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As told by Sergeant Major (ret) Glen Simpson

SITUATION:
18 October 2009, Illinois, SSW winds at 6 M.P.H, 40 degrees

MISSION:
Seek-out and harvest a pre-rut early season Hadley Creek, Pike county, Illinois whitetail during the first group hunt, without being detected and without mission failure!

EXECUTION:
I can’t believe that the first group hunt has come and gone! Wow, what an exciting time to be in the woods especially with good friends Aaron, Ken, all the other celebrities, Team members and of course the fine folks at Hadley Creek Outfitters in Pike county, Illinois.


With Aaron just coming off the Creed Tour and still blazing the trail in his huge tour bus he arrived at my house in Kentucky raring to GO! We packed up my stuff and headed West to pick-up Ken at the St. Louis airport before heading off to meet up with all the other Teams at Hadley. Talking about riding in style…I felt like a rock star if only for the brief trip.

We made our way across Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, and into Missouri to pick up Ken. Arriving at Hadley I must say that Ken and I couldn’t believe the grand entrance that his tour bus had and the special feeling it gave us to be a part of this awesome event this year! From Sergeants Majors in the Army to Rock Stars, who would ever believe it?

The first order of business was to ensure that Aaron's bow was hitting the mark before heading out to the stand for the evening. Yep…the PSE was right on the money so to the tree we went. I must say that this is my first adventure to Hadley and I’m amazed at the number of deer they have. You will never fall asleep in the stand as the deer kept us entertained each and every time we were in the stand. The deer must have heard that Aaron was in town and wanted to meet him in person.

The first couple of hunts passed with a lot of sightings of up and comers but no real shooters. The second evening we took the opportunity to practice our camera hunter interaction for the anticipated Hadley buck as Aaron slammed a doe at 35 yards.

The next morning found us in the tree with plenty of time to spare and just one ridge over from the previous evenings sit. The morning light broke the horizon when the first buck passed at 35 yards with no quality filming light. Was this a sign to come? What seemed like only moments but in actuality it was an hour or so when Aaron spots movement on the old logging road that leads down to the picked corn field in the bottom. Aaron said “Buck coming but I don’t think he’s a shooter but big body though!” I turned the camera that direction and started filming the very wide impressive buck as he makes his way to us. Aaron very patiently waits for the buck to gain ground and come right under the stand before making the decision to harvest the animal…Ice cold Rocker Blood runs through those veins! Keeping very calm, Aaron lets the buck go by until the buck gets at the proper quartering away angle before he draws his PSE X-Force GX. Settling his pin he unleashed the beast and the Rage found its mark. The buck whirled to the right and took off with a futile effort as he can’t take the fury and falls just off camera within 60 yards!

Mission complete! Until next time… waiting for helicopter extraction and follow-on orders.