Scenario: Whitetail buck feeding outside of a bowhunter’s ground blind, quartering slightly toward the hunter
Bow: Mathews HALON
Distance: 10 yards (yes, 10 yards!)
Weather: Cloudy; 25 degrees; gusty 25-mph wind, left to right
What the heck . . . only you didn’t say heck! This buck snuck up on you in your Cabela’s ground blind faster than a sly Pokémon! Blame the wind, but in reality, it’s what you get for paying more attention to your smartphone than your hunting. No worries – this buck is focused on browsing, so calm down and plan your shot. Do you nab this senior citizen Pokémon now (see possible aiming points below) or wait to spring the trap later?
A. Tempting? Yes, but you have to remember you’re attempting to drive your broadhead through helmet-like protection. You could smash through and sever the vertebrae, but you could also stick your broadhead in bone, leaving you watching an exiting buck with his new antenna.
B. This shot leads directly into the vitals of this browsing buck. Your confidence is high at such point-blank range. With the buck’s brawny leg bone and the bottom of the scapula blocking a clear entrance, you might crash and burn on this attempt as well.
C. Finally, you see a way into the midsection of this buck. That’s the only problem – you might clip one lung, but you have to rely on piercing the liver, too. And if you miss, it’s a “gut shot city” ending.
Forget about surfing for more shooting options on your smartphone. This buck is about to look for another wild clover patch. He’s not going to step any closer to your blind, so hunker in the darkness and wait for his next move. After he takes a step, it’s time to launch carbon into the oldest buck you’ve ever hunted. Who needs to hunt Pokémon anyway?
Image by Mark Kayser