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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As I had posted before, I got a temporary assignment here in Reno, NV; so I had a buddy pick some archery hunts to apply for; the only criteria be that they happen while I was here.

So, amazingly, I drew two tags: 32/34/35 Antelope, and 195 Deer!! Guess I better get this figured out.

A person across the hall from me just happens to be a guide and taxidermist, and gave me some good info. If nothing else, I get to see some AWESOME new country, places I never ever would've bothered without the tag:





45 miles in on a dirt/rock/sand/dust road...and that was about 1/2 way. When they coined the term "middle of nowhere", I'm pretty sure this was it.

For some reason, the antelope in this area have taken to living up high, so up, up, up I went.

Looking down:




Unfortunately, the water holes that were around last year were almost non-existant this year. The lake below didn't have any antelope come in the two days I spent there. The ones I did find were all horded by wild horses (another post about them). Did get to see some sheep, followed them a long ways to get some pics.



So, on Sunday I went on around the dirt/rock/sand/dust road another 30 plus miles, and ended up just turning off of the main hwy up a little BLM sideroad. In the next 3 miles, I saw over 70 antelope; and I ended up topping out over 6000 feet. I was absolutely beat from Fri/Sat hikes, so I circled the place in my memory, and scheduled myself to come back on the next Friday.

That would be yesterday.

Got up in the area about 9am, after a 4 hour drive. People around now; archery deer opened Wednesday. Still think it looks more like sheep country:




but there's definitely antelope!! Had this guy at 62 yards, but it was VERY steep uphill, so held off:



Plenty of other wildlife in the area.....wish my deer tag was for this unit, too!!





I bought a pop-up blind, because I figured that's the only way to have a chance at taking an antelope.....my little home away from home:



So now the fun stuff.

I got burned Friday night.....coming off the hill and saw an antelope buck coming down off the hill about 500 yards away. Raced down the hill, hopped out, and ran over to the bottom of the rimrock where he was supposed to come out. He never did!! Looking around, sticking my head farther and farther out; and busted, he was bedded at the top of the rock pile. Back I went, around the pile, to where I could start crawling behind rocks to cut the distance. He knew I was there; always looking right at me. But each time before I crawled to the next rock, I'd wave my hat to get his attention, then go to the next one. Finally closed the distance to, well; really too far, beyond my self-imposed range. But, he was bedded down, same elevation, and no wind. I do have a bunch of pins on my sight, and picked the appropriate one. Got up on one knee, and let fly. Everything went perfectly, the arrow went exactly where it was supposed to; except he stood up on release, so it went under his belly. Crud!!

I set up my blind before light this morning on a water hole for 3 hours, all that came in was moo-cows. Figuring the animals were watering at night under the bright moon, there wasn't any reason to come back to the blind until after noon. So up the hill I went. I hiked out over the rimrock where the bucks (ended up being 2, saw the other one after I released the arrow yesterday) were headed. Picked my way through, and all the sudden, an antelope buck was below me. Crap! Stepped away from the edge, placed an arrow, drew, and stepped back. Antelope took off running; crap. Antelope stops; how far? Gosh, must be 60-ish, but very steep downhill. No time to range it. 40 yard pin, release. Thump!! The wind was blowing hard sideways; and it hit a bit too far back. Down the hill it runs, down the drainage that the road runs through. I ran the 1/4 mile back to the truck, and headed down the road. Parked and went out on the next rock, there he is standing below me, breathing hard.....and finally lays down. Ohboy, he's done! But, 10 minutes later, he's still laying there, head up; crap, I'm going to have to hit him again. I crawled down through the rocks and sagebrush to within 40 yards (but still really steep). Let fly again, perfect behind the shoulder. He takes off again, high-speed race down the hill. Runs a hundred yards or so....crap, he's going to cross the road again, and go clear down in the canyon.....and slams on the brakes, right at the road. Stands there a second, then falls over dead!!!

Back up to the rig I crawl, and down the road I go. Pull up within 5 feet of the darn thing. Honestly, I was holding out for, well, the first legal antelope that would stand still.

Here's what it was walking up to it:



Wow, he's heavy:



I tried and tried to get a good portrait picture, but I was excited, and it was getting hot, so these are the best of the ones I took:






So, that's my story!!! The taxidermist rough scored him at 77.......64 needed to get into P&Y. Wow. Right side 15, left 14 1/2. Heavy, heavy, heavy.

Would I do it again; yeah, but rather with a rifle! Now I get to work on my deer tag, but that's right here outside Reno.

TR
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Drew it first shot, never had applied out of state anywhere before.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Like your Logo, Hawkeye!!

My rig is a BowTech 05 Extreme VFT at 67lbs shooting 27" Gold Tip ProHunters with 100 gr. 3 blade Muzzy.



TR
 

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Awesome story and good pics. I like your honesty in your story that is very genuine and you said it like it happened. I respect that.
 

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Great story and photos, too...Thanks for sharing it. I especially like the photos illustrating the narrative from the get go...Amazing stuff that lets us pack a camera in one hand and a bow in the other...
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
One of the things about this entire hunt for me was that I did it on my own. After leaving the first area that I had been pointed toward, I used my map and sense of direction to find this second area. I hunted all by myself without any moral support.

Granted, it sucks when you're sleeping in your truck at 6500 feet on an open ridge and the moon is so bright you could almost see your sight pins, and you're sure that Michael Meyers is going to get you :D :D

As for telling the story like it is, well, my favorite hunting videos are the unedited types, where outfitters and clients screw up and they show it all. I think it's good to tell the whole story.

TR
 
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