Roy Stroh Custom Muzzleloaders
Chapter Two
Here's my story sad but true,
It's about a gun that I once knew
She took my love and ran around
With other guys from other towns.

I should have known it from the very start,
This girl will leave me with a broken heart.
Now listen people what I'm telling you
A-keep away from Runaround Sue.
When Roy asked me earlier this year if I would be interested in using his traveling
rifle to try and take a Whitetail of course I accepted. The more I thought about the
idea of a "Traveling Rifle" the cooler the idea seemed to be.

She showed up here on the Friday a week before the Illinois firearm deer season
opener. She sure is sweet! Beautiful, well balanced, ...impressive.

We spent most all of Saturday at the range getting acquainted. Shoots real good
with 100 grains of 2F Goex pushing a .600 ball wrapped in pillow ticking lubed with
Moose Snot. 3.5 inches high at 50 yards, dead on at 100, and 7" low at 125. Half a
pan of 3F works great for prime. She likes plenty of lube or she burns patches. She's
easy on flints and goes off as reliably as they come.
We didn't have time to test any other loads. She was plenty accurate with the 100
grain load tho.

After I got her home, cleaned her up, put a few drops of Swampy's bear oil in the
lock, and gave her a good rubdown she told me her name.
Her name is Sue... Runaround Sue.
I had high hopes of taking a big monster Illinois Whitetail buck when the season
opened. I had been out bowhunting a few times and had seen a couple real dandies.
But Sue and I hunted hard the whole first season and didn't even see an antler!

We had a chance to shoot 2 does with one ball at about 15 feet but passed. It just
didn't seem right. Saw and passed on a bunch of other antlerless deer too. Still
hoping for the big buck.

On the last day of first season, I took a shot at a doe but a 2" thick sapling sprung
up and grew right in front of her where I was shooting. I shot, heard a weird sound,
watched her PRANCE away, and stood there befuddled. Couldn't figger out what
happened until I went down there and found the notch in the sapling. LOL
The 2nd firearm/1st ML season opened Thursday December 2 and I had decided to
take the first doe I had a good shot at. At 8am I had slipped into a spot on a hillside
overlooking a big gully where I usually see a lot of deer. As I scanned the area
movement caught my eye 150 yards away on the other side. The first and only buck I
saw during the whole firearm season. Big body but I only caught a glimpse of his
rack. He had already got under my radar and was sneaking into the neighbors place
when I saw him. No shot situation.

Sometimes they circle around over there and come back into the valley on my side
so I waited. Not 10 minutes later I saw 2 does crossing an opening a little over 125
yards out across the gully. A light wind blew right in my face. I was sitting on the
ground on the hillside and Sue jumped up on my knee and her sights settled on the
lead doe and just hung there.
Now, I know that is a pretty far shot with open sights, but I had shot the rifle at 125
yards and I've made this shot before. If the shot feels right...
Hold just over her back. Light 'er up.
Sue kissed my cheek and spit fiery death across the valley.

The shot felt real good. Smoke blocked my view so I didn't see how the deer
reacted. Just heard them running off up the valley. I decided to sit tight for an hour.

Nothing moved for an hour so I got out of there and took the long way around the
end of the valley and walked down the other side. One nice thing was the wind
switched while I was walking so it was still in my favor. I sneaked down in there to
where the does were when I shot and found a big wad of hair. No blood.

More wads of hair every few feet for 10-15 yards. Still no blood. I followed along the
trail she was on for 50 yards or so without finding any blood. Then I combed back
and forth a little bit on the way back to the hair in case I had missed where she took
a side trail. Nothin'.

By then it was 11:00 and I was hungry. Just uphill from the hair I have a spot where
I left an old steel folding chair with a good view, so I sat down in my chair and ate
lunch and thought about the shot. It FELT like a good shot! There was a LOT of
hair! Could I have just gave her a haircut? I didn't think so.

With some food in my belly, I went back to the hair and started over. After the big
obvious wads of hair ran out I got down on my knees and found a hair here and a
track there for the next 50 yards or so. Right back to where I had been before. The
main trail went to the right there but I couldn't find any sign. There was a fainter
trail splitting off to the left. Another hair!

From a real low position I saw a red gob on a small tree 20 yards farther along the
smaller left fork. Hair and blood! 70+ yards from the first patch of hair! Then I
started finding a few drops of blood on the trail. Not a good blood trail at all. At least
it was proof that I was on the right deer track.

She wound her way another 50+ yards thru the brush and went across the creek.
Right there at the creek the blood trail finally started getting good. I didn't even
hafta bend over anymore. Bright foamy splashes on the big sycamore leafs all the
way up the other side of the creek bed.

I made my way down thru the creek bed and up the other side. Followed the blood
around a clump of bushes and looked ahead. Another 20 yards or so and there she
laid. She had made it a good 150 yards before falling over!

I hit her high thru the lungs. Exit wound just forward of the entry. You can see the
entry in the picture. Them .600 balls make big holes. I couldn't believe how far she
ran! Or how far she ran before she bled!

We hunted the next 3 days and saw lots more does but no more bucks. Firearm
season was over and there were only 3 more days of 2nd ML-only season left to get
that buck. Time was running out. Then, finally, the 2nd day of 2nd season ML,
half-way thru day 9 of hunting, I got my chance!

It was right at Noon and I had just finished lunch. Hadn't seen a deer all morning. I
bent down to pick up my wrappers and tuck them away to tote out with me and when
I looked up there he was! Mr. Big Buck!

He was walking straight away from me at about 50 yards and I put the sights on him.
I won't take a straight away shot on a deer so I waited for him to turn. And waited....
and he kept walking ... and waited... my heart was pounding in my ears... and
waited... and he walked... I was getting all shaky... and waited... my breathing was
hard... and waited... and he finally turned broadside at about 80 yards in the wide
open... and I lifted my cheek off the stock and pulled the trigger!
Shot over his back. Yes, I followed up to make sure.

Man, I haven't had Buck Fever for YEARS! I surely got it that day tho.

Didn't see another deer all the rest of the day.

The next day I hunted all day in a blizzard and only saw one doe.

So it's no Whitetail antlers for me or for Sue this year.
Next year is coming tho.
And Sue did get a Whitetail doe.

There's still 7 doe-only days coming up... but Sue is on her way to sunny
California.(She musta not liked the blizzard.) I'll prolly see HERDS of big bucks.
I miss her barrel and the curl in her stock,
The touch of her trigger and the spark of her
So if you don't wanna cry like I do
A-keep away from-a Runaround Sue.

Ah, she likes to travel around, yeah
She'll love you but she'll put you down.
People let me put you wise,
Sue goes out with other guys.

Here's the moral and the story from the guy
who knows,
I fell in love and my love still grows.
Ask any fool that she ever knew, they'll say
Keep away from Runaround Sue.

                           Hey, Hey
                           Bumda hey-ey
                           Hey, Hey...