got up to Scotland this week for a few days in between work and social commitments (they all get in the way of shooting!). I went up on Wednesday afternoon and came back late Friday night.
I met another SD member staying at the same place as me, was a pleasure to meet you fella, certainly nice to have a bit of company on an eve.
Anyways, i got out Wednesday night after a last minute Buck. I saw a few does but the bucks continued to be illusive. Ive had a pretty rubbish buck season this year with the deer just not showing. Anyways, i saw a few does on Wednesday night but that was it. I got back to the digs and headed out for some food..
Thursday morning was a lovely morning, frosty, clear and calm. Certainly a change of conditions for SW Scotland. The deer werent as plentiful as i would have hoped, i bumped a doe but it was quiet. I eventually did get into a wee buck kid which i took out as the smaller of the twins. Its fascinating the difference in condition between the larger doe kid and him. Anyways, was a good one to take out and hopefully lead to a heathier mother and young doe through the winter.
I went back to the digs to drop off the youngster and had a bite to eat before heading out to some other ground after a staggie. I got up to the hill and sat and watched. It always seems to take me 10 minutes to get my eyes into spotting reds. I eventually spotted a staggie and 3 hinds about a mile away. Due to the time until dark, i figured that i couldnt get there undetected in time to get among them. Instead i found a large rocky lump and got huddled behind it out of the wind. It was still chilly sat there but soon enough a staggie came out of the wood. He was pretty dumb in fairness and didnt seem very alert. I let him get well clear of the forestry before taking the shot as i thought there may be more than one and also that he was less likely to reach the wood edge if he ran after the shot.
I took the shot at 180yds and he ran towards me, stopped about 120yds and then fell over. I sat and waited for 10 minutes to see if anything else would appear and then headed over to sort him out. He was only a small staggie and again a better animal to take. I marked the stag with some orange plastic and started the walk back to the truck in darkness.
Friday the 21st.. 0430 came and i got up.. It was pouring down and windy.. great! But if you dont go, you wont know! When we got to the hill, the weather was no better and the cloud was nearly down to our level. After sitting in the truck for half an hour, we decided to have a look anyways. I managed to find a lovely soggy peat hole where i went up to my knackers in black smelly stuff.. also a schoolboy error.. i had forgotten to retape my mod after the previous night. The mod went down into the water too. Hmm. I carried on until i got to my rocky outcrop where i was to wait in ambush. Luckily the gaiters had kept my feet from getting wet but it was still awfully cold! I took the mod off the rifle, shook as much water out as i could and then checked the barrel, which was completely dry. It all looked clear although i could still hear a bit of water in the mod. Anyways, i sat and glassed the hill when i could as the cloud raised and lowered with no joy. We got the staggie off the hill and back to the larder, dried out and i started packing at the digs. I went out again that eve and got 2x does, right on last light. Then started the 3 hour drive home after a 15 hour day.
Another whistle-stop stalk in Dumfries and Galloway, knackered and smelly but had a great time!
A66 Westbound just past Staindrop. Appleby Valley.
140gn 7mm VLD from my 7-08 at 180yds