Well it has taken some time, numerous outings, a few moments of indecision and some steep learning curves, however I finally caught up with a fallow buck today, my first deer.
I had gone out with the intention of doing a bit of stalking before helping Barry (Elmer Fudd) with some maintenance on part of his permission. If I'm totally honest I wasn't expecting to see anything as it was drizzly wet and it got heavier and I thought with the light I had missed the best chance. I was busy scanning the area when I saw some fallow on the neighbouring estate, I looked closely and saw 3 does and 3 fawns and sat there watching them for a few minutes.
The rain got heavier and I used my raincoat as a poncho and whilst sat underneath it I thought the terrible thought of retiring to the car rather than sit out in the rain. Despite these negative thoughts I dogged it out for a bit more, at worst I'd get a bit wet and I was enjoying watching the does, fawns and the hares.
As the rain calmed down a bit more I went back to searching for the does I couldn't see them straight away but quickly found them browsing in a copse in the middle of the field.
My mind spun back to a nice Roebuck that had been caught on the stealth cam and as I had the buttalo with me, I thought no harm in trying, so I let out a few squeaks and spent a short time scanning and squeaking. Nothing was really happening and I thought it was a long shot, so back I went to doe watching, by now I couldn't see them anywhere....just then something caught my eye, my peripheral vision. I turned and saw a fallow trotting towards me....darn it, the wind was blowing in my face and I thought I was in the perfect position, unless of course something came from behind me.
Well, I couldn't do anything about it, so spent the next few seconds sexing it, it wasn't clear from its head, but I saw the necessary to make me sure it was a buck....it was then the panic set in!!
As as calmly as I could I adopted a position to allow me to track the deer with my rifle, it was moving as though it was unsure of something and whilst it didn't look at me, I was sure it had winded me as it started to move quicker, I thought another chance had passed me by, but suddenly the buck slowed and stopped - safety off, finger on trigger - off it went again....
This process happened twice more before it reached a fence and I was sure it was gone, however it stopped at the fence started to browse and presented a perfect broadside shot.
Now time started to go slowly, trigger pulled, shot went off and slam, straight to ground the buck went. A sharp reload, unusual for me as I usually forget that bit! then I watched it through scope to make sure a follow up wasn't needed.
down I went to check the deer and there it was, my first and a young buck...Barry called it small, however it was big enough to me!
Barry came over and helped with the gralloch, something I will improve with, it has now been skinned and is in the butchers..
what a day
Cheers Barry, you are a legend and I owe you big time.
This is a great site, a credit to the field sports/sporting/pastimes/hobby....whatever, I have got so much from here, met some great people and fulfilled a long term goal. Dead happy today