photo of a deer killed by James Mitchellphoto of a deer killed by James Mitchellphoto of a deer killed by James Mitchell

Hunter: James Mitchell

Points: 9 (4L, 5R)

County: Jasper

Season: 2017-2018 (Week 6)

Hunt Story

I was hunting an hardwood ridge surrounded by planted pines. I found several fresh scrapes and some really nice rubs on this hardwood ridge loaded with white oak acorn trees. I got in my stand a little after 7, opening morning, and waited for daylight. It started breaking daylight and at 7:40. I spotted a small 4-pointer feeding on the edge of the planted pines that butted up against the hardwoods. The small buck fed for about 10 minutes, then walked up the ridge directly behind me. About 10 minutes later, I heard a deer walking back down the ridge directly behind me. I looked and it was the same small 4-pointer coming back down the ridge to me, but I could hear another deer coming with him. I finally caught movement, and spotted the other deer. I couldn't see it that well, but when he turned I caught sight of antlers. He turned his head again, and I saw long tines and a good rack. Since I face the tree sitting in my portable, I needed to stand up and turn around to take a good shot at the buck. When I turned around in my stand, my clothes scraped the bark on the tree and made some noise. The buck immediately went into alert mode, and froze. Unfortunately for me, where he froze, I could not see him that well to take a shot. Finally, after what seemed like 10 minutes, the buck knew something wasn't right, and turned to walk back up the ridge where he came from. I had one opening that I knew he had to walk through, and it was going to be the only shot I had. When he stepped into the opening, I whistled, and he froze again. I shot, and the buck immediately when down for good. I knew he was good, but didn't realize he was this good! No ground shrinkage here! I just looked up and thanked the Good Lord above!
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