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A Noisy Safety...........

BazzalooBazzaloo Posts: 67 Member


One time while hunting mule deer in Ca., I had picked a likely spot to be before first light. However, when I arrived there very early next morning I got a nasty surprise and that was the noise my boots were making while walking on the oak leaves which covered the ground all over.

Talk about crunch, it was ‘conflake city’, so damned noisy. No self respecting deer could not avoid hearing you coming and be stupid enough to stick around after hearing that. Heck, what to do? Looking around I saw that the oak leaves that had fallen on the road had been flattened by other vehicles and were wet with dew, they were not giving off any ’crunch’. H’mm, that meant that I was going to be relegated to walking the road which was not ideal to my mind at all.

On this occasion I was carrying my Winchester “Featherweight” model 70 in 6.5x55 which has a noisy safety catch and to keep it quiet one needs to ease it off slowly which dispenses with the loud ‘Click” when released.

I had walked about 300 yds. down this track/road when I came across a saddle. I’d been walking downhill until I came to the saddle which was the point where the track started up hill. Recognizing that a saddle is often an ideal place for deer to pass from one side of a hill or mountain to the other, I decided to walk across to see if there were any deer hanging around below the saddle on the right side.

I was now walking in ‘corn flakes’ again but I took it real slow. As the land fell away slowly what came into view was a buck just passing on the other side of pile of deadfall. He was moving from my left to right. He was being obscured by the fall but my heart beating faster got the better of me and I forgot to release the safety catch slowly. “CLICK”, it sound like symbols clashing to me and the buck heard it too.

I held the rifle to my shoulder waiting for him to appear from behind the deadfall buy he didn’t appear, he had stopped when he heard the click of the safety. He was still behind the deadfall and did not affording me a shot. Talk about a pregnant moment. He no doubt was listening trying to decide what had made that metallic sound. Time past, and my, did it seem a long time.

Apparently not hearing any other noise while standing still and listening intently he must have decided it was nothing and began walking again. As soon as he came into view I hit him right behind the shoulder where my 129 gr. Hornaday handload severed his spine. He was mine.

That was a lesson well learned that day, a mistake I never made again.

Bazzallo.


Replies

  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 7,928 Senior Member
    I tried to walk like a deer when the snow was crusted or the ground dry and crunchy. Take a step or two and stop, repeat etc.. Don't know if it worked or not. Near as I can tell. They winded me anytime I ever got busted. The most clever bust I ever saw was from a bear. I watched it scent my tracks, circle down wind and spot where I was sitting. Far as I know, a safety or cocking never gave me away. The safety on my Win Featherweight's pretty quiet. But I've not hunted with it.

    Another mistake I've made with deer, is not spotting the additional herd spotting me well I tunnel visioned on one animal.

    I remember all the meetings fondly. They are wonderful animals.
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 14,189 Senior Member
    Walk slow, deer make crunchy noises walking on leaves too, to, 2 
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 18,114 Senior Member
    CHIRO1989 said:
    Walk slow, deer make crunchy noises walking on leaves too, to, 2 
    Yep....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • BazzalooBazzaloo Posts: 67 Member
    I try telling guys new to deer hunting that you almost cannot walk slow enough. I point out that in the forest the only animal that walks continuously are humans.
    Bazzaloo.
  • FreezerFreezer Senior Member Posts: 2,356 Senior Member
    Slowly and without rhythm. One step, three steps, one step, two. I'm also a tree hugger. I use trees and brush to break up my form. 

    A trick that has saved my bacon is to use a squirrel call. Those little buggers can make al the noise they want, let me snap a twig and the world is looking for me. If I make a bad move I stop and work the call a little," I'm not a nut in the woods, I'm a squirrel. One time I was changing position and moving towards a draw. As I approached the edge three does came towards me. The first passed within 25 feet of me without incident. The other two stopped and tried to figure out what I was. I slowly got my hand on the call and made a few soft calls, they went about their business without out sounding the alarm.  

    The squirrel is also the worlds biggest snitch. I learned to bark back at them. It's lots of fun and since its a couple squirrels having an argument all is right with the world, deer don't speak squirrel.

    The other thing a squirrel call is good for is locating a partner in the woods if you don't have GPS.   You can say on the radio "I'm over here" ,but where's that? I tell them "Hit your squirrel call". 
    I like Elmer Keith; I married his daughter :wink:
  • BazzalooBazzaloo Posts: 67 Member
    That's some good advice old sport, I'll remember that.........thank you.
    Bazzaloo.
  • Wambli SkaWambli Ska Posts: 2,980 Senior Member
    Freezer said:
    Slowly and without rhythm. One step, three steps, one step, two. I'm also a tree hugger. I use trees and brush to break up my form. 

    A trick that has saved my bacon is to use a squirrel call. Those little buggers can make al the noise they want, let me snap a twig and the world is looking for me. If I make a bad move I stop and work the call a little," I'm not a nut in the woods, I'm a squirrel. One time I was changing position and moving towards a draw. As I approached the edge three does came towards me. The first passed within 25 feet of me without incident. The other two stopped and tried to figure out what I was. I slowly got my hand on the call and made a few soft calls, they went about their business without out sounding the alarm.  

    The squirrel is also the worlds biggest snitch. I learned to bark back at them. It's lots of fun and since its a couple squirrels having an argument all is right with the world, deer don't speak squirrel.

    The other thing a squirrel call is good for is locating a partner in the woods if you don't have GPS.   You can say on the radio "I'm over here" ,but where's that? I tell them "Hit your squirrel call". 
    A doe/fawn bleed has worked for me a few times.  Sound like a fawn looking for mommy.  Scent control is WAY more important than sound when stalking.  All sorts of things make sounds in the woods.  Metal sounds are a big no-no in my book though.
    I’m baaaaaaaaack… 😬
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 12,041 Senior Member
    Freezer said:
    Slowly and without rhythm. One step, three steps, one step, two. I'm also a tree hugger. I use trees and brush to break up my form. 



    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
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