posted on January 06, 2013 13:37
By Mike Handley
As soon as the bowstring's kisser button hit the corner of Jon Wolf's mouth, he almost panicked. The 63-year-old hunter from Galva, Ill., was staring at a buck wearing what looked more like an upturned rotary hoe than antlers. But he wasn't seeing it through a peep sight.
The device was there, right beside his nose, but it wasn't encircling the pin Jon had pointed at the dandy whitetail just 15 yards from his ladder stand.
It took only a split-second for the befuddled bowhunter to compensate, to flick his wrist and bring things in line, but he doesn't remember doing so. One minute, he was rattled; the next, he was holding a limp bow and watching the deer careening away through the strip of trees and into the adjacent field.
He knew he'd somehow hit it.
After the buck disappeared, Jon got down, walked back to his truck and called his wife, Jane. The two of them returned later and found the exceptional animal.
Jane, also a hunter, was the first to recognize the deer as being one their trail camera had photographed in 2011, the same buck that caught Jon mid-draw that year and then vanished for the remainder of the season.
"You're going to mount this one," she informed him.
Jon nicknames the deer he shoots. His daughter suggested he call this one "Trick-or-Treat" because he shot it on Halloween, but he didn't like that moniker.
"That's too long," he told her. "I'm just going to call him Dandy."
The Henry County 23-pointer hasn't been scored yet, but it's a safe bet it'll top the 206-incher - "Spike" - Jon shot from the same stand 12 years ago. Look for the particulars in RACK magazine next fall.