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Sharon Taylor
Sharon Taylor • 10/23/11 • Rifle

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Carla Schartz • 11/06/2011 • Pawnee Co. , Kansas • Bow

Big Buck Central

Big Buck 411 Blog

Never Assume You've Missed

One reason even veteran deer hunters fail to get more than one shot at a fleeing deer is because they're shocked when the animal doesn't falter or collapse after the first boom. All too often, those who manage a follow-up shot are too rattled to make it count.

That might've been the case in Pointe Coupee Parish, La., last December, when Phil Major fired twice at what he calls the local "celebrity buck." The deer, fixated on a doe, didn't react in the least to Phil's first shot, and a quick second round flew wide.

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Opening Day to Remember

Last deer season, Heather Artist scheduled a 10-day vacation to coincide with the opening of Missouri's rifle season on Nov. 16. No longer in college (she graduated the previous May), she was determined not to miss a day of hunting.

The night before the opener, she and her two sisters arrived at their parents' house and set their alarm clocks for 4:45. It was still dark when the trio left for the woods.

Heather's sisters shared a stand, while she went by herself to another. It was unusually hot and humid, the wind was strong, and it began raining after sunrise.

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Thanks to a Little Brown Bottle

Mike Mallory has no qualms about stinking up his boots. As far as he's concerned, drag rags are for wusses.

The old trick of dousing his boots with doe-in-heat scent paid off handsomely last year for the carpenter from Akron, Ohio. Going into the season, he might've known the place he hunts held at least three shooter bucks; he knew where they liked to walk, too.

But even more important than the photographs taken by his new trail cameras, even more significant than his quick mastery of a crossbow, he credits Tink's #69 for luring the bull of the woods into his lap in mid-September.

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The Wind and the Willows

On Nov. 18, the Monday following an unsuccessful opening weekend of New York's 2013 shotgun season, Tom Sheridan left the auto body repair shop early in order to rush home and hunt the remains of the day. The wind was supposed to cease gusting that afternoon in Onondaga County, and he was eager to be in a deer stand.

"I hate to hunt in the wind," the 51-year-old said. "And we'd had wind gusts of up to 40 mph."

He left work at 3:00, drove home to Jamesville and suited up, and then walked outside. His stand is less than 200 yards from his door.

The wind hadn't died, but he took off anyway.

About 10 minutes into his trek, Tom thought he spotted something "weird" in the nearby brush. Originally, he thought the wind was simply whipping the woody vegetation, but then he realized that section of brush was a whole lot whiter than the rest.

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