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"Wide 5x5 Muley for Wes"
Photo provided by: Wes Bennett

Wes Bennett (aka Wes) did well this year, scoring on a wide muley. He shared in the forum.........

"Shoot the 30"er or Wait? - I waited. I believe this is a buck I saw two years ago. Finally was in the right spot at the right time. The last Saturday of the hunt my wife and I rode out before daylight. I was hoping to find her a buck. I didn't really want to shoot anything this year unless it was an exceptional buck because I shot a 4 point last year and being in the dedicated hunter program means shooting one this year fills my quota for this go and I would have to set out next year. We saw a couple small bucks first thing. It was a warm day and things were slow during the afternoon. I spent the day glassing while my wife did the sleeping hunter decoy trick. It didn't work because I couldn't glass up anything. Just as the shadows were getting long I spotted a small cactus buck with a couple does come out to feed. A few minutes later a 30" 3X4 came out. I ranged them at 658 yards. I asked my wife if she wanted to try for the 3x4 and she said she couldn't make that shot. It was getting late so I told her we would come back in the morning and find him. Just then I notice another buck coming out of the trees. This one was much larger then the 3x4. Once I got the spotting scope on him I recognized him as the buck I'd been after. We were 3 draws away so I ranged the next ridge at 239 yards. I figured if I could get there without spooking them I would have a 400 shot. I gathered up my pack and rifle. I had to cross about 100 yards of open to get to the trees on the next ridge. When I got to the trees I found a solid rest and got set up for the shot. The 3x4 had spotted me and was staring in my direction. I couldn't find the 5x5. I figured he must have spotted me also and moved. The 3x4 didn't move, just kept staring in my direction. I stayed hidden hoping the 5x5 would come back in view. The shadows were getting longer and I thought I would run out of shooting light. I put the crosshairs on the 3x4 and pushed the safety off but couldn't pull the trigger. I went back to glassing hoping to find the 5x5. The 3x4 went back to feeding. I put the crosshairs on him once again. Still couldn't shoot knowing the big one was somewhere close. Finally I decided to back out and come back in the morning. I put my pack on and picked up my rifle and started to leave. I walked about 15 yards and looked back and there was the 5x5 bedded right out in the open. I couldn't see him because of a tree blocking him . Now I'm on an extremely steep slope with nothing for a rest. I ranged him at 420. I threw my pack off and tried to use it for a rest but with the steep slope I couldn't get solid. He was quartering away. My rifle is sighted dead on at 275 and hits 9" low at 400. I figured I'd hold right between his antlers and put one right in the back of his neck. At the shot my pack fell over. By the time I got set up again he was running up the hill. I got a much better rest and followed him in my scope. He ran behind a tree and stopped. I ranged him 384. He came trotting out and I continue to follow him in the scope. He went about 10 more yards up the hill and stopped behind another tree. His shoulder was hidden but when he peeked around the tree I was dead solid and sent one thru his forehead. It was lights out. I gathered my gear and headed back to my wife. She had already gone for the horses. By the time we got everything gathered up it was getting dark. I told her it would be too dangerous to try and get the horses up in there in the dark and we'd be better off coming back in the morning. It was a long night. Finally at 4am I couldn't take it any more. We loaded up the horses and rode in. We came in from above him. As I was getting close he didn't look as big as I thought. It wasn't until I pulled his head out of the bush that realized how wide he was. Now I won't be able to pull a deer tag for two years if I can get drawn when my wait is up. But I guess this one is worth the wait."

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