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Thread: Cattle Flat

  1. #1
    Member Dino's Avatar
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    Cattle Flat

    Early start, up at 3.30 pack a lunch and off to pick up my mate to head down to cattle flat, a block at the southwest corner of the Blue Mountains RHA.

    This is actually a block I have only hunted once before, hunted the Rankleburn block next door 1/2 doz times so looking forward to a new block.

    Light a 6 and we were at the road end not lang after, weather perfect, plans laid and off we went.

    My beat was a long stepped ridge, lots of open beech, steep sides and creeks with good amounts of broadleaf, dew in the bush overnight made stalking possible, lots of small shit on the floor, we have had a few good belts of wind down this way just like the rest of the country.

    About 20 minutes after setting off we hit the first foot , lots of regen, great place for a deer to be feeding, sure enough a nice yearling about 50 meters away, on to us though and melted away. I know north islanders have the impression Fallow are easy hunting, these deer get hammered from FEb to Nov, very popular for hunting down here. I love it for the challenge of hunting the fallow in the bush, makes a great reward when you get one on the deck..oh yeah, they taste bloody good too.

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    I have had Max for 2 years now, I am loving hunting with a dog, problem I have not shot a deer over her yet.

    In fact before today I have missed the last couple. Not the hounds fault, mine or as sometimes happens deer just fuck off in the wrong direction.

    I have spent a bit of time practising my offhand shooting as deer seem to get on to us a bit more, 2 lots of noise and movement gives more chance for the deer to get on to you. Whn hunting the few times without the dog, I seem to be able to stalk up on deer and have a better chance at shooting an animal undisturbed, or at least not so worried. I figure the better I am at snap shooting the better, part of the reason for reloading, to be able to get some rounds down range.

    Anyway, back to the hunt, we worked our way up the hill, exploring wee spurs, hunting the broadleaf edges and stalking through the open stuff, sun came out, really started to warm up.

    A shot rang out, my mate was a ridge over from me, checked the phone and sure enough he had a shot at a yearling, no result, pulled over the top. easy to do in the undulating country and with a screen of low pepper woods, as he said, he has trained himself not to shoot through bush.

    We started to see a bit of pig sign and after coming back to the main ridge the dog got real interested, a sow and 6 suckers making a bee line for somewhere safe.
    Dog broke and nailed a piglet…not good! Sow ran off with her litter in tow.

    Sat down and had a wee break, its hard for the dog stalking for extended periods, had a sandwich and let things settle down.

    Onwards and upwards, came to a really open ridge, wind not quite in our favour, blowing from right to left as we walked onto the ridge. STOP, something not right…2 yearlings at 70 meters, silouhetted 2 sets of ears checking me out, dog no clue was just at my side. No chance of a rest, nearest tree 10 meters away, couldn't sit too much low cover…oh well feeling good with recent practise, lifted rifle, good sight picture, picked the deer in front, did not really want to shoot 2, aimed for the big bit, 2/3rds up the front leg, relax…squeeze off. Shot felt good, 2 deer bounce off. I was convinced there must have been 3 deer, was confident the shot had been good, we walked over and I was looking for a deer on the ground.

    No bloody deer! searched for blood…none. Easy to see as now the bush is dry…not a good result really…just hunting…still gutted.

    We hunted for a another couple of hours with no luck, tried to have a snooze, too many bloody sandflies. Lunch consumed, watered and fed we were ready for out afternoon hunt. We made our way down the hill, stopping on the high points with good views down on to the flat ridges below

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    After resting up here for 15 minutes, was just about to move off, suddenly the dog perks up. Instantly I can sees ginger shape moving below, bloody thing was bedded up in a patch of pepper woods and had chosen the perfect time to move. Hang on, bone on top, not only that its a cracker, walked out of sight but is walking my way. I quickly stood up and 2 steps to a tree for a rest, lined up where it should pop out.
    Bloody deer was on to us, turned and bolted, guess they don't get big by being stupid. Another good look at his rack and I know I am looking at 200 plus, wide long and great palms. I can see where he is going to run, line up, deer comes in to sight picture head neck shoulders, squeeze….miss.


    FUCK FUCK FUCK. 2 more bounds and this fully mature buck is into a screen of pepper woods above a broadleaf gut…gone!

    Searched for blood, in my heart I knew I and not connected. Dog ground scented and wanted to follow, I called her off, no way we were going to catch up with him.

    I completely stuffed up, if I hadn't moved the buck would have kept on the trail he was on and been 30 meters away, side on, wind in my favour, we would have had a chance at an easy shot, patience is a virtue sometimes, certainly in this case.

    So sat down and gathered the thoughts, if this Buck was moving, other animals will be too. Down the hill slowly checking the open bush and searching the Braoadleaf, just like on the way up. managed to pick the wrong ridge on the way down, ended up at a creek running the wrong way….mmm, out with the map and a plan is hatched to get out. we set off and after 30 minutes feeling a bit lost. Time for chocolate bar and a smoke, pull out the map and nut it out. Lots of people get lost in here, every year there are a few lads sleeping out. Not me I thought. Walk east and I will het something so off I go, found a lot of complete Crap, finally hit the edge of the block and am found but now about 2 hours from the car, still Im found, not lost so off I go, hunting again, rain sets in and there are some clearings to hunt on the way back.

    Found some more complete crap, then some more, then Gorse, then a belt of scrub. Down to the river and just to top off a great day, arsed up and got wet up to my man boobs. Another hour and I finally hit the car, change and can of coke. Picked up my mate on the road on the way out, he nailed a yearling on a clearing so at least one of us scored. tales swapped. My mate who has hunted here for 30 years was surprised the buck still in antler, must be bloody close to dropping.

    So my tale of woe and misery ends, 20 hours after leaving I pull up to the homestead, a shower and fart sack calling.

    What a great day, way better than driving my desk for the day. Got to spend a day on the hill with my dog, spend some time in a beautiful part of the world and a couple of stories to swap in some hut in the back of beyond.

    I love hunting…even the not go to plan days.

    Cheers

    Dino
    "If God wanted us to be vegetarian....why did he make meat taste so good?"

  2. #2
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    Nice, was this recent? Seems a bit late for a mature stag to have his head gear still? I no the ones I have seen/shot in the last week have all well dropped and they were only young buggers.

    Cheers for the report

  3. #3
    Almost literate. veitnamcam's Avatar
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    Nice write up cheers.:thumbup:

    Does seem late but your spring is probably a month ahead of mine and two months ahead of the blues Perazzi.
    "Hunting and fishing" fucking over licenced firearms owners since ages ago.

  4. #4
    Member Dino's Avatar
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    Yep was recent…yesterday.

    I was surprised the buck was still carrying, as was my mate who has hunted down the Blue Mountains science the 70s.

    Has been a mild winter and early spring here, last 2 months just like everyone else unsettled.

    Lots of grass on the roads and clearings, elevation is low only up to 800 and where I was hunting was around 200-400 meters.

    Cheers

    Dino
    "If God wanted us to be vegetarian....why did he make meat taste so good?"

  5. #5
    Sending it Gibo's Avatar
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    Unlucky mate, nice write up

  6. #6
    Member stug's Avatar
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    Good stuff Dean. Nice to see a pic of Maxi. One of my wires nailed the first pig he saw too. Pity about the buck.

  7. #7
    OPCz Rushy's Avatar
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    Great story Dino. Out there is always better than in the office.
    It takes 43 muscle's to frown and 17 to smile, but only 3 for proper trigger pull.
    What more do we need? If we are above ground and breathing the rest is up to us!
    Rule 1: Treat every firearm as loaded
    Rule 2: Always point firearms in a safe direction
    Rule 3: Load a firearm only when ready to fire
    Rule 4: Identify your target beyond all doubt
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    Rule 7: Avoid alcohol and drugs when handling firearms

  8. #8
    Caretaker Wildman's Avatar
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    Good read mate.

  9. #9
    Former Gun Plumber lostlegend's Avatar
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    hard luck Dino but awesome write up, I'm wondering if the buck you saw was the same big buck i saw in the next door block a few months back. The one i saw had a very impressive set of head gear but didn't stick around for me to get a shot away at him.

  10. #10
    Member Dino's Avatar
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    a few ridges over from rankle burn, possible.

    Still bloody mulling over missing him, will be back in there for sure and have a wee poke around.

    Never been much of a trophy hunter, that may have changed!

    Cheers for the feedback guys

    Dino
    "If God wanted us to be vegetarian....why did he make meat taste so good?"

  11. #11
    Former Gun Plumber lostlegend's Avatar
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    there have been quite a few big heads seen and shot down that end of the mountain over the last couple of years, with any luck you will get another shot at him next year with a new years growth on his head.

    19 years ago I stuffed up a shot at a 14 pointer red in Waikaia, I still think about how I could have possibly missed it from time to time, it was only 30 yards away at the time of the shot.

  12. #12
    Member Dino's Avatar
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    Yep, historically that end has been producing, not just last couple years, more than fair share of record book heads. Good genetics, good feed and a bit of age will give a good result.

    14 ponter from Waikaia, wow! Be cool to see one at 30 yards.
    Cheers

    Dino
    "If God wanted us to be vegetarian....why did he make meat taste so good?"

  13. #13
    Former Gun Plumber lostlegend's Avatar
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    it was a magic sight right up until it didn't fall over with my shot, I still to this day don't know what happened, I even checked the rifle barrel to see if the projectile actually left the barrel, it did, so was just my stuff up. the stag was in the head waters of post office creek if you know the area. still a few big reds living in there if you know where to look.

  14. #14
    Caretaker Wildman's Avatar
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    So long until next roar...
    Gibo likes this.

  15. #15
    Sending it Gibo's Avatar
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    It is aye! 5 bloody months

 

 

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