OK, I confess. I was napping a little. Well, I was napping a lot. Yeah, I was asleep, but I was safely strapped into a 16-foot-tall ladder stand overlooking a harvested corn field with plenty of remaining cob litter as well as a green plot of ryegrass, wheat and kale.
The set-up was a perfect mix of natural habitat and best practices at supplemental food plotting.
I was in an ideal seat to watch deer action as the day closed out in the west. I knew this because a couple of weekends before I counted 11 deer file out of the adjacent woods at the dark-thirty timing, as they call it around here. Among the group were three bucks, but alas my binoculars were failing in the dying light. At least two of them bore multiple-tined racks, though.
The witness encouraged me to come back for another look without pressuring the stand location.
So when I shook off the dreaming at the sound of thrashing in the woods, I was not the least bit surprised to see two does bolt from cover at full throttle right across in front of me. As they a made an L-shaped run for the woods to my right and behind me about halfway there, a racked buck tore out of the woods pressing right into the hoof prints left by the two does. He was gaining on them fast and way too fast for a view in my rifle’s scope, much less to take a shot.