This is not the biggest buck I've taken but probably the one I worked hardest to get, at least in the modern era.
This past weekend I was on state quota hunt at Oak Ridge Tennessee. The weather report was not good and it was supposed to be cold and rain with high winds. It was a party hunt and I was the only one in my party to make it to the woods. I don't know the older I get the harder it is to find buddies that will go regardless of the weather conditions.
When I left the house at 4:00AM it was raining pretty hard and I was sure it would be a tough day to Muzzle load but I was ready for this hunt I didn't care what it did.
My only concern was that I had missed the only day they would allow scouting so I was going in kind of blind. I say kind of because I have hunted there several times in years past and had 20 or so spots pin pointed on the GPS to hunt. Just nothing current.
My game plan was to hunt off the ground and scout at the same time, if I found good sign then I would set up and hunt if not I would move to the next place and so on till I found what I wanted to hunt and plan on sitting in a stand all day the next day.
Right off the bat I had a shot at a spike and a doe but never did find the big buck sign I new was there. I spent all day climbing up and down 900' ridges and valleys with very little buck sign found and was a little frustrated and flat wore out by 4:00Pm when I said heck with it I am gonna sit down and just watch over a valley until dark.
I sat down on a power line looking over a very steep valley and from where I was it 140 yards to the other side which gave me a good view of anything moving through. I had just checked the time and it was 4:30 when I heard a stick break to my right. A big doe had just come up the steep hill and popped out on the power line right on top of me.
I do mean right on top of me, not 10' away. I am sitting on the ground litteraly eyeball to eyeball with this doe and my gun is on my lap facing the other direction. She gives me the old up down side to side head check and finally decides she don't like what she saw and blows and snorts her way all the up the hill behind me. I think that just great I have really had it now; I'll just wait till dark and try again tomorrow.
In just another minute I turn in the direction the doe had come up and I can see a set of horns coming up the steep bank the doe had just come up. No hesitation on this, I wheel the gun around and at the same time I get deer in the scope he pops out right on top of me. By the time he saw me I had the cross hairs on his neck (another straight on shot) but this time, and I swear, he is not 5' in front of me. I could have hung my hat on his rack.
I have never seen anything like this and will never forget it, when the bullet hit that buck I could see the impact ripple his body, it just shook him I don't know how to describe it.
I don't know why he didn't drop on the spot but he didn't he had to turn and run 30 yards straight down the hill.
Like I said it's not my biggest buck but it is a hunt I will remember. They scored him as a nine point the G3 on the right side is broken.