Olivia's first deer hunt: Deer and turkeys were already feeding in the first food plot that we came to. That plot is planted in Whitetail Forage Oats Plus and also another forage that we are currently testing for Whitetail Institute. We continued on to the second food plot which is planted with Tall Tine Tubers — trust me it’s unbelievable.
We got to the blind about 2:45 pm. About 10 minutes after we got there, and until Olivia shot at about 7 p.m., it was a steady stream of deer in/out eating/gorging in the plot. Most deer out at one time was about 15 but I suppose we saw about 25 does / fawns and one spike. About 7 p.m. he stepped out of the brush just east of the blind at about 45 yards and immediately went to feeding on the food plot. There were a few tense moments as I tried to get Olivia calmed down but after a deep breath, she was fine and unbelievably focused. I filmed the deer for about one minute. When he turned broadside, Olivia was ready and made a great hit on him with her new Thompson Center Pro Hunter — highlighted in pink of course. After the shot, the buck ran right at us and went by the tower blind about 10 to 15 feet away. I reviewed the footage a couple times and just wasn't 100 percent sure of the hit because of the smoke or if the spot on his side I thought I could see was even a hit? About five minutes after she shot I decided I better get down and look for blood right by the blind — dark was approaching and rain was in the forecast. Fortunately, I found blood immediately which made me feel pretty confident the spot I thought I could see on his side (while reviewing the video) was indeed a good hit. Five minutes later we found him about 30 yards in the brush. He is approximately 170 inches and at least 5-1/2 or 6-1/2 years old I’d say. A shed from the same buck three years ago is in the enclosed photo. It was really a good family time and a great, great buck. Side note: As I'm sure you guessed, I am extremely proud of my beautiful six-year old daughter. She was a real trooper — very excited to practice shooting, look at trail camera pics, watch deer, hunt, etc. We practiced shooting most of the summer (about 300 rounds) — primarily with a scoped .22 caliber gun. She didn’t practice as much with the muzzleloader but often times looked through the scope to be sure she could find things easily on 3X, 6X, or 9X power. When she did shoot the muzzleloader (80 grains of powder and a 200-grain bullet), she was never spooked by the recoil — which was always a little worrisome to me. I'm still smiling about the whole memorable event.