Home Forums Campfire Forum I got the shakes!

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    • Danny Klee
      Post count: 90

      I have been white tail hunting since I was a kid with my dad. I heard a lot about seeing a deer and getting the shakes, your heart pounding and what not. I have never experienced that before. A few of my friends call me a true cold blooded killer. Yesterday I was in one of my favorite spots for about 30 minutes when to my left, this monster doe appeared out of nowhere followed by two smaller does. I took a better look and the lead doe and I thought, Oh my gosh!” Suddenly my legs starting shaking, my heart started pounding, and my arms were shaking! I thought to myself that if she were to make her way to me would I be able to draw back my 55# Wesley Special or not! Unfortunately she made her way at a 45 degree angle away from me not giving me a shot. I tried some light grunting and my doe bleat and they stopped and milled around a bit but never did come back my way. But for about 10 minutes after they were gone I was shaking like crazy. Knock on wood that doesn’t happen again since it finally happened to me.


    • NZLongBowMan
      Post count: 11


      I had the same thing happen to me, I was going for a hunt on some private land I’d be given access to (showing people your longbow works wonders!) and was largely unfamiliar with the terrain so I decided I would just walk the bulldozed track and glass around for potential feeding grounds and sign.

      Anyways after about an hours walk I slow made my way through the over grown track and just as I was coming up to a nice clearing there in front of me no more than 15 meters stood two Red hinds, one was enormous! The other was a yearling, but I stood still and my heart just started beating like mad, I swear I’ve never felt it beat so hard before, my arms were shaking, my legs weak and when I tried to gain composure, lift my bow and let and let an arrow fly I realised there is no way I could possibly aim… The wind then shortly changed, when they caught a whiff of me they were gone quicker than I could blink.

      I truly squandered that opportunity, I was just so excited I couldn’t remain calm! 🙁

      So I know what you’re feeling there!

    • David Petersen
      Post count: 2749

      Long ago, when I was shooting heavier and cheaper bows (factory rather than custom, which tend(ed) to stack), and the first time I bugled in a bull, I was so shook that I couldn’t come to full draw–just felt suddenly really weak in the arms. Had to let down with the bull standing broadside within range, drooling and staring at me, and try again. Second time I made it, and the shot was good if not perfect, but my next bow went down a few pounds in draw weight. I’ve heard many experienced hunters proclaim, “If I ever fail to get buck fever when close to a big game animal, I’ll quit hunting.” Oh well. I rarely get “bucked out” any more and don’t miss it one whit! The fact that you got the shakes on a doe I find oddly … uplifting, like getting the most on a personal level from every special moment of life and to hell with that other kind of buck fever — antler addiction. I’ve often wondered, if we were not allowed ever to show or talk about the antlers we take from bucks and bulls we kill, how would that affect our passion for collecting them? I think I’m pretty neutral on the issue, but it’s a good question to kick around anyhow. Meanwhile, let’s enjoy every shake we can honestly come by. Cool

    • David CoulterDavid Coulter
      Post count: 2261

      I had a bad case of the fevor when I was just starting hunting with a rifle. I was in thrick woods and saw the bark blow off the tree several yards between me and the buck. He bolted but shakey me still managed to crank two more rounds out of my Granddad’s K98 before I settled down to hear the ringing in my ears. I still hear it when I think of it and cringe when I think that I fired off two un accounted for rounds into the woods. I’m sure I wouldn’t do that again, but the blood does speed up when a deer is about. I like the excitement, but can do without the shakes!

    • William WarrenWilliam Warren
      Post count: 1384

      Buck Fever is a strange thing. I have killed some very nice bucks and only had a mild case of shakes after the shot and sometimes none at all. But then I have had exactly what you described over does and spike bucks!! Becoming a quivering mass of uselessness. Go figure. And this is all coming from a guy that is somewhat excitable and anxiety prone even when not hunting.


    • SteveMcD
      Post count: 870

      Fortunate for me. Up to and during the shot, I am very focused and methodical. Meaning about as unemotional and cold blooded as one can get. AFTER the shot, I have to sit down and calm down for 5 or 10 minutes, because that is when I get the shakes and lirerally come apart.

    • Dpowers311
      Post count: 43

      SteveMcD wrote: Fortunate for me. Up to and during the shot, I am very focused and methodical. Meaning about as unemotional and cold blooded as one can get. AFTER the shot, I have to sit down and calm down for 5 or 10 minutes, because that is when I get the shakes and lirerally come apart.

      Same for me unless the deer take to long to come in-range then I am shaking like crazy until I go into my routine. It does not matter if it is a doe or buck large or small.


    • tkyelp
      Post count: 1

      I tend to agree that if it weren’t exciting….then we should be doing something else. Golf anyone? I’d like to throw out another aspect. The excitement for me doesn’t peak until I determine that this is an animal that I want to harvest. Then is when the excitement starts. Thank goodness that the longer I have to watch the animal the more control I have. The more time I have to adjust, think, get set, etc. the calmer I am.

    • trl242
      Post count: 28

      I’ve noticed that the more time it takes for the animal to get to shooting range, the more affected I am. It’s almost as if I have too much time to think about it. When they come up on me suddenly, I know it’s time to go to work and I perform much better. It seems to hit me the more so at the beginning of the season than later, as if it takes me a few ‘deer’ exposures to get over it. The truly odd thing in my case, is I don’t get it at all from a pop-up blind, I think maybe because I’m so confident that the deer can’t see me but the more exposed I am, the harder it is to stay calm.

      Oh well, thanks for the post, glad it’s not just me.

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