Thursday, February 28, 2013

Mexico Coues Deer 2013....Day 5 and 6

Day 5 started off with Chase and myself ending up back on the same point we had been on for the previous four mornings. We had been averaging 40+ deer a day while seeing a lot of bucks, with a couple of the bucks being outstanding. 
Can't beat a Beautiful Mexican Sunset
With quite a few in our group having success we were itching to get on board or at least fire some shots. The morning started off with seeing 8-9 bucks with one being a buck that Chase had passed a few days earlier but was now ready to see what his 7MM WSM could do at some long range shooting. I set the camera up and ranged the buck at 675 yards before giving Chase the green light to let the party begin. Chases' first shot went right over his back, we didn't quite adjust for the uphill angle. The second shots vapor trail looked great through the binos until an oak branch "stepped out" in front of the buck and Chases' shot glanced just off the side. The buck had enough and decided he was ready to leave the mountain.

Chase's 675 yd trophy

With a couple of shots under our belt we decided we would move higher up the mountain to look into a saddle where a better part of our deer would travel in and out of. With the hour and a half climb we finally settled into a glassing spot. We glassed until almost dark seeing several bucks but just not one of our shooters. Just before dark and finally back to the bottom of the mountain we spot a buck watching us from about 200 yards. Chase sat down and got a rest while I ranged the buck. We figured it to be the buck Chase had missed earlier that day since we had relocated him while glassing from high up on the mountain and he was still in the same spot. Chase made the decision to shoot. The buck dropped with one shot and we were both pretty excited. Well we walked up on the buck finding out it was a smaller buck that was also in the area. We took care of the deer and got to camp late and tired but had both laughed about how our day had ended. With Daniel and Chase now crossed off the list that only left Ira and myself to fill our tags.
Chase with his "Oops Buck"

Early day 6 brought quite a lot of rain through out most of the night leaving Ira and myself both nervous and anxious to get out and try to fill our last minute tags. We sat around camp until the rain and the fog finally lifted around 9 AM. Wasting no time we loaded the four wheelers and headed out for a 30 minute ride to our drop off point which was the beginning of our hour and half hike to the top a peak we had named the "Anthill". It was a steep peak that was only 20 yards wide but revealed an incredible 360 degree viewing of some great coues deer country. The day prior from the same hill Devin, Ira, Spencer and Rusty had seen 30 plus bucks with the big 120 inch monster they had been chasing now for 3 days. The long hike in the drizzling rain and fog showed no signs of weakening but our spirits were still high.  Noon rolled around with still no break in the storm and all of us waiting impatiently. Reality was beginning to sink in thinking we were only going to kill 6 out of 8 bucks.  2 PM rolled around and all of the sudden the fog began to lift and we scrambled to set up glass and get to work.

waiting in the fog

Moments after the fog lifted

Well we only had about 3 hours to kill 2 bucks so every one jumped up and started hitting the hills around the "Anthill" hard. Instantly we were seeing bucks and does. It didn't take long before one of the bucks that Devin and Ira had passed the day prior showed himself pushing does hard. It was a team effort to keep the buck located and in the scope before Ira finally made good on 2 well placed shots at 617 yards to kill a great mexican coues deer.

Ira's great last day Buck

While the boys bailed off the Anthill to retrieve Ira's buck, that left Daniel, Damon and myself glassing frantically to find one more buck. Damon made good spot on a decent buck that happened to be in the direction of the four wheelers and the decision was made to attempt a 610 yard shot on a bedded buck. I set up my 300 win mag with the custom dial set at 600 yards and let it rip. Shortly after the shot rang out Daniel and Damon were whooping and hollering that the buck just rolled over not hardly even kicking. That brought the total team count to 8 for 8 with two bucks being killed in the last three hours of the hunt with both shots being over 600 yards.
It was one of the best Mexico coues hunts that I have had the opportunity to go on with a lot of rutting action and a lot of bucks seen by all the groups through out the entire week. We all enjoyed each others company and can't wait to get back down to chase these incredible animals and enjoy time away from work...... If our wives will just let us go just one more time..
Until next time....

My 610 yd buck  killed with less than hour left in the hunt
8 for 8

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Mexico Coues Deer 2013... Day 5

As the sun rose on Friday morning, reality slowly began to set in.  We still had 5 tags to fill and only two days left in Mexico.  Ira, Devin, Spenny, Rusty, Damon, and myself all decided to focus on the area where Ira and Devin had seen the 120" buck the previous evening.  Damon and I stayed half a mile to the south while the other four hiked to a hill directly above where the big buck was seen.  Within minutes, Spencer glassed him up.  Unfortunately, he had broke a couple inches off his G2 and G3 on his right side.  Ira quickly got set up and steadied for the 650 yard shot.  Suddenly a coyote spooked the buck and he ran into thick cover before Ira could fire a round.  They glassed all morning hoping that the buck would reappear.

Around  10:30am, shots came from the other side of the ranch.  The big mountain didn't allow for radio contact with Mike and Chase but someone was getting some trigger-time.  The rest of the morning was slow going.  Shortly after lunch, I glassed 4 bucks chasing a doe all over the mountain side.  Damon and I moved closer to size them up.  We relocated them and estimated the biggest buck at 95".  Despite his pretty frame, I was opting to pass the buck.  Following some deliberation, Damon talked some sense into me.  I shot my buck at 360 yards.  We reached my buck around 4pm and I was pleasantly surprised.

My 100" Coues
We packed up my buck and headed for the ranch house just as the sprinkles began.  At this same time, Rusty and Spencer glassed a good buck bedded about a mile away.  They ran to beat the darkness and to get a closer look.  Just before dark, they reached the area and found 4 bucks milling around some does.  They picked out the biggest buck and Rusty made good on a 520 yard shot from his cannon (30-378 Weatherby).  The buck was close to the far north boundary of our ranch and the boys didn't get back to the ranch house until close to midnight.
Rusty's 108" 4x4

After Rusty and Spencer ran off the hill, Ira and Devin continued to glass for the giant buck.  They hadn't seen him since the coyote spooked him earlier that morning.  Just as they were getting ready to pack up and head off the hill, the 120" buck appeared.  The buck walked into a clearing at 325 yards and stopped behind a lone mesquite tree.  Ira got on the buck and waited for the buck to step out into the open.  The buck stood motionless behind the tree as the seconds turned to minutes.  Ira stayed in his scope until darkness consumed his sight. 
To be continued........................

Friday, February 8, 2013

Mexico Coues Deer 2013... Days 3 & 4

Day 3
With two bucks down that meant we still had six more left.  We all left the ranch house around an hour before daylight and went our separate ways.  With the ranch not having much of a road system, all of us usually had pretty good hikes into our glassing spots.  All of our teams were still seeing plenty of deer and rutting activity was still going strong.

Ira and myself had headed north from the ranch house to hunt the southern end of the biggest mountain on the ranch.  We were seeing lots of does and little bucks but nothing worth chasing.  As midday started to approach we made the decision to move around the mountain while the deer were bedded down.  While we were walking I looked off to the south and noticed something moving.  Ira and I both pulled up our binos and watched some Javelina feed out into some rocks.  With it being midday we decided we were going to have a long range contest on this group of pigs.  We both laid our packs down as I ranged them at 450 yards.  Ira let the first shot rip and I couldn't tell where he had hit.  The pigs started to head back where they came from as he shot again and barely missed.  I was just starting to get back up as Ira whistled at me.  I looked over at him to see a buck and two does that had just got up not 50 yards underneath us.  We both swung on the buck and Ira couldn't pick him up in his scope due to being on 14 power on his scope.  Somehow I got lucky and found the buck in my scope (I was still on 25 power) as he hit an opening I let my .300 WSM rip. We heard the whack as the buck slowed down a little and hit another good opening and Ira let one go from his .270 WSM.  We both had a bullet in the buck as he went just out of sight.  We made our way over to where the buck was and found the blood trail which turned out to be a short one to a great buck.  The buck had split eye guards on both sides and matching extra points on the end of each beam.

112 "  buck 

This buck had a lot of character

Day 4
Ira and I headed to the top of the highest peak you can see in the background in the picture above to see if we could find Ira a buck.  As we were cussing ourselves the whole way up the mountain, thinking what are we doing?  Neither one of us knew what was in store for us on the other side.  As we were getting set up to glass we heard a doe start blowing below us.  A buck came chasing her down the mountain.  We were scrambling to get a good look at him.  If he wasn't broke off on one side, he would have been a shooter.  The one horned buck ended up getting a great afternoon going for us.  Not long after, we spotted another upper 90's buck traveling by.  We watched him move down into a wash and get some does up.  We continued glassing and as I looked down to check on the buck and his does, there was now a giant  (120") pushing the upper 90's buck off.  Ira began to get setup as I watched the buck.  After an unfortunate miss on a tough shot we had a long walk out in the dark.  We still had two more days to locate the big buck and were optimistic about our chances....stay tuned for days 5 & 6.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Mexico Coues Deer 2013....Days 1 & 2

With so much to tell, it will be easiest to break it down into day segments.  So here goes......

We arrived at our ranch on Sunday afternoon (Jan. 20th) around 3pm, then unpacked our gear and set up camp.  We ran out for a couple hours of glassing before dark.  We had 4 teams of 2: Damon Hughes and myself, Mike and Chase Sherwood, Devin and Ira Parry, and Spencer Porter and Rusty Ulmer.

Day 1
When light broke on Monday morning, we were scattered all over the ranch ready to divide and conquer.  Everyone saw 30+ deer on Monday except for Damon & I.  We ended the day with 7 deer.  Must have left our lens caps on or something!  The other teams all saw 1-2 buck over 100" with Mike seeing a buck that would top 110".  However, the only shots of the day were when Damon & I took out our frustrations on a javelina and some coyotes. (Guess that might be part of the reason why we only saw 7 deer!)

Our First-Day, Frustration Pig
The cowboys sure enjoyed it
Day 2
By Tuesday, some trigger fingers started to itch!  Following our pathetic start on day 1, it didn't take much to get Damon and I excited.  We glassed up a buck a long ways off and decided he needed a closer look.  By 11am we were sizing up the buck and trying to decide whether to pass or shoot.  Damon was wanting a 95"+ buck and we knew this buck wasn't quite that big.  But his unique look made up for it.  We finally decided to shoot and Damon went in to kill mode.  When the buck finally stood, Damon made a great 410 yard shot and dropped his first Mexico coues buck.

Damon's 90" Coues Buck

Beams would almost touch if his left beam wasn't broke

Later that afternoon, Spencer and Rusty glassed up a buck that they had seen the day before.  This time the buck wasn't as lucky.  Upon further examination, Spencer decided he was big enough and had the "wow factor" he was looking for.  The buck continued to move towards them while pushing a doe.  Spencer tickled the trigger on his 257 Weatherby and smoked him at 140 yards.

Spencer's 104" Coues Buck

Did I mention that the ticks were horrible this year??

Spencer's new friend
 I guess what happens in Mexico, doesn't always stay in Mexico!!