Thanks! My buddy shot the second deer a 9 pointer. It was his first time hunting and first deer ever! He was tall and heavy. I told him that he was lucky to kill a deer his first time hunting and to kill a nice buck too, most hunter don't. I was just glad to have someone to hunt with. We shot our deer less than 5 minutes apart.
We live in Altus, Ok. We're in the Air Force. We hunt both public and private land. I was able to get permission to hunt 200 ac of private land this year. We shot those two bucks on private land. I shot another 8 pointer with my bow on public land earlier in the season.
Congrats to both you and your Buddy on a couple of fine deer! Seems to me that with some careful planning you might just be able to plan your mid-tour leave around hunting season My very understanding wife saw me do just that when we were stationed in Germany and I came back to the states for 3 weeks to hunt. I do hope you can plan something for next year!
If you're lucky enough to be on private land and can leave your stand up during the off season you can tie an old piece of cloth or something of the sort to your stand. I like to use an old camo bandana that I have. That way the deer get used to the movement and eventually don't bother even looking up when there is slight movement. This may just give you the time to draw your bow or raise your gun without being detected.