-- More and more hunters are passing on small bucks in hopes of a trophy. What many newcomers to holding out are not prepared for, however, is to go through the season without taking ANY buck -- but that's what passing up smaller bucks often will mean.
If you decide you are going for a trophy, prepare yourself mentally for the strong possibility that you won't be taking home a buck that day or even that season. Mature bucks are few and far between, and you just aren't going to see one that often.
It's difficult to resist the temptation to take that smaller buck in the last few minutes of daylight, but doing so ensures it will never grow up to be a mature buck, and there's also the possibility that the real monster was just about to step out.
Brace yourself for the worst so you won't spend the entire off season wishing you had taken the 6-pointer you passed up. Looking back with regret isn't going to do you any good, and it won't help you hold out next year. If you have a firm resolve before you head out, you'll feel better about your decisions.
Also, if you're worried about meat, take a fat doe at your first opportunity to take the pressure off.