posted on October 27, 2013 11:27
By Mike Handley
If Ryan Stolz hadn't anticipated his buck's ducking the string, a phrase that's rightfully falling out of favor with the (compound) bowhunters who coined it, he might've had his mount a whole lot sooner. And he might've had more and much better photographs.
But at least he got his deer and will soon see the antlers affixed to a form with glass eyes, albeit with another buck's hair.
The bowhunter from Mondamin, Iowa, had dreamt about arrowing this whitetail with points aplenty long before he triggered his release on Oct. 1. He first heard about it during the 2011 shotgun season, when it was seen and missed during man-drives.
After the curtain fell on the 2011-12 season, seems like everyone in Harrison County saw the buck. Its sheds were found. And by summertime, every other tree was a hitching post for a trail camera.
Ryan took to the woods on Oct. 1, wearing his ghillie suit. After an uneventful morning, he went to a different spot, which afforded him a 50-yard shot at the local legend.
He connected, too, but the shot was a tad low.
"I expected the buck to duck the arrow, but it didn't," Ryan said.
Blood was sparse, but Ryan never threw in the towel. He spent much of the week he'd taken off from work to scour the countryside.
By the time he found his prize in a brush pile beside his dad's unpicked bean field, coyotes had torn into it.
The 35-pointer is the new runner-up to Kyle Simmons' buck from 2008, Iowa's compound bow record. It's also the fourth-largest overall there.
Its BTR composite score is 286 3/8 inches.