Whitetails in the Black Hills

Today’s blog post comes to us from Adam Hays, co-host of Intrepid Outdoors.  Adam writes about a Wyoming whitetail hunt that will be featured during airings of Intrepid Outdoors.

My early bow season started off with a bang, harvesting a Boone and Crockett black bear in Northern Saskatchewan, so I couldn’t wait to see what was waiting for me back in the states for the 2012 whitetail season! Like I have for the past couple years, my deer season starts off in the Black Hills of Wyoming, on the Solitude Ranch with the rest of the Intrepid Outdoors team. I can’t imagine a better place to kick of the whitetail season than this area, it’s loaded with deer and the scenery is absolutely breathtaking with the silhouette of the Devils Tower monument on the horizon.

Kevin Kostka of Colorado was one of a handful of guests who took a nice trophy whitetail on the Solitude Ranch this fall.

Upon arriving at the Solitude this year, it was work before play and I had three hunters to film before I was able to break out my archery equipment. First up was Kevin Kostka from Colorado, then Ken Seargent from Michigan, who happened to be the winner of our hunt giveaway through one of our best sponsors, Whitetails Unlimited. Lastly, Doug Roberts who owns and operates Conquest Scents would be at the ranch for his first whitetail hunt with a bow in 17 years! The week started off great, and after missing a beautiful 150 class 10 point, Kevin scored on a great management 8 point on the last night of his hunt. Ken’s hunt was just as exciting with multiple opportunities that he’s glad he didn’t score on because he ended up shooting one of the oldest, biggest 8 points ever to be taken on the Solitude Ranch!

I was anxious to get to spend some time with Doug Roberts the second week, with his 22 years of experience raising deer I had a number of topics to pick his brain about! Doug has probably forgotten more about big bucks than most people know, and in case you didn’t know it, he operates the only scent company in the hunting industry that actually owns its own deer herd! His products are the real deal and the ONLY ones I use! We really struggled with the warm temperatures and the mature bucks we saw always seemed to show up at the opposite end of the field every time we sat a stand. Everything came together on the last night of his hunt also, when we abandoned the tree stands for an old barn loft and Doug shot his first whitetail with a bow in nearly 2 decades! Everybody thinks that if you are in the hunting Industry you must get to hunt everyday but not Doug, that’s his busiest time of the year collecting the key ingredients he uses for his products. I was really happy for Doug and glad he was able to sneak away from the chores on the “deer farm” and tag a nice buck in Wyoming!

Ken Sargeant of Michigan (left) and Intrepid Outdoors Executive Producer/Host Mike Schmid caught up before looking for Ken’s downed deer at the Solitude Ranch this fall.

After spending a couple weeks behind the camera and bouncing all around the Solitude, I had a pretty good idea where I wanted to hunt. There is never a shortage of quality animals to chase on the Solitude and there were a couple big ones I had my eye on. On the 3rd night of my hunt, I ended up in a stand overlooking the same Whitetail Institute food plot that I harvested my first Black Hills buck over, 3 seasons ago on my first trip to Wyoming. The only problem with the setup is that its a small food plot that backs up against a steep hill and the wind tends to swirl quite a bit. Once again, by placing some Evercalm in a few strategic spots, I was able to get away with the ever changing wind and connect on my best buck yet in the cowboy state! It never ceases to amaze me what I can get away with by using a quality scent product like Evercalm, you owe it to yourself to give it a try!

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