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Big Buck Central

Big Buck 411 Blog

23

Brad Southwood

By Mike Handley

It took only one night for Brad Southwood to substantiate the existence of a bodacious buck with towering brow tines in his corner of Wayne County, Ky.

He'd heard reports from three people. Fueled by curiosity, even though he'd tagged out for the 2012 season, Brad obtained permission to set out a trail camera on a friend's property. He checked it the very next morning, and, lo and behold, the tall-racked buck was on it.

"I was kind of shocked to get him on film the very first night," he told Dale Weddle, Kentucky's regional director for the BTR, who's writing the story for Rack magazine.

The mostly nighttime photographs continued into February, when the buck shed its antlers, and Brad later found both sides, which tallied more than 160 inches without a spread.

The deer's next rack was even bigger.

On the Monday following the Sept. 7 bow opener, the previously nocturnal buck made the mistake of passing underneath Brad's stand.

Brad went to his tree about 2:30 p.m. that day. By 5:00, he'd seen four or five small bucks and some does. He was looking at an 8-pointer in the distance when he happened to glance down just in time to see another deer - the one he'd nicknamed Ol' Brow - approaching silently.

"I hadn't heard a thing; he just came in like a ghost," Brad said.

Brad took the 18-yard shot, but something caused the arrow not to penetrate. His pride was more damaged than the deer, but he didn't know it. He looked for the animal for seven days, until his job sent him across the state.

On Sept. 25, while he was out of town, Brad's wife checked the trail cameras and texted Brad some photos. The big deer was alive and well.

A month and a day later, Brad took full advantage of his second chance at the 19-pointer, which carries a BTR composite score of 201 2/8 inches.

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