Hammy’s 2020 CO Hunt

Hammy

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Mar 11, 2015
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39
Late to post but wanted to share one of my favorite hunts from last fall.

What a great trip with my dad and best bud, Cory. Dad and I cashed in our points after years of building points and Colorado did not disappoint. Between the deer hunting, exploring new country, the nice people we met, seeing other critters we don’t see much here in WA and the memories of 10 days spent with two of my favorite people, it was perfect.

We got to our unit the day before the opener and spent a few hours driving the road system and getting eyes on the country I had been e-scouting for months. Didn’t see any deer but found the country we wanted to start glassing in for the next morning.

Opening morning, there were hunters every where but were seeing lots of does with small bucks, several moose and the weather was perfect. Couple hours after sunrise, we were getting ready to walk in the other side of the road and glass a different drainage when a truck pulled up with some elk hunters. We got to chatting and when they found out we were deer hunting, they said they had seen a giant buck bedded in the drainage we were preparing to glass in. Long story short, they pointed the buck out from where we stood, so we moved to get a better shot opportunity. We ranged the bedded buck at 370 yards, got a good stable rear, adjusted our dope info, dad dry fired a few times and with me on the spotter, “send it.” One well placed shot at the broadside buck, he got up but was dead on his feet. He laid back down and that was it. Buck of a lifetime so far for dad! What a terrific opening morning.
 

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Hammy

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Mar 11, 2015
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39
After dad tagged out opening morning, I decided to hold out for a mature buck as the rut was evidently heating up. I passed on a lot of small bucks, made two stalks on a good one in two days that didn’t pan out. This was an absolute blast.
 

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Hammy

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Mar 11, 2015
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39
Second to my last day to hunt, I had passed on about 15 bucks or so and was going to fill my tag the next day just to put meat in the freezer. We had a great trip and I would be content with that going home.

This day, however, the big guys were in full rut mode and the opportunities were there. I passed on a real tall 3 pt at 80 yards, he had too many does around him and eventually they all got nervous and too off. I relocated him later in the upper part of the basin. We glassed up more deer and I eventually found a real nice 4 pt. He was feeding in the burnt timber only a few hundred yards away but the windows were tight and I didn’t have a great shooting rest. With that, I elected to stalk in with the wind right, cut the distance to a finger ridge in between us and wait for him to pop out. Dad and Cory stayed back to watch through the spotter. I belly crawled to the saddle in the ridge and laid prone waiting for the buck to show himself. A small but wide 3 pt bumped by me but trying to be patient, passed on him while the big buck never showed. I started to get cold and with the wind starting to swirl, backed out. Cory said the buck never spooked but bedded down where he was last feeding.

Being mid day, we elected to bump over the ridge and glass another basin to see what we could see. Not long into it, a massive 4 pt with lips curled, pushed 6 does into our basin. As I moved to get in position the does must have caught a glimpse of me moving and took off up and over the ridge with the buck following behind. I was really bummed but I knew I still had a nice buck bedded on the other side of the ridge and at this point, bucks were cruising at all times of the day. You never knew what was going to feed into sight.
 

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Hammy

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39
We moved back to the original side of the ridge to settle in for the remaining couple hours of day light. Within minutes, Cory relocated the 4 pt from earlier. He was out of his bed, feeding and staring in our direction. I felt foolish, knowing that buck had probably watched us make our way back over the ridge line and sit down to glass. But he just stared at us, straight on, probably 200 yards away. On the slope we were on, I didn’t love the shooting position I was in and the window to shoot him in was tight. I made a quick plan for dad and Cory to stay put and keep eyes on him while I would walk almost away from the buck, down the slope we were sitting on. And once I was out of sight, I would use the finger ridge that was between us to sneak up, close the distance and get a better shot position. I was hoping the buck would not get nervous still seeing dad and Cory sitting there and me walking further away from him.

Once in the bottom of the draw, I cut up and decided to belly crawl with my rifle and pack to the crest of the ridge but at the lower end of the ridge where hopefully, I wouldn’t be in direct sight of the buck. I belly crawled to a down log where I slowly put my pack and slid my rifle on top. I began to scan through my scope and finally picked out the bucks left antler in the burnt timber. I laid there contemplating if I should wait for him to move into a lane or move myself over a bit. I chose to slide over and the buck was now in plain sight, still staring straight on. I had a dead rest and put the crosshairs dead on his chest and (in hindsight, jerked the trigger) fired. The buck jumped and stopped broadside. Thinking I had hit him (how could I miss that shot!?) I felt compelled to shoot again. This shot was rushed and the buck turned to leave when I fired a third. This one absolutely devastated both lungs and he went about 15 yards, dead on his feet before falling over. I put a lot of time into shooting practice this year but I’m not too proud to say, I must have caught buck fever with my first two shots. I got extremely lucky that buck held for me to put a good one in him. I made my way to the buck, so elated and grateful the way this hunt turned out. I could hear dad and Cory celebrating from the ridge I had left them on. When dad got to me, the emotions of the whole trip and this whole year let go, and damn, it felt good. We were tagged out in Colorado!
 

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Hammy

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Mar 11, 2015
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39
We made quick work on the buck as light faded and another snow storm started. With headlights on, we shouldered heavy packs and made our way out, following a creek down the drainage, praying we wouldn’t encounter too much to deadfall. We made it back to the truck well after dark and then proceeded to chain up as we slid out of control down the mtn road with black ice in the ruts. It was a long ordeal getting back to camp that night but we made it ok.
 

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Hammy

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Mar 11, 2015
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39
Man, whiskey never tasted better than when we got back to camp, after the scary ordeal on the mountain and the content feeling of a quality hunt completed.

Next morning, we enjoyed sleeping in, biscuits and gravy breakfast. We got our bucks prepped for travel home and enjoyed a day of sight seeing and looking for animals. Next day, we made the long drive home.

Big thank you to a couple members on here that were incredibly helpful in my escouting. You guys know who you are and my dad and I sincerely appreciate it.

I hope everyone enjoyed their hunting season last year despite the craziness. Good luck to everyone this coming fall.
 

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Last edited:

Hammy

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Joined
Mar 11, 2015
Messages
39
I was trying to post a couple short videos from the hunt but it isn’t an option when attaching files- only pics. Is there an easy fix to attach videos?
 

jlong17

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Jan 21, 2019
Messages
289
Location
'Merica
I was trying to post a couple short videos from the hunt but it isn’t an option when attaching files- only pics. Is there an easy fix to attach videos?
Great write up!
For the videos, I think most guys are uploading to Youtube and then posting the link from there
 

Necrovarius

New member
Joined
May 22, 2021
Messages
12
Location
Northern MN
Such an awesome story, but I have a dumb question. What are points? I don't think anything like that exists in MN, but I just started hunting this last year, so I don't know a bunch...
 

Hammy

Active member
Joined
Mar 11, 2015
Messages
39
Such an awesome story, but I have a dumb question. What are points? I don't think anything like that exists in MN, but I just started hunting this last year, so I don't know a bunch...
If you do a YouTube search on Randy Newberg’s videos about applying for the different western states, he goes into depth on what they are and how different states use or don’t use them.
 

accubond

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Dec 2, 2012
Messages
24
Great write-up and what an awesome hunt to share with your dad and best friend! Congratulations on 2 great bucks!
 

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