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"Stewart's South Dakota Archery Buck"
Photo provided by: Stewart John

Stewart John writes, "This was my third trip out to South Dakota and have yet been able to even release an arrow at a mule deer buck. My hunting partner of over 15 years has only taken one buck himself on 5 trips out West bowhunting for mule deer and we have had many discussions on the best tactic to try to arrow this big game animal.

After many failed stalk attempts over the past two seasons, my partner and I decided on hunting from blinds. This was very hard for both of us when you can see country for miles and miles, but decided to give it a try. After scouting some fields in the evening on the day we arrived, we had a few ideas. After moving our blinds several times after three morning and two evening hunts, the third evening we finally got things right.

About 30 minutes before dark and after 20 does and smaller bucks already passed my blind, this fine South Dakota muley walked by giving me a 30 yard broadside shot. The buck only ran about 100 yards before expiring.

The best part about it was that I had my video camera in the blind with me taking video of deer to show my wife because she has never seen a mule deer before. Right after the shot, I picked up my camera and videoed my first archery mule deer going down. Words could not express what I was feeling at that moment. Besides my wedding day, it was the best day of my life and is something that I will always remember."

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