Giant Whitetail On Opening Day –
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Giant Whitetail On Opening Day –

August 12, 2019

(dramatic music) – [Narrator] Yamaha presents
the Whitetail Diaries. Chronicling hunting adventures of the most plentiful
and intelligent big game animal
in North America. Embark on the amazing
adventure that is hunting the whitetail deer. (ominous music) – It’s opening week
in a staging camp. We’re at the Wendlandts. Kevin, Jeff, everybody’s around. It just makes for
a fun adventure when you get all your
friends and buddies up for a deer hunting
scenario on opening weekend. That just even makes
it more exciting ’cause you’ve been
sitting around all summer long waiting for
this weekend to get here. – We love to hunt, we
love to get out there. We love to be in the outdoors. We love whitetail
deer, we love chasin’. And opening day of deer season in Texas, for me,
is a huge event. – Just kind of the whole
year builds up to this time. But being prepared is essential. – That’s probably the
most exciting part to me. You get your stealth cams
out, you get ’em set out. And you get pictures
of these deer. Not knowing whether you’re ever
gonna see ’em in real life, but you know they’re there. And then it’s the fact of
waitin’ ’till opening day of deer season, y’all like
I’ve got a big one out there. I know where he’s at, I
know where he’s going, I know where he’s feedin’,
I know where he’s beddin’. Can I intercept him? Can I get where he wants to
be and put him on the ground? – Anticipation, eagerness, for
me anxious, lucky to be here. It’s just a cool deal. Really I kinda mark
this on my calendar as the opener for
me across the board as far as deer hunting
goes for every year. – You know, to sum it all up, been looking forward to this day since the last day of
deer season last year. And it’s here. We’re getting ready
to go hunting. We’re at deer camp, can’t
say no more than that. You know,
the Wendlandt ranch here is such a great place to hunt. They got a lot of deer here. A lot of really good deer. A lot of hills out here. A lot of oak trees. This place is full of oaks. Post oaks, live oaks,
and a lot of acorns. Trying to pattern these deer
on what they’re feeding on. Which oak trees are dropping. Because early in the season, you don’t have them all
dropping at the same time. They usually start dropping and then gradually,
they’ll all start dropping. But it’s fun when
that first oak tree that’s really dropping them good and them deer are really
gonna be hitting hard. And it’s just a
fun place to hunt. Well, the first two
hunters to head out into the field this morning are Wade and Steve
Nessl from Yamaha. Opening morning for me
starts the night before if I don’t sleep very well. I know that sounds cliche, you can’t sleep, you’re anxious. And I was, I actually
expected to sleep okay but I kept waking up. Kept rolling over,
tossin’ and turning’ looking at the clock. Afraid I was going to oversleep, even though there was no
chance of that happening, with all the hunters in camp. And you just can’t wait
for it to get there. Again, I mentioned,
looking at the clock, you’re looking at your watch. Am I going to late, too early? When do we go out? And you’re constantly
questioning. For me, I was checking
my gear every 30 seconds. Do I have my release? Do I have this? Do I have that? License is there. Good. Gloves. It’s a little bit of
a hustle and bustle ’cause you’re just
getting everything going, and maybe the routine
isn’t what it’s been, because you’ve been
out for a while. I just didn’t want
to screw up either. I wanted to have
everything there. I didn’t want to
get into the stand on the first morning
on opening weekend and forget something. So, yeah, I was anxious. Nervous, I guess. But once I got up there and
got settled and got quiet, and I could tell there
were some four-legged animals up there
walking in front of us, it just, kind of a calm deal. And it felt great. It was awesome to
be back out there. I’ve been waiting to do
that for a long time now. Maybe this year
more than others. So to get out there
and to get set, get settled and then see
deer, it was perfect. – [Narrator] We’ll
kick things off with Steve’s bow hunt when we return. The Yamaha Whitetail Diaries is brought to you in part by Welcome back to the
Yamaha Whitetail Diaries with Wade Middleton. Steve Nessl is bow hunting
on the Wendlandt Ranch on opening day, and has set
his mind on a particular deer that’s been on
the scouting cameras. – It’s opening day in Texas. I am hunting a big
deer this morning. And only hunting
him opening day. We’re in a really nice tree. We’re back up in
some good cover. Got a tree stand
right above a river and we got a ridge above us where we think they’re gonna
be feeding as it gets light. Hoping they come down in front. As long as I do my
job, we should be good. (whispering) Well, I guess
this is the end of our first morning of the
Texas season opener. And I don’t even guess, I know it’s all I could ask for. Except maybe throwing an arrow
at the buck we were hunting. But we saw him. He was about 3,4 steps
away from being perfect when he got pushed off and
it all happened really quick. There were a ton of
deer in front of us. A lot of nice bucks. Just a ton of action
from the word go. So we couldn’t have
asked for anything more in the first morning. Season opener. I think I got the
jitters out of the way. I was anxious coming into
this stand this morning, but now I’m just ready to go out and hopefully put the
smack-down on something, but great start. Head back to the Wolverine
and go back to camp and see if anybody else was
successful this morning. – [Narrator] The Yamaha
Whitetail Diaries is brought to you in part by, Welcome back to the
Yamaha Whitetail Diaries. With Wade Middleton. With Steve’s morning concluded, let’s see how Wade
fared on opening day. Wade’s kicking off
the new deer season with something new in his pack. His Smith & Wesson
Performance Center Stealth Hunter handgun. – Steve’s opted to
bow hunt this weekend. I’m gonna be trying to
take a handgun deer. I’m going to be hunting with the Smith & Wesson .44
Magnum Stealth Hunter from the Performance Center. And I’ve been spending a
lot of time shooting this this summer, and
learning it’s nuances. Understanding the
ballistics of it. And what’s unique to this one is I’m gonna be hunting
with a Red Dot scope. I’ve never hunted
with a Red Dot. And I’ve never hunted
with this handgun. So I’ve got two new
things that I’m learning, and understanding. But both of them have me
pretty excited to go to. Well there’s something about opening weekend deer season. You got all your buddies. You’ve worked all year
long gearing up for it. And there’s good
deer running around. You’ve been practicing. You’ve made food plots. You done all this work and it gets here
and you kinda don’t sleep very good
the night before, ’cause you’re excited
to get out there and go. And that has not changed
since I was a kid going on a deer hunt. That makes you pretty excited. We’re gonna go up in a couple
of tripods this morning and overlook kinda
a mesquite flat. There’s power line that
runs down through there. All we gotta do now is
kinda work our way in. We’re gonna actually
park our Viking probably about 400 yards away. Work our way all the
way down on this lane. Get down there and get set up and try to get in
there pretty early. The deer oughta
move fairly early. This time of the year,
I find ’em in a lot of bachelors groups so
if you see one buck you’re liable to
see three or four. We might see none,
we might see 15 you never know until
you go sit down. (Whispering) That’s
today’s choice for the hunt we’re going on. It’s a Smith & Wesson .44
Magnum Stealth Hunter. I really enjoyed
practicing with this for the last couple months. Can’t wait to get up there and see what I can do
with it in the field. The setup was perfect, we
parked pretty good ways away after driving the Viking in. We worked down
this old ranch road to get near a
telephone crossing. And it kind of teed out. One line came here and there and it kind of overlooked
a little valley and a draw, and it just looked like a
natural funnel up there. And they’ve had some
scouting camera pictures. There’s several pretty good deer that have been coming in there. We’d thrown out a
Purina Quick Draw Block, to capture a lot of
those photos over time, and it was just really a
good early morning setup. But I gotta tell ya, we
probably made more noise than 14 people in the Army. It was like, we needed
some pre-season practice to get in stand. But once we got settled in… You know, we did see a few deer. There was one out
there particularly
that got my attention early in the morning in the dark that was rubbing
on a cedar tree. Then a couple more deer
skirted off to the right. Kind of worked away,
a couple of big ones. (cows bellowing) (whispering) We’re
gonna ease on down. It’s probably 9:30. And this time of the year I’ve just found it’s an
early and a late deal so we’ll go back,
eat some breakfast hang out around camp, and make
a plan for this afternoon. This is a good
setup this morning. I love to hunt tripods in this
part of the world in Texas. You got a little mixed
mesquite with some oaks down there in that bottom. Those deer this
morning, we had one out there early this morning. You could hear it
thrashing on tree. We’d hear a little bit
of fightin’ going on before the sun ever came up. We saw some deer
kind of mill around over here off to the side of us. And a couple come
through in front of us. The scouting cameras have
shown several good bucks here. Just hey chose not to
show up this morning. We’ll be back here
sometime on another hunt. This is definitely a
good morning stand. We just need to spend
some more time here. – [Narrator] The Yamaha
Whitetail Diaries is brought to you in part by Welcome back to the
Yamaha Whitetail Diaries with Wade Middleton. Well, we’re gonna catch back
with Steve Nessl from Yamaha as he heads out to the
same stand to see if he can get another shot at the
shooter he’s been hunting for. – So the name of the
stand’s a tree stand, and the creek goes
right behind the stands. So we’re in a tree actually. It’s a ladder stand
tucked into the tree. It overlooked an area that had been trampled down quite a bit. You could tell that the deer
were coming through there. It’s just a sweet spot. A little bit of
breeze is always nice in this situation like that. It was gonna be pretty calm. But overall, checking boxes as far as what you’d
ask for from the setup, it was checking most of ’em. Off to my right, I
see this big mass of horn and animal
coming through. And it’s him. He’s the
first shooter buck in. And there’s other deer
coming from the left, but here he comes. The three little dinks that
were in front of us are gone, ’cause he’s make
quick work of them, he’s pushed them out. He’s just coming in front. He goes through to the left. I don’t even have my
bow off the hanger yet, I gotta grab it. So I get the bow, I’m
getting ready, getting set. And he’s still off to the left. I keep waiting for
him to come through, and it’s going down,
it’s going down quick. (bow shoots) Ho, ho ho ho. (whispering) Slow down big guy slow down big guy, slow
down big guy, slow down. Slow down. Slow down. – [Cameraman] You see him? – I just lost him on the ridge. I’m trying to watch him ’cause
I think it was a good shot. I think. (laughs) I think that was a good shot. It felt good. He didn’t flinch too much. Now I have to wait. That was a good boy. That’s the guy we’re hunting. He’s a monster. I hope, I hope, I hope. Figure this time I had
a good shot on him. He is a stud. He is a stud. (dramatic music) Super excited right
after the shot. Probably more excited
than I’ve been after any bow shot I’ve
made that I can remember. I’m thinkin’ hopefully,
he just fell over right after getting
out of my view. And we’re gonna see some sign. We’re gonna have a good trail. And we’re gonna go up to him
after give him a few minutes. And that kind of unraveled once we took a look at the shot. And we looked it back and saw
that it was a little back. Got down looked at
the impact spot. Clark came in and joined
us for reinforcements and found some sign
eventually, not a lot. And we went up a
couple 10,20 yards, and decided we needed
to come back to camp, because not only did we see
the shot was back a little bit, we’re not getting a lot of sign. And if he’s bedded
down and he’s not dead and we jump him it becomes
a really bad scenario. So we’re gonna look at the
shot on a bigger screen just see exactly where
it might have hit, and we’re gonna make a game plan about how we’re gonna go
after this deer much later. Got the reinforcements. Got Clark and Jeff, and we
went back in after dinner and it was probably a
full three plus hours after the actual shot that
we went and looked for him. (whispering) You
just never know. – Hey – What have you got? Oh ho ho! (laughing) You just let loose and come over to share the love with the wind. – That was the deer
we were smelling. – Oh wow. Ugh. (laughs) Look at all this character
up through these brows. He’s got this cool thing
I was calling a pinky off his right beam. Made him pretty
recognizable and he gave us the slip this
morning, opening day. But he came in off his shot
this afternoon pretty early and we knew who
he was right away. I mean just look at
him, how could you not. We christened the
Wolverine for sure putting a big buck like
that in the back of it. That was his first voyage, so to be able to do that was nice. And it just makes the overall job easier in and out of season. And that’s what
they’re intended to do. Is to get you into tight spots, in the rough, rugged spots. Places you wouldn’t
want to take your truck, even your ranch truck. And we got to showcase
that this week. – [Narrator]
Congratulations Steve on your opening day giant. Hah. And hey, stay tuned to future
Whitetail Diaries episodes, as Wade continues
his hunt with his Smith & Wesson Performance
Center handgun. Thanks for watching.

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