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A Cold October Wind

In our book, Giant Whitetails, Terry and I wrote of the first major cold front in October. When it breaks the back of the summer heat it does something to the whitetails likes nothing else. In October bucks are still in their feeding patterns, but most of the activity happens at night. That first October cold front exposes this movement, giving hunters a chance to see it as the bucks start to move in daylight.

The first week of October 2009, will go down as redefining what a cold October wind means. We sat set after set with the North wind and smiles on our faces. Front after front passed through followed by high pressure and a sweet North wind, bringing deer after deer into our carefully architectured food plots.

The first seven days of October came and went. We were averaging three good-racked bucks per sit. I passed on a couple of nice bucks waiting for something really mature. My Reconyx cameras told me there were definitely some in the area. The Biologic plots were as effective as I’ve ever seen. On a nightly basis we counted ten to fifteen deer coming into the plots.

The night of October eighth promised to be just as good. Our confidence was high. The third big cold front of the early season was passing through. It was led by rain and followed by cold temperatures. Anytime it rains during the day then shuts off, its always more magical. We knew the deer would be moving.

We headed out to a field I had hunted numerous times without any luck – this made the fifteenth time in two Octobers, and the third time this year. Even with no luck, I couldn’t stop hunting it. A lush Maximum field with thick cover on three sides, perfect for a North wind. Reconyx images of big mature bucks. It all seemed too perfect. All I needed was to be there at just the right time.

After passing on a posturing four-year-old one forty, my persistence paid off. A five and a half year old nine point with a kicker walked out. He was the fourth buck we saw. He gave us one hundred yards of preroll through the warm season grass, then stopped at forty yards and turned broadside. The PSE Omen found its mark and the rest is history.

As I went back to review my trail pictures of this buck, I realized I had passed him twice on camera two years ago when he was three and a half. The Reconyx pictures at right show him last year at four and a half, and this year at five and a half.