Tim’s First Bow Hunt
This was Tim’s first year bow hunting. At 14 years old, Tim decided to bow hunt with me over rifle hunting because his knee injury limits his walking ability and he knows the area where I hunt entails very little walking. The advice I gave Tim on bow hunting was to practice shooting everyday and to know the exact yardage for each pin. In addition to mastering the shot, we discussed camouflage, noise, movement, and scent control. We procured Realtree AP for his camouflage, galoshes for footwear, Mathews bow, Montec broad heads, Hunter arrows, a Tru Ball release, and a harness system for his tree stand. In late July, Tim and I set up his tree stand and he practiced shooting out of it.
I explained to Tim that bow hunters who typically struggle to harvest whitetail deer are usually worried only about scent control, but forget about the importance of noise and movement control. Walking into your hunting area has to be done in absolute stealth mode and never walk where the deer come through. Climbing into your tree stand and getting set up has to be done in absolute stealth mode too. While sitting in the stand and looking around at all your shooting lanes, you must eliminate any quick head or hand movements; a whitetail deer can spot movement from more than 100 yards out. Also, hands without gloves are like flashlights; wear gloves even if its 90 degrees outside if you want increase your chances at success.
With this advice Tim and I headed out to our tree stands for his first bow hunt experience in early September. We snuck into our tree stands about three hours prior to sunset. After sitting for about an hour a 3×3 whitetail appeared out of nowhere and after a few more minutes, a doe with 2 fawns came walking into shooting range. Tim told me ahead of time that he only wanted to harvest a buck, so his eye was really on the buck; he just let the doe and fawns pass through. The buck never gave him a clear broadside shot and eventually walked off into the trees. It was hard to watch the deer walk away knowing he got away.
Another hour went past, and then this monster whitetail buck came out of the trees walking straight toward Tim completely unaware of our presence. Tim drew back an arrow in absolute silence as the deer approached his shooting lane. It looked like a huge 5×6 coming in quickly and then stopped 5 yards out from his tree stand presenting a perfect broadside shot. Two seconds later, with careful aim Tim released the arrow and it hit the deer with perfect precision. This buck ran 35 yards and collapsed. We could see the deer lying down from the tree stands and after waiting about 15 minutes we approached the deer. As I walked up on it, all I could think was, WOW.
This was Tim’s first night ever bow hunting and he sticks a deer bigger than any whitetail I have ever seen in the wild. The size of this deer is not typical for south east Idaho; this is more like what you would see harvested on TV around the east coast or in the mid west somewhere. We scored the deer at 162.25. I told Tim, good luck ever finding another deer like this the rest of your life buddy.
Hunter – Tim Bolleurs
Dad – Richard Bolleurs