Name: Aaron P
Date of Hunt: November 18th, 2013
Location of Hunt: Alberta, Canada
Animal Hunted: Whitetail Buck
Were you successful?: Yes!
Weather, Wind, and Conditions: Very Cold. -25 C – Fresh snow on the ground and overcast.
Interesting Details of the Hunt: It was a very cold day right after a small snowstorm had blown through. It was right in the middle of the rut so as we drove in, we saw lots of tracks and we knew the deer were moving. I was hunting with my new 7mm Remington 700 but my confidence wasn’t the strongest in my scope. I had sighted it in during the summer, but still wasn’t positive it was right where it should be. I was eager to make sure it was right on.
My friend and I had been a couple miles away at about 8:00 am and I had an easy shot at a doe at 40 yards. I had taken the shot and the doe ran off like nothing happened. We walked to the spot and didn’t find a single drop of blood. We followed the tracks for 20 yards or so but didn’t see a thing. Both my friend and I were pretty sure I missed.
We jumped in the truck and started driving over to another cutline. I was complaining about my gun and considering using my friends that was a little more proven. I’m not the best shot in the world, but at 40 yards I should be able to at least hit a doe broadside. I went through every aspect of my shot and couldn’t figure out why I had missed.
We arrived at another cutline and we settled down at one end of it. I debated putting my gun aside, but decided to keep it a bit longer. I was eager to get the first kill on it. It was about 9:00 am when we finally settled in where we could see a good ways down a wide cutline. About 30 minutes a buck started to cross right about at 150 yards. I quickly got on my knee to stabilize the shot….put the cross-hairs right where I wanted…and pulled the trigger.
The deer didn’t make any big reaction like it was hit, but did dart quickly into the woods. My friend wasn’t confident that I had hit him…and to be honest I shared his skepticism. I was shooting a 150 grain bullet out of a 7mm and it was hard to believe that wouldn’t have some impact on the deer if I had hit him.
However it was our ethical duty to at least check…so we hiked down through knee-deep snow to the spot. With the fresh snow it was easy to know exactly where it was. When we arrive at the spot it didn’t look very good. Suddenly I spotted a single bright red drop of blood that stood out very clear on the fresh snow. Seeing that one drop gave me a bit of hope, but I still wasn’t confident in my shot.
It was an easy track through the snow back into the woods. The entire way we didn’t see any other evidence of blood or anything else. Yet just about 60 yards away under a big evergreen was the buck! He was a young 4×4 with one really long brow tine.
The shot placement was right where I had aimed. I couldn’t believe it…..there had been very little blood at all and yet it was a perfect shot.
We cleaned him and and pulled him back out to the truck. When we got back, I looked at my friend and said, “I think we better go back and look at that doe!” We made our way back over to where I had shot at the doe and found it dead right about 35 yards from where it was hit. Once again, a good shot, but not a drop of blood until we reached the animal.
Needless to say, I learned two lessons that day. First, I shouldn’t doubt my gun. And second, just because you don’t see any blood at the shot site doesn’t mean you didn’t get it! Always make a complete search for the animal!