For some reason, I was more excited for the 2013 bow season, than I had been for past seasons. I was going to spend as much time in the woods this year as possible. I asked my wife and boss to allow me to hunt as much as I could without getting divorced or fired.
Jason’s buck scored 189 2/8″ using the technology available through the Buck Country Page. It officially gross scored 188 7/8″ by the Boone & Crockett Club.
A good friend of mine gave me permission to hunt his property in Columbiana County, Ohio. The property is absolutely picturesque, with rolling hills covered in a mixture of woods, crops (soybeans and corn), and grassy fields. I was excited to hunt there because of the large deer population and known “shooters” in the area.
Prior to opening day, I Iooked over the property and decided to hunt a nice hidden field not far-off of the beaten path. I secured a stand and a permanent safety strap/carabineer for my harness to a wild cherry tree in the northwest corner of this hidden field where deer would be coming up from the draw.
I started my archery season on Sept. 29, the second day of the season. I was in my stand almost daily. Most of my relaxing evenings were filled with noisy chipmunks, squirrels, blue jays, and pileated woodpeckers. I was visited almost every evening by wandering does, fawns, or immature bucks looking for a girlfriend.
Sunday, November 3 was my 17th day in the woods. Only one morning hunt was in the mix, all others were evening sits. This evening was very still. Not even a leaf was moving in the woods. Around 5:35 PM a doe with two fawns came out in the small field. They grazed around a while and the doe started to get leery; she tucked her tail and walked away. I have been in the woods long enough to know what that means…..a buck was not far behind!
Within a minute, I saw another deer walking toward a scrape that was about 35 yards from me. At that time I could not tell if it was even a buck. The deer walked over to the scrape in the corner of the field, stretched out his neck and started licking the branch. At that point I could see it was a buck, however, I could not see if it was a shooter. The buck started walking toward me and the yearlings.
I raised the bow off my lap, turned, and drew back while still sitting. By the time the buck got within 18 yards, I knew he was a shooter. I was focused on the shot and not looking at the size of his rack. I knew that I was within minutes of legal time, and trust me it was getting pretty dark.
As I focused on the vitals, I squeezed the trigger on my T-handle release and my arrow hit its mark. I felt confident in the shot.
He ran off in the same direction he came from. After a few minutes, I got down and went to where I shot. I found two thirds of my arrow with blood on it and a few feet away his blood trail. At that point I walked back to my truck and sat for 45 minutes. I called everyone that I could think of, not that I wanted to talk to them, but to kill time. If you are a hunter you know how long those 45 minutes feels like…HOURS!
After 45 minutes I walked down to the impact site and started following the blood trail. He backtracked on the same trail that he came in on. I followed the blood about 80 yards and found a white belly staring at me. As I walked up to the deer, I knew that he was big. I was still in shock when I called a friend to tell him I shot a nice deer; he asked me how big the deer was. I was quick to answer with 140”-150” deer.
I told him I had to go; I had a lot of work to do. As I knelt over him and closely examined his rack I almost cried. I knew this deer was a lot larger than what I recently thought. After a full evening of show and tell, I took him home and hung him in the garage. I wanted to sleep beside him with a gun to ensure no one stole him! The next morning I took him to the taxidermist, and he was even impressed. He measured the rack at 193 3/8” (gross) and aged him at 4 ½ years old. He has 16 scorable points and his inside spread was 25 5/8”.
As you can see by the photos and the smile on my face, I had a great archery season! To be honest……I think my wife was glad to see my season come to an end. I believe the novelty of my deer hunting was wearing-off.
God blessed me with a once in a lifetime buck!