managed to do a little scouting today of one area I wanted to hunt mid November. Same property but a different location than previously mentioned.

I started up from the right, to a shelf/knob, then back down through the drain to the left side of the field at the bottom.
On my way up, I hit the first set of pines and somewhat level terrain where there is the game trail (red line). When I got to the top, it was a playground with a scrape and some poop. I decided to leave all else alone and head down through the drain. The first bed I saw just looked like a resting spot, not previously used. Small area of leaves pressed down but no other signs. I again crossed the game trail that is heavily traveled. Knowing where the drain exited the mountain, I veered (left) so I would exit at the far left side (as viewed) of the filed. Shortly after leaving the drain, I saw another well used bedding area or what could have been another scrape. This one was well used and poop again was near the area.


I didn't want to take any more chances if I was in a sensitive area so I stayed out of the pines. The 8 point and 10 point I have on camera at night only was at the bottom far right of the screen shot.

There really is no way to get to the top from this property without going up from the far left side of the pines. That's a lot of work for this old man. From the best I can get right now, the bucks are only down in the fields at night....or so the only time I can get them on the trail cam.

I just think it's too late in the season to keep sticking my nose in up there...what ya think? Hunting the field will be easy, but I just don't think I will catch them before dark. There are tons of acorns everywhere, no lack of food.

I guess the options are go far left, then get to the top in the mornings and somehow maybe hunt the trail in the evening. There is a good possibility the main bedding area is in the thicker pine area to the left and the leave there and move right, along the ridge or down along the trail.
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Winchester 73'

Six Pointer
Well, it all worked out except for the actual harvest.

At 2:04pm Tuesday afternoon, what I thought was a good 25 yard kill turned out to be a lost deer. I had a chance for a second shot but I just didn't realize how sorry the first one was. When I got up to go get him (maybe an eight point), he has disappeared off the side of the slope.

At 3:23 I inadvertently jumped him (105 yard first bed), of what I thought to be plenty of time for a bleed-out. I left again and came back at 4:45 and basically lost the blood trail at the road beside the creek.

I came back this morning and found nothing but did get one blow his horn at me from where I thought mine might have gone. Hard to think a liver shot survived the night.
Full video of the sorry, lousiest 25 yard shot ever and recovery attempt coming soon.

No tracking dog available that I could find.

First video shows the gut/liver shot...oh the humility!

Full shot video

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Winchester 73'

Six Pointer
If gut or liver, you wait long enough, and if coyotes don't push him, he's dead in his 1st bed at 105 yards.
I was shocked when I jumped him an hour and a half after the shot. Gut shot never crossed my mind at the time. I even had time for a second shot if I had thought it was. Oh the humiliation!

I reviewed the shot video, but screen was too small to see the shot placement. When I viewed it on the big screen when I got home, it was then I saw the deer step forward as I pulled the trigger. I began to get discouraged for all I could think about was not getting a tracker for the next morning after I emailed you. No trackers were available that I could find.

The hunt continues next week...I'll try for the ten point!
 

bowhuntingrook

Old Mossy Horns
I was shocked when I jumped him an hour and a half after the shot. Gut shot never crossed my mind at the time. I even had time for a second shot if I had thought it was. Oh the humiliation!

I reviewed the shot video, but screen was too small to see the shot placement. When I viewed it on the big screen when I got home, it was then I saw the deer step forward as I pulled the trigger. I began to get discouraged for all I could think about was not getting a tracker for the next morning after I emailed you. No trackers were available that I could find.

The hunt continues next week...I'll try for the ten point!
Good chance he's in a creek bed or body of water. They get septic and febrile and find cool spots/water.
 

Winchester 73'

Six Pointer
You learned a valuable lesson, and I am not being critical. If they are locamoting after the first shot ALWAYS put another in them.
Oh you bet, never again.
What I don't want to share is that it is worse than that. I took the video and made a slow motion clip.

I was free hand shooting and my torso turned nearly 90 degrees to the left, sitting slightly reclined position. The barrel can be seen aimed high then lowered while acquiring the target. Once the deer stopped, the barrel stabilized but just as soon as the deer took a step, the barrel raised slightly then fired.

Too little too soon followed by too much too late!!

POI is actually high aft just below the spine. Can be seen clearly in the slomo below during one frame capture only.

The problem was not the gun, the problem was the shooter!!!

WARNING: Video is slowed down considerably and each frame clearly viewed as a pause.
 
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Ex Military

Six Pointer
I would PM a certain poster that just replied to this thread for help harvesting the many deer roaming the area.

Seriously, go walk it. Deer generally will walk it similar to you. They take the easiest route when they aren't disturbed. You'll see the sign once you get in their and it will become obvious where they're bedding, feeding, and drinking.

The old bucks are not going to follow that pattern exactly. They will work the draws, ridge edges, and thickets to their security. Nonetheless, they get funneled too, just like us and the does.

find the mast trees, find the water, you'll figure out the rest.
That's rite. See if you can find walking trails they have been using or pinch points of any kind
 

Winchester 73'

Six Pointer
11-24-2022

After analyzing the video shared in slow motion...

I owe this to everyone that has been following my progress on promoting this cartridge for such hunting use.

I like to analyze what I have done so I can learn from it, if analyzed correctly...even when I should have already known better for the obvious screw-ups.

After slowing down the video, the bad shot placement was probably due (Probable Cause) to the following chain of events.

The video clearly shows a few things, aside from woulda, coulda, shoulda

  1. 90 degree torso twist, free hand (no rifle rest) = unstable shot - the barrel never stabilized contributing in an upward barrel movement past the desired bullet path at the time of the shot.
  2. Barrel never fully stabilized = barrel rise as the trigger was pulled causing a higher than desired bullet path, resulting in a high POI.
  3. Deer stepping too early = contributed in a further aft than desired POI

Combining 1-3 resulted in a high aft back shot, coinciding with the temporary hind quarter paralysis seen in the video.
  • The high POI was probably caused from an unstable aim, rise in the barrel as the shot was fired.
  • The aft POI was the result of the deer stepping foreword without further adjusting for such movement.

Whahooooo....lets eat some Turkey!!!!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING FELLAS!

 
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nccatfisher

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Oh you bet, never again.
What I don't want to share is that it is worse than that. I took the video and made a slow motion clip.

I was free hand shooting and my torso turned nearly 90 degrees to the left, sitting slightly reclined position. The barrel can be seen aimed high then lowered while acquiring the target. Once the deer stopped, the barrel stabilized but just as soon as the deer took a step, the barrel raised slightly then fired.

Too little too soon followed by too much too late!!

POI is actually high aft just below the spine. Can be seen clearly in the slomo below during one frame capture only.

The problem was not the gun, the problem was the shooter!!!

WARNING: Video is slowed down considerably and each frame clearly viewed as a pause.
Don't be so rough on yourself. I feel fairly certain if everything I did my whole life was filmed I would have already offed myself for stupidity and I try to consider myself at least average intelligence. We all make mistakes, the key is not doing them over and over.
 
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