Big Buck 411 Blog

Goofy Comes of Age

Goofy Comes of Age

By Mike Handley

Quaker Boy Calls’ pro-staffer Greg Gershon shot a buck in 2019 that had been on his radar for four years.

He and the others who are part of the 1,400-acre lease near San Saba, Texas, couldn’t decide how old the deer was, and age is their No. 1 factor in choosing which whitetails they’ll shoot.

The lease isn’t a fenced property, but the 65-year-old hunter from Clare, Michigan, and his friends manage it as if it were: shooters, walkers and culls.

“We first spotted this non-typical about four years ago,” he told John Phillips, who’s writing the story for Rack magazine. “Although it had a nice set of antlers then, we decided it wasn’t the kind of buck we wanted to harvest.”

In other words, they weren’t quite sure if it had or hadn’t reached its potential. Their goal is to harvest only bucks in their prime.

The gang uses trail cameras set up over protein feed stations to inventory the property’s whitetails. They don’t hunt the feeders.

One of the frequent diners was the deer with the squashed, upside-downish rack. Greg called it Goofy.

The whitetail was small in stature, which made aging him more challenging. He would attain “cull” status only if they thought he was a mature deer with little or no potential to pack on more inches.

After three seasons of allowing it to keep on trucking, the members sent a photo to a biologist, asking the deer’s age. His answer was inconclusive.

In 2019, Greg decided enough was enough, that the buck had to be at least 6 ½ years old. Two days into his Texas rifle hunt, he saw and shot the deer from 100 yards.

Afterward, they determined the animal was 8 ½ years old. Its 23-point rack scored 160 inches, not the largest Greg has taken, but certainly the most unique.

“For me, Goofy was a trophy for two reasons: He was an older age-class buck we all knew needed to come out of our herd; and he had one of the most unusual and amazing racks I’ve ever seen.”

— Read Recent Blog! Worth the Hike, Even in the Dark: Less than a year away from a college degree in land surveying and mapping sciences, Leo Van Beck learned one of his most useful lessons off campus last fall.

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