Winter deer stalking
I had been out a couple of times recently with not much luck. In late November and early December we had really bad weather with lots of rain and strong wind. Then we had a few days of snow. It soon become really crunchy underfoot that made any stalking nearly impossible.
My strategy for this kind of weather is to go to the places where I can sit and wait for the deer moving. I also like to see at least 200-300 yards, but we do not have many places like that in the forestry. So I usually go to one of my favourite spots. I have one or two I often visit. There are also nice ambush places further up the hill, but I do not go there too often. Mainly because anything else than a single roe that can fit the roe-sack and can be dragged is a nightmare and a few hours of extraction…
I had been to this spot a few times, but did not get anything. I saw a doe with a single kid, but they winded me before I could get a shot. I also saw different roe, but too far away for me. I also had three red stags on the hill, but they never came closer to the forestry.
We had some snow again. I left home early to make sure I had enough time to get to the forestry. I had to leave the car far away near the farm, as the road was to icy for my car to get any near the forestry. It meant an hour’s walk to get to the place I wanted.
When I got to the spot, I thought I was too late, but after a few minutes I spotted a hind on the hill, so deer were still on the hill. After a few minutes I also spotted two roe, and soon after that more red deer appeared on the moor.
It was after sunrise when all red deer kept feeding on the moor 300-400 yards away from me. I counted 10 hinds with calves and a nice 8-pointer stag. There were also two spikers laying up closer. In the meantime roe deer disappeared somewhere and I was getting cold.
After next hour all red deer were laying up in the same spot on the moor ruminating. They had no intention going anywhere… Well, could not do anything about it. I thought I would stay for a few minutes more as the sun started shining from behind the hill and I hoped to get a bit warmer, and decided to go back to the car in a quarter.
I started to pack the camera back to my roe-sack, when I caught a movement on the moor. Some roe deer where coming from the moor to the forestry. I put my newly acquired Tikka M595 in .223 Rem on the sticks and waited for them to stop. I had to be so when the last roe stopped I pulled the trigger. I saw the bullet strike, so reloaded and got another in the rifle scope. Unfortunately, when I was exhaling I did that exactly on the riflescope’s ocular… doh! 😳
I struggled to clean the ocular and when I could eventually see one of the kids broadside through the missed scope I squeezed the trigger… and missed. Tried to clean the scope again and the kid was still there, so now more carefully I squeezed the trigger again. This time I saw the bullet strike and the kid dropped after a few steps.
I could still see the other kid and the doe standing, but it was enough for one day.