Editor’s Note: Mark Drury of Drury Outdoors (https://www.druryoutdoors.com/) is known first and foremost as an expert white-tailed deer hunter and turkey hunter. You can forecast deer movement with his app at (https://www.druryoutdoors.com/deercast.php#.W9H2GeJOmUk) that combines local weather info with the distinct characteristics of each of the 13 phases of whitetail season to deliver a custom forecast for peak deer activity of where you should hunt down to the hour. This app combines 70 years of Mark and Terry Drury’s whitetail-hunting expertise with hour-by-hour real-time algorithm-driven deer movement forecasts and an abundance of videoed Mossy Oak hunts. But what you may not know is that Mark also enjoys hunting mule deer and uses what he learns during mule deer hunting in September and October every year to prepare for whitetail season.
I took a big mule deer in the fall of 2015, and he scored 198 Pope & Young (P&Y)
(https://pope-young.org/). He was a true whopper – a giant mule deer! I took him at 60 yards after we hunted him every day, all day. Then I finally found him out in a field of canola. We were standing in a sprayer track about equal in size to the sprayer track where the mule deer was walking, in head-high canola. This giant was with several other bucks, and the only shot he presented to me was when he was walking in the sprayer track that was parallel to the sprayer track where we were walking. Sprayer tracks aren’t very wide, and I realized that if I didn’t take a shot I probably wouldn’t get another shot at him.
I shot that buck with a Rage 2.3 Chisel Xtreme broadhead (https://www.feradyne.com/x-treme-chisel-tip/). I was shooting a PSE Carbon Air bow (https://www.pse-archery.com/carbon-air) and hit this big mule deer center body late in the afternoon. Then he ran about 200 yards in that canola.
Due to the late time, we decided to let him lay overnight, since the weather would be cool, and the meat wouldn’t spoil. That muley stayed in the canola. When we located him the next day, we quartered him to get him out. Although blood trailing through such thick cover is often difficult, finding this mule deer buck was relatively easy. Everything he’d touched was red. That buck matted down the canola where he went, making the trail much easier to follow. When we found the mule deer, the canola was over head-high. Luckily five of us were on the hunt, so we had plenty of hands to help carry that big boy out.
To learn more about mule-deer hunting, check out John E. Phillips’ book, “Mule Deer Hunter’s Bible,” available in Kindle, print and soon to be available in Audible August, 2019, at https://amzn.to/2Kg62w5
Tomorrow: What Was Mark Drury’s Most-Difficult Mule-Deer Shot