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Another one bites the dust. . .

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  • Brad Eden


  • Rex Hoppie


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A little luck goes a long way. Opening day in Wisconsin was my lucky day. This buck and I had a run-in in October on the 22nd and he won. I was bow hunting with my grandson and the Buck slipped away.

Mine with my muzzleloader. 

Amazing what getting up early and climbing a mountain will get ya. . . Blow by blow later after I shower and regroup.

What a morning.

OK here’s the skinny. With a tender young 3pt in the freezer compliments of "The Huntress" I made a mental decision to hunt smart– hard, but smart. In other words, not sit mindlessly watching Powerlines, Pipelines, fields, barrens etc., etc. but to get "out there".

I made a mental list on the tough areas I wanted to hunt this season and this morning decided on a hike up the "South Side" of a local ‘to be unnamed mountain’ (that should give my bird guests a clue. . .) I drove the short drive to my parking spot and headed UPHILL about an hour before legal light which was at 5:50AM+_ to set up for a spell under some granite ledges-and then since it had rained and the woods were quiet, to still-hunt the surrounding ridges for the morning. It took me 45 minutes of climbing to make it to where I had shot a nice 6 pt some years back and with the help of my flashlight found my “rock”. This is a beautiful area overlooking a beech tree valley-very thick though, as the leaves were largely still on the trees. I had very few shooting lanes to speak of.

At 6:00 I did my obligatory bleat call sequence and settled onto the ground with my back to the rock. About 10 minutes later I thought I saw some antler type movement about 100 yards directly to my right, but after glassing figured my eyes were playing tricks on me so did a couple more bleats just in case and almost immediately I heard one clicky “tending grunt”. Suddenly slightly below and to my right at 80+-yards I saw a brown body moving up the ridge, I hit auto-pilot; “big, brown, rack, shooter”. I got the scope on him and as he moved through what was really the ONLY open lane, I found his shoulder in the cross-hairs and squeezed the trigger on “the venomous little bastard/7mm-08”. I caught a glimpse of what looked like a ground hugging death run and listened to crash after crash after crash as he headed back down the ridge. From the time I heard the one grunt, saw him and shot was maybe 3-4 seconds-that’s how fast it happened. If I had not bleated and then heard that grunt I never would have looked and seen him-he made no other sound in the wet leaves.

I walked to where he was last seen and was greeted by a massive blood trail. But I still did my usual routine of hanging tissue paper along the trail so I had a reference in case I needed to back track etc. No need as it was evident he was a dead deer. I walked up to him about 50 yards from where I shot him. No ground shrinkage here. I really didn’t know how big he was when I shot-only that he was bigger than a spike, so seeing this monster buck lying high up on this ridge was. . .well you really can’t put it in words.

The next few moments were personal, between me, the deer, the the red god of hunting.

I figured I could drag him downhill to the truck even if it took me hours but there was no way I was gonna get him in a capped truck bed alone. So I called my best hunting buddy Scott. I had helped him with his Spike buck earlier in week. He answered his cell even though he was also on a ridge almost an hour away at his camp, hunting with his elderly father. Like any real buddy, his words were “I’ll be right there, sit tight, I’m coming.” I attached a drag rope and stick and an hour plus later I had the deer halfway down the mountain and Scott made his way up to us and the rest was a lengthy photo session, drag, tag, weigh-in and hang in the tree out back. Upon inspection, I made a heart shot (obliterated it really) and the bullet is still lodged somewhere in the far shoulder from what I can tell.

This guy is joining “the herd” on my wall much to Jo Ann’s chagrin.

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Brad thats just Awesome!  What a great buck.

While we have alot of big deer I personally have never bagged one that big.  Nice job.

For those interested in Ohio deer go to "links" then to "state agencies" then to Ohio then to Photos of deer.


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It is amazing that a early morning plan comes together like that.  :D

Now get back to the birds

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10 pts, 21.5" outside/19.5"+- inside spread, 200 lbs on the dot, dressed (no heart/liver etc.)
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Heading out huntin, hoping for luck, With hopes higher than expectations.  Great plan, great execution, and great story.

Down hill drag to boot, very good plan.

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