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Bowhunt or Die! Episode 4 Recap

by Cody Altizer 1. November 2010 10:11
Cody Altizer

 In the first three installments of Bowhunt or Die the bowhunting.com team put some awesome bucks on the ground while managing to capture it beautifully on film.  In Episode 4 we watched two more bucks, a doe and a turkey hit the ground, and we received updates from the rest of our Pro Staff guys on how their season was progressing.  Let’s recap the action!

Follow this link to watch the footage from Bowhunt or Die- Episode 4


 The bowhunting team of Richie Music and Rick Galvin proved to be a deadly combination as they harvested a doe and a yearling buck, respectively.  Richie was up to bat first and took a shot on a mature doe, but the arrow hit a branch, deflected and hit the deer farther back than Richie would have liked.  However, Richie kept his cool and made the absolute right decision and didn’t attempt to recover the deer that night.  Fortunately, Richie was able to recover the doe just 60 yards from his tree stand the next day.   Kudos to Richie for knowing when to back out and give the deer time; even though he could have recovered the doe that night, he decided he should back out and give the deer ample time to expire.  Richie then traded places with his camera man, Rick Galvin, the following afternoon and Rick made a great shot a nice, yearling 8 pointer.  Watching Rick’s recovery footage was refreshing, because even though he didn’t harvest a monster buck, he was still having a great time in the woods and enjoying nature with his friend, Richie.  Way to go guys!

Rick Galvin pictured here with his first successful video bow kill.  It was nice to see Rick genuinely thrilled to have shot a nice buck.


 We then followed Todd Graf on his three day hunting trip to Southern Wisconsin.  I tagged along with Todd to do some filming and we had high hopes for the hunt when we left Illinois at 2:30 Thursday morning.  Throughout the course of the trip, Todd and I saw some good deer, including some respectable bucks, just nothing he was looking to harvest.  That’s just the way it goes sometimes bowhunting, regardless of how much time and effort you put in, often times the deer just don’t want to cooperate! So, we came back home to Illinois empty handed but optimistic about the looming rut.
 If you remember in Episode 3, Justin Zarr passed on a nice, gnarly 8 pointer on his lease in West Central Illinois.   This week we got back in the tree with Justin on the same piece of property and again watched Justin pass on a nice, wide 2 year old 8 pointer.  Sooner or later, Justin is going to be rewarded for his patience and persistence!  Unfortunately, Justin was having a little tougher luck on his hunting properties closer to home in Northern Illinois.  He hunted hard for two days and didn’t see a single deer, but forecasted a buck down Halloween weekend so you'll have to wait until this week’s episode to see how he did!

In Episode 3 of Bowhunt or Die Justin passed on a mid 120s 8 pointer.  In this week's episode he passed on yet another solid 8 pointer that most hunters would be thrilled to shoot.  It's only a matter of time for Justin now!


 Next we watched Jeremy Leu of the Campbell Outdoor Challenge film himself shooting a beautiful 150” buck over a watering hole during an October heat wave.  With warm temperatures moving in on Jeremy’s Southern Illinois hunting spot, Jeremy decided it best to hunt near a water source where he had some good Plot Watcher video and test out his luck.  Right before dark, Jeremy took a shot at the 11 point buck and felt confident about the hit, however, wasn’t able to recover the deer that night after a spotty blood trail.  Fortunately for Jeremy, he was able to recover his buck the next day and has great footage of his self-filmed bowhunt for an Illinois monster buck!

Jeremy Leu of the Campbell Outdoor Challenge filmed himself shooting this awesome 150: buck in Southern Illinois.  Self-filming can be difficult but Jeremy did a fine job.


 Throughout the rest of the episode we checked in on the rest of our Pro Staff to see how their seasons were progressing.  Neal McCullough updated from the tree in Wisconsin and has been hunting hard for a few stud bucks he has captured on his trail cameras.  I check in from Central Illinois during a morning sit where my sight actually fell off my bow!  Thankfully, no shooter bucks presented any shots because I wouldn’t have been able to shoot, but I still was able to enjoy a gorgeous fall hunt.  Mike Willand shot not only his first turkey with a bow, but his first turkey period.  Well done, Mike!  Meanwhile we visited Josh Fletcher on an unseasonably warm October hunt when he gave a quick rundown of the bucks he’s been seeing on his trail cameras.

Mike Willand shots his first turkey ever while hunting in Northwester Illinois.  Check out Bowhunt or Die Episode 4 to see the footage.


 Episode 4 of Bowhunt or Die documented the consistent success the Bowhunting.com team has been experiencing for the 2010 season.  With the best days ahead of us and the rut right around the corner, the action can only get better so check back in this Friday to see how our Pro Staffers faired during Halloween Weekend! 

Bowhunting.com Wins the Campbell Outdoor Challenge

by Justin Zarr 13. November 2008 02:03
Justin Zarr

For those of you who may not be familiar with the Campbell Outdoor Challenge, let me take a quick second to explain exactly what it is and how it works.  The Campbell Outdoor Challenge is a television show that showcases a series of hunting events for a variety of animals around the country.  Each event consists of several teams participating and attempting to earn points in order to win their respective challenge.  Points are awarded to both the hunter as well as the cameraman and are based on a variety of factors, not just the harvest of an animal.  As anyone who watches outdoor TV or videos knows, there's a lot more that goes into a successful production than just killing animails.  Your hosts have to be entertaining and knowledgable, and the cameraman has to do his job of not only capturing the hunt on film, but doing a good job of it.  Low light, rain, wind, branches, leaves, and a variety of other factors are stacked against the cameraman when attempting to capture good footage of a hunt which makes winning this type of event no easy task!  All teams participating in these events hunt at the same time under the same conditions, which puts them on an even playing field and affords nobody any sort of competitive advantage.  If you want to win you need to bust your butt and spend a lot of time in the field!

I was lucky enough to participate in, and win, the 2007 Archery Whitetail Qualifier event last October as part of Team HuntingNet.com.  Along with my cameraman (or is it camerawoman?) Christine Appleberg we were able to capture two doe harvests and a nice buck harvest on film which was enough to put is into first place by the end of the competition.  It was a great experience and if you want to read the entire story of last year's hunt, you can click here.

This fall I was fortunate enough to return to the Campbell Outdoor Challenge as part of Bowhunting.com's Team Farm Credit along with my hunting partner and cameraman Mike Willand.  Mike and I have been hunting together since high school and finally had the opportunity to get out on some good hunts this fall, which was a blast.  If you've never filmed your hunts or been with a good friend in a tree to share in the experiences of a November rut, I highly recommend it!

Our first day at this year's Campbell Outdoor Challenge we elected to sit in a pre-hung stand setup and see what we could see when the sun came up and then do some scouting and stand hanging from there.  As we thought, the morning was rather uneventful as we spotted a few does and some 1 1/2 year old bucks off in the distance but nothing close enough for a shot or even good video.  At around 9 am we packed it up for the morning and decided to hang stands for the remainder of our trip.

Mike and I are firm believers in aggressive whitetail hunting which includes staying mobile and hanging stands on the freshest sign we can find.  Some people like to sit back and hope the deer come to them, whereas we like to put ourselves in the middle of their bedrooms or feeding areas and try to capitalize on the element of suprise.  This technique requires a lot of hard work, a lot of standing hanging and moving, and a lot of getting up real early in the morning!  It's definitely not for everyone, but has proven to be successful for us over the past several years and we're sticking with it.

Two of the most important tools in our arsenal are our Lone Wolf treestands and climbing sticks, and our Hooyman Extentible tree saw.  With two Alpha Hang-On stands and a set of 4 climbing sticks we can get 20 feet up in just about any tree in the woods whether it's crooked, leaning, straight, or branched.  Because of the Lone Wolf's light weight we can pack these stands in quickly and quietly without working up too much of a sweat which affords us the opportunity to hang and hunt stands that same evening, or even in the dark for a morning hunt.  Combined with our Hooyman saw which allows us to trim shooting lanes without the need for a full size pole saw, this has proven to be a deadly combination.  Check out the bottom of this blog entry for links to more information about these great products that are available for purchase right here on Bowhunting.com.

In any case, after our 1st morning hunt we hung three additional sets on our assigned piece of property.  One of them was on a fresh scrape line we located that ran East and West on our hunting grounds.  This particular scrape line was on the edge of some old cut timber that had started to regrow and was super thich and nasty (a perfect bedding area) and some open timber to the North that held a lot of acorns and was surrounded by cut agricultural fields.  With the amount of fresh sign in the area we knew the bucks were using it to work their scrape line and check for any does that may be coming into heat early.  We knew this would be a good morning spot for the South winds we were having, but we'd have to get in real early in order to avoid spooking any deer that may have come in from the fields before daylight.

Our 2nd and 3rd sets were located at the opposite end of the property along the edge of a cut corn field where the deer were feeding heavily.  One of the stands was right on the edge of the field, which would allow us to shoot anything that may be feeding behind us.  The other stand was 80-100 yards inside the woodline where we hoped to catch a mature buck coming to the field to feed after dark.  These big bucks don't like to show their faces in the daylight if they can avoid it so many times they will stage about 100 yards in from the field and work rubs and scrapes while waiting for darkness to fall before entering the field.  So after some excessive trimming (it was THICK in there!) we were set up and ready to go.  We headed back to camp for some lunch and a shower.


The view in front of our stand from the first evening. 


The view to the left and behind our stands.  You can see the cut corn field where the deer were headed to feed at night.

That first afternoon on November 4th temps were in the mid 70's so we elected to head out to our stands a little later than usual.  Those temperatures will subdue deer movement until dark, or just before dark, so we figured there was no need killing ourselves in the heat by sitting on stand any longer than we needed to.  While most teams in camp headed out around noon or 1, we waited until 3 to leave and were in our stands by 3:45 with an hour and a half left until dark.

After our pre-hunt interview we settled in for the evening and it wasn't long until I spotted several does working their way toward us.  I woke Mike up from his cat nap and we both redied ourselves for the shot.  Just like we planned the doe walked into the shooting lane that Mike had trimmed out only hours before, and gave me a perfect broadside 15 yard shot.  I sent an NAP HellRazor tipped arrow from my new Diamond Marquis (which I love by the way) and it connected just a bit lower than I had hoped, but good enough to get the job done.  After a relatively quick recovery Mike and I had put our team on the board with a successful doe harvest.

As per the rules of the challenge I was awarded 74 points for my contribution to the hunt (half of the doe's 148 lb weight) and Mike was awarded his points for the footage.  I don't have the score sheet handy right now, but I do know that we were unable to receive any points for pre-harvest footage.  In the case of a doe harvest you receive points for every 30 seconds of footage before the shot, but this doe had come in so quickly we were unable to get more than 15-20 seconds.  In many cases the hunter/cameraman can't control how quickly things happen, but in other cases such as when the animal is feeding or walking slowly you can stretch the hunt out in order to provide more footage for the viewer to watch.  So with this minor setback our score was good enough to put us in 2nd place behind a team that brought in a ridiculous 170 lb doe that night.  She was huge!!


My 148 lb Southern Illinosi doe, taken the first evening of the Campbell Outdoor Challenge.

The next morning Mike was up as the hunter and I was behind the camera.  We have a working agreement that we switch off days of hunting and filming to keep it fair for both of us, which isn't a problem.  Although I would like to be the hunter every time, I have just as much fun being the cameraman as I do being the hunter.  And if you are reading this thinking "Yeah, right!" I say try it yourself!  You'll see!

Our alarm went off at 3 am and after a quick shower and some breakfast we were on the road by 3:45.  To be honest with you, we were up and on the road before most other teams in camp even woke up at all.  Like I said, we're pretty dedicated to this style of hunting and it's not for everyone!  After a 20 minute drive, getting dressed at the truck, and the walk to our stands we were set up by 4:45 about an hour and 15 minutes before shooting light.  Just enough time for a cat nap in our tree!  And yes, we were both wearing our safety harnesses!  Treestand safety is not something we mess around with and you won't find two more safety conscious hunters out there.  We always wear our full body harnesses and strap in as soon as we're in our stands.

Around 6 am just as we were waking up from our dreams of Booner bucks and it was getting light enough to see the forest floor we had a 1 1/2 year old buck walk 10 yards from our stand.  With a few quiet smiles Mike and I knew that once again we had set up in the right place and were in a killing tree.  From that point on we had deer all around us.  Two 1 1/2 year old bucks put on a good show for us by fighting with each other, a small button buck circled the bottom of our stand looking lost like they do, and a few does snuck in behind us headed from their feeding area to their bedding area.

As I was focused on filming a nice 1 1/2 year old walk by our stand Mike tapped me on the knee and said "Buck coming".  I quickly swung the camera up and got on the buck as he approached.  I could see he was a nice 10 pointer with good brows and decent mass and tine length.  I let Mike know he was a shooter and he got ready for the moment of truth.  As if he read the script, the 3 1/2 year old buck walked perfectly in front of our stand and offered a broadside shot at 12 yards while he was standing in the scrapes we had discovered the day before.  Mike drew, grunted to stop the buck, and let his NAP Nitron tipped arrow fly.

Unfortunately the hit was a few inches further back than we wanted, but we knew it would be lethal.  Mike turned around with his trademark grin as if to say "Did that really just happen?"  Only three sits into our trip and we had put down both a buck and a doe, and we had excellent footage of both!  Clearly our hard work had paid off and we put ourselves in a position to be successful rather than simply waiting on a hope and a prayer that something would walk by us.

We reviewed the footage a few times in the tree before deciding to back out and head to camp.  It was only 6:30 am and we had plenty of time left in the day.  So we grabbed our gear, climbed down, and headed back for some real breakfast and some relaxation before taking up the trail.  At 12:30 that afternoon we set out after the buck with our guide Troy to help.  Unfortunately at 2 pm I kicked the wounded buck from his bed and my heart sank as he bounded off through the woods.  After calling Mike and Troy over to tell then what happened we all agreed to back out and come back the next morning, giving the buck some additional time to expire.

The morning of November 6th was again warm with a heavy dew following some rain the evening before.  We knew the blood trail would be next to impossible to pick up so we fanned out across the forest looking for Mike's buck.  After only an hour or so of searching, Mike and I were able to locate the deer not 150 yards from the original point of impact.  I am always amazed how a wounded animal will circle back to where it came from after being shot.  It seems like every trail I've ever been on the deer have done the exact same thing.  Amazing!

To say Mike and I were relieved to find this buck would be a huge understatement.  Nobody feels worse about losing an animal than the hunter, but you can bet that the cameraman comes in a close 2nd place.  He may not have been the biggest buck in the woods by any means, but we could not have been any happier to recover him successfully and to say we filmed two successful deer hunts in less than 2 days on a piece of property we had never even set foot on before.  I don't care who you are, that is an accomplishment for any bowhunter/camerman team!


Mike's 2008 Southern Illinois 10 pointer.  He gross scored 133 1/8".

With our two succesfful hunts and the quality of our footage we were able to finish this year's Campbell Outdoor Challenge Archery Whitetail Championship in first place, becoming the first team to ever successfully defend their title.  My personal thanks go out to both Christine Appleberg and Mike Willand for not only their great skills behind the camera, but also their peformance in front of the camera and for putting up with me for a week!  I also want to thank Todd Graf with Bowhunting.com for sponsoring this year's team and giving us the opportunity to prove we could do it.  I told you so!

And last but not least a big Thank You to the entire staff at the Campbell Outdoor Challenge.  John, Jeremy, Travis, and the rest of the gang are a great bunch of people that work their hardest to organize these events and make them as enjoyable and successful as possible for everyone who participates.  If you're interesting in learning more about these events, or possibly putting a team together to participate in them, check out their website at http://www.campbelloutdoorchallenge.com.

This year's episodes will begin airing on Versus starting in January on Wednesdays from Noon-1 pm Central Time.  So set your DVR, you won't want to miss the smiling faces of Bowhunting.com on your TV screen!

Gear Used on this trip:

Lone Wolf Alpha Hang-On Stand & Climbing Sticks: Once again, one of the most important, if not THE most important tool in our hunting arsenal.  These stands are extremely lightweight, super strong, quiet, easy to set up, and very versatile.    If you want to kill deer you need to hunt them where they live, which means sneaking in close and setting up right on top of them.  With our Lone Wolf gear we can get in and get the job done.  BUY NOW>>

Hooyman Extendible Tree Saw: Until this year we had only a few limited options when hanging stands on the fly.  Either carry a full size pole saw with us to trim shooting lanes (which sucked), go without trimming lanes (which also sucked), or tape our hand saws to a limb and make an impromptu saw (which was a total pain - especially if you forgot your tape!).  The Hooyman saw folds down to a compact 12 inches so I can carry it easily in my pack, and extends to 5 feet which gives me just enough reach advantage to cut down some of those pesky limbs that get in your way.  It's the perfect compliment for our hunting style and I don't go into the woods without mine.  BUY NOW>>


Using the Hooyman saw to cut down a few limbs before an evening hunt.

NAP HellRazor broadheads: The 2nd doe I've shot with this head this year and it was devastating.  My shot was a bit low but managed to take out the doe's heart and completely shatter her off-side leg/shoulder on the way out.  And I don't just mean it stuck in the bone, it completely broke it into several pieces.  This is one tough head!!!  BUY NOW>>

Gum-O-Flage & Chlor-O-Flage: When you're getting right ontop of deer to hunt them scent control becomes key to your success.  Mike and I have both been using these products for several years and have the utmost confidence in them.  Some people believe in scent control, while others don't.  We're not trying to change your mind if you don't, but if you do and you aren't using these products you really should look into them.  They work, trust me!

Campbell Outdoor Challenge Day 3 - Buck Found!

by Justin Zarr 7. November 2008 07:36
Justin Zarr

After last night's post we reviewed the footage of the buck Mike shot a few more times just to see if we missed anything we hadn't seen before, but nothing had changed.  The hit was a bit far back and we knew it was going to be a tough recovery in the morning.  So we grabbed a small bite to eat, tried to watch some TV, and eventually went to sleep.  When the alarm when off at 3 am Mike and I decided to call the morning's hunt off as we were beat from a week straight of hunting and needed some rest. 

We set out to look for the buck around 8 am with guides Troy and Adam.  We knew any blood that may have been present yesterday would be gone with last night's rain and the heavy morning dew so it was a search and rescue mission.  We spread out and began fanning our way across some of the thickest raspberry thickets you've ever seen.  The thicker they were, the deeper we tried to get into them.  An hour into the search Mike took a breather on the edge of a bean field and noticed a few buzzards circling back where the buck had originally come from.  Having tracked more than one wounded buck in our lives we knew they often like to circle back so we headed over to the area the birds were seen.

Only 50 yards into the treeline Mike spotted his buck laying next to a deadfall, no more than 150 yards from where he had been shot.  Unfortunately with the record high temperatures yesterday and throughout the night the meat and cape had spoiled by the time we recovered the buck.  This is the sad reality that many of us face when hunting in warm conditions, and there isn't much that can be done about it.  We snapped some photos, took some post-recovery footage for our challenge score, and headed back to camp with the buck.  The symmetrical 10 pointer scored 133 1/8 inches which is more than good enough to put us into first place for this challenge as well as the circuit.  With a little luck, we'll repeat our victory from last year!

Right now we're washing some clothes and planning on heading up to our lease in Brown County where hopefully I can put an arrow into a nice buck before I have to go back to work on Tuesday of next week.  The temps have cooled off and there's no better time to be in the woods than now, so if you can get out in the woods - do it!


Mike's 2008 Campbell Outdoor Challenge 10 point.

Campbell Outdoor Challenge Day 2

by Justin Zarr 6. November 2008 13:50
Justin Zarr

November 6 - Carmi, IL

The 2nd day of this year's Campell Outdoor Challenge found us in a set of stands we just hung yesterday up tight into a bedding area where we found a good rubline.  We were fortunate enough to find a good group of oaks that shared a common trunk and really get tucked in where the deer hopefully wouldn't see us.  So as usual we were up and on the road before most people here even woke up, and were probably in our stands while most guys were still drinking coffee at the lodge!

Before the sun even crested the horizon on this warm 50 degree morning we had deer moving around and under our stand, which we both knew was a good sign.  After it was light enough to see we had a small 1 1/2 year old buck cruise by and go head-to-head with a small button buck right in front of us for a bit.  After the 1 1/2 year old moved off into the oak flat he ran into another 1 1/2 year old buck and they had a pretty intense fight for a few minutes, which was pretty cool to see and hear.

As the two 1 1/2 year old bucks and the button buck milled around eventually a doe and two yearlings joined the party and we were literally surrounded by deer, most within 60-70 yards.  Then all of a sudden Mike taps my leg and says "Buck coming....I think he's a good one."  So I pulled up the camera and got on him.  What I saw in my viewfinder was a nice 140" dark-racked 10 pointer making his way to the scrape in front of our stand.  I confirmed with Mike that he was a shooter and we both readied ourselves for the moment of truth.

As the buck cleared the last limbs that we had just trimmed with our Hooyman saw not 18 hours before, Mike stopped him with a mouth bleat and let his arrow fly.  This is where the story begins.  The hit was a bit far back and initially looked like a solid liver shot.  We replayed the footage a few times to confirm and decided to back out and wait.  After retrieving his arrow Mike and I gathered our gear and headed back to camp for some breakfast and a few episodes of Saved By The Bell and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

After a 6 hour wait we took up the blood trail just as a front moved in and brought some moderate rain, which made our job even more difficult.  We managed to find a decent trail for the first 100 yards or so before it ran out and we were left to grid the thick bedding area in front of us.  It only took a few minutes of walking before the buck jumped from his bed and trotted off, tail tucked, away from us.  We immediately assessed the situation and decided not to risk pushing this buck any further and backed out of the area.  If he was alive and well enough to run off nearly 8 hours after the shot, we needed to give him more time to expire.

We are planning on hunting for an hour or two in the morning to try and get another doe harvest on film before meeting up with some of the guides and some of our fellow hunters to continue our grid search of the small woodlot we're hunting.  We are hopeful that the buck hasn't left the area as the next closest woodlot is a good 500 yards away and he most likely won't want to cross the open field in his condition.  So wish us luck, we'll be back at it first thing in the morning!

As of tonight Bowhunting.com's Team Farm Credit is holding steady in 2nd place for both this event as well as the Circuit, which is a combined score from multiple Outdoor Challenge events throughout the year.  If we can recover Mike's buck in the morning it will be enough to push us into first place for sure, althought that is of little importanced compared to finding this animal and completing our hunt.

I will update again tomorrow as more details come in.  Thanks everyone!

Categories:

2008 Campbell Outdoor Challenge - Day 1

by Justin Zarr 5. November 2008 15:52
Justin Zarr

November 5, 2008 - Carmi, IL

After an evening of getting acquainted with one another as well as our hunting areas, and enjoying an excellent Prime Rib dinner we finally settled into bed around 10 pm for some much-needed shuteye.  Mike and I have been on the road for a few days already and getting up at 3 am is starting to catch up with us!  Speaking of which, when our alarm went off this morning neither one of us were too keen on getting up but we didn't come here to sleep so we hit the road and made the 20 minute drive to our hunting location.


Our home away from home for the week.  Simple, but effective!

This particular spot we're in is very unique in that it's a rather small block of young timber that's extremely thick and grown over, and totally surrounded by agriculture.  Essentially it's one giant bedding area with food on all 4 sides, making for a rather tough place to hunt.  We elected to sit in the stands that were already set for us this morning and managed to see a few deer, some does and small bucks, but nothing closer than 60 yards.  After around 7:30 the action really died down as the deer headed for cover in anticipation of today's record high temperatures.

With deer movement next to nothing after the sun came up Mike and I took the opportunity to hang a few extra stands to provide us with a few more options for the upcoming days.  We hung one morning set tucked in tight to the main bedding area near a few fresh scrapes, and a few evening sets near a picked corn field where the deer are feeding pretty heavy.


Here's Mike getting ready to go out hunting this afternoon.  Its amazing how much "stuff" we have just to go try and kill a deer!

By the time we got done hanging stands we were both sweaty messes so we headed back to camp for some lunch, a quick shower, and headed back out.  We got into our stands around 3:30 which was pretty late for us, but with the hot temps we weren't expecting the deer to move much before dark.


Here's the view from our treestand looking South.  As you can see it's pretty thick and prevents you from seeing any deer until they're pretty much right ontop of you.  It also inhibits our ability to get a lot of footage of deer, which could play a roll in our overall score in this competition.

While Mike and I both dozed off in our stands in the evening sun I spotted a group of does headed our way.  I quickly got Mike's attention and got in position for the shot.  The doe and her two yearlings came in quickly as they were being bumped around by a small 1 1/2 year old buck, which didn't give Mike much time to get a lot of video before the big doe stepped into my shooting lane at 18 yards.  I let out a short mouth bleat to stop her, settled my pin, and let my arrow fly.  Unfortunately I think I hit my safety harness as I shot, which threw my arrow a bit off target and hit the doe a little bit low.  With a telltale mule kick the doe bolted off into the woods and I knew our first deer was on the ground.

Follwoing our post-shot interview we took up the blood trail and found the big doe less than 100 yards later.  We shot some quick photos, took some more video, loaded her and up and got back to camp in time for dinner!


Here she is - my 2008 Campbell Outdoor Challenge doe.  My shot was a bit low but it did the job by entering low in the near side and completely shattering her off-side shoulder on the way out.  That NAP Hellrazor is one tough broadhead for sure!

Our big doe officially weighed in at 148 lbs live weight, which at the time was the biggest doe taken so far.  Although a short while later a team brought in a mammoth doe weighing over 170 lbs!!  Our video footage is still being reviewed and scored so I'm not sure where we're at in the standings but I'm confident we're in the top 5.  After all, there's only been 4 does brought in so far!

Tomorrow is supposed to be warm again in the morning, and Mike is up to bat with the bow in his hand.  We're going to get tucked into the thick bedding cover and hope to catch a big Southern Illinois buck checking around for does.  A cold front is supposed to move in tomorrow afternoon and bring some rain with it, so we're not sure if we'll get out or not.  We both need to catch up on some sleep as we've got a few all-day hunts planned once the weather breaks on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  We came to shoot a big buck, and we're pulling out all the stops until we do!

Be sure to check back tomorrow for another update with our final score, the official standings, and any other exciting happenings from our team and the other teams here at the campbell Outdoor Challenge!

  



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