Filled my tag

Discussion in 'Small Game' started by Coues84, Jan 7, 2007.

  1. Its been a long day. Got off of work and out the door of the station a little late. Wasent able to leave until about 0830. I called my brother in law on the way out the door to have him meet me at the house. Got home about 0930, took a quick odorless shower, and finally got into the truck and on the hunt about 1000. A little late for deer hunting but never to late to hunt pigs after a cold clear night. Finally made our hunting are. Today was supposed to be for my brother in law. He drew an archery tag in 32. My tag is in 33. We spent the remainder of the morning doing some "chores" on the mountain, (we replenished a salt lick) all the while glassing for pigs on the mountain. Found 3 herds of muleys with small bucks in tow. We decided to head back down off the mountain and into the river where both of us would be able to hunt for pigs. We went into a honey hole of mine from the 33 side. Since the San Pedro is the boundry of both units any piggies found would be fair game for all as long as they were in the river bottom.

    We parked the truck and started off tword the bottom. This part of the river has a good deal of grass along the banks which leads up to hords of cuts, gullies, washes, and mesquite and salt ceder thickets. Once you get away from the banks of the river it gets real thick real quick. Any hunting in this area usually requires crawling on hands and knees.

    We approached the river as quietly as possible with the blessing of a 10 mph wind in our faces. Right as we started off the bank, my brother in law grabbed my sleeve. He pointed to the north and told me there was a dead pig right there. Meanwhile I was looking real close at some "logs" that just did not look right. I put the glasses up and found 2 pigs lying down sleeping. I told my brother in law that they were not dead, just sleeping. He already had an arrow knocked and started working into a shot. I was in the middle of pulling an arrow out of the quiver when we heard a noise behind us. A large boar had some how or the other come up behind us. My brother in law turned a little to quickly tword the pig, drawing at the same time. The boar jumped a few times and ended up behind some grass and a large mesquite. My attention now turned from the sleeping pigs to the one 10 yards now if front of us. My brother in law was at full draw for what seemed like forever. From my position I was not able to see a shooting lane for him. I kept telling him "top pin, top pin." He moved a little to his right, and then sunk down tword the ground a little, and released. I heard the sickening sounds of his arrow hitting a branch and then the dirt. The pig took off up the bank and kept going.

    I turned back to the ones that were sleeping. All of them were now on their feet. I had an arrow knocked now and drew my bow. 2 woofed and took off into the mesquites. The third one, which I had not seen until now, had been bedded to the right of the other two. I could tell it was a sow by the small head. She was facing me head on. Not the best shot, so I waited. She stood frozen for about a full minute, and I had to let down. I took the time to pull the range finder up and got her dialed in at 31 yards. She was still standing frozen in time. I drew again and took a step to the right hoping a little movement might make her turn. She turned her head just enough to get both eyeballs on me, woofed and did a neat little 180 degree turn. Then turned a little more and froze again, giving me a perfect broadside shot. I centered my 30 yard pin right on her collar about in the middle. And she jumped the string. I watched as the arrow caught her right in the wrong spot. Which in this case was about 10" in front of her tail. I knew right from the point I watched the arrow go through her it was not a good shot. I really hate it when this happens. This is the second time in my archery career that I have gut shot an animal, and its made me sick to my stomach both times.

    I just stood and watched trying to get an idea of which way she was going in the river. Nothing. I scratched an "X" in the dirt at my feet, then went over to help my brother in law find his arrow. Thankfully his arrow was clean. Would have been better had it been nice and red, but better then what I knew I would find when I picked mine up. We snuck down to where she was standing when I shot. My arrow was just as I had expected and worse. Not a single flake or speck of blood, it was all stomach and bowel.. I was hoping for an outside chance of hitting the bottom of the liver. Nope. I stuck the arrow in to the dirt at the point of impact and we backed off and headed for the truck.

    We stayed at the truck for about 30 minutes. We decided as the sun was starting to creep lower, we should get started on the tracking job and try to get another arrow into her. As we started to drop back off into the river the salt ceder below us woofed several times and we could hear what we thought were at least 2 pigs. This was not a good sign as we figured that she had laid down and another javy had stayed with her. And we had now pushed her out and into the river.

    With only 30 minutes of light left we decided to continue as both of us have to work tomorrow and would not be able to come back. We dropped to our hands and knees and started into the thicket. No blood , no hair, nothing in the way of sign. We kept going and finally got out into the river itself. Now with a good ammount of space to see back into the thicket we started moving along the waterway looking for tracks where they might have crossed knowing she would try and follow the rest of the herd. we turned South initially and after 100 yards were not able to find a crossing. We returned to the spot where we came out of the thicket and started heading North now. About 50 yards down I found a spot with fresh pig tracks crossing the water. I just stood there trying to get upthe nerve to cross myself, when my brother in law started "psssst" "Psssst" I knew he had found something and headed over his way. He had started to back track the sign looking for any signs of a hit pig. He was pointing into the thicket up against the bank and held up two fingers and shrugged. At that point I heard a woof. My brother in law pointed into the brush again, and I finally picked a pig out of the branches. She was lying down and looked sick. I snuck in as close as I was able to and attempted to thread an arrow through the trees. I heard my arrow clattering off of the trees well over her head and the branch closest to me was still waving dramatically. The javy got up and moved about 10 yards farther down the bank.I got back down on my hands and knees and followed. I finally got within about 10 feet of her and knocked the final arrow to finish the job I had started.

    It took us about an hour and a half but finally I had my pig in my hands. Not the biggest I have ever taken but I had to work harder for this one then any other. I'm glad we found her. To date I have only lost one animal that took an arrow. It was another javy that I hit in the dead spot right above the shoulder. @ weeks after I stuck that one a friend of mines son tagged the same javy. He returned my broadhead that they found only after skinning it.

    This will make I think 7 javalina with my bow. And now I'm looking forward to getting my brother in law back in there and tagging his.



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  2. Great story and good teamwork on the tracking job.
    I too, shot a smaller one this year, especially compared to the one I got last year. I think this was my 22nd pig, and it is still as exciting as the first.
     

  3. Chief

    Chief Guest

    Congratulations and a great story to go with it. Hard to beat hunting on the "river".
     
  4. As much as I enjoy archery hunting. Hunting javys with a bow is about the most fun. And thats the only way to describe it is FUN. Every year just when you think its a " cake hunt" the javys pull one out of the bag and beat you to the corner. Which I think makes it even more fun as that allows me to hunt more.

    All totaled now including my rifle and handgun hunts as a kid and early in my career. This one should make #19 if I am counting correctly. I had a few years there where other things clouded my mind and I did not even apply for a tag. But after I married her and ran out of money to drink and tear up the town, I have tagged one every year since, except last year. I spent to much time trying to get others tagged out and didnt get much "me time" in. Granted my oldest will tell a different story but thats my side and I will stick to it. LOL
    At least this year she allowed me to put her in for a jr tag instead of archery, so she could use a firearm. Got to love the stubborness of a 13 year old female. Although I believe shes going to try it again with the recurve this year initially, and go to the rifle if that dosent work. LOL
     
  5. TallPaul

    TallPaul Guest

    Way To GO !

    Great story Shane. Thanks for sharing your Hunt with us. I enjoyed it.
     
  6. My oldest done educated me on the finer points of posting pics on this here contraption, so I posted the pics above or where ever I could fit them.

    Got to love kids.
     
  7. I took my first pig with a bow last week. About a 40 yd shot, sliced an artery coming out of the heart and took out both lungs. Bad part was it was standing on a bank and the arrow didn't have enough room to pass through so when the pig jumped the broadhead broke off in the bank, 2/3'ds of the arrow skipped in the dirt and about 8 inches stayed stuck in the pig and kept any blood from coming out. I watched the pig bolt when I stood up to go back to my stand and get more bullets, had left my quiver there. Went over to track and no blood plus all kinds of fresh pig tracks to follow. Short story is I didn't find my pig till 20 hrs later. Luckily the meat wasn't spoiled. Will head out for deer as soon as my truck gets fixed. I have pics - 2 of them - one with my bow & pig and one of the pig cut up along with my broken arrow.
     
  8. SLim - Good job on the follow-up. Congrats, folks.
     
  9. Congrats and thanks for the story and pics.