A16 - how'd it go for everybody?

Hogskin

New Member
Nov 11, 2019
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My two Creeps and I finally were able to put in together after waiting a lot of years - August football practice always kept us busy. So we were looking forward to it and I don't think we slept for a month before, always laying in bed at night thinking of the smoker we were going to shoot. We applied as two parties with my buddy and his wife & sons - plenty of points and we were in. Made a couple trips up there between May & August and didn't see anything stellar but we were still looking forward to the hunt because this would be my sons' first big game hunt.

We got up there the Thursday before the opener, met up with friends and did some road scouting. We saw a gazillion does, a lot of dinks and a few shooters. On Friday my buddy (that knows the area like the back of his hand) took us into a few areas that he's done well before but we literally did not see a single deer. I was behind him in my truck and, like a dumbass, was following too close and was eating his dust up a straight but narrow road. We were doing a good 35mph when I slammed into a rock sticking out of the side of the trail. The impact blew the front passenger tire and rear passenger tire and I planted the truck into a berm. Eventually my buddy noticed we weren't behind him, we changed out one tire for the spare, he took the other into town and returned in a couple hours with a new tire. I was expecting major mechanical carnage - I swear, it was like being in a car wreck and I'm surprised the airbags didn't deploy - but a visual inspection didn't show anything. So I started heading back to the highway and noticed that my steering wheel was turned about 45 degrees in order to drive anywhere near straight. Finally nursed the truck into town and to a shop, the guy said he'd check it out and let me know.

Next morning Creep #1 had a neck ache from the impact so we decided to basically road hunt. We took the Creep's 4Runner and glassed an area and found some small bucks, Creep #2 decided he wanted meat in the freezer. The stalk was on - Creep #1 and I and Mrs. Hogskin sat up on a hill about half a mile away and watched through the binos as he made his sneak. He was in 2' tall sage and bitterbrush, when two bucks started feeding toward him. They pegged him at about 50 yards but he was like a statue. It literally took them 30 minutes to feed toward him, all the while keeping an eye on him. They finally got to about 30 yards and the whole time I'm muttering, "Kill him, son, kill him." He drew back, let it fly and the deer scattered over a ridge. He eventually walked back to us and I said, "Man, that was so close, I thought you were gonna kill him." He said, "I did." The tracking was on and it only took about 10 minutes to find him piled up.

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Gutted and loaded into the 4Runner (Creep #1 was none too happy about having his precious truck bloodied) and we were out of there. We took him over to Yort's place and hung him in his cooler and then we were back at it. I picked up the truck from the shop on Sunday afternoon - no broken parts just badly out of alignment. The mechanic was stunned that nothing was busted. The next 5 days were spent trying to fill Creep #1's tag but he couldn't close the deal. It was frustrating because he had the chances but it was also a blast because we were chasing deer everywhere. Morning of the last day I told him, "New rules of engagement, if I see one I'm killing it. " and he said, "Do it!" About an hour later we came across a little buck and I told the Creep - "Go kill that thing" but he said, "Dad, you've given me every shot, you take this one." So I the stalk was on. I ranged him at 30 yards and was waiting for him to turn but he decided to walk about 5 yards toward me. He finally turned and my arrow was in the air... right over his back. The Creep goes, "Holyshit, you missed!" To make matters worse, the Creep was videoing the whole thing with his phone. I think I now know what Bill Buckner felt like after game 6 of the '86 world series. We hunted the rest of the day and came close a few times but never did finish. But at least later that night I was able to watch my miss on a loop on a big screen TV at the condo. I slept terribly that night - partly because I was replaying the shot in my mind and partly because I had an ominous feeling about my truck. I finally prayed, "Lord, please keep us safe. And get me to within 200 miles of home so I don't have to pay out the ying-yang for a tow."

Next morning we loaded up and headed home - creeps up ahead in the 4Runner, wife and I cruising along in my Tundra. We were south of Lone Pine when the truck started making a strange noise in the rear end. I started taking an inventory when the truck started shaking violently and started to go into a drift. It was about that time that I saw my driver side rear wheel go rolling past me at about 65mph. It was all I could do to keep the truck upright but finally got it to a stop on the side of 395. That was a couple weeks ago and I'm still pulling seat cushion out of my butt cheeks. Turns out the shop I took it to failed to tighten the lugs. But nobody died and it's just stuff. A flatbed tow truck showed up about 2 hours later and dragged it home - 182 miles. Since then the truck has been in and out of the shop getting repairs done - if anybody knows a decent Toyota mechanic in the San Fernando Valley I'd be grateful for the name. I was hoping to go back up but without a rig it was impossible so it's tag soup.

Overall a lot of fun but also a lot of misery. My sons both said, "At least we'll never forget this one."

Hope other tag holders were able to hang their tags.
 

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HATCHET1

"yes,it killed the hound..ferocious bitch she was"
Aug 2, 2013
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Incredible documentation!! Good on the boys...anything with bow is an accomplishment! I hate roads!!!
 
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MarceloF

Active Member
Jun 2, 2017
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Great story, sounds like it was a nice hunt even with the road troubles and tag soup...if everything goes well and smooth, things are not as memorable. :)
 

ke1234567

Active Member
Jul 24, 2018
105
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Santa Clarita, CA
Automotive Instincts (818) 349-5900

Best mechanic I know as I grew up in the valley. Not cheap, but they do dealer quality work (only use OEM parts) and are cheaper than the dealer. They only work on Honda/Toyota (Lexus and Acura). Certified mechanics. I stopped going there about five years ago because I live in Santa Clarita, so it was just too far. I do a lot of my own work now also.

Good luck
 

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