Dominic Stivala - HUNT SMART COURSE Success Story #41

In the early days I spent many hours bashing through scrub and it took me 17 years to shoot my first deer. Most of my hunting was "walk them up" style and something had to change if I was to start enjoying success on a regular basis.

So I purchased Errol Mason’s three books - Secrets of the Sambar Vol. 1, 2 & 3 and started reading and putting into practice his methods. Wow!!! Immediately l started to see more deer but they usually got away as l was still not completely sure of all the things l should be taking into account when hunting.

At this stage l had just five deer to my account in 22 years so l decided to book into the Hunt Smart Course that Errol runs. Bingo - all the information from his books came together as he explained it in a way that you can easily understand. First he explained using PowerPoint on a large screen and followed it up with field trips where he takes you through different scenarios and teaches you how to apply overlays to narrow down where the deer are going to be.

This is where you really start to get it and it sinks in really fast. Since the course l now see between seven to thirteen deer on every trip. And l mean l see them first in an unalarmed state the majority of the time, rather than them seeing me first, honking and running. I now keep the freezer full of venison and pick and choose if l want to shoot or let them go. After attending the course in May 2013, just five months later I bungled my first opportunity on a very big 30+ inch stag in late October 2013. After taking many hinds for meat, finally I took my first stag on May 25th 2014 - 1 year after the course.

The antlers measure 21 1/4" x 21 1/4" x 15" with 9 1/4"brow tines. While nothing to write home about as far as size is concerned, the effort l have put in over the past 23 years makes them a very meaningful trophy to me.

Errol, I can’t thank you enough for all the knowledge you passed onto me during your course. While sambar hunting is never easy, by showing me what overlays to apply to various scenarios you sure have made it much easier. Now I do a lot less walking, far more sitting and glassing but I have many more carry outs.

Dominic Stivala, Rosebud VIC

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Errol Mason