I went to Fordbank last July Roe Buck stalking I did 4 stalks and sighted deer every stalk but was not successful in getting a shot off at a Buck. It was very hot and like a numpty I slept on top on the bed with the window open to say the MIDGE's had a feast on me was an understatement I looked as if someone had Patterned their shotgun on me.
I returned to Fordbank for the start of the Roe doe season last Friday. My 1st stalk was late Friday PM I parked up where I had been instructed to stalk I had seen Doe's there in July I stalked about 250yds glassing the ground as I went and stopped as, the ground opened up to my right to get the bins in action again a Doe came wondering out I lay down prone and when she presented herself for the shot squeezed the trigger and thud saw the reaction to shot and off she ran.
I went to the strike sight and then followed a well worn deer track that I thought I saw her go on into cover but could not find any blood trail I searched for about 1/2 hour and it was going dusk so a quick dash back to the car for the dog. I walked him back to where I took the shot and cast him off he ran strait to the strike sight and then off on another deer track approx 10yds to the right of the one I had searched and he went strait to the doe 60-75yds further on. The blood trail was easily followed to the Doe it was me on the wrong track if it wasn't going dark eventually I would have found her. Grallach and onto Deer sled and back to Fordbank and into the larder.
I then met John and Chris they were also up stalking but not with Scott from Fordbank they were only B&B. They had been up since Thursday but had not been lucky enough to grass one. We started to chat and Clive and Ross arrived they were in for a mixed bag week end comprising a stalk Saturday am then out with Scott from Fordbank for a general walked up game in the day and then finishing on the Ducks at night.
Saturday am we all went our different ways I went out with Derek as he was showing me some ground I had not been on before we spotted a Doe and twins and started to stalk into them but as we all know as fast as Deer appear they also disappear. We stalked on Derek showing me the boundary the first time we spoke and up jumped another Doe and twins but they were on a mission and disappeared into the wood.
It was then time to go back for Scott's Breakfast (you have a bowl of cereal before you go out) I can say without shadow of doubt his breakfast is second to none nothing is to much trouble for Scott he only wants to please and he will keep asking have you had enough to eat.
Clive and Ross came back with a Roe each another successful Fordbank stalk. John and Chris said they wished they were stalking with Scott as they had blanked again. Breakfast over Clive and Ross departed with Scott for their mixed bag day myself John and Chris went to the local Gun shop.
Saturday PM it was severe gale force winds so I didn't think that I would see anything and as I though nothing showed it self so, back to Fordbank John and Chris also didn't seen anything.
Clive and Ross returned at about 8-30 PM full of excitement saying they had a fantastic day with Scott bagging Hare, Snipe, Woodcock and over 30 Teal and Mallard they were overjoyed with their day. A long chat with all followed until about 11-00pm then it was lights out for all.
Sunday AM out with Derek again to another piece of ground we were not optimistic as the rain had stopped but the wind was still howling Derek stated he would show me some sheltered valley's we stalked into one head of a valley where we sat for a while and glassed but no luck in spotting anything we stalked on to another valley nothing sighted again, we then walked on to a track and as we walked and glassed I noticed fresh footprints of a Doe and twins we carried on for about 300yds glassed nothing spotted the Derek said we will go up the Hill and as he said that the doe jumped up from approx 25yds below us (she had been couched up in the Bracken) we dropped to the ground and I got the crosshairs on her but she didn't stop I hadn't noticed as I was looking through the scope the twins had also jumped up and gone down bank and then ran up a dry stone wall.
Within a couple of seconds the Doe was back at a 5 bar gate and jumped over then the twins appeared and stood at the gate I got the crosshairs on the one but could not take the shot as the other twin was behind and would have ended up possibly gut shot. It seemed like an age before the twin moved forward the wind was strait in my face so the trigger was squeezed and I heard the impact thud and saw the jump reaction to the shot I reloaded for the second twin but they both ran up the bank along the dry stone wall. Derek said he thought that I had missed as he heard the bullet hit the gate to which I replied if the bullet has hit the gate then it has passed through the deer as they had obscured the gate both ends when I took the shot.
We made our way down to the gate where we looked NO BLOOD and NO BULLET HOLE through the gate then Derek saw flesh on the concrete gate post we made our way up the Deer track by the dry stone wall then BINGO blood spots that became bigger and bigger as we ascended back on to the track higher up from the shot site the Deer must have stopped at this point as it looked as though a pint of blood had been poured onto the track we followed the blood trail now becoming weaker expecting to find the Deer the blood finally stopped with a splash about the size of my little finger nail. We then search in earnest confident that we would find it. An hour later we went back for the dog full of confidence that he would find it I cast him off on the track and he went back to the shot site then back up and followed the blood until it stopped the he went off to the left but no result we then searched to the right and higher up the hill but disappointed gave up after 4 hours. To say I was gutted at not finding the carcass is an understatement.
I had 13 sightings of Deer in total with 2 presenting me with the shot so I can well recommend Scott at Fordbank for stalking opportunities or if you want a mixed bag weekend. Although it is a B&B the Bladnoch Pub is walking distance away for a meal if you want to eat out but, Scott leaves a Microwave if you want to grab a takeout from the Co-op Wigtown or Sainsbury's Newton Stewart. Scott always leave's Beer's in a fridge on the lounge counter and says help yourself as I said nothing is to much trouble. He said bring Ghandor (my Springer dog) in and not to leave him in the car. Scott also made Ghandor a breakfast the day we left Sausage egg and potato cakes how's that for customer care. Second to none in my book. Many thanks Scott for a very warm welcome
Scott is on SD as Fordbank and is well worth a visit.