By Nancy E. Flynt
-- I've been hunting for about six years with my husband, Miles. I have had some luck, but I am still learning. This past season, I hunted hard every weekend at the Cypress Point Hunting Club near Bowman, S.C. I was determined to put my own mount on the wall across from my husband's glaring mounted heads.
One tip given to me by more experienced gentlemen who love to help us gals was to not give up, and when I see the does I need to wait for the bucks. One weekend I saw the does, a small buck and waited and waited. About 45 minutes before dark, a big buck with a nice rack slipped into the open about 20 yards from me. I noticed it had an impressive rack on top of its big body. I lifted my gun, aimed between the shoulders and fired. The end result was that I gave myself what all hunters call the idiot mark on my nose!
After looking for the deer for over two hours, I had to give up. Everyone at camp convinced me I had buck fever and more than likely missed hitting the deer. I shed some big crocodile tears over that lost buck! It was the first time I had a chance to take a trophy deer.
The next weekend, I went to the same stand six hours before sunset, determined to show those guys that I was not just a woman with buck fever! Of course, everything that could go wrong did go wrong. I dropped gear out of my stand and had to climb up and down. My cell phone had no reception so my loving husband drove the ATV to my stand to check on me. Then 15 minutes before sunset, HE stepped out, looked around and proceeded to take off running across the field.
While the buck was running, I told myself that this trophy was not getting away. I put my scope on its shoulder and proceeded to shoot until the deer hit the woods. I didn't have a lot of confidence after the previous week, but I was determined nonetheless. Well, I stared at the spot where the buck went into the woods until my husband arrived, and we began the search.
Just inside the woods was a six-foot deep, eight-foot wide ditch with muddy sides. My husband climbed down and up the other side, and I combed the edge. After 30 minutes of searching, I heard Miles say he located the buck. Miles then went quiet. As you can imagine, I had to get across that ditch to see that deer!
I crab-crawled in the mud up the other side as fast as I could go. Then I ran toward his flashlight, hoping this buck is worth my troubles. When I saw my man's grin and looked down, I started to cry. Finally! At Last! Getting the buck to the ditch, down it and back up the other side is another story, but I owe a big thanks to my husband for all that he had to put up with.
It just so happens that this was the same buck I shot at the previous weekend. The shot missed all of its vitals and didn't even faze the deer one bit.
I was handed a second chance at a tough mature buck that had seven points, a 17 1/2-inch outside spread and weighed 215 pounds. Now I have a big mount for my side of the wall. Plus, I shared the club's money pot for the biggest buck of the year! My buck's on the wall, and I have my own story to tell.
I'm ready for the next one!
Nancy E. Flynt