You Gotta Love Wyoming!

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  My buddy Steve’s 2004 Wyoming trip for the Mule Deer season started much like many of the previous years.

  After two and a half days of travel they reached Casper where he and the others in his party gathered at Walmart to make sure they had all their supplies.

  They filled the propane tanks in their rigs – 5th wheels and trailers - got extra water and topped off their fuel tanks.

  Then it was north for a 2 ½ hour drive to cover the 70 miles or so to the BLM land where they would hunt.

  They set up their camp near a favorite canyon, and then with a couple of hours of daylight remaining, drove around some to do some “windshield scouting.”

  It was still two days before the season opened, and they liked to be able to spend the entire day before the opener doing some serious scouting.

  Next morning, after a good breakfast, they drove around the canyon to the area where they would begin hunting on the following day.

  Seeing several small bucks feeding not far off the two-track road was encouraging, and got everyone thinking that it was going to be a great season.

  

  After spending the rest of the day scouting on foot and seeing good sign, they gathered back at the camp for supper and an early lights out.

  It was their habit to not shoot anything except a 4x4 or larger on opening day.

  Several deer were spotted, including some more smaller bucks.

  Steve saw this group of does at the head of a draw he was scouting.

 

  No one saw a buck that they wanted to take on the first day. 

  On the second day Steve and Kay, the wife of one of the other hunters, were going to walk along the top edge of a draw, hoping to push some deer to Kay’s husband, Ron and another friend, Barry.

  Ron and Barry were posted roughly a mile ahead, having taken positions about ¼ mile from each other.

  As Steve and Kay slowly walked along through the waist-high buck brush, they would occasionally get a glimpse of a tail fleeing ahead of them.

  At one point, they could count eleven deer in front of them, but too far for a shot.

  They could see that there were at least two good bucks in the group.

  They kept slowly working their way ahead, and saw the deer drop down into a draw that ran adjacent to the one they were following.

  The hunters were just about to enter the draw when Steve caught movement back to his left. A nice buck, probably one of the group they had seen, had been bedded and now stood up after they had walked past him.

  He was standing broadside about 75 yards away, and was just starting to turn to vacate the area.

  Steve leveled his .25-06 on the deer and shot, knocking the deer off his feet.

  It appeared that he was down for the count.

  This was one of the larger deer that Steve had ever shot, and he began trotting over to see his prize.

  But when he was only 30 yards from the buck, it suddenly got up and stood looking at the hunter.

  Steve had always wanted to shoot a deer with his handgun, and had tried stalking close enough several times in the past without connecting. This looked like a great opportunity to put his .454 Casull to use.

  He pulled it from his holster and was just getting it in line with the buck, when it decided to turn and run for the draw, 50 yards away.

  Quickly holstering the pistol, Steve shot at the deer again just as it launched itself over the side of the same draw they had just come out of.

  “You hit him!”, yelled Kay. “I saw where the bullet hit right behind his rib cage!”

  So now the tracking began down the side of the steep draw.

 

  Since Steve has poor color perception, especially red and green, he asked Kay to take the lead.

  After following the spoor for a ways, they jumped the buck, but because Kay was in front of him, Steve didn’t take a shot.

  Kay didn’t want to shoot because it was Steve’s deer, so they waited a few minutes and continued to follow the blood trail.

  A ways further, the buck jumped up again, and this time, Steve got a shot at it, but didn’t connect.

  The deer only traveled about 30 yards that time and they saw it lie down.

  Carefully moving in to where he could see the deer clearly, Steve put a final shot to the base of the skull with his pistol.

  Where the buck finally fell was on the opposite side of the draw, right up against the steep wall.

  After field dressing the deer, Steve and Kay went back to the top of the other side of the draw (puff, puff, puff) to continue the push toward the other hunters, who were still in position.

  As it turned out, they pushed another nice buck, a 4x3 into Ron’s sights and he put it down.

  A lot of work followed, as Ron’s deer was loaded into his truck and then Steve and Barry went back down and across the draw again to pack his buck out in two halves.

  It was a pretty good season - everyone got their buck – 7 deer for 7 hunters.

  You Gotta Love Wyoming!

 

Comments

Deer Slayer's picture

Wow!!! 7 for 7!!!

Wow!!! 7 for 7!!! Congratulations goes out to your entire hunting party. Congratulations to you on your nice muley buck. I really enjoyed the pictures and it was a great story. I know I would love to get out west some day and tag out on a nice huge bull elk. Then throw in an antelope and a muley on top of that and it would be real sweet.

numbnutz's picture

Great story!!! looks like you

Great story!!! looks like you guys had some fun, Congrats to everyone. 7 for 7 is great, i dont think I've ever had a year where every body in the group filled there tags. Wyoming is on my list of states i want to hunt, Colorado will be first in 2014 then maybe wyoming or Montana, I have family in Montana that could take me out to show me the ropes. and since they have left over tags its kinda a shoe in. Again thanks for sharing your story, and congrats again on the deer.

ManOfTheFall's picture

Great story, I really enjoyed

Great story, I really enjoyed it. Nice pictures, and congratulations on the nice muley buck. Going 7 for 7 on a hunt is great. Congrats to your entire hunting party. Someday I would like to get out west and hunt all those western animals. I would have to say elk and pronghorn would be on the top of my list, but taking out a big muley would be a nice trophy as well.

hunter25's picture

I absolutely agree and love

I absolutely agree and love Wyoming, There is so much opportunity there, so many animals and so much public land to make use of.

So far I have only hunted antelope and sage grouse but have started to build some points for deer as well. Antelope is my favorite here as you can take so many and can hunt earlier than the other big game animals.

We have gone for five years in a row now and can't imagine missing a year.

Don't overlook some of the hunter management areas that are available for some otherwise locked up land. We have put them to very good use and some are excellent.

 

Ca_Vermonster's picture

That's a great story Jerry,

That's a great story Jerry, and a truly impressive animal! 

Thanks for the photos and story.  That looks like a heck of a hunt!

jim boyd's picture

Whoa - another great tale

Whoa - another great tale from Jerry - with great photos to go along with the story!

I love the mental images of the canyons and the deer hiding in what appears to be waist high brush.

These folks are doing it the right way - taking the campers and make a 10 day or 2 week trip of it... and enjoying true comfort while they do it. 

Sounds like they have a great group and I am sure there are some tall tales told by the campfires each evening - and that these same tall tales take on even more dimensions on the drive home!

With success rates like you are talking about, I an ready to pack up and head to Wyoming myself!

Great story, Jerry, enjoyed it very much!

Jim

Tndeerhunter's picture

Wyoming

Hey Jerry, I've never hunted Wyoming, but you've got me interested now! I have really enjoyed the couple of trips I have taken out west and sounds like Wyoming would certainly be another good one. The country out west is so different from what I'm used to hunting that sometimes I have to remind myself to hunt, not just sight-see! LOL!

I absolutely enjoyed your great story and the pictures were very fine as well. Thanks for sharing that!

groovy mike's picture

Great place

Jerry:

Thanks for sharing the story and especially the photos.

It sounds like you had an exciting hunt and a good time together too.

I have never been to Wyoming let alone hunted there, but I would love to do so.

Thanks for keeping the longing fires burning. 

Someday...someday I'd love to bag one of those big wyoming muley bucks!

Mike

GooseHunter Jr's picture

Yes Wymoing is a great place

Yes Wymoing is a great place to hunt I love it there also.  Someday I wanna chase deer and elk there, but for now I will chase the antelope. 

Great story and congrats on the great looking buck!

Topgun 30-06's picture

Wyoming is a great state with

Wyoming is a great state with tons of game and awesome, diverse country.  I have hunted mulies out there almost every year since 1994 and also help friends with their elk hunts pretty much every year.  Once in a while I throw in an antelope hunt too.  If I wasn't married to a wife that likes city living, I would have made Wyoming my home many years ago.  That was a great story and it's hard to top 7 for 7!