Traditional Archery Discussions on the Leatherwall


I let him walk...

Messages posted to thread:
Valley Scout 09-Oct-21
longbow1968 09-Oct-21
SB 09-Oct-21
Gun 09-Oct-21
Gun 09-Oct-21
MStyles 09-Oct-21
LDB 09-Oct-21
Percy 09-Oct-21
Valley Scout 09-Oct-21
Caughtandhobble 09-Oct-21
Jon Stewart 09-Oct-21
Geezer 09-Oct-21
Ovilla Bill 09-Oct-21
Jegs.mi 09-Oct-21
bentstick54 09-Oct-21
vikingbear 09-Oct-21
Babysaph 09-Oct-21
fishin coyote 10-Oct-21
JusPassin 10-Oct-21
BigJim 10-Oct-21
George D. Stout 10-Oct-21
Babysaph 10-Oct-21
kennym 10-Oct-21
nocking point 10-Oct-21
shade mt 10-Oct-21
Foggy Mountain 10-Oct-21
sammyg 10-Oct-21
GLF 10-Oct-21
parr 10-Oct-21
Yellah Nocks 10-Oct-21
Corax_latrans 10-Oct-21
Gun 10-Oct-21
Jegs.mi 11-Oct-21
tradmt 11-Oct-21
Don T. Lewis 11-Oct-21
Corax_latrans 11-Oct-21
babysaph 11-Oct-21
Keekeerun 12-Oct-21
Brittman 12-Oct-21
Iowacedarshooter 12-Oct-21
HRhodes 13-Oct-21
letrwalk 13-Oct-21
Bassmaster 13-Oct-21
LDB 13-Oct-21
SB 13-Oct-21
deerhunt51 14-Oct-21
lawdy 14-Oct-21
Hoshblood 15-Oct-21
Murray Seratt 15-Oct-21
From: Valley Scout
Date: 09-Oct-21




I'm posting from the stand. I don't really post anymore, often have little to add that hasn't been said, but thought I would today. It's been great in the stand today, lots of critters are active today and the weather has been great. My point for the post is that I had a buck come in, but I passed on him. He had 3 main points on each side and 1 very small brow tine on his left antler (7 point) but was very young. I enjoyed watching him, had one very excellent shot opportunity, but thought to let him go and see if he makes it to next year. I mentioned this to some fellows who are hunting the same land with me (private not state but I'm currently 400 meters from the boundary with state land) and I got mixed responses. "Glad you saw him, hope he makes it and goes up" and "You let that go? You'll regret that" are the reactions. I know he may not make it as others would take him, but I'm pretty good with my decision. Sure, I might not see another buck, but I'm not going to second guess it. How many have encountered that same difference in reaction from other hunters when you let one walk? It's not the first time I've been told I'd regret a decision.

From: longbow1968
Date: 09-Oct-21




No regrets getting to see deer while on stand… You did good.

From: SB
Date: 09-Oct-21




I've heard that before...then come gun season all the small bucks I passed are piled in the back of thier truck!

From: Gun Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 09-Oct-21




I don't tell friends what I even see anymore. They wouldn't believe me half the time. :^)

From: Gun Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 09-Oct-21




I don't have near the pressure you guys in the states have where I hunt. He'll never get bigger if he's killed. You did good IMO.

From: MStyles
Date: 09-Oct-21




You enjoyed watching him pass by. Enjoying what you’re doing is the main thing.

From: LDB
Date: 09-Oct-21




I almost always let the first deer of the year pass. Except for one year. Pretty good buck first day out, it was back when we could only shoot one deer, had no turkeys and pheasant numbers were way way down. The most miserable hunting season ever, until the snow came, rabbits in the farm groves.

From: Percy
Date: 09-Oct-21




What can you say, if it's legal someone will shoot it. NYS DEC saw fit to open a doe only several day gun season in September. Neighbors shot 4 deer, 1 doe and 3 fawns. Fawns 2 button bucks. Fawn total field dressed wight was less than 120 lbs. You can't fix stupid!!

Percy

From: Valley Scout
Date: 09-Oct-21




Well, now for the rest of the story. One of the other fellows shot it... That buck would have been amazing next year.

From: Caughtandhobble
Date: 09-Oct-21




You let him, it was the right thing to do. It doesn't matter what other people think, hunting is about as personal as it gets.

From: Jon Stewart
Date: 09-Oct-21




You hunted your hunt, saw deer and let one move on. No-ones business but yours.

From: Geezer
Date: 09-Oct-21




I never did understand why a buck with small antlers are passed on. No, I reckon I do get it: it is an ego thing.

From: Ovilla Bill
Date: 09-Oct-21




I would rather shoot a doe than a little buck. However, when you hunt public land, on the ground, with traditional gear, that little buck might be the only shot you get all season. The decision is not always easy.

From: Jegs.mi Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 09-Oct-21




You can hunt next to me anytime.;) You set your goal and didn't compromise. Who cares what someone else thinks.

From: bentstick54
Date: 09-Oct-21




Sometimes I just enjoy watching them. I’ve hunted all my life,and am to the stage that I don’t need to kill something every time out. I usually pass up some nice young bucks just to keep the hopes up of someday seeing a wall hanger. Honestly don’t really care if I kill one or not. If the circumstances are right I will shoot an occasional buck, but most of the time I’m happy putting a couple of does in the freezer. Yes I’ve heard “ you passed him up?” before, and honestly it kind of makes me smile inside. I have no need to prove anything to anybody. Enjoying a day in the woods is enough for me.

From: vikingbear
Date: 09-Oct-21




Never feel bad about the shots you did not take. Only the ones you you shouldn't have taken.

From: Babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 09-Oct-21




That’s what happens usually valley. But shoot what you want

From: fishin coyote
Date: 10-Oct-21




You passed him and made yourself happy and in turn made another hunter’s day who took advantage of a situation that he wouldn’t have gotten if not for you. I’d say it’s a win all the way around.

From: JusPassin
Date: 10-Oct-21




I pass on one deer or another almost every time I go out. I'm picky, and since it's my choice I'm fine with that. I'm more puzzled when I see pics on here of little fawns guys have shot that might weigh 60 pounds. What the heck is up with that?

From: BigJim Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 10-Oct-21
BigJim is a Stickbow.com Sponsor - Website




If you had shot him.. then your buddy shoots another dink, then there are two dead dinks and not just one.

If he's happy with it, then it is his trophy and all should be good. If it bothers you that you didn't shoot the deer because your buddy did, then it's not really about the buck, is it?

Some are happy with any deer. Others are unhappy if you won't take any deer.

Bow hunting is an individual sport. We might share these experiences with others in camp but the choices are or should be our own. Nothing illegal happened. Be happy for him. If he whines about it not being that big, agree with him! Maybe he will get the point. BigJim

From: George D. Stout
Date: 10-Oct-21




""Bow hunting is an individual sport. We might share these experiences with others in camp but the choices are or should be our own. Nothing illegal happened. Be happy for him. If he whines about it not being that big, agree with him! Maybe he will get the point. BigJim""

Yep...pretty much that.

From: Babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 10-Oct-21




I only shoot 10 points or better

From: kennym
Date: 10-Oct-21




I don't apply any size or numbers to a buck. I know when I see one if I'm shooting or not. The one I pass today might get an arrow next time.

From: nocking point Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 10-Oct-21




When somebody shoots a deer I figure in their eyes at that moment it was the best deer in the world whether it be a big or little buck or a doe,and I am glad for them.

From: shade mt
Date: 10-Oct-21




These things really shouldn't be debatable..As was mentioned, it's a individual thing.

Passing on shooting a deer don't necessarily mean it's a ego thing, I've done it lots of times. I've also shot smaller buck lots of times, and I've also passed on a buck early in the season, and then shot him later in the season.

Really needs no explanation, just an individual thing depending on mood or circumstance, or how much meat is in the freezer.

I once watched a doe for quite some time, the more I watched her the less I wanted to kill her, when she finally was in bow range, I drew, took aim then decided against it..I just didn't want to kill her. Yet later on I did shoot a doe.

One year I passed on a 6 pt so many times he started to seem like a pet to me..one evening a guy came in above me and climbed up on a treestand, the 6 pt came under me, then angled up to the other guy who was probably 100 yds away...and he shot him, and I seen him go down. Afterward I climbed down, went up to the guy, shook his hand and offered congratulations..he was thrilled..and I was happy for him.

From: Foggy Mountain
Date: 10-Oct-21




We’ve all heard mixed responses imo none are incorrect though some of the let em grow crowd would disagree. Imagine a perfect scenario, giant private land, very protected, no other hunters. Your decision might be easy given you have the experience, the time, the opportunity. Say some single mom, dad that hasn’t hunted all year. Has first three day window all year and it might be the last with the schedule. Wouldn’t mind shooting one. Their opportunity is limited, can’t fault them for their decision. Take a young kid, shot one deer, he’d be silly to let it pass. An old man, his eyesight is limited, his hearing, can’t drag too far and hasn’t shot a deer in 5 years. You gonna fault him? It’s not your deer you let go. Take a middle aged man, started hunting late in life, shot 3 deer, you can’t fault him either. Now understand some are only deer hunters. If it’s legal and they’re satisfied we can’t put your values on others. As a kid I used to shoot lots of deer. Mostly bucks maybe a dozen a year in dif states and seasons. I was more selective than. 4 years ago I had brain surgery, dominant eye is now real blurry, no pheripheral, deaf in one ear, can’t tell direction, equilibrium off. Hard to be in tree stand. Gotta tell you the 2 does I’ve shot this year were bigger accomplishments than the bucks in the past. Ok so now I’ve got the does, I’m passing and looking for a buck. It doesn’t have to be a banger. Say I shoot one, the following would be bigger. It evolves throughout the year for me. First year after surgery I shot a nice 7 and 8. Can’t place your personal values upon others. If your dad wanted that buck for his last deer it’d be ok right? It’s always ok. We’ve gotta make our own decisions and be comfortable with that as you are. Don’t worry what anyone else might do. One more quick thought. Years back I was in Alberta. Shot a chocolate with a white blaze first nice. Decent bear as well. That was Monday. Everyone tagged out within couple days with good bears. A few nights later a bomber came in, biggest bear I ever would’ve shot. My fingers were on string and I almost drew. Than I thought about the guys reading in camp. I let him walk. Last night, last 1/2 hour before dark an almost as big bear came in. I shot him. No I had no regrets either. No I didn’t second guess letting the first one go. I simply wanted to hunt. That was always the real reason when I shot lots buck to self impose 8s and up, to prolong my time in woods. In my state crossbows are legal. I can surely use one right? Hell no. My buddy once commented given my limitations he’d be using a crossbow. I told him it’s not his hunt, I’m doing it my way. I’d rather shoot a doe or smaller buck with a styk than a bigger one way out yonder with a crossbow and God forbid bait. Everyone has their reasons. Be good with yours

From: sammyg
Date: 10-Oct-21




I've let lots of deer walk. I've taken what I consider my fair share in the 45 years that I've hunted deer. Many, many times I went without filling a tag that season and I don't regret it one iota. I was in the woods and hunting that was the main thing. I did let one deer walk years ago and I've played the scenario over and over in my mind many times and I still think I made the right choice by letting him go. This hunt was during our gun season and it was the first time I'd ever hunted with a handgun. Biggest whitetail buck I've ever had in my sights and I let him walk. It was not the best angle for the shot and it was pouring rain. I was afraid that if I botched the shot I'd never find him. Oh well, that's one of the reasons we call it hunting, isn't it.

From: GLF
Date: 10-Oct-21




I don't fault anyone for their hunting decisions. But, silly me ,I expect the same consideration.

From: parr
Date: 10-Oct-21




The thing I look forward to most every time I head out to hunt is the possibility of shooting a buster buck. In Kansas we get only one buck tag and 5-6 doe tags. Therefore, once I fill my buck tag the excitement is pretty much gone for me the rest of the season. For that reason I have eaten many buck tags with absolutely no regret. I have been bowhunting deer for 45 years and have shot some decent bucks but some of my best experiences are encounters with monster bucks - even when I don't close the deal. I absolutely love hunting for whitetail bucks.

From: Yellah Nocks
Date: 10-Oct-21




One year I arrowed a large bodied spike. Turned out well. A co-worker with terminal cancer and his family needed that deer. My freezer is right tight full already this year. It has to be a monster or the lady we know in church who has cancer will have a full freezer. I figure that God puts them in front of me, I should be grateful if the deer is needed, and act accordingly. If nobody is meatless, it is going to need a TON of points to loose an arrow, and STILL the meat goes to someone somewhere with little mouths to feed.

From: Corax_latrans
Date: 10-Oct-21




I don’t count a younger buck as any less desirable than a big one…. Especially because I’ve never had much in the way of luxury when it comes to choosing where I would hunt, so you take what comes. But in this state, private land is overloaded with deer and I don’t see any sense in taking a buck “to fill the freezer” unless I’m unlikely to be able to get out again that season. When I had great private land access, it was almost a given that I would see at least 1 deer in range per sit, so there I was really looking for the very best, safest shots more than anything, and I kind of made it my policy to not take more than 1 buck/year… so I always told myself that I was looking for something bigger than anything I already have on the wall in the garage…. But in the bottom of the 9th, if it’s right there in my wheelhouse….

On public out here, ANY deer is more than I have figured out thus far, so I guess I won’t cop an attitude about anything I haven’t done yet. Pat Himself won’t even bother with public land here… He has plenty of much better options, so I don’t blame him, and the public land guys should probably thank him for not adding to the pressure. Pretty sure I would take the first solid opportunity on anything over a year old…. and I might go younger, depending on how far it is back to the nearest road…. ;)

From: Gun Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 10-Oct-21




"I never did understand why a buck with small antlers are passed on. No, I reckon I do get it: it is an ego thing."

Not an ego thing with me other than rubbing it in the MA crowd a bit.

I hold out for big Deer because I like the challenge. When a buck gets 4yrs plus he is in a different class than other deer. I have spots that have big Deer and a good age structure. And virtually no outside pressure other than poachers. I moved so I can hunt areas like that and spend a lot of time gaining access and scouting more than I hunt. I don't care what anyone else shoots.

From: Jegs.mi Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 11-Oct-21




Glf X2.

From: tradmt
Date: 11-Oct-21




Never, I’m the one shooting the forky! Lol

I pass, then one day I might shoot, depends on the date and/or the hunt. I struck out on elk yesterday but came upon a forky mule deer so I spent an hour or so stalking him, with my pack and my boots off I made it to about 80 yards and he caught me, I would have arrowed him and been proud as ever to do so. Fun hunt anyway.

From: Don T. Lewis
Date: 11-Oct-21




Sounds like you had a successful hunt to me. Well done!

From: Corax_latrans
Date: 11-Oct-21




JMO, you learn a lot more from “faliure” than “success”, and any time you learn something, that’s a Win. So….

From: babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member
Date: 11-Oct-21




An old mature doe is still smarter

From: Keekeerun
Date: 12-Oct-21




What tradmt said above x2 I agree 100% "A fun hunt and would be just as proud" It's a fact that stuff happens out of our control to us all. Have fun, don't worry and shoot straight!

From: Brittman
Date: 12-Oct-21




I've let many small bucks walk the past several years mainly because I'm getting lazy and don't feel like doing the late night tracking , dragging , and cleaning. I'm getting older and hunt alone so I'm getting picky but I do love seeing smaller bucks plus it's good practice getting them close and drawing back on them .

From: Iowacedarshooter
Date: 12-Oct-21




had fun this evening had 6 deer pass within range and never picked my bow up i just enjoyed the show! 5 does and one buck i let them all walk!

From: HRhodes
Date: 13-Oct-21




Jon Stewart x 2!

From: letrwalk
Date: 13-Oct-21




Hey, your choice gives me a pat on the back for my handle being letrwalk.....

From: Bassmaster
Date: 13-Oct-21




I let quite a few of them walk when Pa. changed the law as to what was legal to shoot. One I can still see. A 6 point with a legit 18 inch spread. It only had 2 up.

From: LDB
Date: 13-Oct-21




Monday, right after sun set, I could have taken a rather long shot at a nice young 8 pointer. Good thing I did not shoot him, I had a type of heart attack two hours later, a bad 6 hour bout with a-fib. At a 3:15 a.m. I tried a tapping routine since the drugs they were shoving into me were not slowing down the erratic a-fib or lowering the run away blood pressure. My heart stopped, all of the nurses went into panic mode when the alarms sounded off, and then restarted on its own to 60 bpm with a 128 over 78 bp. I am going out tomorrow, since I left the hospital with no prescription or advice from the doctor, he basically gave me a 's%$t happens' diagnosis. I will take it easy. I may let one walk or I may not, I will see when and if I get such an opportunity.

From: SB
Date: 13-Oct-21




I passed on a small buck that my wife shot the following week! It was her first deer so all good!

From: deerhunt51
Date: 14-Oct-21




I tell archers I take hunting to shoot what they have a tag for and would be happy with. Sounds like all went the way you two hunters wanted it to go.

From: lawdy
Date: 14-Oct-21




I had the first buck I have seen since 2019 feed on grass about 20 feet from me in my ghillie suit. I took my wife there this evening and no deer. I snoozed in the leaves while she watched and hoped. She has never shot a deer, so I am the guide this year until she scores.

From: Hoshblood
Date: 15-Oct-21




Enjoyed your post and perspective Foggy Mountain, everyone's situations are different and the choices are very personal preference. My preference change by how much time I have to hunt in a given season, certainly if I was fortunate enough to take a deer early in the season buck or doe determines what I pass on after. I've passed on mature doe past seasons because I didn't have time or too tired after working all day to drag one out and process one that evening. 2 weeks into the PA season now, I would love a good opportunity at a mature doe and be tickled with taking just that deer this year because my time in the woods is extremely limited this year to Saturday's and the occasional short morning or evening hunt. I've never been in a position to be overly fussy on legal bucks in PA especially now with the 3 point rule and hunting mostly public land. On our very first morning opener I had a crab claw Y, possibly a barely legal 5 point come through at 5 yards the best shot would have been about 12. I didn't want to role the dice on whether or not legal, but years back before antler restrictions, that deer would have been in my freezer. My opinion is any deer taken with traditional equipment is a trophy - again my opinion and don't judge others for their trophy hunting decisions, good for them they have the places, financial backing and time to hunt that way. I would be alot more fussy if I had a piece of ground and highly populated herd that allowed me to do so, but that is definitely not the case in my areas where now there are tons more people in the woods with cross bows that years back never existed. All personal preference and situational. I too don't typically share what I see except for with my own son and hunting partner. His success is more important to me than my own anymore even at 21. Always been, always will be.

From: Murray Seratt Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 15-Oct-21




LDB, hope all is well with you. Prayers sent.

Murray





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