Getting late in the year we decided to do one more sambar hunt with the backpacks into some new country to see what it held. Being an exploratory trip we were going in blind so had to lug water as we didn’t know what to expect.
After selecting a camp we quickly set off for an afternoon hunt to see what we could spot. I managed to spot a few stags feeding out early, one of which had cast. They were soon followed by a hind and calf that come out into the snow grass on last light for a feed.
That night we compared what we had seen around the camp fire and decided that we would need to explore the area some more and set up in the afternoon for a glass on a high spot in the afternoon. The night was cold and went below zero, before night had set in. The unpredictable weather at 1600m had shown up and made for a very frozen morning.
The following day some km’s were done exploring the new area. There was sign of stags present but the place was definitely not over run by them. Looking at the clover development we may have been a little early and just a fraction ahead of the older stags. A top class cast antler was found during the hunt that also got us dreaming of similar stags in the same area.
The afternoon of day 2 we set up looking at a big face that fed off a timbered spur. It was very quiet and nothing at all was spotted. Just as we got itchy to move I spotted a stag break cover at 650m. After a good look at him through the 30-70x95mm STX Swarovski spotter and the 15’s it was confirmed that he was a definite shooter. I geared up quickly for a stalk and set off. We were lucky to get some top quality film of the stag through the spotter which made the hunt all that more special.
A short stalk in and a 15 minute stare off with the stag I had managed to take the very cagey stag down from 250m. This topped off a great hunt with mates and made for a very light mood around the fire that night. This closed off a great year chasing the game of Australia and New Zealand and most importantly I shared it with great mates. Now the 2013 scouting begins.
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