0

0

October 11: Jessica Ware

October 12th was the 2nd day of Illinois youth season and we had excellent conditions setting up for a good hunt this evening.  It was in the 50's and a gloomy cloudy day with a misting rain.  Jessica Ware (14 yrs old) was up to bat and we were hoping for better movement than last night.  We were on a 1 1/2 acre food plot mixed with standing beans, Biologic Radishes and Biologic Maximum.  It had cooled off quite a bit from yesterday and surprisingly we had a SE wind.  Perfect for the box blind we wanted to hunt.  
We got in stand about 4pm and didn't see a much for awhile.  About 5pm a doe and 2 fawns finally emerged from the timber into the food plot and started chomping on the radishes.  A small buck came in and ran them off and that was good to see a little bumping going on to remind us of what is about to come in the next month!  It was quiet until a little before 6pm when we saw a big 4 year old head out into the food plot and immediately put its head down into the beans.  Jessica and I both saw him and knew it was a shooter.  She got the gun ready and I turned on the camera as she opened the window to the box blind.  We got about a minute of preroll before she made the shot.  The muzzleloader put off so much smoke that we (and the camera) couldn't see anything.  We were blind!  It was a long shot of about 140 yards (later walked it off) and we both had no idea if she even hit the deer. 
We took a moment to look back at the footage and still were disappointed to see all the smoke fill the screen immediately after the shot.  We couldn't see where he went or his reaction at all!  We went to check for blood and low light conditions prevented us from seeing any.  We decided to wait overnight...
 
After a long sleepless night Jessica decided to wait until about 9am to go looking.  Luckily my filming partner Klem and his son Bailey came to help look along with a buddy of mine from work Brennan Davidson.  We looked for blood and found a few drops and knew at least she hit him.  A smile from Jessica's face was nice to see after all the worry.  We continued looking in some of the thickest brush I have ever been in.  We could only see about 5 yards in any direction.  After following blood and looking for an hour and a half I was lucky to spot him ahead of me.  I called to Jessica to come over and she knew what that meant.  She was smiling and I couldn't help myself either.  There was no surprise!  She knew I had found him.  We bear hugged and thanked God and went to see our prize!  He was beautiful.  Dark chocolate rack with lots of points and a few kickers.  His body was huge and my heart filled up with so much pride.  That was the 4th buck she has shot at since she was 8 years old and the 4th buck on the ground.  3 of her shots have been 100 yards or more.  She can definitely out shoot my hunting partner Klem any day....(sorry Klem) as well as her Dad!  I'm not sure where she gets her marksmenship from.... maybe her Mother...Uhg! 
Proud Papa Ware