After weeks without a rifle, I came down stairs yesterday to find my variation in the letter box. Off I went to my RFD to collect my new custom .222, bought from Nigel on the site.
A couple of hours later I had it zeroed in using crappy factory winchester soft points . .and crap they were, one of the rounds had a cracked neck, and that was before firing
Nevertheless the rifle shot like an absolute jem, easily throwing these junk into sub inch groups. . . I'm planning to start developing a load for her tmro so no more factory crap.
Anyway I had a few hours to spare tonigh and thought I would head out for a few hours in search of my first buck of the season and to hopefully christen the new bang pole.
There is still a good 12'' of crispy snow in the rides with some deep drifts so it was impossible to stalk where I had originally planned . . I made my way back to the jeep and headed for the clear fells and replant . . .there are some huge clear fells on this ground, which given the right winds are sometimes productive . . . after glassing for ten minutes I spot a fat doe and what I think is a little button buck . . after a good twenty minutes of crunching through snow, a wet foot and nearly breaking a leg on a hidden tree trunk, I set up the bipod and wait for the button buck to turn side on . . . and turn side on 'he' did after giving me a good look at his bushy white tush . . .I could have swore he had buttons . . .but it was obviously just wishful thinking . .the does were left to scrape whatever they could from the clear fell . . .
I drove around half a mile on down the road and took a walk to another area that for reasons unknown has always been very productive, minerals in the soil, who knows, but the roe seem to like it. . . Result, I had only walked a couple of hundred yards and I could see two deer out feeding on the edge of the sitka spruce, up with the binos and there is no doubt this time, its a nice six point buck and a doe, but their a good 300 yards away over the clear fell . . the same antics ensue as before . . stumbling around, down unseen holes, crunching up to the knee in snow . . . their still feeding, how can they not see or hear this comedy act making its way towards them . . . And to make matters worse I can hear the dog howling with excitment, obviously watching things unfold from her vantage point above me.
200 yards and this is as good as it gets . . nowhere else to go, by some miracle the deer are still feeding, I suspect they either have tintus or are so hungry they simply don't care!!!
Down onto the snow, bipod deployed, scope magnification on the Zeiss screwed up to 12 . . .he's a nice buck, why did I sell my 25-06 . . . is the .222 up to this shot . . .my balls have retracted into my scrotum . . whether it was the cold or the thought of a long track with the dog i'm not sure.
The buck eventually turns side on, I aim an inch above his spine just behind the front leg and I touch off a round . . .the effect is instantaneous, he jumps forward, runs in a small circle and drops dead, not ten yards from where he stood . . . the doe stands for a moment before quite nonchalantly walking off into the trees, quite unperturbed by the demise of her suiter.
When I get to the buck he is stone dead, the winchesters have done their stuff surprisingly well . . there is a tiny entry wound mid way down the buck and the bullet has liquified the beasts lungs . . a quick gralloch and a climb back to the car, where the dog upon seeing the deer is on the verge of a seizure.
The deer is duly loaded and we make for home, not before seeing another two beast in a little clearing . . .I suspect a doe and a yearling, but i'm past caring as my foot is now completely numb, but on a plus note my balls have returned to normal.
An excellent night stalking with the new rifle and a six point buck to boot, it can't be bad !!
6 point buck -
Shot with Custom .222 -