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Unit 7 deer hunt


New member
Sep 5, 2002
Well my hunting time was cut in half due to bad weather but still had a good time. My dad and I drew rifle deer tags for unit 7, which is not a trophy deer unit but has lots of smaller bucks. My dad has fished and hunted birds his whole life but I just recently talked him into big game hunting, so I wanted a hunt with high success rate to help get him hooked. The area I hunted was the north west facing slopes of the San Francisco Peaks. I arrived Thursday morning to clear weather and awesome views of the peaks which were already covered with snow. My dad met me up there Thurs night. My normal hunting method for this area is bring my lunch along hike my ass off all day and dont come back until its dark. I had to forget that since my dad was along. He was diagnosed with borderline emphysema 8 years ago and quit smoking right away, he is getting better but since then he has had two pneumonia so I had to take it easy on him as far as hiking goes. I also have a recovering foot injury right now so I didnt mind.

The hunt started Friday morning and we slowly hiked a mile or so into a wilderness area where I had seen lots of deer including a few big ones during the archery hunt. We didnt see any bucks that morning. We did see lots of does, some big ass bulls, a flock of turkey, two foxes and some real fresh lion track so it was still a cool morning. We went back to camp and ate around 12:00 pm and decided to hike a lower area for the afternoon. We did about a 2 mile round trip hike and saw no bucks. About 430 we decided to drive back to the entrance to the wilderness area, hike up a little and glass the meadows below the aspen stands where we had seen the most deer sign. I walked about 100 yards from my dad and sat down in the tall grass and felt a pain in the ass (literally) I stood up and found that I had sat on a 5 point elk shed :eek: it was a neat find but I could think of better ways of finding it. I started glassing and right away found a herd of deer, it took a while but I finally determined it was 12 does and fawns, no bucks. I turned around and saw my dad waving me over, he said he had spotted some deer a little over 1/3 mile away but they had moved out of view and he never saw if there were any bucks. It was only about 15 minutes to sundown and he told me to go without him because he wouldn’t be able to cover that much ground that fast. I ran down the hill, across a ridge and through the meadow and got to the bottom of the mountain they were crossing just in time to cut them off. There was a small 2x2, a bigger 2x2 and a 3x3 walking along about 3/4 to the top of the steepest slope of the steepest mountain in the area. I ranged the deer at 191 yards, and it was mostly straight up. I found a big boulder to use for a rest and looked through the scope. The bigger 2x2 had stopped and the others were still cruising pretty fast. I decided to take him since he was being so cooperative, and made a perfect shot with my 7mm mag. He stood there for about 5 seconds then just tumbled down the hill about 50 feet. I had a hell of a time climbing that mountain and getting him down but was worth it of course.

The next morning we woke up to snow on the ground and didnt see any deer that morning. We went back to camp for lunch and my dad decided to hit the mens room before going back out. He hiked out of camp and didnt come back for about an hour. I was starting to get worried about the old fart when we see him coming back with an ear to ear grin. I asked what the hell happened and he told us he had seen a 4x4 a few hundred yards from camp and had been following the deer the whole time. He said there were too many does around to get a clean shot and they eventually spooked, but he didnt care he said just seeing the buck in his crosshairs made the trip. After lunch the weather only got worse and with my dads medical condition he cant be in freezing temperatures and wet conditions too long or he may get another pneumonia. The temp had dropped to 19 degrees by 4pm and the snow was getting thicker so we packed up camp and headed home. My dad is definitely hooked now and he cant wait for our archery elk hunt in mid November.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 10-28-2002 16:09: Message edited by: FEW ]</font>


Dec 23, 2000
Wow, that's great. Glad to hear that you got to share a hunt with your Dad. Congrats on the buck.



New member
Nov 28, 2001
somewhere other than AZ :(
Good job taking your dad along.
I hope you remember this hunt for many years to come and have many more with him.
I know of some areas up there that I see Bucks during archery season, so if you want email me and I'll be glad to share them with you.
Good luck next year in archery and post the picks of this years buck.

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