Oregon 5x5 Blacktail Deer
Place: Benton County, Oregon
Species: Blacktail 5X5 with eye-guards
Hanging weight: 90 lbs.
I had been waiting for this weather change since opening day. There are two holes that I can't effectively still hunt unless it's extremely windy or raining (hard). The morning started out nice; raining with a light wind coming in from the north. I had positioned myself deep in the bedding area about an hour before light in hopes of catching a buck slipping in after day break. Well two hours after day break and probably 10 extra pounds of water dripping from my cloths, it dawned on me that this area might not be the bedding hole for this weather pattern. The deer in the area I hunt have multiple saddles to choose from each morning, so it’s more of a chance encounter rather than fact that the deer will be in one of the bedding areas any given day. From my experience, in the area I hunt, the does and the bucks don’t necessarily have one specific place they sleep during the day.
The second spot is a madrone/oak nightmare. It’s one of those places that needs a good rain to quiet things down to still hunt. I worked my way around the back side so the wind was in my face and began the slow and painful still hunt through the area. About midway in I saw three deer, two of which were mature bucks. Unable to get a clear shot, I sat down and waited for them to move beyond that area and put a hedge-row in between me and them.
After what seemed like hours, they finally split up and moved beyond sight which gave me the opportunity to side hill out above them where I could get a clear shot. Sadly, when I came out, there was no deer in sight. There was a clear cut just over the next rise, so I figured I could move that direction and see if by chance they were out there. When I broke over the edge a doe busted off to my right and went down towards the bottom. I quickly moved to the edge to see if a buck was near and there this bruiser stood looking at me at no more than 30 or so yards. The end was rather anticlimactic, but one quick neck shot and the work began.
Now it’s just a matter of waiting out the 90 day drying time to get it measure. I don’t normally measure horns or try to guess at what he is, so it will be really exciting finding out after January.