Big Buck 411 Blog

Not Only a Scorer

Not Only a Scorer

By Ken Piper

When Hunter Schmittou gets out his measuring tape, it's not always for someone else. As an official scorer for Buckmasters Trophy Records, Hunter Schmittou gets to see giant bucks fairly regularly. Impressively, some of those bucks were taken by Hunter himself - and the giant he took in 2020 came from public land! What's more, the public parcel Hun... READ MORE

New Script Followed

New Script Followed

By Ken Piper

When two hunters are after the same giant buck, at least one will be disappointed. It's rare that a giant buck is taken out of the blue these days. Trail cameras have rewritten the script, but the stories are no less compelling. In fact, they often have a background or history that was lacking in giant deer tales of years past. It usually goes some... READ MORE

Public Land Ain't Easy!

Public Land Ain't Easy!

By Ken Piper

It's not that you can't shoot a giant on public land ... but it is rare. The reasons are what you would expect. First, there are fewer big bucks to be had. Second, there are more hunters trying for those bucks. And third, the intense pressure applied by the extra hunters affects deer movement and behavior. Some public land tracts offer a better cha... READ MORE

Priorities

Priorities

By Ken Piper

It can be tough to juggle work and family life these days. Add in deer season, and things really get hectic. Prioritizing your time and deciding when you can get away to hunt is difficult, but when your wife calls and says she's going into labor, you get out of the tree as fast as you can! That's a no-brainer, even during the archery opener. That's... READ MORE

Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker

By Mike Handley

The best day of a 15-year-old's life as a deer hunter was also the worst for some of his neighbors. Noah Rogers' big brother, Jared, wasn't exactly thrilled either. A lot of people in that pocket of Powell County were salivating over a world-class whitetail seen and photographed on several area farms during the six years before Noah shot the local ... READ MORE

Big Game Swap

Big Game Swap

By Mike Handley

A simple handshake helped a Maine outfitter and a farmer from Ohio shorten their bucket lists in 2020. It's impossible to say who got the better end of the deal, the man who took home a brace of record-book whitetails, the one who felled a truly world-class black bear, or the taxidermists who earned one or more truck payments. None of this would've... READ MORE

A Beast by Any Other Name

A Beast by Any Other Name

By Mike Handley

I admit I’m paid to come up with myriad ways to describe whitetails. Referring to a storied animal as a buck or a deer 27 times in one article is a surefire way to put a reader to sleep. To keep your attention, I generally alternate between the two, or I might substitute nouns like whitetail, giant, 20-pointer, 10x10 or behemoth. If I’m... READ MORE

Double the Pleasure

Double the Pleasure

By Mike Handley

Des Moines bowhunter Brady Snyder doesn't always budget for taxidermy, but when he does, he prefers paying double. That's what happened in 2019 anyway, when he let the air out of a couple of world-class whitetails, a 174-incher during a local urban management hunt and an even bigger one during Iowa's regular bow season. The larger scored 183 and ch... READ MORE

New Texas Record is Deer of the Year

New Texas Record is Deer of the Year

By Mike Handley

For the first time since Buckmasters began awarding its annual Golden Laurel Citation, a Texas specimen will claim deer hunting's highest honor. Tarif Alkhatib's 2021 Grayson County whitetail will be the 32nd recipient of the GLC, first awarded to the world-record Tony Fulton Buck in 1996. The award is given to our Deer of the Year, based on the ma... READ MORE

Eight Hours from Heaven

Eight Hours from Heaven

By Mike Handley

Before last fall, Anders Blixt had no idea he lives only eight hours from Heaven. The Virginian had a hunch deer hunting's pearly gates were somewhere in Ohio, which is why he and a friend, Tyson Kuhu, leased land there seven years ago. Still, he had no reason to think he'd zeroed in on them until 2021. Anders' introduction to the Buckeye State cam... READ MORE

Former Pencil Rack Potential Saskatchewan Record

Former Pencil Rack Potential Saskatchewan Record

By Mike Handley

In Jon Nicholson's mind, traveling more than 2,000 miles, standing in line at Canadian customs kiosks and buying the proper licenses and tags are only small hurdles in his quest to help a taxidermist make one or more truck payments. The 40-year-old deer hunter from Georgia did it in 2019, and he returned to Saskatchewan in 2021. He struck paydirt b... READ MORE

Curiosity Killed the Buck?

Curiosity Killed the Buck?

By Mike Handley

Mike Every will never put on another face mask without thinking about the day it almost robbed him of the chance at the largest whitetail he’d ever seen. The veteran archer from Mason, Michigan, was deer hunting in Ingham County last fall when the local legend suddenly appeared near one of the scrapes Mike was babysitting. The shot should&rsq... READ MORE

Shooting without Breathing

Shooting without Breathing

By Mike Handley

A 200-inch whitetail is a bucket-list specimen, and, for most of us, it’s a box that’ll never be ticked. In 2020, then-15-year-old Claire Flood put a big checkmark on the list she didn't even know existed by felling a monster in Breckinridge County, Kentucky. And get this: It was her very first deer! Five days into the state's rifle sea... READ MORE

Sorry, Little Brother

Sorry, Little Brother

By Mike Handley

Greg Shembarger is the reason I seldom use the phrase “buck of a lifetime.” At 21 years old, the deer hunter from Berrien Center, Michigan, has already taken numerous bucks deserving of that designation, and I suspect there are many more in his future. He was but a teenager when he dropped his largest in 2019, an Illinois bruiser that s... READ MORE

Thanks, Brother

Thanks, Brother

By Mike Handley

Cory Anderson and his father were unusually quiet during the drive from Georgia to Christian County, Kentucky, last fall. Instead of excitement over their annual deer hunt, they were profoundly aware of the vehicle’s empty seat. Missing was Cory’s older brother Raymond, who had died from COVID following a family beach vacation. Everyone... READ MORE

Copyright 2022 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd