I am sure there are times when a bowhunter finds himself intrigued with one particular animal not always due to the size of the horns, but something different and related to a personal quest. At least that's where I found myself during the KS antelope season chasing a pronghorn that demonstrated a personality that made him susceptible to the decoy.
Opening morning we watched this buck chase off numerous "toy bucks" when they were mere specs-in-the-distance as my partner, his son, and I weaved our way down a steep draw in the middle of a recently planted winter wheat field. There was a rise in the field where we could show the decoy closer than this buck apparently needed for a reaction. But as luck would have it, a smaller satellite buck began to get our attention and was approaching our position. We still had 400 yards yet to go before we approached the harem master...if you will...so why not. A goat's a goat out here. This buck was a good distraction and as it turns out allowed me to witness one of the longest charges I have ever seen an antelope buck make.
Several failed decoy attempts at this satellite buck yielded a reaction from our targeted buck that had we not been distracted, my partner's son may have gotten run over. Kent and Dalton ran up a draw trying to head off this smaller buck with decoy in hand. The dominate buck had seen the movement and the flash of the white decoy from....at least 600 yards away and came at a hamstring pullin', ankle breakin' sprint directly at them. Tragically, they had no idea what was happening. I witnessed the event from 200 yards away hoping and praying that Kent would turn around. The buck never gave us another chance in that field as he quickly gathered his harem and headed for the sticker patch across the road where he probably is as I am writing this post.
I went in the sticker patch after this buck on 2 occasions. Although I probably scored some toughness points with my partner, I was unable to get close to this buck. The decoying action that first weekend was good. The second weekend not at all. I was able to harvest a small buck that spent his time annoying the "Sticker Patch Buck" on the last morning in an all-or-nothing move to sit in a feeding area next to the sticker patch. Full disclosure here...I did not use the decoy to harvest this buck, but by gosh that decoy was either in my hand, on my bow, or tucked in my shirt as I crawled all over western Kansas those 6 days and there was no way I wasn't going to get a picture with it. In the pics you may see some differences in the decoy. We were experimenting with different size buck decoys...it's ongoing. Please enjoy some of the images from our hunt. Click on picture to enlarge...then use your back button to return.
|Kent takin' care of Dalton's stickers|
|Kent and Dalton making my birthday dinner. Thanks men.|
|Beginning of a great day|
|This buck came in to 55 yard, but crosswind was too high|
|there's a muley buck in there somewhere|
|Hoyt Maxxis, Easton FMJ's, Grim Reaper Broadheads|
|Badlands 2200 packed him out|
|Next year Sticker Patch Buck!|