High Seat Firsts

Deermanagement

Well-Known Member
After chickening out to the weather last week, I managed to get out yesterday, didn't take the new 6.5 Creedmoor (yet to use in anger), but used the .270 Finnlight with it's new Hardy Gen 6 Compact. Needed to make a start on the hinds, but what with the weather, some small calves, venison costs to name but a few reasons, I've delayed until now.

So an early start, a couple of hours drive for first light, I took the long way around the downland just to get an idea what may have been still out in the fields from a good vantage point. Hadn't gone far (there were a few roe here and there) before spotting a single hind on the edge of woodland, below me and about 400 yds away, so not an immediate option. Watched for a minute or so more and a bit of movement much closer had my attention. A hind and calf, a bit of a climb down the hillside, some woodland for cover and I thought that should be an easy start, the calf first. Long story short, on approach, I lost one of them when they entered a patch of bracken and after getting to within 40 yds, it became obvious, both animals had layed up. I know I could have moved them but wanted the younger animal first and unusual for me, after trying multiple positions which even included climbing a horizontal trunk of a tree, the remains of an ancient hedge, I decided to wait it out to see if I would get more of view other than the glimpse of an ear. Well, I obviously wasn't desperate, maybe I just didn't want to get the quad bike dirty after cleaning it some weeks ago, but after 2 hours, including a nature break, I decided to leave them to their snooze to find something else.

A walk back along the downland, I bumped into the new and very pleasant lady of the manor out on the horse. After a quick chat, we parted company, I headed back while she (as she told me a little later), bumped into a group of 30 odd sika :doh:

Anyhow, I had already planned my afternoon, not one for sitting around in high seats, with a favourable easterly wind, I had already decided to use a new high seat, one of half a dozen I put up last year, which covers a new ley and also where the group of Sika had been seen earlier. I obviously mean't business, as the bike came out of the shed, loaded it up and set off over the downland to firstly stalk a piece of woodland on top of the hill, and to then drop quietly down to the high seat, most of the way, free wheeling silently. Nothing at the top, albeit a couple of roe, so I headed downhill.

A simple hedgerow walk and I was in the seat. Now I'm quite pleased with all the seats I've put up here, not only are they seat of my own design and manufacture, I made sure they were fitted to each tree to be used on, in terms of height. That way, with some trimming, I was able to give them as good a view as possible, with this seat covering two fields and nearly 270 degrees coverage.

So after half an hour or so, a young stag and pricket appeared and slowly made there way across the field out in front of me, some 350 yards out. I thought for one moment they were to head in my direction, giving me a chance to both try the new Hardy mod and to take my first deer from this seat. They didn't however, choosing to make their way uphill and into the woodland to my right.

Another 15 mins passed by and a single hind, which didn't look too old crept from the wood to my left. She grazed for another 10 mins on her own but I though she would definitely be joined so I just watched and waited, despite the fading light. I've put the Swaro 8x50 that I've used for nearly 20 years on a .243, onto the Finnlight, non-illuminated, but still well capable of being used right up to last light so knew I had another 20 mins left to wait for some of her mates, who obliged, first one, then another and another until there were 7 hind and calves and a lovely tall 6 pointer all within 100 yards.

I decided to the stag was too nice for me to shoot and I'd just try and take a calf first and see what happens from there. I let them move out into the field and lined up the smallest one as soon as it stood broadside. It duly did so, and the both the seat and Hardy was christened. A quick reload and what I believed to be it's hind stood quartering away looking back over her shoulder. With the job I'd done on the seat, I was more than confident to take the neck shot to which she dropped instantly. Another quick reload and another hind stood, but the stag was just a little close for comfort so I thought better of it and with the light fading fast, though that the 2 animals were enough.

I though I'd give it 5 more mins and within 2 of those minutes, another hind and calf emerged from the woodland, to stroll towards the downed animals. I selected the calf but the light was now making it difficult to interpret if the animal was going to stand for long enough to be sure, so I decided to leave them be and collect the quad and get the work done. In the lights as I returned I could still made out the stag with his group of hinds and in the next field, just some 150 yards away was a larger group of some 20 animals. For next week maybe :-|

So both seat and Hardy christened, I went home happy and muddy to get ready for today's game shooting on the small shoot I've run for some 35 years. The .270 shoots well and there was no ill effect from no hearing protection so the Hardy seem to work. It's not the first time I've shot multiple deer from this high seat position, but last time with the un-moderated .243. Last time around you would have thought it was absolutely silent though as prickets kept coming, one after the other at one minute intervals until I had 4 animals down and decided again that I had enough work on my plate. Another story, another time though ;)
 

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Deermanagement

Well-Known Member
Regarding "the other story"..... one of the many reasons I believe that there is nothing between un-moderated and moderated rifles, albeit what the user and public may hear. Could have comfortably shot another 2 last weekend, possibly 3 but I have seen the same results, before using an un-moderated rifle. From the same high seat position, using an old high seat, the stag in the photo was one of a number I chased for a while, this was the smallest and was shot some 20 mins before last light. It ran back to the wood and fell some 10 yds from the woodland edge. Some 10 mins later, a pricket emerged from where the stag ran in. I let it out into the field before taking this one which went down close to where it was shot. What seemed like 2 mins later another pricket took the same line and ended up alongside the previous, followed by another a couple of mins later, following the same line, standing to look at the previous 2 which ended with the same result.

So at this point there were 3 on the field and one inside the wood and I was contemplating the work when just minutes later another pricket followed the same line and stopped to look at the previous 3 :-| Well this was the lucky one as I had already thought of the work and already needed more than the one trip with the quad, so this one was left for another day as darkness fell
 

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ArunT

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing and for allowing us to be part of the awesome experience.
 

Deermanagement

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing and for allowing us to be part of the awesome experience.
I used to prefer stalking alone. Always felt I was hindered by a second person until my partner at the time wanted to join me......well I suppose in reality, I wanted her to see what I see. We've been lucky to have shared so many days in the field, and in doing so, sharing memories. She wasn't with me last weekend, so although it takes a little time, I'm happy to share it by writing it here.

Mind you, one of the first times she joined me was nearly the last........ o_O but that's another story ;)
 

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