My good friend Kent harvested a great 165 class mule deer buck on Friday Oct 29th. He is gracious enough to share his story. This is what he wrote:
I thought I'd mention some of the successes using the Heads Up Decoy I had from recent 2010 archery hunts. I've been taking the decoy on several hunts this fall. Twice I was able to get my 12 year old son within fifty yards of shooter mule deer, things didn't work out. But getting within 50 yards of a 4 or 5 year old buck, in my opinion, is success.
More recently, I was able to harvest a nice 4 year old mule deer buck. The hunt took place in the AM of October 29th. I found this buck by himself cruisin', "the perfect situation." This was a chance to get the decoy in front of him to come my way, especially during the early phase of the rut. Problem was I needed to quickly get about 300 yards down a draw to position the decoy and myself for a chance to ambush the buck. I hurriedly moved down the draw and had just enough wind to cover any noise I was making. As I approached my position, I looked aheads 70 yards and the buck was too close to get the perfect setup prepared. I quickly stuck the decoy in a clump of fire weed(tumbleweeds) and moved about 5 yards ahead slightly off to the side and got ready for a shot. As the buck got closer moving down the field edge, he either caught me knocking my arrow, saw the decoy, or a combination thereof. After a few minutes of staring my way he relaxed, flicked his tail, and proceeded down the edge of the field. I can't say with 100% certainty he saw the decoy, but if he was looking at me, he had to see the decoy positioned directly behind me. Anyway, as he moved towards me he passed behind a few weeds at about 25 yards and I drew. He kept coming and at 15 yards broadside I softly bleated, he stopped, looked my way and I quickly shot, hitting him just in front of the shoulder. He ran 200 yards, walked a couple hundred more yards, laid down and expired.
As I mentioned, I can't say for 100% certainty that he saw the decoy. I can say there is not another decoy on the market I could have set up that quickly being in that situation, only 70 yards away from the buck. The ease and quietness of carrying, along with the quick set up was no doubt a benefit to the success of this hunt.
Now as this year's rut heats up, I look forward to getting my son back out for a chance to decoy in another Kansas prairie buck.
Great hunt Kent! Thanks for sharing your story and photos. We'll look for Dalton to out-do his dad on one of those Kansas prairie bucks.