Rich Baker took this 165 lb. cat while spot and stalk hunting the Blue Mountains of Oregon last August.
Rich writes, "Saturday afternoon I was heading down this canyon and down off the trail was a very nice cat. I moved into position at about 50 yards the cat started to move, so I picked a spot and shot the thunderhead, hitting the mark sending the big cat in a tail spin and he managed to cross the creek and vanish into the blow down on the other side. I waited for a while to give this big fella a chance to die and then my buddies and I went into tracking mode. I was leading and we found the blood right away. After about 20 yards, I came to the blow down where I had lost sight of him. As I stepped on the log the cat lunged at me, I ran back and he laid back down!! I then cleaned my shorts and waited about 15 minites and went back in with my best friend Bill at full draw. I eased in to see what was going to happen and as I got at about two feet away he jumped up and I let another thunderhead fly. He came out and turned only to go another 10 yards and then die.
This was the most exciting hunt of my life to date."
I could see the small band of mule deer picking their way towards me through the sagebrush 800 plus yards away. With my 10 power binoculars I spotted a legal buck bringing up the tail. I dropped down and crouched behind a large chunk of sage just waiting for them to pass within range. Unfortunately, they stopped and began milling around before finally settling down, with a few of them laying down right out in the open. They were not going to come to me; if I wanted any closer, I'd...