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BBD! Mule Deer Archery Harvest in Wyoming

by Dustin DeCroo 14. September 2010 03:33
Dustin DeCroo

On March 15th of 2010, I had no idea that I would be moving to Wyoming permanently before the commencement of the Fall archery season and I entered the draw for a non-resident deer tag.  In late June I logged on and found the term “successful” listed under the draw results.  At that time I was only hoping that same term would describe my season.


The foothills of Wyoming will test your conditioning.

On opening day I passed on a decent 4x4 buck that would probably have received a broadhead on any day except the opener.  I had a few friends from Oklahoma visit to hunt antelope over Labor Day weekend and while it was deer season, their success and an enjoyable hunt was my main objective.  Somehow my September weekends  had become filled with other activities than I had planned and I knew that the weekend of September 11th was going to be my best bet for “success” before rifle season opened.

A buck for next year!

A few weeks prior to season I scouted two state section of land that my friend Scooter had pointed out on the local BLM map and found a giant mule deer.  Further inspection of the map showed that the county road didn’t touch the section that I had seen the big deer and therefore was landlocked by private land.  My plans changed.

The photo through the binocs is blurry, but the deer on the left is the stuf I was after.

Scooter and I woke up early (him to go to work and me to hunt) had coffee and breakfast in the morning darkness.  Scooter’s oldest son (all of five years old) woke up to the smell of coffee and asked what we were doing, upon me telling him I was going hunting he asked “What kind of broadheads are you using?”  Apparently my answer was sufficient and he climbed back into his camouflage sheets.

As daylight broke the Easter horizon I found myself staring through my binoculars into the steep, rocky and sage filled canyons on Northeastern Wyoming.  Almost immediately a buck stood on the skyline of ridge between two steep ravines and dropped then down the opposite side, I deemed him a shooter at first glance.  He wasn’t anywhere near as big as the buck I had seen weeks before but with my hunting days winding down, the chase was on.  Down one ravine and up the (extremely steep) other side I carried my Badlands 2200 pack filled with a days supplies, my bow and myself.  As I approached the top I took a quick pause to catch my breath and began glassing the terrain.  Naturally I could see the furthest “stuff” first and as I moved higher I could see closer to the bottom.  I couldn’t see what was inside of 75 yards, I knew he had to be close.  I knocked an arrow from my quiver (this one tipped with a 100gr GrizzTrick) and crawled to the edge of the rock ledge.  I spotted tines and could tell the deer was looking in my direction and I didn’t dare expose myself.  My Leupold RX-1000 locked onto a Juniper tree to the left of the deer and told me he was 50 yards.  I came to full draw and when the antlers turned sideways I knee crawled another foot and settled my pin.  I pulled the trigger on my Short-N-Sweet and my arrow sailed down the hill… Unfortunately while my arrow was sailing the buck took a step down the hill and I watched my NAP Quikfletch disappear just behind the last rib and it came out just behind the diaphragm.  The immediate sickness hit me and I knew it was going to be a long day as the buck went down the ravine, up the other side and into another steep draw.

Since I was at the top of a hill I was able to send a text to Scooter and Scott Abbott.  Scooter’s reply to the situation was, “give him time, we’ll go back tonight.”  Scott’s was much the same as he told me, “7 hours.”  Even when you know that backing out is the smart thing, it’s still difficult especially in open terrain.  I proceeded to follow the blood trail for practice as I knew where the deer had gone and that it would take me at least 45 minutes to get to where he went.  As I got close to the last ridge he topped I layed down in a patch of Junipers and had a Caprisun and a granola bar.  I decided that I wouldn’t go after the deer but I’d try to spot him as I was sure he would bed down.  Topping the ridge I found the buck bedded 150 yards facing away but rather than push him over more ridges, or worse yet… onto private land, I backed out and made the long journey back to the truck.

I got back to the truck only to be surprised to see a Wyoming Game and Fish truck parked next to mine.  Long story short a landowner had called me in for trespassing.  In this part of the state, very rarely are property boundaries marked with fences or anything else and it’s extremely important that you can read topographical maps and know how to use a GPS in accordance with those maps.  This piece of state property has literally 50 yards of unmarked contact with the county road which is the only legal place to enter.  The game warden immediately affirmed that I was in the correct location and said he would talk to the landowner.   An hour later I had a new friend, we shook hands and I gave him a DVD.

Back at the house, I passed the time by napping and watching a little college football but I couldn’t wait long enough to catch any of the beat down my Sooners placed on Florida State.  Scooters dad, Ol’ Wil, was kind enough to help me with the pack out if we could find the deer.  The walk back in was quick since I wasn’t trying to be too sneaky through the majority of it.  I crested the hill expecting to see my buck laid over in the sage brush but to my dismay… he was gone.  My heart sank thinking that the last seven hours was plenty of time for the wound to clot making blood trailing in the sage brush nearly impossible.  I never did find a drop of blood, just a little blood where he brushed up against the sage.  The 75 yards I covered in the next 30 minutes took me to the base of a rock cliff and I could finally see antler tips and a nose of my deer bedded in a hole at the base of the cliff.  I sneaked up and around to the top of the cliff to where I could get a clean shot and ran a NAP Bloodrunner through both front shoulders.  It was the only route I had to the lungs, so I took it.  The deer bolted down the draw and piled up 20 yards from the cliff. Eight and half long hours later I got to wrap my hands around his antlers, “success” at last.  The deer was old and definitely on the downhill, his body was enormous.

My 2010 Spot and Stalk Mule Deer.

He’s not a giant, but with a $312 non-resident tag and my days winding down, I was happy to punch my tag.  Getting the buck out was a feat in itself and it would have been horrible without the hand of Ol’ Wil.  Apparently the SD card I brought and my camera didn’t make friends until after the drag.

The uphill climb begins at the truck

My 2010 archery season is off to an incredible start, I hope it continues!  If you’ve never done a Do-It-Yourself, spot and stalk hunt for mule deer on public land… give it a shot.  You’ll find out what you’re made of in a hurry!



Opening Day Doe! Slick Trick Broadhead Success

by Scott Abbott 9. October 2009 10:13
Scott Abbott

I am not known as a "nanny whacker", in fact most years I do not hunt does at all.  I have always reserved doe hunting for after I have filled my buck tag.  This year was a little different as I planned on taking a doe early as long as it was while hunting a low impact setup and would not interfere with future hunts. 

On that rainy evening, I setup on a finger that shot out off a 30 or so acre wood lot that protruded out to a bean field.  I first saw two young bucks walking a tree line a couple hundred yards away. Then I saw two does and a button buck rise up from their beds that were in an area of tall weeds within the field that was not planted.  They browsed my way on the beans after they stood up. I am assuming were working their way toward the oaks within the timber I was hunting.

 I took around a 20 yard shot with my BowTech Allegiance shooting Slick Trick GrizzTrick broadheads.  I successfully recovered her in the bean field a short time later, the broadhead left a devastating wound channel. 

I was very impressed with the GrizzTricks performance, I have used the Slick Trick magnums for years and so far I like these heads better!

If you're in the market for a broadhead that's sharp, flies great, and is super tough I strongly recommend checking out these Slick Trick heads.  You can purchase them right here at by clicking this link.

Bowhunting Products from Pine Ridge Archery, Muzzy, Slick Trick, and more

by Bow Staff 12. January 2009 16:12
Bow Staff

This year celebrates the 25th anniversary for one of the most well defined and popular archery service and product companies over the last century of our sport. The people of Muzzy have been doing this a long time, and know just how to create real world hunting products that work. And the people at Muzzy have done it again. The bowhunting season of 2009 will see the introduction of the all new Phantom-MX broadhead.

The new Phantom-MX broadhead is a 4 blade of terror that features a 1-1/8" x 1" cutting diameter and, like Muzzys other MX-series of broadheads, offers a compact profile for superior flight and maximum accuracy, even at higher bow speeds. This new Phantom-MX features .040" thick main blades for the maximum strength a broadhead needs when passing through even the toughest of targets.

The new Muzzy Phantom MX.

Available in a 100 grain head for 2009, the Muzzy Phantom-MX was built with one thing in mind, successful hunters! This new Phantom will allow bowhunters to have increased accuracy and performance, without giving up penetration and/or cutting diameter. Bowhunters across the country spoke, and Muzzy listened with this newest broadhead! 

Natural Predator Outdoor Products, the people who make the TRUCarbon scent elimination carbon powder, have come up with a better and cleaner way to treat your favorite bowhunting garments. The new TRUCarbon H2O, is the same activated carbon found in TRUCarbon (the powder form), made into a hands free pellet for pre-mixing in water. Pour the H2O pellets into the required amount of water and watch as your camo becomes a fresh carbon suit every time. Then just hang and dry! The TRUCarbon H2O effervescent pellets work the scent elimination properties of activated carbon right into your clothing, only this time it's affordable!

Slick Trick has been long known as one of the archery world's smaller companies with larger goals. And their line of bone crushing broadheads will take another huge leap for 2009. Introducing the all new Razortrick 100 and 125 grain broadhead. This traditional style head is much more compact than its industry rivals, featuring the super sharp Lutz Solingen German blades. Razor sharp at .040" thick and a 1-1/8" main and 7/8" bleeder blade, this new broadhead is built for super flight and better penetration. The new patent pending Deadbolt Bladelock in the amazingly strong one piece Rhinosteel Ferrule, is as strong as any one piece 3 blade head, but with 4 sharper replaceable blades that make for better holes and creating better blood trails. 

While the staff was talking with the representatives of the Slick Trick  brand, we were informed that this newest broadhead, Razortrick, was in fact their most accurate flying broadhead yet.

The new Razortrick

Our friends at Pine Ridge Archery continue to impress us with innovative ideas and solutions that real world bowhunters crave. Among their new products this year is the E/Z Mount Call Holder, and we think you'll agree about it's real world function.

The E/Z Mount Call Holder fits firmly around your forearm or wrist, and can swivel to any position you need it. While walking to your favorite spot, or climbing into your treestand, you can position your grunt parallel with your arm and out of the way. While in stand, you can simply rotate the call to another position and ready it for calling. The E/Z Mount Call Holder works with all grunt tubes and calls, and swivels a full 360 degrees.

The Pine Ridge Archery E/Z Mount Call Holder

A relatively smaller company also came up with a neat idea for the usage of one of the most popular deer calls ever created, the can. The company, B&C Enterprises, calls it the Ground Bleater Pro. It starts with a camouflage metal bracket that can inserted into the ground, at the base of the tree, and allows you to attach a can call like the Primos Can or their own Buck Siren can call. The Ground Bleater Pro has a tether that you attach to the bracket and carry into the tree which allows you to make bleats from the ground and not up in the tree where the deer may bust you while searching for the call's creator. There is also a grunt tube version of the call in the works which should be available by next deer season.

Look for field tester, Jason Lawrence, as he reviews this item throughout the Illinois deer season this upcoming 2009 autumn.


Bow hunting fanatics who appreciate a need for a solid, well built, and usable treestand pack that was made with one thing in mind, the hunter, will fall in love with the improved GamePlan Gear BowBat. Developed for the hunter who carries a climbing treestand into the woods, and cannot carry a regular backpack conveniently, the Bowbat is a bow sling that also opens up and can be used as a pack and backrest to your tree. The product has lots of storage with expandable pockets for carrying large items like coats while also sporting smaller elastic internal pockets for sprays and scents. The Bowbat allows you the comfort of a bow sling while adding the ability to carry everything else needed for your hunt, including a quiver holder. Made of a quiet Bucksuede material, and an ability to fit any size bow, this new pack is sure to be on top of every serious bowhunters list this fall.

Stay tuned for more updates by the staff as they report to you, the serious bowhunter, on this years latest and greatest gear from the 2009 ATA show.

Categories: Bowhunting Blogs

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