Cody Crowe slowly stalked towards his deer stand overlooking a small green field on a recent fall afternoon. Crowe relished the opportunity to get outdoors and hunt the wily whitetail deer with only a stick and string. But would he have what it took when the moment of truth came? Only time would tell as nobody can answer that question affirmatively until opportunity stares you in the face.
Then and only then will you know.
Hunting deer with only a stick and string like the original Choctaw hunters is a challenge that many can’t meet. Sure, almost anybody can shoot and harvest a deer with a rifle, shotgun or even a smokepole. But to score with a bow is the ultimate back to nature and the basics test, one that many can’t pass.
Crowe surveyed his surroundings as he arrived at the stand site and finally climbed up onto the elevated ladder, high above the food plot. Though the young hunter had harvested many deer with modern weapons, facing an adversary such as a whitetail buck with only a stick and string was something else. Two previous trips had been fruitless and yielded no deer within range of his primitive weaponry.
Crowe had a youthful exuberance and determination that belied his age, however, and there was something different about this afternoon. Getting into the stand at four p.m. was surely early enough to let the woods settle down before the afternoon action peaked and the youngster was ready for bear, or deer as it were in this case.
After a couple hours of no action Crowe’s concentration was interrupted and he turned to see a couple of deer coming into the patch for a late afternoon meal. A few minutes later he was homing in on the better deer, a messed up racked buck that was quickly approaching his destiny.
But just as Crowe was about to pull a fine bead on the buck, both deer stopped and turned to look behind them. Snap, crack, came the sounds of another deer heading their way. Suddenly a larger buck busted out and ran the smaller deer around the patch.
Aaaank, aaaank, psssss, grunted and wheezed the enraged buck at the inferior deer that had invaded his territory. “He came in and started grunted and wheezing at the other deer and then ran them to the edge of the woods,” said Crowe.
A puff of wind from the wrong direction, the sound of metal on metal, or even the slightest move will send a wary buck off to parts unknown in the blink of an eye. Crowe had now become a part of nature more than just an observer. “It’s a lot more intense when you have a buck so close to you.” And the moment of truth came.
“He ran those deer to the edge of the patch and came right by me, not 20 yards from the stand quartering away from me so I pulled back, aimed and let the arrow fly.”
Thwack! The impact of the arrow striking the buck was instantaneous and the sound signaled a solid hit as the arrow penetrated all the way to the fletching before stopping. The buck wouldn’t go far, however, as it ran out of the patch dead on his feet and expired just out of sight, a mere 30 yards from the point of impact.
Crowe’s first deer with a bow was no match for his Parker Trailblazer bow, Carbon Express arrows and Thunderhead broadheads! Crowe’s first bow deer was a very nice buck indeed and the deer had a rack still covered in velvet sporting nine points to go with a 16 inch spread and weighing 200 pounds. As it turned out the third time was the charm for Crowe as he harvested a buck that any bowhunter would be proud to kill on only his third time to the woods this year!
Contact Mike Giles at 601-917-3898 or e-mail him at email@example.com