Deer camp started per usual with hooting and hollering going on all night the day before everyone crawled into the stands for the first sit of 2016. It was an unusually warm September morning, as the sun rose over the food plot we were being swarmed by mosquitoes and before we knew it we had to leave the stand as it was just too much to handle. Along with too much movement from myself and my good friend Charlie who was filming.
As we made our way back down to camp we slowly saw the rest of the bow hunting crew come into the house with the same conclusions. That the mosquitoes were just too much to handle, at this time my brother went over to Winona to find some short of repellent. This is when we discovered thermacell and let me tell you if you don’t have one of these for early season you should really invest in one. All of us who got one were able to sit without being disturbed.
During the time in between sits I was curious to go back through photos to try and figure out if there was any short of pattern for these big deer. This was no small task as we run 25-30 cameras most year and all of them take thousands of photos. The way I went about it was to start with our hottest stands and only look at pictures from the week prior to the season. As I started to sift through photos for our stand we call Devil’s Tower, I slowly started to pick up on 3 of our biggest deer’s pattern in this food plot. Every night for that prior week the deer we called droptine, stickers, and a new one were all coming in every evening starting at 5pm. There it was for the first time I was able to pattern a deer and have a very good idea of what was going to happen. But I did not want to jinxs myself so I didn’t tell anyone what I had just figured out as they were all taking naps… Wrong for me to do? Maybe, but I didn’t want that high hope to be crushed so I kept it to myself.
2pm rolls around and I was more then fired up, I started gearing up and headed out to the stand with my trusty Mathews bow and Nikon D90 as I wanted to get filmed. Everyone slowly worked their way out after me, I was set in the stand about 2:45pm and told myself in my head the first deer would walk in at 5pm. In the time in between seeing this buck and getting set, my camera starts flashing that it’s low on battery… Thinking to myself I decided I would turn it off and I would be able to turn it back on as I would see the deer before they were close enough to see me or hear my camera shutter on. Little did I know this would be the deciding factor to kill or to get busted.
Just before 5pm I took a picture with my phone and a pre-hunt video as I put my phone away I hear a stick crack right below me… My heart begins to race before I even look down to see what it is, I look down and all I see is antlers. I look at my camera which is off and if I turn it on it will shutter which seems extremely loud in dead silent woods.. Thinking to myself, either you try to turn the camera on with the chance of this deer running or grab your bow. I reach for my bow as he starts to walk into the food plot… When I try to get it off the hanger it gets stuck!!! I then reposition to get it off, with this buck still walking through the plot. I knew this was the new buck that had been hanging with droptine and stickers, he was a definite shooter. I draw immediately and hit the tree with my arm, this stops him and he barley turns to give me a HARD quarting away shot.
So imagine in your head all you can see is his ass staring at you and the edge of his rib cage? What would you do? Shoot? Wait for a better shot?
What did I do? I aimed off his back hip and shot. This arrow ran right up the rib cage and through all of his vitals and came out to the right side of his sternum. He ran a 25 yard half circle and died 10 yards from the base of my stand!
My phone buzzes, it’s a text from my brother. I’m freaking out at this point.
Erik - “Seeing anything good”
Jorgen – “You’ll have to wait and see man.”
I was trying to surprise him with this bruiser!
Erik – “What did you get good film?”
I then waited a while as I called my dad and told him, so probably 5 minutes of Erik waiting for a response.
Erik – “DUDE tell me what’s going on haha, I’m not seeing much”
I then decide to tell him
Jorgen – “BBD” --- BBD means Big Buck Down.
Erik – “Stop screwing with me, no you didn’t”
Jorgen – “haha ok guess youll see him tonight”
BBD then began to ring out among everyone at camp and by dark the whole crew came to help load this beautiful animal into the ranger and bring him down to be gutted, caped and quartered.
This deer just continued to prove that letting 3.5 & 4.5 year old deer walk is well worth it. Along with continuing great conservation practices from creating water, food, and trail systems to make these animals' lives easier.
If you need any help when it comes to land management and wildlife service’s Jorgen and his brother Erik have a service called Yucatan Agriculture Services LLC which is a land management and wildlife specialists company.
Any questions about Yucatan Ag give Erik Dahl a call (507) 429-5407