Patience on the Prairie

TOOL: Scoped Slug Gun RANGE: 73 yards WIND: Calm/0mph

This pair of whitetails was mooching around out there all morning, well beyond range of any slug gun (center fire rifles aren’t allowed for hunting whitetails in western Minnesota’s farm country). So I climbed down from my stand in the tree lot behind the old, abandoned farmstead and put on a stalk.

Wafting snow, calm winds, rolling terrain and a painstaking pace have brought me here, sitting on my haunch with a scoped Savage 212 bolt-action slug gun nestled into the shooting sticks. Three questions come to mind:

Do I want this buck? Yes! What kind of question is that?

Should I take the shot? Not yet. These reliable Federal Premium Trophy Copper Sabot Slugs are rifle-accurate out of this bolt-action slug chucker, but there’s no angle here—yet. The buck’s inquisitive right ear is swiveled back toward me, but he’s not going to leave that calm, happy doe.

Will I get a shot? Absolutely. My gun-and-load setup easily covers at least 50 more yards of reliable range. Sooner or later the buck is going to offer the classic quartering-away angle needed to poke a slug through the last rib on the near side, into his opposite shoulder.

Until then it’s just me and the deer, the tick-tick-ticking of snowflakes, and patience on the prairie.

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