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Thread: Another Sutherland stag

  1. #1
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Another Sutherland stag

    Well, back from my annual trip up North. Two weeks, the first in Sutherland the second in Dumfries & Galloway.

    First week included a stalk on the first day (as a party we had four stags booked for the week), so up early to get everything ready. The day was warm and windy, so no worry about midges. A quick walk up onto the high ground to spy out over the Flats:



    There were plenty of beasts out there, but as ever deciding which ones to stalk was the challenge Eventually Johnny, the stalker, decided to try to stalk in to a small group of two beasts. Leaving most of our kit with Donald, the second rifle for the day, we realised that we would be in sight for the beginning of the stalk so had no option other than to crawl our way down the burn. This achieved we then made our way carefully to the first vantage point. Reaching the top of a small knoll the beasts were still unaware of our presence and grazing quietly. Pinging them at a touch over 350m we decided to crawl back down and make our way closer, entailing a classic "wet willie" stalk through the peat bog and heather. Eventually we made it to the next vantage point, roughly halving the distance between ourselves and the beasts.

    Cresting the small hillock we could now only see one beast that had bedded down. Fortunately for me it was a shootable beast - an eight pointer but with switchy tops. Getting the rifle up on the bipod we decided to give it 15 minutes to see if it would get up and start grazing again. Time passed by but I could see through the scope that the stag now had its eyes closed and was dozing in the warm sunshine.

    Figuring that we could be in for a three or four hour wait we opted for plan B, so getting the cross-hairs aligned on the base of the neck I waited to get comfortable and then took the shot. As the stag slumped over his friend re-appeared from the other side of a slight rise and stood broadside on for the best part of three minutes. Resisting the temptation to pull the trigger on the second beast we waited until he departed and then made our way up to my stag. The 150gr Nosler BT had hit the mark and the stag would have been blissfully unaware. Gralloching the beast we took a GPS reading and then placed the stomach over the upturned head to provide an easy mark for the ghillie who would arrive in the Argo later in the afternoon.



    After a walk further out onto the Flats we stopped for our piece and then had a successful afternoon getting the second stag at about 3pm:



    Now just counting off the days until next year's visit!

    willie_gunn
    Last edited by willie_gunn; 21-09-2013 at 16:21.
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  2. #2
    Nice one mate, must have been a long crawl on your belly looking at that terrain..
    Blessed be the sheeple for they shall inherit bugger all...

  3. #3
    nice write up ....thanks for that.
    Looks like difficult open ground for stalking ...a lot of 'belly work ' :-(
    ATB
    CVK
    PS: How did you get on in D&G .....did you stalk there ?
    Last edited by craigievarkiller; 21-09-2013 at 15:35.

  4. #4
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant sniper 1 View Post
    Nice one mate, must have been a long crawl on your belly looking at that terrain..
    The ground is deceptive; although it looks pretty flat in fact there are numerous hillocks and dips. That doesn't make it easy stalking by any stretch, but it's surprising how often you can crawl on your hands and kneels without being visible to the beasts. Sometimes you still have to make like a snake though!

    ​Fortunately Johnny knows the ground very well, so if he says we have a chance to stalk into the beasts that's good enough for me.

    willie_gunn
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  5. #5
    Good write-up Dominic and great pics
    (had a guy in your seat for boar last night , two boar arrived at 9pm but he missed )

  6. #6
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by craigievarkiller View Post
    nice write up ....thanks for that.
    Looks like difficult open ground for stalking ...a lot of 'belly work ' :-(
    ATB
    CVK
    PS: How did you get on in D&G .....did you stalk there ?
    CVK

    It can certainly be challenging - makes me realise how easy we have it down here in the South.

    I didn't get to stalk in D&G, although I did go out one night with SolwayStalker to try for boar, but without success, despite best efforts. One of these days I'll dedicate a few days for a "proper" stalking trip in D&G.

    We really go to D&G for the salmon fishing, although even that was tough this year because of water conditions. The locals are also saying that the offshore wind farm at Robin Rigg is affecting salmon numbers, though not quite sure how much truth there is in that as opposed to simply being a new excuse for unsuccessful salmon fishermen!

    The highlight for me was my biggest ever wild brownie, caught and returned on the Nith, so I can't complain too much:



    willie_gunn
    Last edited by willie_gunn; 21-09-2013 at 16:41.
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  7. #7
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solwaystalker View Post
    Good write-up Dominic and great pics
    (had a guy in your seat for boar last night , two boar arrived at 9pm but he missed )
    Colin

    You were right about it being a good spot then

    With the Harvest moon it must have been like shooting in daylight if you didn't have too much cloud cover?

    ​willie_gunn
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  8. #8
    Another good trip mate.
    I was trying to work out what was over the beasts head when you emailed me. I thought you didn't like the look of him ;-)


    As for a 'wet willie' it must be your age mate :-) :-)

    hopefully see see you before or for the fallow rut.

    ​Jon

  9. #9
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 243varmint View Post
    I was trying to work out what was over the beasts head when you emailed me. I thought you didn't like the look of him ;-)
    Yes, it does look a bit like a classic "two bagger"

    willie_gunn
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  10. #10
    SD Regular johngryphon's Avatar
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    You did well to get up to them in that terrain,great stalk.
    "you nae be needing these no more"
    I said as I slipped the knife through the cord

    সাম্বার হরিণ



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