just wanted to take this time to fill you all in on my last hunt of the 2001
season. I was lucky again! This time it was a 55 lb razorback sow.
all might be aware that I fell off a ladder 5 weeks ago and shattered my left
elbow, so this hunt was really difficult. My arm is in a soft cast and
is bent at 65º. (I have nine stainless steel screws and a stainless
steel strap in my arm.) It turned out to be real convenient
that I had given my buddy "Lucky Cole" a present of a double wide
ladder tree stand. Lucky lives in the middle of the Everglades and I had
had my son's and their friend Omar set this stand right behind Lucky's house
in the middle of a hardwood hammock. (High ground in the swamp and thick
with trees.) This meant that I only had to walk about 100 yards
behind our pop-up camper and Lucky's house to get to this stand.
three sons, Chuck, Mike and Wesley (from Texas) went out with me on this
hunting trip to Lucky's in the swamp. (Mike and Wesley have yet to kill
either a deer or a pig.) This has a some to do with being in
the right place at the right time and a lot of luck! I was hoping that
they would get something, but it did not work out that way.
my sons went off a quarter of a mile away to where Chuck had gotten that big
180 lb razorback boar a few weeks ago and I took a leisurely stroll in the
back yard. We kept in contact with our Motorola Talk-Abouts and ear
microphones. I carefully climbed the ladder stand (with one hand) and
sat in the tree stand and waited for the sun to come up. It was cool in
the 50º temperature range, but the mosquitoes were still out and my Bug Tamer
suit came in real handy.
also had decided to use my low recoil Ruger 44 Magnum Carbine so I would not
tear anything loose using my normal .338 Winchester Magnum. This
turned out to be a good choice. I had never shot anything with this
carbine (but paper) and was very shocked at how destructive a 44 Magnum 240
Grain Copper Jacketed Hollow Point can be!
sat up in the total darkness listening to the frogs, alligators, water birds,
otters and who knows what else. Finally the sun started coming up
and the hammock started to come alive with it. I have never hunted
inside a hammock and was amazed at the activity as the sun comes up.
(I was in full camo and a still as a rock.) The first movement on
the ground that I saw was birds. Regular birds! Cardinals,
Bluejays, Sparrows and numerous others that I had never seen before.
They were running back and forth on the ground! (I guess in this thick
hammock it was easier to run than fly.) Then a squirrel jumped from
about 4 feet over my head in the tree and climbed down to run the birds
away from his stash in the dirt right in front of me. (He never saw me!)
He sat there and chattered at them twitching his tail. Satisfied,
he started climbing right back towards me. I decided that I did not
want a scared, pissed off chattering squirrel running up my body so I
moved to make sure he saw me. He finally did an gave me a wide berth.
found that I really only had two small lanes of fire through the overhanging
growth. One was about a 6' High by 2' Wide hole SW of me at about
15 to 20 yards, the other was right in front of me in the trail where the
squirrel went. A little trimming could improve this
significantly, but for now, this was all that I had. I would have to
be alert and make quick decisions. I also could not steady my
carbine with my broken left hand for very long before it throbbed, but I
was out in the woods hunting even if I did have to make a one handed shot!
7:40 AM I caught a flash of black out of the corner of my eye moving through
the thick stuff. I smoothly got the carbine at the ready and a
small (but legal) razorback pig came into view in the 6' fire lane
to my SW. The problem was that the pig was crossing the lane from
left to right! This was the two foot wide section! Luckily,
it turned and started walking up the trail away from me. I only had
one quick shot and I took it! It was as the pig was
quartering away from me, so I aimed for the heart and squeezed the
trigger. Boom! The pig went down squealing like mad in
the brush. I could see what looked like an 8" patch of red, but
could not make out what it was. (I thought I have evisceated the pig or
it was a bloody tongue.) Whatever it was, I did not want to tear up this
little pig any more than necessary. I kept the carbine trained on the
pig for about 20 seconds until the squealing stopped and the pig stopped
moving. As soon as I lowered the gun, the pig jumped up and ran of to my
left! I popped off two quick shots, but never cut a hair. I heard
the pig crashing through the brush and hit the water. Damn!
waited 10 minutes instead of 20 or 30 because I was afraid the alligators
would get the pig and climbed down out of the stand. I walked over to
where I shot the pig and looked for a blood trail. Nothing! I
couldn't find anything! It was as if it had never happened. I
checked my compass and saw that he had run off towards the SE, so I started
working my way in that direction looking for the pig. I spent an hour
looking for this thing until I ended up back behind Lucky's house.
Disgusted at myself I went up and asked Lucky if he saw a pig run by his
house. Lucky said no and was surprised to hear what had happened.
He said "There was such a long pause between the first shot and the next
two, that I thought you had shot at another animal."
Lucky said that he was going to get out of his sleeping attire and
help me scour the area. We went back to where I had shot the pig.
This time I got real close to the ground and found what looked like the seeds
out of a tomato. It was from the pigs stomach. I looked a little
closer at the leaves on some sprouts near the ground and saw some watered
down blood. A very small amount! This time we searched side by
side and finally found a 55 lb sow in the water not more than 30 feet from
Lucky's back step.
dragged back to his house for me and we looked at the wound. It was
horrendous! The entrance wound was 4 to 5" in diameter and there
were 6 ' of his intestines outside of the wound. After dressing
and skinning this pig, we found that the hollow point had hit the pig in the
right side of his abdomen. The bullet caused a spout of intestines to
rip this 5" hole in it's hide on their way out. The bullet
continued to travel through the stomach, heart, left lung, the 7th rib and
then lodge in the thick hide. How this pig had the strength to get back
up and run 100' through the thick undergrowth is a testament as to just how
tough they really are. This was the most destructive bullet impact that
I have ever seen.
good thing about this was that none of the meat was ruined!)
Late December Hunt at Lucky's
Our only kill. My 55 lb razorback sow.
|In the Pop-Up!
||In the Pop-Up!
||Starting to Dress
||240 Grain 44 Magnum Damage!
||This is the entrance wound!
||Wesley Posing with the head!