Mule deer kicked my ass in WY

mtmiller

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Well no dead animals here, but a story none the less.

Well if you are looking for dead mule deer, you came to the wrong spot. We saw a few before the season started (we arrived to this new area 4 days before the opener). Here are Tony (tfinalshot) and me at the trailhead in high spirits. Tyler (1-pointer) showed up several days later and that is a story in itself.

We were rather limited where we could camp as water was not very abundant at the top of the mountain, but we did find this small pond about 500 yards from camp. Unfortunately, there was already a group of four hunters and 8 horses within 100 yards of the pond as well. I tried to be sociable and asked where they would be hunting, so we wouldn’t be on top of them. There response, “Five miles in every direction”. I guess we would be seeing each other then.


Here are a couple of bucks we found near camp, but obviously not the caliber we were looking for.


Here is a shot of Tony scoping out a hillside at the top of the mountain. We spent a couple of evenings and mornings at this spot locating some decent bucks. We had one group of 14 bucks with two that were over 170” (in other words, ones that I was willing to try for). Tony also spotted another that he thought would go 180”, but I was glassing the other side at the time.


Tyler finally showed up the afternoon before the opener. Apparently my directions sucked and he went cross country for most of the hike. Due to the rain, he was a wet rat so we felt it was a good idea for him to stay near the main camp. Tony and I were not as sharp and headed to the area where we had seen the good bucks from a distance. The weather and terrain were not to our advantage. We crossed two large rocky slope to get to our destination. Here is the second one. We came across from what is on the left side of the pic.


Here is another view of the area from the next day. We camped in the lower trees. It was very cold (water bottles froze solid) and we were wet and sweaty when we set up the camp. Because of the conditions, we were in the tent at 4 in the afternoon and spent the next 14 hours trying to sleep and stay warm.


At six the next morning, I spent about 3 minutes trying to force my legs through my frozen pant legs and then glassed from the edge of the tree while Tony hit the other side. Right away I found three bucks headed our direction. No shooters, but as with the other mornings, I guessed that the bigger boys would join the group as they moved towards our position. I ranged them at 455 yards, so I got Tony and had him come over to the vantage point. Just as we got settled in, “BOOM, BOOM…” from about 75 yards above us. One of the medium deer was tumbling down the hill and deer were hauling ass in every direction, actually in one direction, down hill and away from us.

We chatted with the father son team after they retrieved their deer (two 150 class bucks). They said they had seen our tent the night before and I am guessing that is why they pulled the early triggers. They had also seen bigger bucks in the basin the day before, but apparently wanted to shoot these. They also mentioned the 30” bucks and drop tined deer they had killed during the last couple of years, but I had to wonder why they were now pulling the string on these dinks opening morning. Oh well, that is hunting and they were very nice guys anyway.

After that escapade the hunting was very poor, so we headed down the mountain and tried the area I had hunted the year before.
 

mtmiller

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The weather had warmed and Tyler turned in his cold weather gear for the more appropriate Utard outer wear.


We found some wildlife, but not exactly what we were looking for.


After 6 days of freeze dried food maybe it wasn’t so bad running into this guy.


We decided to hit the high country again and found some more interesting wildlife at 9,900’. If there were ever any cows looking to be shot, it was these guys. Talk about quality wildlife security areas being in the crapper.


I hunted my ass off, but about the best luck I had was having this bull and 7 cow/calves nearby. Too bad I didn’t have the elk tag I my pocket.


Well enough was enough. The deer in Wyoming kicked my ass in ’04. I was disappointed at times with the number of hunters or cows being in areas I wanted to hunt, but over all it was another great time. I got to hang out with a couple of good guys and saw some awesome country. It doesn’t look like I will be able to make it back south this season, but I do have the memories and hell, we all made it out alive. Haha…


By the way Tyler, I found your buck on the last evening. He was just asking for it. Haha…


[ 09-20-2004, 16:42: Message edited by: Moosie ]
 

Moosie

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Fixed the Pictures bud.. too many spaces in them ;)

BUMMER on the hunt, Looks like a Motley crew ya got there ;)

Take revenge in Montana bud !!!
 

csutton7

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well don't that beat all--but like you said ya had good company--nice pics--what region in WY did you hunt??
 

pa mt man

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Feb 3, 2002
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Nice pics and story. You guys sure know how to have fun. I hope the snow stays till oct the 10. Thats when I'm going to try for a WY mulie. I'm afraid I'd pull the trigger on one of those bucks in the pic's. Not on the first days but for sure on the last. Thirty nine years of PA deer hunting are hard to break.
 

schmalts

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Sorry to hear that miller. Well, you just may have to make up for it on some Whities this fall.
 

Moosie

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MtMiller, I do have to say that for someone that didn't shoot anything you told one HELL-ov-a story with Pictures. Better then 90% of the Guys that Kill chit !!!!!

Kudos man !!!!!
 

BUCKSPY

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"We are hunting 5 miles in every direction"

Tell them when they are out there hunting five miles in every direction don't forget to check in Blow-me canyon and Get-fugged creek. And when they are getting a little bored in the middle of the day, maybe they can play "Hide and Go Fug-your-self" Smarmy pricks.
 

JoseCuervo

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Hey Miller,

Good story and great pics, but all things considered, I think I like the pictures of Axl better than the Utard....


(Want my opinion of cattle on Public Lands?)
 

MarvB

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Below the snowline...but above the smog!
Miller- Great story and pics (as usuall). Glad to see that you guys decided to hold out for the bigger bucks, never could understand setting the low bar on day one...makes for good karma for the rest of the season! Sounds like your horsey friends were a bit full of themselves, hope their arses froze to their saddles the bastages!
 

1_pointer

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'Gunner- I KNOW I'm better looking than Axl! ;) At least I have balls! :D

It was a fun hiking/camping trip! :( I'll give it one more go in a couple of weeks, but not until I find a doe antelope.

Speaking of interesting wildlife, Tony and I were beat so we stayed in a basin above camp while miller went off somewhere else. I think he just needed some 'alone time'.
Anyway, were sitting/chatting/glassing when through the pines below use a small pronghorn buck comes walking OUT of the pines below us and proceeded to walk within 50yds of us! I checked my GPS and the elevation read 9750ft ASL!! Later that night a deer was shot above us off a sheer cliff. Tony was able to find the hunter's in the spotting scope only to watch them kick the deer off a 300' cliff!! :mad:

miller- You got coordinates for that buck??
I did find four does down low on the way out and made a move for them, but the busted me. Sorta hard to believe being the 'high-tech' camo that I wear! :D
 

Muledeer4me

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Great story and picture's.
There is nothing that can screw up a hunting worse then running into ass-holes or cow's in the backcountry.
At least you know you did the right thing by trying to talk to those guy's.
 

DeerKing

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Nice story and photos MT. Its not always about nailing something, you had a good time regardless of the lousy hunting.
 
D

Deerslayer

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MtMiller.....sounds like you guys did some serious ground coverage.....surprised you didn't have better luck. Sounds like you would have in the first place you hunted if all the other trigger happy folks weren't there as well.

Glad you still had fun.....
DS
 

mtmiller

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Sounds like you would have in the first place you hunted if all the other trigger happy folks weren't there as well.
I guess that is hunting. I couldn't be too upset since they had as much right to be there as us. I was just surprised they dropped the hammer on these smaller deer (you know Moosie size, well a little bigger). Live and learn for us. Next time I need to get deeper into the country where horse access is more difficult. That's the way it goes sometimes.

Next time, more research and work harder.

Thanks for the compliments fellas and I hope I have stories with a down critter over the next month or two.

Best of luck with the hunting guys.
 
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