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NJ permit bow buck


Well-Known Member
SH Member
Feb 11, 2019
New Jersey
Disclaimer: Not a saddle kill (sorry team 4).

I got off work Monday with about an hour and 45 minutes of daylight left. I was thinking about hunting the WMA right around the corner, but my gut was telling me to go back to a peice I'd been bouncing around the last couple weeks and seeing great action. I'll spare the details to save myself the embarrassment but I missed a big 8 here on Halloween, and then again on Nov. 12th. By the time I got to the parking lot I had a little over an hour of daylight left, so i just grabbed my bow, binoculars, and went. The plan was to still hunt from food which in this case is a standing soybean field back towards some bedding.

As soon as I get into the woods I start seeing deer. 2 fawns browsing along the creek bottom below me. No doe with them which made me think maybe Mama is close by with a buck? I sneak past them through the creek bottom and peek my head over the hill and see more deer. Another fawn by itself browsing. A fork horn comes running out of some thick stuff right past me at 10 yards. A nice 6 point point that i passed twice already this season comes limping out of the same thicket and walks to within 20 yards of me before seeing me and spooking. With light starting to fade and feeling like I'm in a good spot I decide to post up here for the rest of the hunt. I kneel down with a huge tree behind me and a couple blowdowns in front of me with good shooting to trails in several directions. I hear a commotion coming from the thicket where the 2 smaller bucks came from. A doe trots out at about 40 yards with a buck trailing behind her. He's a shooter. The doe circles around and walks down the trail right in front of me. He follows suit. I'm at full draw waiting for him as he steps into my opening. He stops on his own broadside at 15 yards. I held my pin low right behind the crease and pulled through my shot. I thought I saw my arrow enter him right where i was aiming and heard a loud pop. He ran 20-30 yards and stopped. I was expecting him to fall over right there and die, but what happened next confused me. He turned around and started looking back in my direction, then started walking back towards me like he was trying to see what just hit him. I knocked another arrow but there was a wall of brush between us. He stood there for a good 2-3 minutes and then bedded down. He's about 40 yards from me. I couldn't see where i hit him because he was facing me head on. I watched him through my binoculars for a good 30 minutes before it was too dark to see, at which point he was still alive. So i snuck out of there as quiet as possible. With temps below freezing, and now doubting my shot placement, I decided to give him until the morning.

My view 5 minutes post shot. He was standing at the red dot when i shot him, and bedded down at the yellow dot behind that thick brush.

A buddy and I went back in at sunrise. I peeked my head over the hill and glassed the spot where he bedded and he wasn't there. I made my way over to where he was standing when i shot. No blood, and no arrow in the immediate vicinity. Walked over to where he was bedded down. Small puddle of dark blood, with a few small spots of brighter blood with bubbles. At this point I'm thinking i got 1 lung and liver and am confident he's dead. I start glassing up ahead and see a rack sticking out of the tall grass. He's down! He went maybe another 50 yards from his first bed. He was stiff and cold when i got to him. Must have died not too long after i left the night before. Here's where it gets interesting. My entry was exactly where i was aiming, low and tight to the crease. Exit was just forward of mid-body. Necropsy revealed I center punched the near side lung, sliced the back of the far side lung, and sliced the liver. Should have took pictures of it but i didn't. You can kind of make out the entry and exit holes in the pictures. The toughness of these animals never ceases to amaze me. He was alive for AT LEAST 35 minutes after a "double lung" and liver hit.

The next day I went back to look for my arrow and do some scouting. I was standing where the deer was standing, looking back at where I shot from and noticed the remnants of an old brush blind in the blowdown i was behind. I didn't notice it the night i shot him, but I was in another hunters old spot. Pretty cool.

The deers view

I don't know for sure if he's the same buck I missed on Halloween and the 12th, but for the sake of the story I'm saying he is.

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