Register  | Login
Trophy Gallery
Highslide JS
Ethan Pope
Ethan Pope • Jennings County , Indiana • Shotgun

Highslide JS
Randy Hawk
Randy Hawk • 11/18/2009 • Franklin County , Missouri • Rifle

Big Buck Central

Big Buck 411 Blog

Like Dogs at a Hydrant

When a doe led two bucks through the Harper County, Kan., creek bottom Billy Garner was watching on Nov. 12, the bowhunter from Arkansas thanked his lucky stars that the rut was only beginning. Because after the doe cruised on through, her two suitors hung around to leave calling cards in multiple scrapes.

The property’s 2 1/2-year-olds were chasing everything in sight, but the older bucks knew it was not yet time to dim the lights and cue up some soft music.

“At one point, the big 10-pointer (which he so desperately wanted) was broadside at 41 yards, and the 8-pointer was working a closer scrape, at 27,” Billy said. “The big one was raking the ground and breaking limbs overhead. I could feel my heart beating, but I was trying to stay calm.”

Eager to seal the deal before the buck walked out of his life, Billy used his rangefinder to check various yardages. He struggled mightily over whether to take the longish shot or wait to see if the beefy whitetail would come closer.

“They worked the scrapes for a long time, and I almost drew on the big one a couple of times,” Billy said. “I was thinking -- hoping -- it would hit the scrape the smaller buck was working, that it couldn’t just leave that one alone without adding its two scents.”

His hunch was as on target as his Mathews bow.

Even before the 8-pointer finished, the larger buck decided it was his time at the hydrant.

“I had my bow in hand and was almost chanting: make the shot ... make the shot ... look through the peep ... look through the peep,” Billy said. “When it was done, I think I made the best shot I’ve ever made in my life. I could see the fletching when the arrow hit.

[Read the rest of this article...]

Sometimes Ya Just Gotta Grin and Deer It

Ryan Bearden was disgusted and ready to go someplace else, maybe even back to his warm motel room.

Though 2010 was the Alabamian’s third year to drive to Ohio, he’d hunted this Highland County farm only once before that cold Dec. 18. All he really knew about the place was that 40 of the 200 or so acres were wooded.

When he struck out that 18-degree morning, he skirted a cornfield – plodding through 6 to 8 inches of snow -- and walked 20 yards into the adjoining woodlot. He jacked himself up a tree, sat down and watched the paint dry on a winter landscape devoid of color and deer, painfully aware that the wind was carrying his scent straight into the property’s only cover.

The 24-year-old had been fighting the urge to relocate for half an hour when, at 9:00, he spotted two bucks running along the edge of the field. Both were 8-pointers, and he was about to shoot the larger when he saw a third buck coming down the same lane.

[Read the rest of this article...]

When Fauna Fights Flora

Pheromones and estrous doe scents might be akin to Cupid's arrow, but whatever Pat Bates pours on bushes is more like Thor's hammer.

One whiff of the concoction will turn bucks into white-eyed defoliators, or, if they're big and stupid enough to do battle with flora in front of Pat, into wall art.

The former firefighter from Alberta decided a long time ago that if he wanted to be as successful in the deer woods as his brother is, and if he wanted to put a tag on a record book buck, he'd better not rely on luck. That's why, since his retirement in 2007, he spends at least eight of every 10 days afield each season. It's why he began playing around with the potion he calls his "buckstuff."

It's also how he one-upped Mike Bates in 2010.

He went to his brother's place on Nov. 25, their father's 89th birthday. While the patriarch hunted with Mike that morning, Pat struck out on his own, hoping to connect with a huge buck that had bewitched and eluded his sibling for a couple of years.

"The directions Mike gave me were very specific," Pat said. "And while I didn't see the big fella, I saw a lot of sign. I also put some buckstuff on a tree with a huge scrape nearby, and then I went back to Mike's for lunch."

Upon his return, he saw his father's birthday present.

[Read the rest of this article...]

Nicked Brow a Small Price to Pay

Casey Orr didn’t look for a blood trail because his deer fought off gravity for only 30 yards. Had he searched, however, he might’ve found two of them – one leading to the outlandishly palmated whitetail, the other back to the homemade ground blind where the 24-year-old had been sitting for an hour and a half.

Casey doesn’t remember being smacked in the brow by his .444 Marlin’s scope, probably because the buck of his dreams had strolled within 20 yards of his hiding place along the Choctaw County, Miss., power line. But when he saw that he’d actually shot the “freak” over which he’d obsessed since 2009, he was punch-drunk.

“I can't explain the feeling of joy that overcame me,” said the assistant baseball coach for Starkville Academy. “I ran right up to the deer and just started dancing and yelling. Had anyone seen me, they would’ve thought I was crazy!”

It had been a long 17 months since Casey first laid eyes on the buck in August 2009, when he’d driven to the family farm to watch for deer crossing a power line that cut through a pine plantation. Understandably, after seeing that gnarly rack, the hunter from Ackerman, Miss., considered it Priority One.

But almost a year passed before he saw it in the flesh again, also during the summer. He and a fishing buddy jumped it en route to a pond.

[Read the rest of this article...]

Page 43 of 57First   Previous   38  39  40  41  42  [43]  44  45  46  47  Next   Last   
Pay Your Bill Online Google+ Buckmasters on Pinterest Follow Us On Instagram! LinkedIn Buckmasters on YouTube Follow Us On Twitter Buckmasters on Facebook!