Father and son team up to take a special buck in Nebraska.
By Brad Roberts
Photos by Hunt Shooters Guide Service
We’ve all heard the horror stories about two hunters shooting the same deer and fighting over it. Sometimes the unwritten law of the hunter — that of giving credit to the hunter who drew first mortal blood — is hard to follow. Age of the hunters, one being closer to his vehicle, or plain deceit can all be factors in who gets the deer.
Relax. This is not one of those stories. But, two hunters from Orange Park, Fla., did shoot a good buck on a guided hunt in Nebraska by cooperating during the 2002 muzzleloading season. The fact that the two are father and son made their trip even more special.
Hanna Farhat, known to all as John, has been hunting with his dad since he was 10. John doesn’t have one favorite hunt; he likes them all, but this particular hunt was twice as nice.
He and his father, Abie, made their second trip to Hunt Shooters Guide Service in December 2002 looking for a good whitetail. Their guide had picked up sheds from a nice buck the previous spring and had been watching the deer all year. Their trip to Nebraska had not been fruitless, but even on the last day of the hunt hope ran high that the big bruiser could still be found.
“My son had shot a 130-class 10-pointer early in the hunt,” Abie said. “We had two tags left on the last day. We decided to hunt until 9 a.m. since our flight left at 4 p.m. that afternoon, and we had to travel back to Lincoln to catch the flight, a little over 190 miles away.”
Would it be possible to have a good morning hunt and still catch the flight?
At 8:30, Bill Bose picked Abie up from a bale blind. He had seen a good buck in a field about a half-mile distant. Abie was told to walk out and hide behind some deadfall. John was set up behind some brush about 200 yards father along. Bill would try to push the deer slowly toward the father-son team.
“Michael came and got me, and Bill picked up my dad. They set us out and apart, and then they said they were just going to walk through light timber. We were on the edge of the timber. I couldn’t see my dad,” John remembers.
“I didn’t realize how close we were. But I heard a shot, and I knew it was my dad. I stood up to see what was going on, and I heard the deer running toward me. Then I saw it, and I could hear my dad hollering, ‘SHOOT!’
“Before I knew it, the deer was even with me, and then a little bit past me. I got my gun up on it. I knew I had one shot.”
John took it.
“I saw it go down, and I reloaded as quick as I could in the cold. I was kind of nervous.” But John didn’t need a second shot.
Proudly, he recalls, “The deer was about 25 to 30 yards out when I took the shot. It went down; I took my eye off it. Then it got back up and stumbled into the trees.”
The tree line was not far away, and, by that time, John’s dad was with him. The guides also caught up with the two hunters. “We looked for blood and found the trail. Our guides trailed the deer into the trees. They saw him one time, and the buck jumped.”
With the chase on again, John and Michael moved around to an area they thought the buck might use for an escape route. Abie and Bill followed the trail through the trees.
“When we were on the other side, I heard a shot; then another. We waited, and then Bill and my dad pulled around in the truck and picked us up. After going back to get a four-wheeler, we went in to retrieve the deer.”
Finally getting to size up the deer was a thrill for John. “I was pretty excited. None of my other deer were anywhere near that big. My dad had never taken anything that size, either. Once we loaded it onto the four-wheeler, I walked behind. We brought it to the edge of the woods to take some pictures.”
The father and son team agrees that another trip to Nebraska is definitely in their future.
The Farhat buck measures 162 Irregular, according to the BTR yardstick.
This article was published in the December 2004 edition of Buckmasters Whitetail Magazine. Join today to have Buckmasters delivered to your home.