Wife's First Deer - 507 Yards

mkollman74

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  • Nov 5, 2009
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    WA, USA
    My wife and I were fortunate to win an auction hunt benefitting Jubilee Youth Ranch this year. She has been hunting with me for about 3 years now. The hunt was for one day access on J. Hair Farms in SE WA state. Let me start by saying what a great family the Hair family is. They were incredibly gracious to us during our time with them. We had a great time.

    Jake Vibbert of Jubilee Youth Ranch and JC Steel was helping out with the hunt, and was able to come with us in the afternoon to do some spotting for us. Not 15 minutes into our afternoon hunt we spotted a small group of deer. We threw the glass on them and counted 6 does and a buck. I broke out my spotter and couldn't put a third point on the buck. We were hunting in a three point or better unit, so we moved on. We moved a bit further into the hunting area and were glassing another group of deer when we spotted the original group again.

    I put my spotter back on them, only this time I thought I saw eyeguards on the buck (making him legal). Jake wasn't sure about the third point and we re-positioned a bit to try to get a better view. The sun was at a different angle now, and I was able to clearly see the eyeguards. Unfortunately, the does spooked, and the little band took off.

    My wife has never taken a big game animal, and she wanted to have a go at this guy. We stalked the group for maybe 90 minutes total, bumping them 3 or maybe even 4 times. We kept at it, and finally got the buck separated from the does for a clear shot. I ranged the buck at 507 yards and entered that range into my Kestrel with ATRAG. By this time my wife was seated with her rifle on the shooting sticks.

    A few words about her rifle: I had it built for her by JD Thomas of High Speed Shooting Systems. Its an accurized REM700 LA with a fluted PTG bolt and a #3 Krieger barrel chambered in 6.5x55. The action is bedded into a McMillan Remington Model 7 stock. It has a NF 2.5-10x24 in Talley lightweight rings. I handload for it, and it shoots like a dream. It is perfectly balanced and extremely accurate. My wife has ultimate confidence in this gun, and she practices with it on my 8" steel.

    OK, back to the hunt: I ask my wife if she is solid and comfortable to take the shot - its a long poke. She says she is. While she is seated with her eye on the buck, I dial in the 11.5MOA of elevation the Kestrel calculated. I get back behind the spotter, and she fires. I was able to pick up the trace and watch the impact. The deer stumbled about 3 steps forward and then flopped over on his back.

    My wife is asking me "what happened?" and I say " you killed him". The adrenaline dump hits her and she keeps asking "he's dead? are you sure?" Her hands are shaking she has a huge smile on her face, and we load up in the Polaris to recover her deer. When we get to the deer we see a perfect double lung shot - and she did it from 507 yards. I am so proud of her.
    Lindy Deer 2013.jpg
     
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    pinsandpitons

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    Jan 13, 2012
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    Wow! Great news. Tell her congrats for us. Seated from sticks at 507... not too shabby.
     
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    Southbreeze

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    Mar 22, 2011
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    Holy Cow Batman,

    If that is her warm up shot, you're gonna have to keep us updated on her encore performances! Let this be a reminder, don't run from her - you'll only be tired and dead!

    Tell her congrats for a seriously good shot.

    Cheers,
    Breeze
     

    mkollman74

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  • Nov 5, 2009
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    Thanks for the words of encouragement guys. She does have a knack for shooting - especially that rifle. A cold bore 507 yard sitting shot from sticks impressed the heck outta me. We both knew it was on the edge of her comfort zone, but she did it. She practices out to about 400 yards on 8" steel, and just kills it. There was zero wind, and she built a solid position. I tell ya, if she starts showing up at matches and beating me, I may start fishing...;)
     

    colscar

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    Oct 10, 2012
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    its awsome that both of yall can share a moment im sure you all are going to remember... great experience and awsome shot.... dont make her mad lol
     

    MarshallDodge

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    Jul 19, 2007
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    Nice work!

    Mine had her first kill this year, a Montana gopher at 25 feet. Drilled him through the head with her 9mm 1911.
     

    Shoottothrill

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    Jan 26, 2012
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    What a great husband and wife day. Great shooting and a great hunt. It seem's many women are really good shots. It's great for the sport. Congratulations to her on a successful hunt. I hope she tells all her girlfriends about the hunt, so they get interested too.
     

    6.5BR

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    Oct 6, 2007
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    Congrats, like to hear more about the rifle, any bolt face work or did it handle the 55 as is? 8 twist? Length/contour? Bullet? What powder is your fave load?

    So the M7 stock was modified for the 700 LA? Thanks.
     

    JC Steel

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    Oct 12, 2008
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    I was fortunate to witness this kill. Incredible to say the least, it was a long way for sure.

    Great job to the both of you!

    really glad you guys had a great hunt!
     

    Killshot44

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    Jun 10, 2010
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    I'll be the That Guy.

    You ranged a "possible 3Point" deer at 500yds on a fenced-field hunt with 10X glass and took a shot?

    And you "Stalked" for a WHOLE 90 minutes, wow what patience!

    Where I'm from (Illinois) that's considered beyond shamefull.
     

    Tburkes

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    killshot44 let's lay out the facts as they're presented in the story:

    These guys won an auction for a hunt that benefits a youth ranch, as in kids that need help. I know Jake Vibbert and he works his butt off for his kids.

    The way I read it mkollman confirmed it was a legal buck, not a "possible 3Point" as you state.

    I didn't read anything about a fenced-field hunt, and who cares if it was man.

    Who really cares how long the stalk was too.

    It's her first hunt, she regularly practices, as in she's comfortable with shooting long range.

    She built up her position on her own and made a damn good shot on her first game animal at 507 yards.

    The buck, falls over dead within three steps with a perfect double lung shot.

    We get to hear about a hunter's first case of buck fever and know there is another hunter hooked on the sport on our side.

    We get to see a pretty lady all smiles next to her first trophy animal.



    Pretty much sums up a perfect first hunt I'd say, and they made a donation to a worthy cause too.


    Now Mrs. mkollman74 has to wake up today to see you being "that guy" running her down.

    Not all of us can be Jeremiah Johnson, or Karamojo Bell like I'm sure you are.

    Couldn't you remember what your momma told you about not saying anything if you had nothing good to say?

    If everyone really does think like you do in the great state of Illinois I'm glad I'm in Texas.

    Why'd you have to be "that guy" man. Jeez!


    Way to go Mrs. Mkollman74, that was a great story, heck I got excited reading it, and an outstanding shot you performed! Just because some people think a 500 yard shot might be unethical just proves that they haven't practiced at that range and don't know how easy it can be, when you regularly practice, and when the conditions are right like they were for you. Women typically are much better shots than men because they listen to direction much better and apply the basic fundamentals. I hope you guys have a long hunting career together.
     

    RobertB

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    Aug 20, 2009
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    awesome, doesn't get much better than that.

    From above, Does are the same as bucks to me. They all eat the same, I don't care to kill one animal just because it has bigger horns on its head. I'm bringing home MEAT!, all that matters, all that ever matters, I've taken some nice bucks out of the field, only thing better bout them are the extra handles.

    Congratulations to your wife. Great shot.
     

    mkollman74

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  • Nov 5, 2009
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    I figured I'd get at least one response like this:

    • My OP clearly states we ID'd the buck as a 3 point


    • "fenced-field hunt"...? Well to the best of my knowledge, yes, the Hair family has at least partial perimeter fence around their 48,500 contiguous acres of wheat and CRP. I wouldn't know to be honest, because we never saw any of it (the fence that is).


    • The 90 minutes is/was only an estimate as I don't even wear a watch, and was not paying any attention to any time keeping device. Rather I was enjoying the experience with my wife. It might have only been 19 minutes, could've been 10 days. Who cares? Never claimed to be patient... How long should we "stalk" before shooting a deer?


    • Shameful? (BTW, that is how you spell the word) Hmmmm..... I humbly beg your forgiveness for having not met your expectations.



    I'll be the That Guy.

    You ranged a "possible 3Point" deer at 500yds on a fenced-field hunt with 10X glass and took a shot?

    And you "Stalked" for a WHOLE 90 minutes, wow what patience!

    Where I'm from (Illinois) that's considered beyond shamefull.
     

    mkollman74

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  • Nov 5, 2009
    1,414
    174
    WA, USA
    Congrats, like to hear more about the rifle, any bolt face work or did it handle the 55 as is? 8 twist? Length/contour? Bullet? What powder is your fave load?

    So the M7 stock was modified for the 700 LA? Thanks.
    I don't believe any bolt face work was required. It is an 8 twist Krieger #3 contour IIRC, it measures 20" from the recoil lug. The load is Lapua brass, FED210M, 46.5 RL-22, 140 Berger VLD, going about 2600fps.
     

    deadly_punk

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    Oct 20, 2012
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    Excellent work. Always cool to hear about a man that can get his wife involved in his sport. Unfortunately there will always be some guy like that high speed that called it "shameful" when you don't do everything just their way. Elitists are always a special pain in the butt that we all know and love.

    That's a farther shot than I've made to date on a big game animal.
     

    JC Steel

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    Oct 12, 2008
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    that would be a lot of fence......

    I have rode 4 wheelers and hiked the entire place many of times, I have also never seen a fence.

    48.5K acres, anyone know how many feet of fence that would be??? Alot
     

    pinsandpitons

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    Jan 13, 2012
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    In the simplest shape (a square) that would be roughly 183,854 feet of fence. Or 61,284 yds, 34.82 mi, 5,603,870 cm, etc.