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"Colorado Slug for Mark"
Photo provided by: Mark Caughlan

Mark Caughlan writes, "After several years of hunting a particular area along Colorado’s northern front range, I finally had a chance to shoot a monster mule deer. I had applied for a deer tag that covered most of the mule deer rutting season. My tag started the 3rd week of October, but I waited until I had seen bucks in the area start to group up with the does before I started my hunt. I had a free afternoon so I decided to head out and see if I could find a shooter buck. I headed out to a piece of private property I had permission to hunt. I parked my truck and hiked up a ridge to glass the far valley. I soon spotted a group of deer down the valley about a half mile away feeding along a hillside of mountain mahogany. I saw 3 bucks in the group and one looked like a possible shooter. I would need to make a hike long around a mountain to approach them from the top of a valley. So, I headed back down the ridge and began my stalk. After a 50 minute hike I was able to sneak within 200 yards of the deer herd. I saw two of bucks along with 6 does. One of the bucks looked like a good buck, but it was hard to tell in the mountain mahogany. I picked the biggest buck up in my scope and placed one shot behind his front shoulder. He hunched up at the bullet impact and walked about 30 feet and fell over. I watched to other deer mill around the area for 15 minutes. After waiting sufficient time to make sure the buck had expired I walked to the area and found the buck laying dead. I was surprised to see the buck was much bigger than I had realized. He measured 32” wide and weighed about 300 pounds. My taxidermist thinks he will score around 190. I used a 30-06 Tikka T3 stainless, Leupold Vari X II with a Nosler 180gr Accubond. The bullet made a clean pass through taking out lungs and his heart. In all the time I have spent scouting that area it was the first time I ever saw that buck. This will certainly be a deer to remember."

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