My One Antlered Buck
I shot my one antler deer back in 1997. I was just 16 years old. My dad and myself with some family friends all drew some doe tags for an area outside of Roseburg Oregon. Back then you could easily draw a doe tag and the season was at the same time as the general buck season on the Westside of the state. We each went down there with 2 tags a doe tag and a buck tag. This was the 3rd year in a row that we had this set up in the same area.
We planned and scheduled for a 6 day hunt. The first 4 days the weather was sunny and pretty warm for that time of year. It was mid October and around 75 degrees. Normally it would be in the mid to upper 50’s and raining like no tomorrow. The only deer we saw was just at the point where there wasn’t enough light left to shoot. On the 5th day the weather turned. The temps dropped by about 15 degrees and it started to rain. Later that day we started seeing does moving around. That was a good sign for things to come. My dad shot a beautiful doe at about 75 yards with his 30-30. Our friends were hunting a few miles away and each of them got nice does as well.
I wasn’t having the same luck as everybody else and was getting frustrated. I decided to walk down an old logging spur (boy I’m glad I did). I was about ¼ mile down the spur when I saw what I thought was a doe. My heart started pumping like no other. When the deer raised its head from behind the brush it was behind I saw antlers. Or what I thought was antlers. I couldn’t tell if it was a doe with a branch stuck to its head or a buck with a single antler. I raised my binos up and took a closer, and sure enough it was a buck with his right antler busted off.
He was only a 2 point but he had some mass and he was tall. I decided I was going to shoot him. Just about that time he noticed me and took off running. He ran down the spur, then turned and ducked into the woods. At that point my beating heart just sank. I thought I missed out at my chance at a unique buck. I slowly walked up to where I saw him enter the woods, and there he was. He was laying down in front of a log at 50 yards I couldn’t believe it. I raised my gun to my shoulder, got him lined up in my iron sights and pulled the trigger. He jumped up and ran about 25 yards and stopped. I pulled the trigger again and he dropped in his tracks.
My dad being not too far behind heard the shot and come over to see what was going on. When he caught up with me I was standing over my one antlered buck. He helped me dress it and get it out. Hope you enjoyed the story. I remember it like it was yesterday.