Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Josh Takes First Trophy Goat

After a weekend at Glouster Tuesday looked like a good day to relax, so why not get a quick hunt in. Josh my 15year old son, Sam another you fellow from the club, and I left around 5.30am, a little late now the sun is getting up earlier, and headed to my favourite spot on the bottom of the Liverpool Plains. Arriving around 6.30am, the Suzuki didnt miss a beat, we kitted up and made the 4WD treck up the hills to the top ridge. It was one of the first times we had arrived at the top and not been able to see a single goat on the morning side of the ridge, I felt not a promising start. We made away along the southern ridge where I spotted a small mob milling around the top of a saddle, Sam had come across the peak not far behind me so I gave him the stalk, poor bugger hasnt shot a thing in about 2 years. After a brilliant stalk to within 15mtrs with minimal cover I watched as he positioned himself for the shot, but what was this, a Kangaroo was heading down the ridge straight towards Sam, it pulled up between the goats and Sam, looked his way, shook its head and headed off back down the hill without a clue of what was about to happen to the goats. Sam drew back and nailed his first goat, the others ran only a few metres before stopping to see what was going on with their friend, bad move, the next arrow failed to find it's mark, this steep rocky terrian can sort the best of them out. Sam loaded up again to nail another, two goats in less than five minutes and loading up for a third, but it wasnt to be.

Josh had made his way to my viewing platform at the later stages of the stalk and we both enjoyed the action taking place 100mtrs below us, after the goats moved on we made our way down to Sam, Josh had a shot at a stragler, wouned it and then made his way further down the hill and across the valley to finish it off.
I stalked down the hill towards where the goats had fled the second time only to find they had moved further around the hill and would soon be out of site, between me nad my knee's I thought it was just too early in the day to go rock hopping for a couple of nanny goats. I had a quick look around and headed back to take a picture of Sams goats. As I passed over a nob I saw a couple of horns through the long grass, I fell to my knees and crawled through verigated thistles and stinging nettles to the edge to find the mob Sam had just thinned out had doubled back and was walking straight to me. I drew back while still kneeling,lined the pins and peep up and waited about 5 seconds then there they were walking towards me at about five metres, I took the largest thinking it may have been a small billy, the titanium tri blade, a head I was trialing for the guys at Archery Supplies in Canberra, passed straight through, long ways, piecing the throat / chest area and exiting near the back hip before continuing on its way to the bottom of the valley, wont see that arrow again. I saw the arrow dissappear in the chest and the goat, it didnt make a noise, it just ran, and left me standing there scratching my head wondering how something can run after getting tweny eight inchs of arrow with 1.5 inchs of broadhead put throught it, damn these goats around here are tough. I finished it off and was dissapointed to find it was a nanny, a couple of pics later and we were all together and back up the ridge to find something else.

We glassed the north ridge and spotted a couple of billies feeding around a few low bushes, it was Josh's stalk as he had only dispatched a nanny through the morning, we all got down to around 80mtrs before working out what the swirly wind was going to do and what route in had the best cover, Josh stalked in to around 40mtrs before a nanny caught a wiff of him, she just stood and snorted for what seemed like an eternity, we called Josh back and found another path in, 20minutes later he was in range and the mob had gathered, there was maybe 6 goats all well over 30", and a large number, 20+, betweem 20" and 30". This was looking much more interesting. With a nobby rock between Josh and the goats all he could do was wait for the mob to move around a little before he could get a shot away. After what Josh said felt like forever he was ready to take a shot, Sam nor I could see what he was aiming at, away the arrow flew, we heard the sound of arrow versus rocks and assumed the worse, looking back towards Josh up the hill he also looked a little dissapointed as he loaded another arrow and slammed it low and back on a 20"+ billy, the mob fled leaving little to no chance for Sam or I to clean up the dregs, I shot an arrow but missed a trailing billy by a foot or two, Sam ran off after the mob and I went to look for my arrow, I looked back up the hill towards Josh to see him indicating how big the goats were, I nodded and continued looking for my arrow, something caught the corner of my eye, I looked back towards Josh, he was jumping around, punching the air, then done the how wide the horns were signal again, pointed at himself and punched the air again, maybe that first arrow had hit more than rocks. I made my way up the hill to find Josh with the biggest grin I have think I've ever seen on him, his first arrow had passed through a nice 31" billy, clean through the heart killing it within metres of where he had hit it. Josh had claimed his biggest goat yet (and smiled for the entire trip home). We removed the trophy and I said to Josh, you killed it, you carry it, as I looked up the steep hill we needed to scale to get back to the car.
All in all a great day, at a great spot.

Josh's 97 6/8 point billy