Last day 200” Colorado buck

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
Colorado was a brutal hunt 6 out of 7 days. Very very low deer numbers and really hot days. On the last day of the hunt the magic of colorado showed up! This is why I love hunting colorado. You just never know when bucks will show up.

We hunted hard and stayed out all day hiking and glassing every day of the hunt. With how hot it was, the deer activity was very low. But we’d see 1-2 bucks a day and maybe 4-5 does that kept the motivation bright enough to think that one day those 1-2 small bucks would turn into something worth getting excited about.

Fast forward to day number 7! Ha. The first six days were brutal. Nothing better than a 22” four point. But the last morning of the hunt was different!

We woke up each morning at 3:45 and made our way to some good glassing points. This day was no different. Other than the fact that we were going to hunt til noon and then head back home. Fatigue was definitely on our minds and the grind of the last 6 days had us questioning the night before if we really wanted to get up at 3:45 the last morning. But all that fatigue and doubt vanished at first light.

Right at first light we spotted a buck chasing two does. He was a 24” heavy four point with good fronts but really weak backs. But he had a dark face, a beautiful cape, and I wanted jerky for ice fishing trips so we decided to go after him. We worked our way as close as we could to him. We were 600 yards away and he was about to push his does into a patch of pines. I got set up and waited for a clear broadside shot. 💥 Boom. The shot was barely high and the buck dove into the pines. We kept glassing for him on the pine face and would get glimpses of him pushing his does but never could get a clear shot.
That’s when things changed! Luck 🍀 was on our side. Two does and a different buck made their way out of the other side of the pines. As we got our scopes on him we couldn’t believe what we were looking at! We had spent so many days seeing very few deer and the bucks we did see were very small.
After calming ourselves down, we dropped down the ridge to a closer shooting point. The buck kept pushing the does for a bit which allowed us to get into position.
The buck stopped and presented a great broadside shot. I gently pulled the trigger and hit right below the bucks chest. He moved 30 yards higher and then stopped again. I steadied on him and shot again. This time he jumped straight in the air, but didn’t act hit.

He left his does heading straight away from us. We thought that he was gone as he was heading to the top of the ridge too far away to shoot. We were devastated. But then he turned around and started heading straight back to us! We couldn’t believe what we were witnessing. As he moved closer to us he was on a different line heading straight down to the pine face that they first came out of. We didn’t feel comfortable with a shot as he never stopped long enough.

He dropped into the pine face that had some openings where we hoped he would show up…. Ten minutes later Garrett found him pushing three does in a small clearing. We ranged his does at 512 yards. 5 minutes later he stepped out in a small clearing and I wasn’t going to mess up this opportunity! 💥 and that sound you wait to hear at the end of shot was there! Smack! The buck hunched up and moved slowly to his right. 💥 this shot broke his back right leg. The buck walked very slowly through the pines and went over a small little knoll. I dropped down the ridge and up there pine face and found the buck laying down in a small patch of quakies. I put another shot in him just to make sure he wasn’t going anywhere.

So many emotions at the end of an extremely hard hunt all came out! We could have left early but didn’t. Our group kept pushing and encouraging each other to keep grinding and it paid off. The buck is the cherry on top of all the hunting experiences gained with such close friends. I am very grateful and humbled for the opportunity to hunt mule deer in some nasty country with some awesome friends! He’s 30” wide and scores 206.5”.

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Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
What a buck! Loved your write up. You could be a great shot but buck fever is real. Way too stay with it.
There was definitely a little buck fever! I had an issue with my sig rangefinder not updating my elevation when it ranged. So I was stuck on 7500 elevation in my app and was shooting at 9200 ft elevation. This is the first time I have ever had that issue with my range finder not updating the elevation. As the last three years in Colorado at similar elevations we have not had issues.
 

nfh

Long Time Member
Messages
6,635
Nice buck. Blame the shot on addictive and spin drift. Something long range shooters should know
 

BrowningRage

Long Time Member
Messages
3,679
He's a sweet buck.!! Thanks for the write up. Also, you sound like an average Joe like me with a rifle. I've taken shots at deer out to 500+ yards. (2 to be exact). They both lived out their days on the mountain somewhere... I'm a conservationist afterall. :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO: Buck fever is like a 70mph wind...
 

Joe2Kool

Very Active Member
Messages
1,905
There was definitely a little buck fever! I had an issue with my sig rangefinder not updating my elevation when it ranged. So I was stuck on 7500 elevation in my app and was shooting at 9200 ft elevation. This is the first time I have ever had that issue with my range finder not updating the elevation. As the last three years in Colorado at similar elevations we have not had issues.
We've all made mistakes and missed. I realized I had my skeet choke in while turkey hunting. Waited until bird was at 25 yards and still missed. Made the mistake of posting it and thought I would never hear the end of my incompetence and stupidity!

Congrats on a stud buck!
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
We've all made mistakes and missed. I realized I had my skeet choke in while turkey hunting. Waited until bird was at 25 yards and still missed. Made the mistake of posting it and thought I would never hear the end of my incompetence and stupidity!

Congrats on a stud buck!
I had to tell the real story! It hurt to put that I missed a couple of shots! But that was the truth!
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
get closer next time
There was no chance. Had we dropped any lower we would have been in pines with no way to see the pine face he went into. I personally don’t like shooting over 650 yards. My home range is set up to shoot 800. I feel very confident at shooting targets that far but not deer. The last four deer I have killed have been 512, 625, 499, and 715. Most of the time it’s just the situation. I don’t like to shoot long range but I practice enough so that when I have to, I feel like I can make a lethal shot. I appreciate your comment. I will always try and get as close as possible for the best ethical shot.
 

Deepcolor

Active Member
Messages
724
Hell of a buck and a good story also. My Sig range finder is used for distance only, all the other data is done on my BulletFlight app. The Sig will just never match up to the app numbers that have been verified.
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
Hell of a buck and a good story also. My Sig range finder is used for distance only, all the other data is done on my BulletFlight app. The Sig will just never match up to the app numbers that have been verified.
That’s awesome to know. Thank you! I’ll check that app out!
 

txhunter58

Long Time Member
Messages
7,676
What an amazing buck. Congrats. Cool hunt story.

But glad you told the whole truth story. This is why I just can’t jump on the long range shooting band wagon. Shooting long range at the range= Good accuracy. Shooting long range in the field = bad results. In truth, ALL 4 of your long range shots were off target (sorry, but hitting a deer in the back leg doesn’t count as a good shot). The only good shot was the finishing one at short range.

The take away for other hunters. Don’t try this at home (in the field)
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
What an amazing buck. Congrats. Cool hunt story.

But glad you told the whole truth story. This is why I just can’t jump on the long range shooting band wagon. Shooting long range at the range= Good accuracy. Shooting long range in the field = bad results. In truth, ALL 4 of your long range shots were off target (sorry, but hitting a deer in the back leg doesn’t count as a good shot). The only good shot was the finishing one at short range.

The take away for other hunters. Don’t try this at home (in the field)
Like I said in a previous post… my range finder was stuck at 7500 ft elevation. Prior three years of hunting in Colorado, this had never happened. Anything over 500 yards was enough for it to be off to where I missed. Yes there was some buck fever, (who doesn’t get a little excited) but overall I have killed multiple deer with one shot at 500 plus yards so I felt comfortable at that distance. And yes luck had a lot to do with it. And I never said hitting him on the second shot in the leg at 500+ yards was a good shot.
 

txhunter58

Long Time Member
Messages
7,676
"Like I said in a previous post… my range finder was stuck at 7500 ft elevation. Prior three years of hunting in Colorado, this had never happened. Anything over 500 yards was enough for it to be off to where I missed. "

Maybe someone who knows more than me can comment on whether or not that is a true statement. Would like to know. However, even if is, that just shows that there are so many variables that have to go exactly right for long range shooting to work. 99% of hunters should not be attempting these shots

Also, if I read your story right, you missed him twice before hitting him in the leg on your third shot. So, 4 total inaccurate shots at long range.

I really am glad you got him. Good hunting in the future.
 

txhunter58

Long Time Member
Messages
7,676
Let me give you some additional context.

One of the best bucks that I’ve ever killed was in Wyoming on a flat sage brush. Sundown on the last day of the hunt. I Felt comfortable out to 400 yards. I took a very foolish shot of him running at 200 yards, and missed. Then took a broadside standing shot of him at 450 yards, and missed. He started walking,And I shot again and knocked him down, hitting him in the back leg. Finished him off with a shot at 50 yards.

That is still one of my best hunting memories, but I do realize how lucky I was. And make no mistake, I think we both earned those bucks by hard work and diligence and some luck. But I think we both learned something too.

Again, great buck. Glad you got him.
 

Deepcolor

Active Member
Messages
724
Let me give you some additional context.

One of the best bucks that I’ve ever killed was in Wyoming on a flat sage brush. Sundown on the last day of the hunt. I Felt comfortable out to 400 yards. I took a very foolish shot of him running at 200 yards, and missed. Then took a broadside standing shot of him at 450 yards, and missed. He started walking,And I shot again and knocked him down, hitting him in the back leg. Finished him off with a shot at 50 yards.

That is still one of my best hunting memories, but I do realize how lucky I was. And make no mistake, I think we both earned those bucks by hard work and diligence and some luck. But I think we both learned something too.

Again, great buck. Glad you got him.


Cool story bro! Buuuut this thread is not about you or you hunting mishaps.
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
I appreciate all the comments from everyone! Such a positive response! Even if a couple had some other opinions. I love mule deer and I am very grateful for this community. Definitely a buck of a lifetime for me!
 

2lumpy

Long Time Member
Messages
4,957
I appreciate all the comments from everyone! Such a positive response! Even if a couple had some other opinions. I love mule deer and I am very grateful for this community. Definitely a buck of a lifetime for me!
I’m impressed with your civility based on your willingness to share the specifics of your hunt.

I believe I might be more inclined to leave out some of the details if I’m ever fortunate to kill a deer like that. I hope you will always enjoy every single moment of that experience.
 

Cahunter805

Long Time Member
Messages
3,156
There was definitely a little buck fever! I had an issue with my sig rangefinder not updating my elevation when it ranged. So I was stuck on 7500 elevation in my app and was shooting at 9200 ft elevation. This is the first time I have ever had that issue with my range finder not updating the elevation. As the last three years in Colorado at similar elevations we have not had issues.
Congrats on the Stud buck!
Regarding the 7500 to 9200 issue. At 500 and 600 yards the change in altitude would only change dope by .25 MOA at most with most high BC bullets. What cartridge and bullet are you shooting?
I’d suspect there might be another error or something with the rangefinder itself.
Again congrats on a giant buck!
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
Congrats on the Stud buck!
Regarding the 7500 to 9200 issue. At 500 and 600 yards the change in altitude would only change dope by .25 MOA at most with most high BC bullets. What cartridge and bullet are you shooting?
I’d suspect there might be another error or something with the rangefinder itself.
Again congrats on a giant buck!
Thank you! 6.5 PRC 143 Hornady ELD-X. The first shots were just over 700. The first two shots didn’t miss by much. After the two shots he made his way away to about 1300 yards and then made his way back to 512. It definitely wasn’t perfect and have a lot of things to work on to make sure it’s a better all around process next time.
 

Gator

Long Time Member
Messages
17,503
Super nice Buck did have any stickers broken.
Thanks for telling the whole story the good and the bad.
that 2000 ft different is a killer.
I had a similar problem on my hunt my turret got bumped to 80 yds and I didn't check it before taking a shot. CLEAN MISS
That Buck fever will get ya now and then.
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
Super nice Buck did have any stickers broken.
Thanks for telling the whole story the good and the bad.
that 2000 ft different is a killer.
I had a similar problem on my hunt my turret got bumped to 80 yds and I didn't check it before taking a shot. CLEAN MISS
That Buck fever will get ya now and then.
Thanks Gator. No surprisingly he didn’t have any broken points. A slight chip out of one but not much at all.
 

Letshunt

Member
Messages
60
After I shot at the first buck, he ran into the pine face that we could see. We watched him chasing does for 10-20 minutes before the buck I killed came out of the pines. During those 20 minutes I tried to get on the first buck multiple times without a clear shot. He was pushing his does pretty hard. No limp, no blood spot. He ran multiple times chasing the does for 50-100 yards up and down the pine face. My friend who was next to me watching the first shot, told me that he thought I missed high. Taking all that info into account, we were pretty certain that it was a clean miss.

Once the buck I killed came back towards us into the pine face, the first buck i shot at pushed his does down the ridge to within 400 yards from us. He stood there broadside for 5-10 minutes and then kept pushing the does. He looked healthy as could be.
 

BenHuntn

Active Member
Messages
498
After I shot at the first buck, he ran into the pine face that we could see. We watched him chasing does for 10-20 minutes before the buck I killed came out of the pines. During those 20 minutes I tried to get on the first buck multiple times without a clear shot. He was pushing his does pretty hard. No limp, no blood spot. He ran multiple times chasing the does for 50-100 yards up and down the pine face. My friend who was next to me watching the first shot, told me that he thought I missed high. Taking all that info into account, we were pretty certain that it was a clean miss.

Once the buck I killed came back towards us into the pine face, the first buck i shot at pushed his does down the ridge to within 400 yards from us. He stood there broadside for 5-10 minutes and then kept pushing the does. He looked healthy as could be.
Hey I gave you **** about missing but I will be the first to admit I have had my fair share of missing. It happens. That photo of you and your buck are priceless. You can see it in your face you are top of the world.
Julius
 

Tiny

Member
Messages
56
It doesn't matter what you say on here there are always going to be people that think they are better and everything you do is wrong the fact is you had a tag hunted hard and notched a tag with 1 hell of a buck the story makes memories and that is all we have in the end keep up the strong work we are all NOT PERFECT
 

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