Last Thursday I played hookie from work (shhh!!! don't tell my boss!). I had to. It was the perfect day. The temperature had dropped 20 degrees from the previous day and it was overcast and drizzly. A nice thunderstorm had rolled through at about 2am and it was pretty cool and miserable. So I donned my camouflage, grabbed my rifle and hiked 1/2 mile across a cut cornfield at 5:30 a.m. I set up just inside the treeline at the back of the property at the base of a tree about 20 feet from a major trail that ran north-south from the south side of the cornfield to the north side (near a soybean field that was on private property). About 7:00, just as it was starting to get light, I could hear some movement in the brush to the northeast but I couldn't make out any forms. About 8:00 or so I moved and again about 10:45. Finally I settled in at the perfect spot. I was just inside the treeline inside a ring of four large trees. From my 3-foot diameter hiding spot I could see down the treeline to the northeast corner of the cornfield and the woods there. I could also see the trail 20 feet to the east. The wind was about 5-10 mph out of the east-northeast. I was hidden well and the wind was carrying my scent away from the woods.
After I had been in my spot for about 15 minutes I glanced up at the north end of the cornfield (about 80 yards away) and just caught sight of a large doe walking past an opening in the trees. I didn't have a shot but my senses were on high alert. I began glancing back and forth, watching both the opening in the trees straight ahead and the trail just to my right. It was then that I saw it...a smallish 6-point buck stepped into view...25 feet away! Then it hit me. I'm right handed and I would have to turn my body 90 degrees to the right to shoot without spooking my quarry. So I gently scooted my body slightly to the right on my stool. The deer imediately stood up straight and began looking around. I was stone still. As soon as I felt he had let his guard down I scooted a little more. Again he looked around to determine the cause of the sound I had made. He turned and looked me right in the eye. I held perfectly still and he turned back away. I made my final turn. The deer looked up one more time and turned his body. He had been quartering away and was now quartering toward. I raised my rifle and put the crosshairs of my scope just behind his left shoulder. With a loud report, the gun sent the 150-grain CoreLokt bullet slamming into the lungs of the animal. He stumbled forward about 5 steps, fell on his side and breathed his last. My first deer!! And it's a buck!!! Granted it's only a small 6-point buck that's likely no more than 1-1/2 yrs old, but again it's my first deer (just started hunting last year).
I'm picking my meat up from the processor tomorrow. I'll have to remember to let everyone know how those backstrap steaks taste!