This week on the Missouri Woods & Water Podcast all of us guys are back in the studio together to get the chance to listen to the great Torry Cook talk about a topic that isn't coyotes. Some may not know, but Torry is an avid deer hunter as well and is passionate about getting after them. In this week's show we get an awesome tales of the chase episode about Torry's quest for the blind 6. We also talk about a near death fall Torry experienced a few years ago and how that helped refocus him. This is a great story and a great way to kick off deer season!
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[00:00:00] Welcome to the Missouri woods and water podcast. I'm your host, Nate Thomas. We have got a hell of a show today, folks. If you are aware of who Tori cook is, Tori is the owner of MFK game calls and well known for his involvement in coyotes, but. Some of you might not know, Tori is a deer killer and has a passion for deer hunting.
Missouri Woods and Water has the first ever podcast, Tales of the Chase, where Tori is talking about deer hunting. [00:01:00] And it is a hell of a fun show we got to talking with Tori after the last time we recorded with him about coyotes and how much he loves deer hunting. And we just thought, man, it'd be so cool to listen to a story from something that, not a lot of people talk to Tori about, which is deer hunting.
And like I said a second ago, he's got a huge passion for it. And just thought it would be a great time to start off, kick off the season here in Missouri with an awesome Tales of the Chase episode with Tori Cooke. You're gonna be hearing this show four days after the season starts. Nice kick off to the season and Tori brings it home with a, an awesome story chasing after a deer for several years.
The show is pretty long, so I'm just going to thank our sponsors for what they do for us and everything they do. We appreciate everything about them. So let me name off those sponsors that we got that we couldn't do this show without. Thank you to Weber Outfitters, Athlon Optics, [00:02:00] Onyx, Camelfire, Black Ovis, Huntworth Gear, Alps Outdoors, Zanderland Boots, Reveal by Tacticam.
And our buddy Dustin Williams at Habitat Works. We thank you all and we'll get you some longer spots at some point, but this show is nice and long and I don't want to waste any time getting in here and listening to it because it is freaking sweet and we want to thank Torrey for coming on.
We're excited to talk to him and get to know him even more, so let's get into this show, Tales of the Chase, with Torrey Cook. Not just a coyote killer. But a deer killer, this is the Missouri woods and water podcast.[00:03:00]
All right. We are with returning guests. Now, friend of the show, Tori cook. What's up, man? Oh, another day. I appreciate y'all having me on always fun. Is it as hot as Hades down there or is it just Missouri right now? No, right now we're, I think we're at our hottest days of the year for this year so far. The heat index we hunted yesterday.
I've been hunting every day. And I think the heat index when we got back to the truck was 116 when we were soaked, but we killed some coyotes. I saw that on social media. You're a, you took your grandson out to, you, you shot a coyote with your trad bow, correct? Or, and you took your grandson out.
To either finish it off or find it. I never, I didn't see the end of it, but right. He thinks he finishes, he shoots all of them. He shoots everything I shoot again. He finishes everything off. Okay. I [00:04:00] know I get it. That makes more sense. They get a finishing shot. We've circled this day since we had Tori on our show a few months ago.
We got to talking to Tori, like we do with a lot of our guests after we recorded. And we learned something that not a lot of people know, but Torrey Cook is not just about doggies. He likes to hunt the four legged cervid animals also, better known as a white tailed deer, don't you? Yeah, that's I'm known for the coyote stuff because that's, the business side of it.
But bow hunting deer is actually my favorite thing to do. It's always been, that's always been my thing. I love to hunt coyotes too, but when bow season comes in... I'm strictly bow hunting deer from the time season comes in until, it goes out. And if I run out of tags, I'm going to buy something in a neighboring state and keep on, I'm going to hunt them until their horns fall off pretty much.
I like it. You heard it here first folks. Yeah. Not a lot of people know that. Yeah. Yeah. I [00:05:00] guarantee you that's a fun fact. Yeah. I'm pretty low key with my deer stub just cause I hunt so much public ground. I'm pretty low key with it. I don't advertise it cause I don't. Make any, it's not part of the business side of it very much.
So a lot of people don't see a lot of my deer stuff. Do what? Probably your vacation away from coyotes too. It's your kind of your own, I don't want to say serenity type moment, but yeah, you don't have to worry about filming or, if you do or don't, you get, get to do it your way type deal.
Yeah. It's a. It is. It's the coyote side of it. When I'm hunting and filming coyotes, it's all, it's, I'm trying, I've got to get those videos. I've got to get this stuff to showcase the sounds when I'm deer hunting. I video all that too. I carry a camera on every hunt, regardless of what I'm hunting.
But when I'm deer hunting, it's more just my time. It's more enjoyable. A little slower pace, which [00:06:00] deer hunting slower pace than coyote hunting anyway, but. Yeah. It's more enjoyable because it's just me and the, what I'm doing, there's no business related aspect to it. Yeah, I think that's, we've talked about this a million times, what a lot of us, me specifically included in that, is what we, what I love about the two different sports, deer hunting and coyote hunting, because they're really not even close to the same thing.
They're so different that, it's hard to even say what do you love more now? I would be the same as Tori. I would choose whitetail over coyote. If I could only do one thing for the rest of my life, that's what I would do. But man, it's hard to compare them because they're not even close to the same.
There's a totally different rush you get from the two different hunting. Yeah. And the good thing about cow hunting, deer hunting, turkey hunting, all of it. The way it the times of the year that a lot of it's at its best. They [00:07:00] don't overlap too bad you know you can Get out there and enjoy all of it, which is what I do.
I just go from one animal right to the next and pretty much hunt year round. Here prior to, I was waiting on family bust up on the cows to start taking place here until into August. Prior to that, I was calling coons and shooting him with my, with my long bows, so it just, I'm always looking for, I'm not much of a target guy, I'm not like the live target, I'm always looking for something that's breathing that I knock the blood out of and I get a little more out of that. I'm with you, I'm with you. So I just rotate for whatever's in season that I can get after. Yeah. That's what I'll swap to. Made for killing, not just a slogan.
Made for killing, it doesn't say made for killing coyotes only. That's right. That's right. But again, when that velvet sheds, until that, hey. Shed their horns. I'm gonna be chasing deer game time. Yep. Speaking of game time. This is the first time [00:08:00] That we know of that Tori was talking about that. He has been on a show where we're not gonna talk about coyotes We're gonna talk about a tales of the chase episode with Tori cook himself about a white tail Which is awesome.
Cause we haven't had one for a while. We've been doing a lot of informational podcasts lately. And we got to talk him a Tory. Like we said earlier after we recorded last time and started talking about deer and he mentioned how he enjoys the stories. So we thought why don't you tell a story?
Yeah. And so we're going to have a Tales of the Chase episode with Torrey Cook. And it's about a deer. I got to ask this first question. Did you nickname the deer? I've heard y'all talk about that before. I usually don't. Necessarily named deer like these, catchy names. I call this deer, the blind six point.
I usually refer to them as, whatever characteristic makes it easy to identify them when I've got one or two buddies that I'll [00:09:00] trade a little information with pictures and stuff like that where we know what each other's hunting and we'll trade information on those deer and usually, whatever my.
Three or four or five or six, whatever deer I've got that are worth talking about. I'll call them stuff like the wide eight, the blind six, stuff like that. Another reason why Tory makes it on my list. I do have one that I call Craig.
He's named, I'll tell y'all this story real quick, how he got his name. And this could potentially be a future Tales of the Chase. I have not killed this deer yet. I have, if I get him again this year, this will be the fifth year documented history I've got with this deer. But anyway, Craig got his name because I was, I had my camera, I was running in video mode.
I'm getting videos of this deer. He's just a, [00:10:00] he's just a pretty good big framed eight point, just clean eight point, but recognizable. He's got some curls to his tines. And anyway, I had at the time, that was the second year that I've had the deer. He had no name. And I think I called him like curl tine eight point or something.
And I'm getting all these videos of this deer. Just repeatedly of him working a scrape and then standing around in front of the camera anyway over time I figure out he's got a doe bedded in a top right there by my camera So he's tending and keeping this doe hemmed up right there I get a series of pictures a couple of hours or videos off this deer And then I get a video of him and the doe running away from the camera And while the video is still rolling, you see the deer in the background leaving.
A guy that I know that hunts this piece of public ground walks out in front of the camera. He doesn't see the camera, it's to his back. He walks [00:11:00] out and stands there and he's looking, I can tell that he saw the deer. And I don't know if he knew what they were, but he stops and he's watching those deer.
That guy's name is Craig, that's, I've referred to that deer as Craig and Craig has managed to, I've had a couple of opportunities to kill him. I had never really tried or to hunt him. I've always got something, usually have something bigger, but anyway, Craig is still alive as of last year was still alive.
So if I get him this year. It'll be five years with him and that should put him about seven years old. Dang. Oh wow. Somewhere in that neighborhood. That should be about his biggest year, hopefully. Yeah. Yeah. I was expecting some extravagant name. Craig. Craig. Yeah. Micah, you have no idea how happy Micah is right now because I feel like I won because he's technically naming the deer.
Logical names. So I feel like I win because that is a nickname. No, we're the same. We do the same thing. That's what Micah does. I got a wide eight. I got one that he got the [00:12:00] nickname nubs because he's got three legs and one nub. So just basic stuff. I don't come up with freaking, Scorpion King or whatever.
I don't have to, I don't have to come up with anything. It's just a name off Mortal Kombat. Now I don't have T Rex or Brontosaurus. Hey, there is a whole bunch of Mortal Kombat characters I can send you names of and you're good. You'll have badass names for as long as you need them. He don't need them.
Hey, whatever I mean. I get it. Either way, something, if you're taking in inventory of deer, you're hunting specific deer, you need something to identify them, either give them a name, or All the characteristic, I usually do the characteristic deal, it doesn't bother me if somebody's hunting Snoopy or whatever they call it.
Oh, man. That's awesome. Okay the deer we're going to talk about today and when the show comes out, everybody's going to, we'll see a photo of the deer that he harvested is this [00:13:00] big ass. Six pointer. Now the year he killed him, he wasn't six points. He was five. But just this big mainframe six pointer who I guess we can hold off on the age.
We'll let Tori tell the story. Let's get into that. But history, let's let's talk about how this all started with this big ass six what you called the blind six, right? The blind six point, right? How did this whole thing start out with him? So in 2018, I started, late in 2018 probably December of 2018, I started hunting a little piece of Puglet that's fairly close to my house and right off the bat, I put out some cameras and like I said, I always run them in video mode and I had this camera just on a trail in a thicket, a peach spot in a thicket.
And, go back to check the camera, pull the card, and I get one or two videos of this [00:14:00] deer. He was behind a doe both times. And right off the bat, I noticed, these were both night pictures, or night videos, and I noticed immediately that it's just a big old looking deer and he's blind in his left eye. And you could tell even in the daytime that he's blind in his left eye if he was close enough to the camera because his eyelid was half closed.
And so I noticed that about him and he was just this big six point frame. And I looked at the picture, didn't think a whole lot about it other than that looks like an older deer that's only got six points and I noticed he was blind in one eye. Didn't pay much attention to it. Didn't have anything else to hunt on that camera in that spot So just shrugged it off, but I usually save my pictures each year And so I saved it and I'm glad I did because of the way it played out But that was pretty much it for 2018 and what got the story [00:15:00] started so so you knew he existed forward, right?
Yeah but I you know, he wasn't I wasn't thinking about hunting him or you know Really giving him a second thought and so fast forward to 2019, I go back to hunt this place. I ended up shooting deer down there that year that was a decent deer. It was a nine point. Fairly heavy horn deer. Saw some decent deer.
So I said I'm going to go back and hunt this place again. And I used to do a lot of hunting farther from the house. Two hour drive. I had a camp on White River. And there are better deer there. So I spent a lot of my time hunting that area earlier on, white Arkansas, Mississippi river, that river bottom area.
And I just got tired of the traveling and the older I got, I was, wanting to hunt closer to home. So I was giving up, knowingly giving up quality of. Rack size to hunt closer to home. And so 2019, I did not go to those other [00:16:00] places. I just started right back on this smaller block of public. And this time I was running cameras fairly early and right off the bat pretty close to the same area.
Within probably a quarter mile, I get pictures of this dude. He just, I think he had just shed bill in 2019 and I recognize him immediately, big frame, six point blind. And he's walking right at the camera and he's got a limb hung in his rack and big old body is even for early, Season hadn't even come in yet when I get this picture and even then, his body and stuff You could just tell neck size all that stuff.
Just a bigger bodied deer. And he caught my attention I recognized it as the deer that I got in 2018 and That was about it for that year. Other than I was a little more aware Hey, this is an older deer and if I seen I might shoot him, but I'm not going to hunt this deer. And [00:17:00] of course I got pictures of some other deer.
I had another deer fairly close there to him. Had the Craig deer that I mentioned. Hey Craig. And I had a giant framed eight, a giant framed eight point. This deer ended up getting killed on the rifle hunt. The following year and that eight point scored 154, just to is. A massive eight point.
151 or 154. He was over 150 and had 10 inch eye guards. Any eight pointer that hits 135 is a big eight pointer. Yeah. Oh, he was just massive brain, just a big one. And so that deer had my attention along with a couple of other ones during that 2019 timeframe. And I continue to get pictures of this big six point.
He was fairly active in that area and I got plenty of daytime. I probably could have killed him. I was getting a good, I was getting a good bit of activity from him that year [00:18:00] and I thought, sure, they always have these rifle and muzzleloader hunts that come in and I thought, sure, this deer would get killed.
Because most of them, of what I have pictures of early, I usually lose, on an average year, I'll lose 60 percent of my recognizable bucks. Once those hunts are over with and the cameras go back out, I'll lose probably 60 percent of them, sometimes more. And that's just the, the stuff you recognize and pay attention to.
You're better, probably three year old, decent looking deer on up. So I don't focus on him in 2019, I'm hunting those other deer, but I did end up, late season, I end up killing a ten point. That video is actually on the YouTube channel. Okay. I think it's called the Beaver Water Buck and I'm pretty sure that's the year I killed him.
See, that's a name. Beaver Water. That's a name. I'm just saying.[00:19:00] I didn't call the deer the Beaver Water Buck. That was just the name of the, this deer was. There was a bunch of beaver water where I was hunting dammed up swampy stuff and this deer I knew some deer were bedding out there in that water and I was hunting right on the edge of it And I grunted at this deer.
He is a deer I had pictures of two years I actually my buddy had pictures of him the year before I had pictures of him that the year that I killed him and I Ended up grunting this deer and I heard him get up and come out of that beaver water and I grunted at him and come In and I shoot him right there under the tree.
Nice. Check that one out. I killed that deer In 2019, and I called the, I titled the video, the Beaverwater Buck because he come out of Beaverwater, but he didn't have, he didn't have a name. I just called him the 10 point. That big ass 10 pointer. Yeah, the big 10. But anyway, so that gets me partway through the season.
And then I'm trying to kill that big eight point that I mentioned earlier. And I had an opportunity at him. He came in [00:20:00] under me late season. And. I had him and another small eight point there, and I was videoing it. The big deer is facing me, and the smaller eight points between me and him. The big deer is only 17, 18 steps.
I just need him to turn. And in the process of this, the angle that he was, I thought that my viewfinder on my camera might be in my way when I drew. So you know how you can flip it around and fold it flat to the camera? Yeah. I made the mistake of flipping it around and folding it flat to the camera in one bop.
fingers got against the camera. It wasn't, it didn't like eighth of an inch, but I just let it slip from my fingers. And it just that slightest thing, the big deer didn't hear it, but the little one did. And he got a little spooky and hopped off out there sideways. And when he did that, the little deer got downwind of me and took off.
He didn't blow out there real hard. And the big deer kept standing there for a minute or two, but he [00:21:00] never, when he left. He got nervous and was alert and when he decided to go, he took about three big hops and stopped and went back to feeding. And anyway, that was pretty late in the year. Before we go on.
I got one question. I got a question. Are you we met, we talked earlier and you were saying that you were shooting a long bow for like raccoons and stuff. Are you using a long bow? Are you a compound? I swap back and forth. That deer and moat, deer and all of this, I'll be shooting compound. Okay.
Nice. Just curious. So after that deer, that big eight point, there were very few deer right there. I hated hunting that deer. I had more deer in another area over closer to where the blind six point was. And a handful of other decent bucks that I might would shoot if I saw them. Shifted and decided to hunt that area and there was, I was targeting that Craig deer.
[00:22:00] Anyway, this was right there about, I think this, I don't know if we had got into January yet, but it was late, late in the year and I'm sitting there and a group of does come through and this blind six point is with him and I almost killed him that year. I'm glad I didn't, that he wasn't, he was probably about the year I killed him as far as frame, but He's coming through there and I'm going to shoot him if I get a chance.
And like I said, this is public ground stuff. Late in the year, people hunt with dogs and, squirrel hunting, coon hunting, and I don't know that's what this dog was, but anyway, the deer is almost in range, they're trotting down through there, almost in range, I've got the spot picked out to shoot him and before he gets to the hole, a dog opens up, starts falling.
Like a running dog or a coon dog opening on track or something. And it wasn't that close to the deer, but when it opened up, just it was close [00:23:00] enough that it startled and they just broke and run through my hole and anyway, I don't get to shoot him. I was thinking, man, I think that's some bull crap.
We've all been through it. There's nothing worse than being on a hunt. And seeing a dog come through the woods not a coyote. I could give a shit about, cause they're part of the landscape, deer deal with them every day. But when a dog comes through, they just mess with deer.
If they see that or humans on public ground, I used to hunt a little piece that I was pretty close to the neighboring property and I had permission to hunt on the neighboring property too, but for whatever reason, this guy, it was, is one persimmons were starting to drop. And so I'm sitting there, it's getting to be right at that magic hour and I'm seeing deer, further off and they're working their way this way.
And I'm like, okay, yeah, this is good. This is going to be a good night. And then all of a sudden the neighbor, he just comes down and starts picking persimmons, picking them up off the ground. And I'm [00:24:00] just like, Oh man, it took me a few years to get, and I don't know, I don't know that I can say that I'm used to it, but at least realize that's part of the deal.
When you're on public ground, people don't hunt like you hunt and they, it's just so many things that happen. I could, we could. Take a whole podcast and talk about the bullshit that happens on public ground and message you up. We actually have that on our list. Yeah. Our buddy Ethan came up with an idea, public ground etiquette and stuff like that.
Yeah, something. That would be a good one. Oh man. Cause you hear everything out there. It's crazy. Some of the stuff, some of the stuff that people, some of the stuff that happens unknowingly. And in some of the things people do knowingly, that's what's really bad. And it's when they do stuff knowingly, but it's part of it.
And I guess if you hunted [00:25:00] enough, you learned to try to avoid as much of that as possible. But anyway, back on the deer. So that seeding late in 2019, wait a second, I gotta back up just a little bit. I think I'm off a year because 2019, yeah, he's got to back up a little bit.
So 2019, what I, that stuff I just told you, part of that happened in 2020. Okay. Okay. So backing up to 2019 on December 5th of 2019. Okay. I ended up shooting a pretty good deer. A big nine pointed I was hunting. In 2019, I can't believe I skipped ahead on the story. It happens. Because this was a big deal.
We tend to get people off track, too. Yeah in 2019, I do kill that 10 point that I was talking about. No. That's wrong. [00:26:00] 2019, 2019 I'm hunting this big 9 point that I've got, and I end up shooting this deer. And, shortly after that, december 5th. I'm down there hunting. I just started hunting out of a saddle and I found this big turkey foot looking deer.
He's got a big sticker point. Good deer. Mainframe 10 point with a, some turkey foot stickers off his back time. So I'm hunting this deer. I'm hunting out of a saddle. And that particular day I had found this deer. He was on an island. Usually people knew the area. I got a buddy that knows the area I hunt.
My wife knew the area that I hunted. But that particular day, I took a canoe, went down a slough. It was about, I don't know, two, three mile four wheeler ride in. And then three quarter mile down the slough. And then a three quarter mile walk out on this island where I was hunting at. I climb up and I hunt until right at dark.
Pitiful afternoon. I don't even, might have seen one or two deer. Anyway, I'm going to [00:27:00] climb down right there. Gray light just so I can see enough to walk out It's basically when I ran out of camera light I started to get down right and I've got this old Lymans belt that I've been that I've had for years that came with a lock on or a climbing stand several years before and I'm up there hands free on the side of this tree putting all my camera stuff up and I'm down to my last piece putting it in the bag.
I mean I would have had a having my hands back on the tree, but I'm hands free, leaned back on that lineman's rope belt, and it sounded like a 22 going off. That thing just went off. Snap, and I fell 23 feet and broke my back. Oh! I was paralyzed for... The story just took a turn. I know what it feels like to think you're gonna die.
Yeah, absolutely. Because I hit the ground. It didn't knock me out. I landed on my feet. It shot both knees up into my face. Oh, damn. Shattered my nose. A little piece of bone [00:28:00] come through the skin. And I didn't even really realize that because of the pain in my back. But I laid there and there for, that was a, that whole deal was a life changing experience.
Complete. You did you have cell service at the time? Did you have your phone with you? I had it with me, but I had no service. I don't have service down there at all. So what did you do? Did you have to crawl out of there? How'd you get out of there? At the time in 2019, I was probably in the best shape of my life.
I was bowed up and ripped, shredded, and I was humble out in public and stuff like that, but inside , I'm the man, , I'm the man. That's how I carried myself and that a lot of that has changed too. Now. That was a wake up call for some of that.
But so I hit the ground and for probably the first several minutes I'm laying there and I'm thinking, I know that I don't have another option. I know I'm hurt and I don't know I'm hurt bad. I know I can't move, but I'm telling [00:29:00] myself at that time, I'm strong enough to get up and get out of here.
I'm you are. It's my mentality for the first several minutes of that. Yeah. In the process, I'm also thinking, I don't know if I'm gonna get out of here, I know that I'm paralyzed and so you get to that moment, or I did, I got to that moment, which I was raised in church and, believed in God and all that kind of stuff, but I,
I hadn't called or wrote in quite a while. So I finally got to that point where I knew that. I wasn't strong enough, I wasn't going to get out of it. I'm paralyzed. I'm bleeding out my mouth, nose can't hardly breathe and excruciate. I can't describe the amount of pain that I was in.
I wasn't even aware until I finally picked my head up because it was just my legs that were paralyzed. I picked my head up and it's a [00:30:00] puddle of blood the size of a five gallon bucket that I didn't even know I was losing. I was completely unaware of it until I saw it on the ground.
And so I just took a minute and got all my stuff right, said a prayer and said, Hey, I know I probably don't deserve it. I hadn't called or wrote and if this is a, if this is a wake up call, I get it. I hear you. So that was a life changing for, all aspects. My, my, Outlook on life, my appreciation for being able to do things that I do, what I have, my family.
And then of course my relationship with God too, because I didn't take it lightly. And so anyway, I said the prayer and got all my stuff straight and asked for help. And I didn't hear any voices or, anything like that. I didn't see any lights, none of the stuff that you hear sometimes in the stories.
But after I did that, I just got [00:31:00] up, I just felt calm. I felt relaxed. I felt like whatever happened was going to be alright. Don't get me wrong, I still wanted to get out of there. But I felt like I was going to be alright. And that was just a really calming sensation. And within a minute or two of that happening, I thought that I could feel, my, at that moment I started to feel tingling in my toes and I was getting some feeling back.
And from there... Every moment was, it was just a huge, it's like the biggest accomplishment being able to wiggle my toes was such an accomplishment or it felt like such a big deal, all these little things you take for granted, was so huge and such an eyeopening experience. Very, it took me, this happened in 2019 and this is the second time I've told this story this year.
[00:32:00] And those are the first two times that I've been able to tell the story without it being overwhelming. It was a very, I don't even know how to describe and I'm not an emotional guy really as far as that type stuff goes. But that was a rough deal. Absolutely. Anyway. It's life changing. From there, I moved my legs and I'm thinking that, all right.
And I'm still, the pain from falling out the tree or having to broke back was unreal. And it. If I had another option, I would have said, I can't get up. I can't move, but I knew I didn't have any other options. So it's amazing what you can do, even when you're hurt in pain, when you don't have another option.
So I moved my legs and then I get to the point to where, I'm going to try to stand up. And that was, I don't even know how to describe that because I guess scared. [00:33:00] Would be a good way to put it, like I said, I'm just fancy myself, this big macho man, but I was scared to try to stand up because I'm thinking spinal cord, what am I going to do if I try to stand up?
Am I going to finish myself off by doing, I knew with a back injury, you probably shouldn't move, but I went ahead and tried it and I managed to get up and again. By the time I made it to my feet, that was such a, it's like the biggest deal. And I get to my feet and from there, it was a long night out.
It's just shuffling, just these tiny little, think of a toddler taking his first steps and, trying not to fall. And that's how that was. And it's been doing it in the woods, in the dark. Yeah. Yeah. I had a little flashlight and in the process, I'll rewind just a little bit before I got to that point, I didn't know what my, [00:34:00] I had internal bleed and I found all this out, at the hospital, but I knew then that I was hurt bad and that I was losing blood and I didn't know what my time frame was, if I was going to make it to the hospital and I had my camera and it fell out with me and it didn't hurt it.
So I took my camera and What I needed to say, nobody's ever seen it because it wasn't necessary, but said what I needed to say to the people I needed to say things to. And again, doing stuff like that in that situation where you think you might die, I think you may never see those people again and really being faced with it.
It changed for the better. The back falling out of the tree has been one of the worst and best experiences I've ever had. But anyway, I do the little, do my little video deal. And then I start trying to get out, out of there and the whole time, I'm asking for help. [00:35:00] I get to this canoe and of course that's a rowing movement, right?
Man, it was tough. Anyway, I'll make it back to the four wheeler and that was probably the worst part was riding down that rough road, hitting those bumps, but I get to the truck. And each, like I said, each step of this was just a huge one step closer. It's like winning something, winning the biggest prize.
You're getting more hope and you're getting more, yeah. But when I got to the house, when I got back home and I reached up and touched that doorknob to go in the house, that's when it all like really come flooding in, opening the door. My family being there, my wife in there, and she actually thought, because I pull some bullshit every now and then, she thought at first that I was pranking her.
Yeah. And then she seen my nose smeared on my face and blood and stuff. And she [00:36:00] knew that it was real blood and I hadn't wiped, ketchup or something. And I told her, I got to get to the hospital. And from there, Ended up going to the hospital and find out I got a broke back and some internal bleeding and he tells me basically there's Not anything that they can do about it.
It was a compression fracture, And usually that stuff the bone fragments go everywhere, but I was in pretty good shape That's some muscle density and stuff that helped. They said helped hold it together. I tend to think it's probably I think that whole incident was a wake up call and a higher power.
Yes. That's what I believe. And that's what I know, just from experiencing it. Cause the doctor said, he said, was there some limbs or what broke your fall? And I said nothing between me and the ground, but air. And he said you should, you, your injuries should be worse than this. [00:37:00] And he ended up, the whole paralyzed deal.
He said, he thought that I just shot my spine and it just took that timeframe. But, they were coming up with medical reasons for everything. But anyway, man, it it changed my life and I know that got us off track. No, that, that's amazing. That's a, that's an important part of the story too.
And dude, you hear about we had a guy, I think you heard that you listened to this show. We had a guy from Arkansas on our show that fell out of a tree right after he shot up after he shot a deer. And I've told the story on our show. I fell out of a tree years ago, walked away from it. But, and then we had some buddies that talk about it outdoors.
They had a buddy fall out of a tree last year. And a lot of these people, like you were saying, you were being safe, you had your lineman's belt on. I was not being safe when I first started hunting. I was just being stupid. And the guy that fell on our show, he was tied off, but he had taken his harness off to, to climb down.
That split moment in between. And that's when he fell. And [00:38:00] man, sometimes you try to be as safe as you can, and it don't matter. Shit still happens. You're when you're 23 foot up in a tree, there's a chance to fall out of it then, because you're 23 foot up in a tree, it's just, unfortunately there's not a 0 percent chance.
And that, that, that's what sucks about, the hunting game is you can take every precaution and still fall out of a damn tree or something happened to you and and, one of the, one of the big takeaways and to your point. That was just me doing dumb stuff because I had this lineman's belt prior to that, when I hunted out of lock ons, I hunted, I've always hunted with hooks, tree spikes and I was hunting with those that day, but prior to getting a saddle, I had never used I might would sometimes if I was going to hunt all day and thought I might doze off or something, I would wear a, a safety harness in the tree.
But far as climbing, [00:39:00] I always free climbed, just no attachment to the tree whatsoever and using spikes. And all the years that I've been doing it never failed. And then I put on a safety belt and fall out of the tree. But my mistake was when I bought the saddle and all this stuff, I buy everything except the lineman's rope.
Probably the most important or all of it's important when you're tying yourself off and trusting your life with it. But I use one that's probably 15, 20 years old. And what ended up happening was the three, it's the belt didn't break the three it's we're so old and dry rotted or just rotten in general.
That they just popped and of course the loop in the end of it slipped right out and I hit the ground. Yeah. That's a good, that's a good reminder for everybody. We've all talked about it before, but change your straps and your tree stands, people. A lot of people leave tree stands out. I have two out when we [00:40:00] were out doing that stuff last week that people were talking about doing stuff in.
I'm like, dude, I don't trust those tree stands. Yeah. Those straps have been there for a while. They haven't been proven yet. Change those straps, with your if you're hunting out of a saddle you can switch ropes out you know after a while because that can happen when you're using older equipment stuff dry rots stuff happens and That's an important part of the story yeah, and After I got to the hospital, I'm asking them What's you know?
What's my future with this? And he said really nothing we can do about it. He said, luckily, we're not going to have to go in and do any kind of surgery because everything is still pretty much in place. It's just broke. He said, it should heal back up. He said he said, I don't expect you to walk normally for six weeks.
And they said, then after that, he said you'll start being whatever you're going to be. He said, I don't know what your pain's going to be. I would [00:41:00] probably expect, chronic back pain and stuff like that from here on. You'll probably have some back pain. And he's telling me, can't do this, can't do that.
That type stuff always motivates me, and so the very next day, I had the green light to lay in bed, of course. But as soon as nobody's looking, I roll out of bed. Hurtin like hell, but I hobbled out to the shop and go to build and diaper in college. So I
was gonna work all day no more. Five days later, and I was messin with my wife. I was tellin her, I said, I'm gonna kill a deer before the season's out. I'm goin back down there. And she's gettin on me, about how stupid this is. Five days later, again, I'm home alone. I ain't never claimed to be the smartest, but I'm sitting there home alone and I decided, I'm about at five days, I've been moving around and I [00:42:00] think it helped me.
I think it helped me, not be in as much pain. I wasn't taking anything either. Oh wow. And so five days later, I go out in the yard and put my. My hooks on and I climb about five foot off the ground in my saddle. I put the saddle on, put the hooks on and I climb up just enough that I can get off the ground enough to see how that's going to feel.
If I put my body weight on that and I expected it to hurt, I expected it felt, I didn't feel it. It was probably less painful than sitting in a chair, like in a wooden chair or something like that. So anyway, at the six week point. Which he told me that it would take me six weeks to get back to where I was walking comfortably.
Six weeks later, I went back down there. I found a spot where they were hitting some, this was in January. Yeah, that was December 5th. Six weeks later, I go back down there. I find this spot where they're hitting some, there was just a few acorns left. [00:43:00] 10 point. He's nine point. He broke off this, he broke off his back tying on one side, nothing real special about the deer.
He's just a tight rack, decent mass, not a high scoring deer, but one of my all time favorite hunts, just because I was back just because of the appreciation of being back out there. And of course I had to have a buddy come help me get him out. I'd walk away. Hey, now my back hurts . I can't drag him.
you're gotta do this book. That hunt, dad Hunt is on the YouTube channel too, and it goes over the story of falling by the tree. And then it's called a broke back comeback book, . And of course I made jokes about the Brokeback deal too. how shit, they couldn't have to. Yeah. Yeah, so that happens in 19.
And then in 20, you're back hopefully full force and yeah, big blind six. He's he's now a target [00:44:00] for sure. He's a for sure target. Yeah. Yeah. So in, in 2018, not on the radio or 2019 might shoot him. If I saw him end up falling out of the tree. And then I kill that deer late in January, that tags me out, for here.
And because I killed a ten point earlier, that tags me out, so I'm done with 2019. Fully recover over the summer of 2020, get my cameras back out early. And right off the bat, I get, and this is where some of the stuff I told you earlier comes back in to play. I get pictures of this deer, videos of this deer, immediately.
And that's the year that the video that I sent you. Mhm. Of 20. That's when he had his best frame. And Just a freak. So I get pictures of him right off the bat. Pretty sure I sucked a gnat down my throat. But anyway, sorry about that. Oh, you're good. In 2020, that's the [00:45:00] video that I sent you. That's when he had his biggest frame.
And I also, by this point, three years history. After looking at all the pictures and a buddy of mine and us looking at the very first picture of him I got in 2018, we're thinking that deer was 4 or 5 years old in 2018. So that puts him, just guessing at him. We're thinking this deer's probably, getting in that 6 or 7 year old range at that point, at least.
At that point, I start thinking, Alright, I'm gonna hunt this deer even though he's just a six point. I've got three years history with him Which I like hunting deer that I've got history with and he's a unique giant six point and a really old deer so I start actually trying to kill him. In the video that I sent you there were some persimmon trees that I'd [00:46:00] found early and that licking branch.
So I get this deer on some persimmon trees, I find some persimmon drop and a lot of deer sign on it. I start getting pictures of this deer on the persimmon trees and he's also hitting a licking branch. That's what I sent you the video of pretty often, every other day or so. We gotta tell this story.
We gotta tell this story. We're laughing with him now. We're laughing with him. Tory inhaled a gnat about, oh... Five minutes ago? Five minutes ago, and he has been struggling since then. Sucker won't go down. With his gnat, just... Yeah. Just killing them. That sucker wasn't no sticky leg, man. He was hanging on.
He didn't want to go on down. The sucker tried to crawl back up.
Persimmon's my ass, sir.
So anyway, I start getting this deer on this [00:47:00] licking branch. Pretty regular, these persimmon trees and the licking branch. So I go in there and hunt. Wait on the wind, all that stuff, of course. I go in there to hunt. And the first day I don't see him. Second afternoon, here he comes. And I think it's a done deal.
The deer is walking a straight line to me. And it gets thick there. He hits the trail that runs. Right under the lichen branch right under the persimmon trees And he gets probably he wasn't that far from me probably only 35 yards or so But there's a egg those persimmon trees I call it a persimmon thicket right there because it's a bunch of Little bitty persimmon trees that usually aren't holding any and then there's some bigger persimmon trees and it's brushy right there And it makes an edge in that river bottom.
That edge is about 35 yards away. And it's thick that where I was hunting that I had just a couple of holes to shoot right there [00:48:00] to that scrape and to those persimmon trees. So anyway, he gets to that edge and without hesitation, he never stops. He never acts like he knows anything's going on.
He just turns and starts heading down that edge. I learned a little bit about the deer here too, because like I said, I always ran my cameras in video mode. And over the process of getting numerous, hundreds of videos of this deer since, 2018 and especially 2019 in the early part of 2020, this deer was, when he was around other bucks, he always had his ears laid back, hair standing up, posture and pushing them around.
And so I'm thinking, all right, this deer's probably callable. So when he turns and I see that he's going to leave, I get a grunt call, blow a grunt call at him. He hears it. I blow it at him again. He takes off scared. Huh? Just runs out of [00:49:00] there. And I said, no, he's down here on this public ground. You played this deal before.
He's one of them shit talkers. Yeah. Yeah. I saw that about the deer. And even though he was aggressive towards other deer and this ends up playing out, a few more times with this deer before the, before it's over with. So I don't get him that day. I end up hunting that deer there two or three more times.
Keep getting pictures of him there randomly. Long story short, don't see him there. The persimmons are about to dry up and that spot dries up. Once that happens, I skip around. That big eight point that I was telling y'all about earlier was still alive. And so I was bouncing back and forth from where the blind six point is to where this big eight point is.
And then rifle season comes in, I'm actually trying to kill this big 8 point because I believe that he will get killed when the rifle hunt comes in because of where he's at and the [00:50:00] conditions that year, it was really dry. And he was crossing a slew bed, I knew from cameras that he was crossing a slew bed that had a straight stretch 300 yards long and you could see down that dried up slew bed.
I said, somebody will sit here during that rifle hunt and kill him. And sure enough, that deer got killed within the first hour of the rifle hunt. And I don't know that he was killed in that slew bed, but I feel like he was. So that took me all the way into part of November. Then I swapped back over and every time that these permit hunts hunt, rifle hunt.
That was the thing another thing about the blind six point that I saw every year with him all the way back to Starting with 20 got his pictures in 2018, but not much history, but starting in 2019 I would have this deer's pictures and videos, regular very great About two weeks as soon as people would start coming in to start [00:51:00] scouting for these muslo and rival ones that deer in particular Would disappear from the cameras.
I don't know where he was going or what he was doing, but he was staying in a, in one of those thickets or something. But as soon as those four wheelers and stuff and activity increased, this deer disappeared. And like I said, probably 60 plus percent of the deer I get pictures of every year get killed.
And so having this deer now going three years, he had something figured out to, to get by the muzzleloader and rifle hunts. And the rival hunt comes in, the big eight point gets killed, so I swap back over, and I start trying to find the blind six point again. No pictures of him. At that point you're thinking, okay, did he get killed this year?
Or is he just still... Hiding. Hiding out somewhere. Yeah. So I bounce around. It's two or three weeks before I finally, he finally shows back up on camera. Still looks good, nothing wrong with [00:52:00] him. And so I know he's made it through another rifle hunt. So I go back to trying to hunt him, and he had moved when I got his picture.
Again, it was on the, it was, I got it on a camera that was a little farther away than where he was normally at. And acorns were changing by that point. It was getting a little later in the year. The food sources were changing some. So I start moving that direction of where I got his pictures at.
Anyway, long story short, I end up finding this deer Ow! This is rolling on into December and I get, I started getting pictures of this deer on some willow oaks that it fell late and there were still acorns there and the deer were wearing it out. And, but also the rivers are coming up and the flood water is starting to, I'm starting to get flood water.
It's pinching in, which is good. If it does, it's slow enough because it hems the deer up. Anyway, I started hunting this deer. And I can see [00:53:00] the backwater on one side, and I'm on what I would call a ridge in that river bottom, but it's really just a slight elevation. And I ended up seeing that deer,
I saw him three times right there in about five hunts. I was seeing a pile of deer. And the first time I saw him, he was out of range, and I, this was the second time that I blew a grunt call at that deer, and I'd done it. I watched him for as long as I possibly could, not wanting to call to him. And I realized, he wasn't going to come that way.
And I let him get out of sight almost, or not out of sight, but to where he couldn't see to where I was at. I could still see his rack. But I knew he wouldn't be able to see if there was a deer over there grunting. Anyway, I blew that grunt call at him. He turned and looked. I did not blow it at him again that time.
I, y'all know I, I do all kinds of animal calling. So I figured out little tricks and stuff to [00:54:00] that don't always work, but a lot of times they do. He fooled around, went back to doing what he was doing and started to walk off. So I finally hit him again, took off, said, man, nothing's changed, and that just solidified what I was thinking about the deer having been messed with the grunt call before.
And in that process, one day I come out. But I was hunting this deer off the river. I come out to go to my boat and I hadn't seen anybody in that area and there was a boat parked there that day. I run into the guy and he was real talkative. Nice guy. And he had, there was a ticket right there and I was hunting the back side of that where those, I call them pin oaks, they were will oaks.
And anyway, he had hunted the front side of that ticket that day and he was telling me. We were probably only three, 400 yards apart and he starts telling me, he said, man, I seen this giant dude. He said, he's got this Jason. I bet he was 20 inches wide and he's telling me, he [00:55:00] said all about him.
And he says, he said, but I think he was just a six point and I said no, he saw him and he said he said he was coming towards me down the edge of that thicket and he said, he just act like something was wrong. He turned and went in thicket. He said, I can still see his tail and stuff living. He said, so I blew a grunt call at him.
He said, he took off. After he told me the whole story, I knew what the deal was because he was hunting where he was hunting at. And I knew that area. He was the reason the deer acted the way he did. The deer was downwind of him. He was hunting with the wind blowing in the thicket anyway. And it's a wonder he even saw the deer, but he did see him.
And then he blew a grunt call at him on top of it. Man, this is, I know why this deer acts this way. Anyway, I go back in there, I think it was maybe the following morning or two mornings later, and I really thought I was gonna kill him that morning. I have, I'd have to watch the video back, but I have a whole [00:56:00] group of deer coming.
It's, by this point, it's getting tail end of December, and the deer starting to group back up. Some of the bucks are grouping back up, the back up, and this wad of does comes by and comes right under the stand, feeds on those trees, and While I could still see them, the same trail that they take. Here comes a group, I think it was three bucks.
And the blind six point was the last deer in the group. And I'd never seen him, running with other deer, but he was with those two bucks that day. They come through and follow those does right through, right under me. One of them was a pretty good deer. And of course, I wasn't going to shoot it with the blind six point deer.
It outscored the blind six point, but. Anyway, I let them go. They walk right under me and I'm thinking, this is a done deal at six point beds down in that thicket. I can see him, but he's probably 60 plus yards and I can just catch him. I've got all [00:57:00] this video and all this and you can see his rack turning.
And anyway, I was hunting with another boy that morning, which I rarely actually hunt with somebody, but I had a buddy of mine and I had dropped him off down the river and I had a pickup time for him. That's just one of the reasons I hate hunting people, is that time frame. So I got this deer bedded and I've got a time frame, like no sale service like we were talking about before.
I hate not to go get him but at the same time I'm, I've got this deer laying there. The wind was also supposed to be changing so, I wait until, As long as I can wait for the deer to actually get up and come my way, and some of those deer were still, they had fed farther out in the bottom, but they were still out there behind me.
And the wind was starting to get, I was catching it a little bit, and I was thinking he's probably going to smell me here for a long. Again, I'm down to the last resort. And this go around, I'm thinking I've got these deer behind me. Those deer were with [00:58:00] him when he come down through here, but maybe.
The grunt or some rattling will work so I tickled some horns at him just a little bit because I knew he'd hear it quick and he perked up and looked and listened and he stood up and he turned like he was going to leave, started walking off. And so I bumped him with a grunt call and he hauled ass again.
And when I say took off, he just trots off. That, that right there broke me. I knew that I would never call to the deer again. That was three attempts plus the story from the other guy. And right after that, we had another big rain for two days. The river shot up. I tried to go in there one more time.
Couldn't even get to my stand. It was, or couldn't even get to my tree. It was over knee deep in water. So flooded out that ended 2020. So fast forward to 2021. This deer, going into 2021, [00:59:00] that was the first year that he was going to be a target, like right off the bat, I wanted to hunt this deer regardless of what else I got or how big they were.
I knew I wanted to kill this deer if I got his pictures again because I was going to have four years history with him and I wanted to kill him. In 2020. I wanted to kill him during that timeframe. But going into 2020, he wasn't the re he was on my radar, but not the deer. Going into 2021, he was the deer that I wanted to kill.
And I did get, I start running cameras and I always picked this deer up immediately early, that in 2021 there were almost no arons where there usually were, where he usually was. No persimmons. I'm running the cameras on all the licking branches I get him on all the places that there was very little food.
And I could not get this deer's picture. I [01:00:00] actually had a picture of the first video I got of him was on November 3rd. But I didn't know, it was out away from the camera and it was a daytime video and it wasn't close enough for me to know for sure if it was him. And since it was the only video I had of him, I just shrugged it off.
I thought it might have been him. I don't get pictures of this deer. I end up getting some other deer, finding some other deer, to hunt and I'm thinking, something's happened to him. But I didn't completely write him off. I kept looking for him because I knew with the way the food situation was and not having other deer in that area, I thought maybe he just moved somewhere.
So 2018 when I put that first camera out and got his picture in that thicket. It crossed my mind that year was a similar year, acorn wise, to 2021. And most of the acorns were a little farther down the river, just the other side of where I got that picture in 2018. I hadn't run, I hadn't hunted that area,[01:01:00] what would have been downriver from the 2018 picture any of these years.
That camera that I got the 2018 picture was the farthest downriver I'd ran a camera. So anyway, that crossed my mind, that story. I bet that might be where he's at, because that's where I got his first picture. And I hadn't ran any cameras in that area, especially deeper in there. And there were, I went out there and there were some acorns in there.
Of course, this is, we've got him December at this point, early December. I'm trying to remember what the actual date was that I got his picture, but December something, mid, first week or so of December, I get his picture. And man, that thing, he looked rough that year. He comes buzzed up while the first picture I got at him, he's walking dead at the camera, buzzed up.
It's a dusky, dark picture. And of course that blind eyes is not shining in the deal. And I immediately recognize him. And I noticed that [01:02:00] he's missing an eye guard that year. He's not quite as big a brain either. And but I knew it was, I knew it was him as soon as I got his picture and I said and he ends up bedding down in front of the camera,
Oh, that's cool. So it was almost like he was teasing me, I got three videos of him right there, and that was it. And I tried to hunt him right there. Didn't see him put out more cameras, no videos of him. They end up moving a half mile deeper in there where there, there were more acres. Put out a couple cameras in a couple different places, and I get him on both of them.
One of them was in a funnel spot, and one of them was on some, what few acres were left, and I get him on both spots, and I had him in the daytime, so I knew I was in the right spot then. Another part of the story that I left out when I could have killed this deer earlier on, and it'll tie in right here.
This made me think of it. In [01:03:00] Either 2019 or 2020. I think it was in 2020 when he had his best track. It was the morning time change. I was late getting to my stand. It was already daylight. I'm walking in and I see this. I had a, I had this pretty good seven point on camera. Nothing I was hunting a recognizable deer.
I see this thing coming and so I just squat out on the ground. I could tell by the way he was acting. He was posturing and looking back. I could tell it was probably another deer. And I film everything, so I set everything down, get my bow, but I don't, I can't set my camera, I've got it for mounting on a tree anyway, so I just set all my stuff down, squat down on the ground, and about that time I see the second deer coming, it's the blind six point, this seven point peels off and goes down a slew right beside me, goes all the way past me, and I was on like a old road right away, walking in, the, When seven point peels off at blind six point keeps [01:04:00] coming, I know he's blind in his left eye.
He walks by me at 20 yards. And I have an arrow on and I draw on the deer, put the pin on him and I'm going back and forth on whether or not I'm going to kill him. He's just right there. I ended up letting down, grabbing my cell phone and videoing him with my cell phone walking across. You know it.
By the time I get my phone out, he's maybe 30 yards and I video him go across and out of sight. So that was an opportunity where I could have killed him and chose not to kill him because of the filming side of it and jump back to 2021. I get the pictures of him in the daytime. I go in there to hunt the next morning and a lot of times I'll walk into where I can just see without a light.
And so I'm climbing the tree and I think the deer, like I said I climb a hook. I think the deer heard me climbing the tree. I get up there and I've got everything set up except my [01:05:00] camera. I've got my bow ready, it's hanging there, arrows on it. Everything's ready. I hear a deer coming. And so I just get still and quiet.
It's the blind six point. Walks up there, he coming in there with his ears laid back. I think he heard me climbing the tree and thought it was a, I guess I should have been peeling bark instead of grunting at him. But anyway, he He comes walking up there and he knew exactly where that was coming from.
And there was a couple of scrapes right there too. He turns and walks through one of them about 15 yards from me. Then he turns around and walks back across. And I'd already made my mind up. I wasn't going to shoot him. I didn't, I had that much history with him on camera, video, all this on my cell phone.
He turns and walks, starts walking back the way he come from. And I thought maybe I can go ahead and get the camera set up while he's still in sight. And I'm trying to get it back. I'm trying to get it out of my bag and on my camera arm. And the deer turns around and walks right through the little pinch that I'm [01:06:00] set up on there.
And he does it before I get the camera on him. So he gets by me. Damn cameras. So that's two opportunities where I had the opportunity to shoot him close range and chose not to because of the camera. So I hunt there a couple more times and it's by this time. It has got, I can't remember the dates on it, I'll have to go back and look at pictures.
But I ended up shooting this 9 point that was there. That was, it was just a decent deer. Nothing real high scoring, probably a 120 class deer at best. It was late in the year and this was a deer that I thought had a little 8, probably a 4 year old deer. I shoot this thing.
Cause I wanted to shoot something basically, but I got that late in the year. And I knew I still had one tag. So I shoot that deer, kill him on video. I hadn't released that yet, [01:07:00] but then I go right back to trying to kill and that's something else. In 21, every intro to every video that I do on every stand up, and I hunt every day, unless the weather's bad or something.
So every one of them, if I'm hunting in that area, I mention the blind six point. That's the deer, one of the main deer I'm trying to kill. And then I might mention a couple other ones that I would shoot if I saw them, like at nine. After I kill the nine point, go right back to trying to kill this blind six point.
And I find the spot, I run no cameras here, it's a half mile from where I was hunting, where I shot the nine point, where I videoed him. It's a half mile from there. I find two or three overcups that have acorns and a deer, a lot of sign in there, and it's a peach right there too. It's a couple of slews that came together.
Good looking spot and a lot of sign in there I didn't know for sure if the blind six point was using that or not [01:08:00] half mile from there But I knew it was close to me to be possible. It was close enough to his area that a little intro Yeah, close enough to his area that it's possible right, I Climb up at first after finding the spot.
I climb up at first afternoon And I think I see 17 deer that afternoon come through and hit those, which was pretty high numbers for that area to see. So I knew I was in a, I knew I was in a good spot as far as having a lot of the deer and was probably on the last little bit of food that was around, but I don't see him.
The next morning I go back in there and hunt the same spot. I climb up in the tree. I start seeing some deer and I can't remember exactly what time it was that morning, but. I hear some deer coming, running. I look up, and here comes a whole group of deer, does and bucks. It was like 11 deer together. Some little racked deer and some [01:09:00] does, and they run through and jump the slew and end up slowing back down and coming right by me.
I'm watching them, and then they take off. I hear something else coming, I turn and look, and here comes a giant boar hog. And I think he had busted them out of a little thicket he had right there because that's where they come from and he'd come through it too. I think he busted those deer out of that little thicket and run them over me.
And I'm sitting there talking on camera because that hog comes through and walks right under me. And I'm cussing that hog, thinking I ought to shoot that sucker. Thank God we don't deal with that yet. I hope we don't. Oh man, them things, I hate them. And if I see him, I'm supposed to ever hunt, but he run all those deer through there and I'm cussing that how he no sooner gets gone.
I had my attention focused on him and the way those deer went. And I look back around the same way he come from the same way all these other deer come from. [01:10:00] And the blind six point is probably 40 yards and he's already in between the slews and he's got to come down. If he keeps coming, I've got the wind on him.
And he's got to come down one of two trails and both of them I can shoot. So get my camera this time. I've got everything set up and that was January 18th. I went in there, I'm pretty sure that's right. January 17th. I hunted it that afternoon. Does your season end the 31st of January or when is it?
No, it goes all the way through. It goes all the way through February 28th. Oh, wow. Geez. I was just done January 15th. Yeah. That's why I say you can hunt them until their horns fall. I normally don't hunt them that long because a lot of our deer will start dropping, by Valentine's day, a lot of them will drop and some of them will drop as early as, I had some shed bucks on camera.
When I killed this deer, so January 18th was the morning that it was, but I've got all my camera equipment, [01:11:00] everything set up this time and he comes walking right by filming, all the way through. He actually walked through a couple of holes and as he gets on around, I've got to pick my spot.
GoPros too. And I draw back on him and I draw with him walking with his head up because he had his left side to me and I knew he was blind in that left eye. As he's walking with his head up and he never let up. He didn't stop and feed or anything. He stopped a couple of times just alert, checking things, but he never fed.
He was just walking through and I drew on him while he was walking and then bladed at him. He, soon as he paused, I shot him. And boy, it looked perfect, but, and I've always shot, I've always shot fixed blade broadheads and prior to talking about the coyote hunting stuff, prior to I had set my bow up with some lighter arrows, lighter, [01:12:00] everything, and some rage broadheads for coyote hunting, just to get a bigger.
Cut because cows don't bleed very much. Rolling into deer season I just never swapped it back over to what I usually deer hunted with. And so I shoot this deer and it looks like I hit him perfect and I did but as he wheels to run It looks like my entire arrow is hanging out of the side of it and it was.
Oh shit. But I'm thinking you know that I didn't get any penetration. So I'm, I'm torn between, did I get him or not? It looked perfect. And so I start trying to watch the footage back in the tree and I see this deer, he runs and he makes a loop and he goes up in behind this big, I get a blind spot and I don't see him come out the other side, but I thought he turned and might have run straight away from me because it was a pretty big blind spot.
So that makes me a little, a [01:13:00] lot worried and I'm thinking, man, all this time. Fooling with this dang thing finally get the shot and hang on, I ain't got no penetration miss. No Yeah, so I'm worried about that So I try to watch the footage back there and I just cannot tell you know I can't tell if the air goes in and comes back out as he wheels or if I just didn't get any penetration, right?
And I'm you know talking back and forth with my buddy That hunts down, hunts that area with me and he's thinking man. He thinks I got him and so I go back to the house so I can put it on my editor and really slow it down and see what's going on. And once I get it on there and slow it down, I feel a lot better about it because I see the arrow looks like it goes in and then as he wheels, it looks like it comes back, pushes back out.
His opposite blade maybe, or whatever, when he made [01:14:00] his movement. You can tell in the, you can tell in that picture I sent you, it's like right in the edge of the shoulder on one side and it it's a little, it's not any shoulder blader, but it's up in the
opposite side, but anyway, I go home and of course my wife, she's real supportive with, that's why I get to hunt so much. She runs the MFK stuff every day. That's how I coyote hunt every morning and then during deer season I leave before daylight and don't get back till after dark almost every day of the season.
So when I, and she knew it's perfect. It's really perfect because her name's Tori cook too. So it works out. Cause nobody knows the difference. Yeah, I know it's spelled different, but you don't have to charge. She, that's something she talks about all the time. All the people that call her brother, they're sending her messages.
Anyway she knew how much. I had invested in this deer over the years and all the documented pictures and everything. And when I go back to track him, she wants to go with me, so we go back and take up the blood trail. Where I saw him last is where he, when he got in behind that blind spot, that's where he fell.
He didn't go, he didn't go hardly anywhere. And we found him pretty quick. Man, it was... And once I got my hands on him and I sent you a picture of that too, and I saw his, just the condition of his cape and the scars on the deer and the missing eye, he had no hair on his muzzle or Roman nose looking thing.
You could just see the age on him. And I was at that time, I'm thinking this deer is probably seven, eight years old is what I'm guessing he met. Just based off the four years history [01:16:00] I had with him and so after I got him to the house we do the picture deal. It was like I said, I've got killed.
I got a wall full of bigots and a pile of biggins in the shop I've killed some deer that are a bunch of deer that are a lot better higher scoring then that What ended up being the blind five point by the time I kill him. But That blind five point is probably my favorite deer because I knew he was an old deer then, but after I got him back, I had aged deer off their teeth doing taxidermy.
Before I got into the MFK stuff, I did taxidermy for years and I learned how to age deer and all that kind of stuff. So I looked at his teeth and of course he didn't have enough to keep aging. You get to that six plus mark on just doing Tooth wear just start guessing from there. Yeah, so I end up sending his teeth off to [01:17:00] have the layered aging done on him and it come back is nine and a half Possibly ten and a half Wow is what they thought he was so dang once I got the age back on him You know, I was actually shortening him a year or two.
Mainly because you know how many deer make it to Yeah, very few that age plus especially, I think their natural lifespans like 12. Yeah. I think that's like in a perfect environment, you're, if he just lived his life, I think 12 is Long lifespan for a deer. Even as if you're looking at his face, even his good eye doesn't even look good.
Like he almost looks blind on that one. He looks like it's half closed. He had,
he had some puncture wounds around that eye, like that. It just missed it. It's a wonder he had. But he was rough, man. It's his cape and stuff was all scarred up, missing hair. You see what [01:18:00] his muzzle looks like. It was slick. It didn't have hair. Oh wow. How big of a body did he have? Was it average size or was he like huge?
That year. And I noticed it, of course it was late year. When I started getting pictures, that video that I sent you, that. He was always a big bodied, healthy looking deer. But the year I killed him he didn't have the neck size. He looked run down. Of course, I don't kill him till January, but he didn't look as good as he had in previous years.
And as far as how big he was in, in that particular area, every year they do, when they have these permanent hunts, they act, they weigh everything and check them and all that kind of stuff. And most of the time they don't have a deer that. It hits 200 pounds in this deep South Arkansas. Now you can go an hour when I hunted over around the white river, Mississippi, Arkansas, you'll have to do the hit two 40 over there.
But I didn't weigh him. I don't ever weigh [01:19:00] anything, but I think that he was probably in that one 80 plus range on his good years. And I don't know if he would have waved at when I killed him. Hell, he's nine, maybe ten years old. He went through another rut and it's January and he's worn down. That, that's a deer that, if you don't kill him, then I wonder if you even get a chance to kill him in 2022.
Yeah. You killed him at 21. I, it was the 21 season. Yeah. Yeah. I don't know that you get a chance at him the next season. I don't know if he makes it, again. Yeah, I kept, that's where I'm getting to with that Craig that I told you about. I don't know, I'm estimating his age and.
If anything, I may be a year shouting. The Craig beer has got to be seven and a half minimum this year. And he could be a year or two older than that. I said, normally what's odd is how, as, as much as I run [01:20:00] cameras and all the deer that I've had pictures of and history with for a how many of them can't make it, through a season or two, but how A couple of those, and then my buddy's got a deer that he's got three or four years history with.
And, it's just amazing how those deer, those two or three, are able to make it year after year. They've got something, they're doing something during that time frame that, that gets them by. I don't think it's a coincidence that they just slip by year after year. And especially when they disappear on off of camera, when you start getting a lot of activity around those permit hunts, I think they do something, they react to that some kind of way that, that keeps them alive.
I think what keeps the crig deer alive, that crig deer lives, lives on a. Since he's [01:21:00] still alive, I'm going to, I'm going to be vague with my description. He lives in the woods. But he lives in a spot out of all the years that I've had that deer, I never get his picture outside of mainly like out of 40 acre block.
He stays in a real tight, and if you put a camera in there, you'll get him quick. But because of where he's at, I'll say this, it's, there's enough water around him. And there's the easy access to get to him and the way everybody would access that to get, I think the d I think he knows that coming. He knows that.
Blow him out. Don't think they can access him and hunt him coming in on dry ground without him knowing he's being hunted. Yeah. And to come in from the water side, which is, I've had two opportunities. I've seen him from the stand two times. Both times I come in from the water site. Yeah. Yeah. And that's a pain.
That is a. That's why I don't hunt him any more than I do, because it's a nightmare to [01:22:00] go to that much trouble
anyway, and that's that's the story of the blind six point. Sometimes I wonder, I've thought, especially these older deer, you say, there's so many deer that don't make it to this age. Sometimes I feel like two and three year olds, a few of them get lucky and don't die.
They either get lucky and get missed or a few people bust them and they get lucky and make it to that four years old and Then it's that's when they start figuring things out and get smart, okay Last year I almost died here or all this happened last year and then they just get smarter and smarter and you know if they can get lucky up front when they're young and not get killed I think that's when they just get harder and harder to kill every damn year because, they, it's [01:23:00] like an educated coyote that you just keep busting every damn day you walk in that sort of stuff, they just, it, it takes getting lucky up front for most of them and then, yeah, then they're good, then they just start knowing how to survive.
I think a lot of those, cause I'll have, deer, I'll have a lot of deer that I get. A second year, rarely a third. And I think that second year is just what you're talking about. And when I say second year, they might be a three or four year old deer that second year that you get them.
But I think a lot of that is that second year was just a lucky deal where they managed to, happen to get by. But then on deer like the blind six point and some of them that there's multiple years history with, I think those deer are reacting and doing, doing something, bedding somewhere, doing, and down here is so thick.
I don't, do the whole, I don't think that deer's bedding up in the same spot in his one little bed or anything like that. [01:24:00] I, but I think he has an area or a spot that's, either hard to access or he knows when people are coming and going trying to hunt him or like the grunt call deal.
I, no doubt he figured that, that out. Yeah. They get smart, man. The calling stuff, that's what I do for a living is call animals. So I'm always big on stuff like that. I was talking to a couple of buddies the other day, we were doing some cone hunting, talking deer hunting while we were doing it.
And one thing I picked up on, and I've got multiple videos of this, a lot of it's just with my cell phone when I'm out there scouting and happen to walk up on a deer or see a buck or something. And it can be a little buck or a better deer or whatever. But one thing I learned partly from raising cows and just knowing about a lot of experience calling animals, I figured out on this public ground and I started trying to [01:25:00] teach myself to do it a lot better than I could was voice grunt at these deer.
I've had, and like I said, I've got multiple videos of it. I grunt in some deer down there with a grunt call. There's a time frame where the calling works pretty good, and I like to call deer, so I'll grunt, rattle, and call in a good many deer. Oh yeah. I also have some that act like they are scared or educated, if you want to use that word, educated to a grunt call.
But what I figured out is if you have, and this is, holds true big time with coyotes, but I think it,
I figured out that I have a much higher, way higher success rate when I voice grunt at these deer than if I use a, commercial store bought grunt call. And I think it's because they don't hear it. They hadn't heard that. It's [01:26:00] different. Yeah, it's different and they hadn't heard it and they buy into it.
And I've even had the same deer, hunt multiple days. And maybe have the same deer, recognizable deer, and try it both ways and have that deer come to the voice grunt. But he won't come to, matter of fact, he'll trot away or leave, act a little spooked from the other grunt calls. Just some interesting stuff I've picked up, from all the testing calls on coyotes.
And then I've applied some of that to deer hunting and seeing how... That all plays out Boy, that is awesome. I this might be The first tales of the chase where we have went through Pretty much every emotion you can go through. Yeah, this has been anticipation Damn near thought I was gonna cry when he was telling his His story of falling outta the tree.
And then just this whole dancing game he was [01:27:00] playing with the big six, which is now his name by the way. I'm gonna give him that name, the big six. That is his nickname. The big six or five. But like through every single emotion in this tales of the chase Cook with his first tails, the chase, I gave him an a plus for sure.
Other than swallowing a gnat in the middle of the gnat. And I got mixed up on my that's a lot of history to go through. That's a lot of time to think about what you did. I'm sure I left out lots of it, but it was long enough as it was. I've gotten on this. Computer over here. I've got, oh man, and they're all videos.
I know I said pictures a lot, but they're all video clips. Every one of them are video clips of this deer. Four years worth of documented, and we're talking, we're probably talking thousands of clips. Plus the cell, the two different cell phone [01:28:00] encounters. Plus videoing him, a handful of times from the tree, like when he bedded down.
It's a, it's a long story and most of it was captured on film of some kind. That's awesome. Yeah, that is awesome. That's rare. That's rare to have that many encounters that you can document. A lot of guys, oh, I didn't see, couldn't get him on camera, didn't shoot him. But they don't have the cell phone clips, so they don't have this or that.
But that, the documented history is what's cool. Yeah, hopefully we get See you one day. The fun thing about it. Yeah. This one is not, this one's not out yet. Correct. This is not on YouTube. It's not out yet. It's going to take a long time to put it together. And I absolutely hate sitting behind the computer that and it's like I was telling you off camera, I'm, you use, I'm torn.
I like sharing the stuff. I like preserving it mainly for, just for my own. Enjoyment. Enjoyment later on, this video deal, being able to go back and watch your hunts. And then now I've got [01:29:00] the grandson that, is, he loves to, he's only two, but he loves to watch the, so there's that side of it that I wanna put it out there and have it.
And then there's that side of the, especially on the deer hunting, but even the cow hunting and stuff. Yeah. I've had. Getting away from being secretive and low key and, that side of it. Unfortunately, sometimes people suck, and you have to deal with that at times. So we definitely understand it.
But dude, that is a, an awesome story. The big six probably the only six I've heard a story on and you just don't see six pointers very often. Especially rare in our big, a two year old is a six pointer turns into an eight turns into a 10, you don't usually see him just stay like that and then just get bigger and bigger.
And that's what this deer did throughout his life, obviously from, five to [01:30:00] nine years old. So what was another funny part of it, is the side and the tail that. This tells the chase about what ends up being a five point, chasing a six point or a five point. And when I was, my wife, when I told her, let's do this podcast, read this podcast scheduled for tonight.
She said, which deer are you going to tell them about to Illinois deer? Because that's my high score. And then I've got another one that I killed off the white river that's in the one sixties and that Illinois is there's, upper one seventies, they're both public ground here and good stories and fun.
Good stuff, but I thought I said, no, I'm gonna tell him about the blind six point my lowest scoring, I don't even know what, who cares. He's probably my favorite deer. And what I consider. My, my best deer, I think he's my best deer [01:31:00] just because of what he was. Yeah. You had to put it in the time.
Yeah. And he's old and he's older. He's probably the oldest deer you've killed. At least, yeah. He's technically the most mature. And by the way, there's no limit on tales of the chase story. So don't mean we can't hear the other ones at some point. Hey, I love the tales of the chase stuff and just.
That's the kind of stuff I listen to. I've always, it's always funny to me how people will come to the house and they'll look at the deer and they may ask me a question or two about maybe something what'd he score? Where'd you kill him? Stuff like that, and that's all they want to know about it.
Ever since I was a kid, a little bitty kid, I loved deer hunting stories, especially if they were bow hunting stories. I wanted to know, and I still to this day, when I was doing taxidermy, when somebody would bring me a deer, I'd ask them, how'd you kill him or whatever, and they're usually pretty short with it, and they might say kill it with my bow, and [01:32:00] of course, then I want to know more about it, and I'll ask them, I like hearing those stories.
Yep. And I spent most of my teenage years bow hunting and reading North American whitetail stories. I wouldn't read any of the, I didn't read any of the tips and tactics stuff, but I would read all the stories of, the Yeah, especially the bow hunts like mossy horns and just any of them.
Oh, yeah, I always love to know stories And I like that about y'all's I appreciate it. That's my favorite thing too. I, what I love is especially on a podcast. Now, obviously I like to watch stuff on YouTube and watch hunts, but what I like about listening to stories on podcast is at least this is what I do when I'm, if I'm driving or whenever I'm listening to it, I will paint a picture of what I'm listening to in my mind.
It might not be anything like what actually is happening, but I'm picturing that deer there and I'm I'm picturing you up in the tree and I'm picturing that slew and you know how he came through even [01:33:00] when you were telling it just now I'm in my mind. I'm watching that deer walk and watching you draw with his blind eye.
Look, towards you and I'm watching all of that in my mind and that's my favorite part about the stories. Now I also love learning stuff too, but Yeah I'm a story guy too, so I'm with you on that one, but and you did a great job here on the Tales of the Chase episodes, episode Tori Cook with MFK Game Calls.
We really appreciate your time tonight and go wash out that gnat. Yeah, I think I finally swallowed it. All right, man. It took 30 minutes. Hey, man, we'll talk to you later. All right. See ya.