On opening morning, my hunting partner David Brinker and I were stranded in the middle of nowhere with a dead battery on my truck. If I could have rolled it down, all our scouting and preparation would have floated out the window. Cell service was spotty at best, so we figured if we just hunted close to camp, at some point a rancher or fellow hunter would pass by and we could flag him down.
We had set up the wall tent in the middle of antelope country, so finding something to chase didn't take long. Almost immediately, we spotted four small bucks bedded on the far side of the basin, along with a few loners spread out and wandering. We decided to split up and hunt our way to different highpoints to see if one of us could pick up a good signal and call for help.
The day was long and hot, and sunset found me waiting for a few bucks to feed over a sharp ridge so I could close the distance. I watched the last buck disappear over the skyline and ran as fast as I could to get into position. A hundred yard sprint had them all feeding below me from 36 to 54 yards. I nocked an arrow and prepared to shoot the biggest of the four bucks as soon as he would turn broadside. But then I heard hooves and grunting coming from behind me and spun around to see two stud bucks chasing each other coming right down the same cow path I was sitting on! I drew as they were closing in on me at top antelope speed. The first buck passed literally inches from me and I could hear him breathing as he went by, and as the second buck flew past I released the arrow. The buck was pierced and bleeding, chasing the other buck unaware of what just happened. I stood up to watch them run off only to see my buck tumbling to a halt in the sage.
The morning's change of plans left me scattered, and my knives were still back at the tent. How was I going to get this buck a mile back to camp by myself without a knife? Well, I thought, I do have a quiver full of razor-sharp Montecs. I started with the arrow that already had blood on it, and that one arrow did everything I needed it to do, from down the buck to dressing it out.
Darkness set in as I hauled the buck toward camp, and I could see the lantern going in the walltent guiding me back across the basin. With every step, the day's events flashed one by one, and I wondered if there wasn't a greater purpose to my battery going dead that morning.
I hope you enjoyed it!