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October 30: Darrell Tudela

After our first two years with Drury getting skunked with putting a decent buck on the ground, it would be an understatement to say we were anxious to “get on the board”. Rick & I drove 1300 miles to Illinois to hunt public ground. We chose a different public land than we hunted last year. My good friend Mike Rave, from Illinois, had advised us a few days earlier that they were having record breaking flooding, and that he didn’t know how much dry land there would be when we got there. Our hearts and plans were already set on the trip so we headed out ready to deal with whatever we had to when we got there. Good thing we brought our canoe.

Literally all of the land that we could hunt except for about 100 acres was under several feet of water. So we headed to the 100 acre piece.

Rick insisted that I hunt first. About an hour and a half into the first very windy afternoon I saw some antlers headed our way before I could even hear the deer coming. He was trailin’ a doe on a trot. I got Rick’s attention. After some mis-communication in the tree, I drew back and smacked my first Illinois Buck. He ended up being a little smaller than I was hoping for, but that happens some times. It’s OK, I’ve got great memories and we donated the venison to a local family…Now it’s Rick’s turn to hunt and after several encounters with nice bucks over the next few days, he had a successful morning…