posted on September 01, 2013 12:58
By Mike Handley
Noting the comings and goings of whitetails on a mere 5 acres should be as easy as pulling a can of green beans out of the cupboard.
Cody Gwinner and his father, Ted, know their little patch of woods near Okeana, Ohio, like it was a pantry. And they normally pinpoint the freshest and most often used deer trails long before the season opens.
In 2012, however, they were flying blind.
"Between going to work and helping with the family chores, I was just too wrapped up to do any of it," said Cody. "Only when the season was upon us did I do a small amount of glassing."
Cody saw nothing to excite him during the time he spent with binoculars glued to his eyes. But he did see a couple of very nice 10-pointers cross his driveway one morning in mid-August, which lifted his spirits.
It was so hot in October that Cody was in no hurry to burn his tag. Even the thinnest camo felt like a sweat suit, and the deer were afoot mostly at night anyway.
By November, however, the activity increases dramatically.
Cody arrived home early on Nov. 5 and was in a stand by 4 p.m. An hour later, he saw a small buck approaching from the neighboring property. When he reached for his binoculars, he dropped them.
Fifteen minutes after the unwelcomed thud, Cody heard a crashing noise in front of him and glimpsed a rack in the brush. A buck - no, wait ... two bucks - were following a doe through the high weeds of the nearby CRP field.
When the one bringing up the rear passed within 15 yards, Cody yelled at and shot it.
With a BTR composite score of 242 4/8 inches, the 27-pointer is No. 4 among Ohio's bow-taken Irregulars - the biggest recorded in that category since 2003. Ed Waite's story about this rascal, which will appear in RACK magazine, has lots more detail.