By Adam Hayden
-- I want to thank the Lord for giving me the opportunity to do what I do and then still bless me with an animal like this. It’s very humbling. He definitely guided that arrow for me, because it wasn’t the best "form" shot I have ever made. I guess that’s what big bucks do, though — mess with your head and your shooting form.
Saturday morning, Nov. 7, was exciting, to say the least. This buck was tearing up the woods. At about 7:10 a.m., he chased a doe into the field to my right, then cut directly behind my stand (and directly downwind) before he slipped off into the standing corn.
I thought, "Well, great. He’s gonna smell me and that will be the end of it." Apparently he didn’t smell me, or he just had one thing on his mind and didn’t really care that I was there 25 feet up a tree.
Anyway, a few minutes later I heard two bucks lock up inside the corn. Then it all grew silent. A few minutes later, I heard grunting and the sound of deer running all over the place, breaking corn stalks and just creating an absolute racket.
The whole time this was going on, the same doe the buck chased into the field in front of me was keeping an eye on that corn field. Finally, it got quiet. Shortly after that, this giant exploded out of the corn with stalks hanging from his antlers, grunting his head off.
As soon as saw him, my first thought was, "How am I going to get this guy stopped?" I started with the usual ill-replicated human grunt. When that didn’t work, I resorted to that old bowhunter standby, yelling, "HEY!"
That didn’t work either, but the buck made a big mistake when he trotted down the access road right under me at about 8 yards. My arrow caught him at the last rib and came out right behind the left shoulder.
I saw him go down just inside the woods on the other side of the field about 50 yards away. The next challenge was how to get out of the stand before I hyperventilated and passed out.
You gotta love bowhunting!
-- Adam Hayden / Scott Archery Mfg. / Clay City, Ky.