> Joe Franz hunted every fall for decades, trying to fulfill a dream of taking a trophy-sized whitetail deer. Every year he would pass on shooting big bucks, hoping they would grow bigger. He’d only shot 3 bucks in 40 years of hunting.
> He bought 6 different rural acreages with the prime prerequisite that it was the perfect habitat for a big buck. He would sell each after learning a neighbor was harvesting the good-sized, but not monster, bucks that he let pass.
> The Land Franz finally spotted in Marion County last summer was perfect, an 80-acre farm with just the right habitat…it wasn’t until Franz closed on the property that seller Bruce Hupke told him of a magnificent deer that he had followed since spotting him 3 years prior, already with a palmated rack like a huge hand by age four. Hupke so admired the deer he gave him a name: Palmer.
> He put up trail video cameras and saw Palmer…for the first time. It was an unbelievable sight, the buck’s huge rack towering above a massive frame of more than 300 lbs. “We knew we had to develop a quick strategy. We knew local people knew about the deer. So our goal was to get it before the rut.”
> …on Oct 4 during the bow hunting season, he went out for his first hunt for Palmer. His tower was situated near the food plot, across from a timbered ditch he calls a deer sanctuary…. And there he was…. Palmer grazed across the field, working his way toward them. He moved only 70 yards away from them, stopped and scanned the horizon, before moving only 46 yards away.
> Wilkerson asked him if he was ready to take the shot. He couldn’t do it. He had wounded 2 deer before and never found them. He suffered for them. “The last one, I said I’m not shooting a deer until it’s 40 yards. I have lived by that principle. I didn’t know if I’d see the deer again. It broke my heart.”
> The next best opportunity to hunt Palmer would be the early muzzleloader season, so Franz and Wilkerson went out again Oct 13, armed with guns and video cameras. If they did take Palmer this time, they didn’t want to hear the questioning about who shot it and how from whitetail enthusiasts, which…is typical when a trophy buck is harvested.
> It was rainy and the wind frustrated them because it was affecting the deer…. So by 6 pm they started to pack up. Then they saw a large deer body behind a berm, its rack slowly coming into view as he climbed atop the berm. Palmer.
> He walked toward them at a slight angle, 90 yards away and coming fast. They frantically opened the blind’s windows, and Franz fumbled for his muzzleloader, which he hadn’t hunted with in 15 years. He thrust it out the window as Palmer got within 70 yards. “Shoot him, Joe. Shoot him,” Wilkerson said.
> But it was dusk…. He couldn’t see Palmer. When he thrust the gun out farther to gather more light he bumped the window seal with the gun. Palmer’s head rose. He stared at them. Franz was sure he blew it.
> But in the next instant he sighted the deer. He promised himself he wouldn’t look at the big rack, only the body. He’d practiced it for years in his mind. He pulled the trigger. Smoke filled the air and it was hard to see.
They waited overnight:
> Palmer was…estimated to be 7 or 8 years old. His rack was scored after drying by B&C…non-typical gross score was 261 7/8.
> The rack was atypically palmated with a narrow inside spread of just [13 0/8]. Total of typical portion of rack’s right antler (among the biggest ever measured): 116 2/8.
> On the first attempt, with full-length hunting arrows tipped with Muzzy broadhead points, Chief AJ [real name John Huffer] bagged a deer at 30 yards in OH. This got the attention of Tony Reaves who ordered one of AJ’s slingshots and then, 4 days later, harvested a deer.
> …the Elite Sling Bow has bagged bucks, does, moose, caribou, whitetail deer, black and grizzly bears, turkeys, a 450-lb red stag, and a 210-lb alligator gar. [Props to anyone crazy enough to try it on a grizz!]
> On May 5, 2015, Chief AJ & Tony Reaves were invited to do an “Elite Sling Bow” hunt for the Wall Street Journal. The WSJ…sent a former US Marine Corps combat officer to report on the hunt. At the end of the hunt, Tony & AJ both bagged hogs weighing over 200 lbs each, all in front of the WSJ reporter, combat officer and video cameras. The successful hunt was then featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal on Jun 8, 2015.
> It weighs just 1 lb. It has a finger-grooved handle, an ambidextrous fold-down arrow rest, and a built-in folding wrist brace. The product also comes with the company’s BAP (Ball and Arrow Pouch) with D-loop. Hunters can choose between different power bands and the product ships with an extra set of them.
> The Elite Sling Bow can be used for shooting balls, rocks, full-length hunting arrows and more. The handle is threaded to hold all bow attachments. The bow folds up to only 1.5″ thick.
The Chiefs Elite looks like $152 on the website. Kinda want one, not for deer though. If you only want to shoot arrows out of one, the North American Big Game Edition comes with a whisker biscuit:
WI men shot 34-point buck during legal hours, jury says.
> After a 2-day trial, a jury…found Alex and Dion Laffey ‘not guilty’ of shining deer and hunting before hours.
> Before the trial began Dion Laffey pleaded no contest to failing to register a deer. He was fined $387, and lost hunting and fishing privileges for 1 year.
> The huge buck was shot opening day of the Nov 2020 gun-deer season, between Fall Creek and Brackett. DNR wardens [after a several-month investigation] said the men shot the buck illegally using a light from a vehicle about a half hour before legal shooting hours.
> But defense attorney Matt Krische says, using the men’s cell phones, he was able to show that everything happened during legal hunting hours. He says as a result of the verdicts, the deer will be returned to the Laffeys.
Good to see they stuck to their guns and came out okay. Can’t wait to find out what that bad boy scores!
How to figure your EFFECTIVE in the moment bow range.
From a good post on GearJunkie – can’t link it but it’s at gearjunkie com:
> Determining your effective and ethical shooting distance is all about repetitions and honesty. For me, if I can put 3 arrows in a row in a paper plate downrange, I’d say that’s an effective shooting distance.
> For hunting, though, I think it’s safe to cut about 20 yards from that number. You need to give more room for error due to the intensity that comes with these encounters. I’m not as effective when a giant buck is standing in front of me – I’m just not. The archery range doesn’t make my heart want to jump out of my chest. But big bucks sure do, and I love it.
Real good point, but I think I’d cut 5-10 yards because our distances here in the Northeast are close. Either way a good reminder especially for folks newer to bowhunting.
Here’s another way to gauge effective range:
MN data-privacy law loophole could make some hunters vulnerable to harassment.
Wow MN sure seems to be ground zero for a lot of stuff these days. The latest is this, which makes us wonder what data-privacy laws are like in other states:
> Under current Minnesota data-privacy law, any organization or nonprofit that contractually volunteers with a government entity can have its personal data seized by any individual. The individual who makes the data request is not required to give the purpose for the request or how the information will be used. The locality receiving the request is, by law, required to give it, no questions asked.
> While hunting-license information is protected in general, the names of those who volunteer for local controlled hunts or other events are fair game for anyone requesting the information — including animal-rights extremists.
> Today’s anti-hunting extremists stalk hunters, target them on social media, and even attempt to ruin their businesses or cause them to lose their jobs. The Sportsmen’s Alliance led the way years ago to ban the harassment of hunters in the field. In today’s digital age, the battlefield has shifted, and it is equally important to protect the personal information of hunters.
100% agree. But will state lawmakers step up? Are they on our side? We shall see!
> It’s difficult to determine how much of a role EHD had in the almost 14% decline in whitetail harvest counts…. Still, an estimated 54,223 white-tailed deer hunters harvested 21,418 whitetails in 2021. Although roughly 15% below the 10-year average mark for whitetails harvested, the overall success rate has stayed on track.
> ID mule deer hunters had the biggest year of anyone. A total of 79,825 mule deer hunters got after it in 2021, with 26,086 of those successfully packing out a mule deer. That 36% success rate was the 3rd highest in the last 11 years, and is even more impressive when you consider that there were 9.9% fewer mule deer hunters in 2021 than 2020.
…for District 1, GMUs 101-121 – can’t link it, it’s at cheneyfreepress com:
> Doing this would make the whole east side of the state – from CAN to OR – compatible, requiring whitetails to have 3 points on one or both sides before it would be legal to shoot.
> The Northeast Washington Wildlife Group believes that our whitetail deer are in trouble and their numbers have dropped to the point that recovery is impossible given the direction state Region 1 game managers and the Fish and Wildlife Commission has taken. Something needs to change.
> Dunleavy, a Republican, hunted bears on the AK Peninsula with trophy guide and former Anchorage GOP Rep. Mel Gillis. And he hunted deer, quail and an African antelope called gemsbok on ranches in TX, where he said he also targeted pigs….
> “I’ve been hunting a long time. I’m going to continue to go hunting, and I just like to get in the outdoors.”
If our President doesn’t recognize the Constitution, and the Congress and Supreme Court don’t either, then what?
> Congressman Thomas Massie of KY lambasted the president’s decision to bypass Congress and attack one of the key components of the Second Amendment.
> “The Constitution does not authorize the federal government to prevent you from making your own firearm. This a fact that has been recognized for 200+ years. Also, Article 1, Section 1 (literally the first operative sentence in the Constitution) says Congress makes law, not POTUS!”
> “And I said, ‘What — do you think the deer you’re hunting wear Kevlar vests? What the hell you need 20 bullets for? You must be a hell of a terrible shot.” [Same tried line. Really doubt he had the guts to go into the woods let alone approach someone there! And of course the 2A is not about hunting.]
> “Eliminate gun manufacturers’ immunity from liability. They’re the only outfit…they’re the only outfit in the country that is immune.” [100% false. The vaccine industry is completely exempt from liability, since 1986.]
> “…the Second Amendment didn’t say you can own any gun you want, big as you want.” [That’s right and it also doesn’t say we can’t – because that’s not what the 2A is about.]
Is CWD spreading? Seems like it, but has anyone ever asked the question: Is there more CWD now or are they just finding more of it because there’s more CWD testing now? 🤔 No idea – if you’ve seen anything related to that, please send it to us!
> The new DMA 7 was created when CWD recently was detected at a captive facility in Lycoming County. The newly established DMA includes portions of Lycoming, Northumberland, Montour, Columbia and Sullivan counties, and will be about 460 sq miles in size.
> DMA 4 also will expand following detection of CWD at a captive facility in southern Lancaster County. DMA 4’s expansion will follow the Susquehanna River south to the MD border and follow the Octoraro Creek north to where it meets the current boundary.
> DMA 2 is expanding in 2 locations as a result of CWD detections in wild and captive deer. …expansion north along the West Branch Susquehanna River to Lewisburg and continuing west on Route 45 to meet the current boundary.
> …increased antlered mule deer controlled hunt tags from 180 to 380 in Unit 14, with the hunting season running from Oct 10 to Nov 20. [Muleys had CWD.]
> It approved a new controlled hunt with 180 “extra” antlerless tags for mule deer from Oct 10 to Nov 20 in Unit 14. “Extra” tags allow hunters to harvest another deer in addition to their regular or controlled hunt tag.
> The commission added 250 “extra” antlered whitetail tags and 250 “extra” antlerless whitetail tags. Each hunt runs Oct 10 to Nov 20 in Unit 14. [Whitetails had EHD.]
> …a new class of purpose-built tactical smartwatches. Leveraging a new 5-button interface with a responsive touch screen, the tactix 7 Series provides dedicated tactical, training and performance features, wrist-based navigation, and comprehensive health and wellness monitoring.
> …now includes an always-on NVG-compatible reflective display and a dedicated multi-LED flashlight for low-light conditions. Featuring robust battery life across all 3 models, including enhanced solar charging on select tactix 7 units….
> Many bowhunters still want a fast bow. Arrow speed is important to minimize low and high misses, plus it offers additional penetrating power on game. However, should speed take priority over other attributes such as smoothness?
> In my opinion, never. In the deer woods, smoothness counts for a whole lot more than raw performance. When hunting, you must draw slowly and deliberately, often in awkward positions or in cold weather. A fast bow with a lousy draw cycle will detract from your stealth and deadliness.
> A smooth draw is not just found in the cam design either. The bow’s brace height also helps improve drawing ease. All things equal, a taller brace height will feel smoother simply due to a shorter powerstroke. This allows you to cycle the bow faster during rushed shots.
> To choose the ultimate hunting weapon, you must note every detail, and draw smoothness is an important one.
Quote of the Week
“I proved to myself that I can harvest an animal on my own, and I also quieted the boys in my school who say I’m not a real hunter without my dad.”
– Teen Iris M talking about her hunting journey on OutdoorLife.com. Sounds like she’s being raised right! Also glad to hear that hunting still gets talked about in some high schools….
Shot of the Week
@bowmarbowhunting found “Heavy Weight” dead of old age – they think he still was over 300lbs:
What’s the DB and who does it?
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