Past Big Buck Contest Winners Stories Here 2010 to 2014

Discuss deer hunting tactics, Deer behavior. Post your Hunting Stories, Pictures, and Questions/Answers.
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Stanley
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Past Big Buck Contest Winners Stories Here 2010 to 2014

Unread postby Stanley » Wed Dec 16, 2015 5:03 am

These are the top vote placers from every year the Beast has had the contest. Enjoy


You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Stanley » Wed Dec 16, 2015 5:09 am

2014: Dewey

2013: Jackson Marsh

2012: Czabs

2011: Jackson Marsh

2010: Spysar
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Spysar » Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:16 am

Venison Tour 2010

Here goes....the trip started 10/18. The truck was packed and I was ready to go. I had several tags in my pocket, and I was anxious to fill at least one of them.Oh, and I'd also have a paddlefish tag this year. I'd be heading to SD, NE and IA for a do it yourself bowhunting vacation, with a little bit of paddlefishing thrown in.

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My plan was to get to Iowa on tues the 19th and stay till the 22nd, while on my way to my cabin in SD which I would arrive at on the 22nd. The first stop in Iowa was to scout the land I had been given permission to hunt, and also check out the public land that I had been "cyber" scouting all summer.

I was staying at a small one room cabin on a 640 acre farm. The farmer also got me permission on his neighbors 100 acres too! I couldn't believe it, the farm looked great, it was a mixture of cut crops of beans and corn. Some was in CRP, and cattle was on some. There was the typical wooded ravines. The farmer even left a few acres of standing beans in a hidden corner of a CRP field! And it was connected to a honey suckle and rose thicket with mature oaks. A real deer sanctuary. Anyway, I scouted the whole farm and then some, and I was one my way to SD and NE.

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I arrived in SD friday evening, got stocked up on groceries, and got a good rest for morning. The first few days would be spent hanging stands and scouting. I was the first one there, Kyle was coming by sunday and Dom and Timmy would be in camp later that week. I got my zodiak ready. I later found out that there was record water levels, and that would wind up changing my water/boat hunt stratagy.

I was able to boat into a favorite spot, and get a couple of stands set. The next few days, a record low pressure system came in and the winds made it to hard to even set tree stands and made scouting difficult.


Paddle fishing

I had waited three years to get my paddlefish tag. I had seen people catching them all this time and I wanted to try it. On the days it was too lousy to hunt, I went "spoonbillin" as the locals called it. Although it was cold and brutal, I was able to tuck in under the dam which blocked the fierce winds somewhat. I tell ya, what a freaking blast! I must of caught 30 of the prehistoric looking plankton feeders! You can only keep one fish. That one fish must be 35 inches or under, or 45 inches or greater.(measured from the eye to the fork in the tai, the overall fish is much largerl) Although I tried to get one over fortyfive, I wound up keeping one that was a shade under 35". I caught one in the "slot" that must have been 40 lbs or so. The big one in town was 91lbs!!

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First One Of The Season

Just when I got done spoonbillin, the weather was getting good for hunting. It was getting toward halloween time. That's the signal to start getting serious. I hunted and scouted and set up stands. I had seen several, tempting, but too small kind of bucks. Usually we start seeing the bigger ones getting up around the 3rd or 4th of November. Then we would all start getting shots untill it was time to go home, this year would be no different.

We stay for about three weeks and hunt a mix of mostly public, and some private land. We have a deal with a rancher where we pay him to bowhunt his land for eight days before the opening of the NE gun season. I think we're the only ones that bowhunt except for a farm hand.

I didn't get a deer while hunting the public land, and now it was time for us to hunt our private ranch. We all can't wait to hunt the ranch as there are quite a few nice bucks running around, and we don't have to worry about other people being one the land. All my buddies were here now, and we went down and met the ranchers and sais hello.It was Nov 5th. Then we went our seperate ways to scout and hang stands. Each of us has over 500 acres to ourselves, sweet hey?

I was heading to "my" section. I parked my truck, got dressed in a light hunting layer since I'd be walking. Me and Dom park at the same spot and hunt opposite sides of the road. Since we were carrying in stands, we both contemplated carrying out bows or not. I decided, that despite the extra weight, I'd be carrying mine, and he agreed.

So I walked in with a hang on stand and a set of climbing sticks and some screw in steps, and of coarse, my bow. This was my 5th year hunting this area so I had a good idea where I'd be going. I got to a tree that I used in the past, but things had changed a little due to trees falling in the good route. Plus there was the activity I had always observed 100 yards up the draw in years past. So I set my stand and sticks down, and headed up to check some sign, and possibly pick a tree. I got there, and yes indeed, I found a new tree that I had to relocate to. Just too good of a spot.

I was staring at two different tree deciding which one, when all of a sudden I heard deer crashing through the woods. They were coming right towards me so I took a knee. I was glad my bow was in my hand. Suddenly there was two does right next to me panting, and I knew it was a buck chase. Then I heard more crunching in the leaves and a couple more does came up on the other side of me. And the wind was good. So now I have 5 does in a semi circle in front of me and more crunching in the leaves.

Here he comes, I could see the rack, and I just knew he would be near me soon, and things were happening real quick. As he trotted in a small dip, I drew my bow from one knee. The buck popped up less than 15 yards from me broadside. He looked dang good to me, and I hit the release. He didn't know what hit him. He died 20 yards from where I hit him, and 35 yards from where I was standing. A perfect heart shot. I couldn't believe my hunt on the ranch was over in about 5 minutes!!! And I didn't even get to set up my stand. Since I had never shot a deer on the ground with a bow before I was stunned at the experience.

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The Next Day

I was pretty excited about getting a nice ten point buck, but I couldn't believe I was done hunting on the private ranch as the owner lets us get one buck there. In Nebraska you can buy two statewide archery tags. Each one good for 1 buck, and 1 doe. So I went to town to the archery store, and Scott from Dakota Archery (check out their web site) let me use his computer so I could get my second tag. I did, and I was back in the woods that afternoon.

Since the private ranch landlocks some army corp of engineers land, I used my access via private to get to the ACE land. My plan was to walk with the wind in my face to scout out a draw, and pick a location for a stand.

As I walked up the draw, bow in hand of coarse, I encountered quite a few deer. Most of them I spooked, but some were unaware. I filmed a few, and it's kind of neat to watch the footage from the ground, as most footage is from a tree. I had marked several spots where I was gonna put in a tree stand. My plan was to exit the draw, and walk the prairie and go get a stand and walk the prairie back in and hang it. But my plan got interrupted by a big buck.

I was standing for a few minutes contemplating my next move. I was at the end of the draw, and I was either gonna climb out, or go check a near by pond for a pinch point around it. Just when I decided to climb through a small ravine and out on the prairie for another view, a buck decided to come out of the prairie and come across the ravine I was in!

I seen him and was stunned at such a big buck in front of me. And he was gonna cross the most unlikely nasty est part of the ravine. When he moved a little, I crept up as close as I dared. Then I didn't see or hear him anymore. Had he slipped through the thick stuff when I moved? I waited.......he must of been waiting too, cause all of a sudden, off the top he came, down to the bottom, and was now heading up and out.

It was thick but I saw an opening, and decided to shoot.

CRACK!!! The arrow disintegrated and the buck took a couple of jumps the way he came from.Total miss. Now the buck is standing about 25-30 yards away, stomping and looking, and on pins and needles. Way to thick to shoot, and facing me, but the wind was from him to me, and no way for him to smell me. It was about a 10 minute stand off, then I seen his tail flicker, indicating he would start walking.

He took a few steps, and miraculously, his whole body and head was covered in sticks, except his chest. I got as low as I could cause I wasn't sure how much my arrow would arch. I let it rip. The deer started running at the sound of my arrow releasing, but it still smoked him. He ran into the prairie from which he came, did a little druken dance and then, CRASH, he was down in seconds. Holy!@#$ my second archery buck in two days, from the ground!! Another day of not setting a stand.

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Soiux Indian Reservation- Buck 3

Wow, I couldn't believe it, two nice bucks in two days, and on the ground. But it's not over yet. That's the beauty of this place, your never tagged out. I still had my SD tag, and I could get another tag in Nebraska. Let me explain.

Where I hunt there is a reservation of the Soiux Tribe. It is a big chunk of land, mostly privately owned, but a portion of it is owned by the tribe. They have control of managing the deer on their reservation. So I can buy a tag from the tribe as long as I'm hunting on reservation land. All I did was go talk to the Soiux game warden(Donny), and he sold me the tag, and gave me a map. He said the yellow is land owned by the tribe and I could hunt any of it. There were other colors on the map that matched up to names of tribe members that allowed you to hunt if you called them and asked permission. And anything else was private(unless you knocked on the door and got permission).

I had heard the reservation land gets pounded pretty hard, especially during gun season. Oh well, what public land dosen't get pounded?

So I took my map, and got to scouting. I decided to check several areas until I found one I liked. The first place was loaded with does, but it was accessable, and I knew I would be bothered by other people. The second place was nice and I bet no hunted that much, but it was thick cedars, almost impossable to walk in. Although I thought about this spot and put on some miles here, I thought I could do better. Same with the third spot, I just thought I could do better.

Then I got to the fourth spot I scouted, and still hadn't hung a stand. At first I thought it wasn't going to be good. It was nasty on the outside, but then, wow, it opened into an oasis of a deer spot. One of those spots you look at and say, yeah, I can definatly kill a buck here. My scouting was done, and it was time to hunt again.

The first time I hunted the stand, I passed (and filmed) a decent 10 point. I passed him a couple of times, and there was plenty of does in the area.

The next time I hunted there I was just gonna do a morning sit and then go over to SD as I was hunting both states at the same time. I packed a light snack that day and dang it if I didn't have my base that mounts my camera to the arm, oh well.

The deer activity was steady that day. It was just one of those days where at least one deer was in sight all day long. So I decided I had better go with plan "B" and make this an all day sit, it was Nov 9th. As the day wore on, 18 does were within sight at one time! I had passed that same 10 pointer I had seen on the earlier sit, three times. In the last half hour of daylight, two does caming running by me at ten yards with their tongues out, so I grabbed my bow in anticipation. Right on que I saw a nice rack heading my way, a very respectable buck especially for the public reservation land. He stopped at ten yards broadside and got a Hellrazor through his heart. Was I lucky or what? I had to pinch myself, what a year, and I still had tags.

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[color=F10010]Tracking/Dragging Crew LOL[/color]

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For some reason none of us filled our SD tags this year. We all hunted in various spots there, and all of us sighted big bucks, but none got killed. In years past we have gotten some of our biggest in SD.

This year the regular gang killed 9 bucks in Nebraska. Timmy killed a big weird tall buck we called the "turkey track buck".

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Dom killed a public land ten pointer, and an even bigger 9 pointer with a forked G3 on our ranch.

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Kyle killed a hefty 8 point on public land, followed by another big 8 on the ranch, and then stunned us all with a 13 pointer! He has a secret spot called "racker ridge" that he boats to on the Soiux reservation.

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And here's all the racks for the whole vacation.


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IOWA

After years of waiting, and the million dollar tag in my pocket, I was headed to Iowa. I spent all summer researching the area I would hunt. I picked the area because of all the public land in the area, and the fact that much of it was on waterways. I thought I might be able to use my zodiak here. After I narrowed down the area I wanted to hunt, I had to find a place to stay. I almost called a hotel, but first I decided to try and find a cabin as I like those so much more than a hotel. I tell ya, I really got lucky. Not only did I find the perfect cabin, but that cabin sat on a 640 acre farm, and the owners gave me permission to hunt it! And the owner got me permisssion on an additional 100 acres! Talk about hitting the lottery!

So as my story started, I had been here in October and scouted the farm. Now it was November 14th, and I had three spots I wanted to set my stands up, which I did.I wasn't the only one hunting the farm. The owner had a guy that had been helping him around the farm since he was a kid, and he had been hunting the farm for over 20 years. He is a super nice guy named Bret. Bret shared his info of the farm and his trail cam pics from this year. There were a few nice ones on the farm, including what I thought was a droptine ten. Back in October I left a trail cam in, and when I checked it there was a nice one on it. So I really wanted a crack at that droptine 10. Here's the one good pic I got at the time.

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I knew about the droptine 10, another bigger hoss size 10, an 8 with a extra droptine brow, another nice regular ten, and several other not quite shooter for me bucks. I kept dreaming about the droptine 10, I really wanted that one.

Through the week I spent my time sitting on stands, and exploring and scouting. I went through the farm back in October, so I spent my scouting time on public land. I didn't want all my eggs in one basket on the farm...just in case I needed a backup plan.

I hadn't been seeing a whole lot on my sits, but I felt I was closing in on what parts of the farm the deer were using most, and I had found some really nice spots to try on public land. It was pretty apparent that the deer prefered the side of the farm where the standing beans were. It was an awesome spot with a small river through it. There was a nice peice of timber with large oak, walnut, and locust trees. Years ago there was cattle that kept it free of undergrowth, but years of no cattle and it turned into a honeysuckle, and north american rose bush deer sanctuary!

You ever notice how you can kill a buck when the wind is "almost bad" for the spot, but not quite? The kind of wind where a buck might still feel comfortable traveling, and your ambush is right on the edge of where he'd smell you?Well I had a spot to try and the wind was just like that. It was almost blowing the wrong way, but just enough that it wasn't blowing into the bedding area. I almost didn't go to the stand, but I did.

The stand was in a hedgerow. It connected the honeysuckle, briar patch to a couple of other small timber peices. On both side of the hedge was CRP, and the bean plot was about a third of a mile away.

It was November 18th, and the bucks were really active this afternoon where I was. I heard a doe crashing through, and I could hear a buck grunting like crazy. My heart was racing and it turned out to be a small 8. Then more louder grunting, and more chasing. A real lot of noise,and too thick to see. Then another bigger, almost shooter 8 is chasing a doe around. A lot of chasing and grunting and then it got quiet for a while. Then I hear another doe crashing up the hill, and more grunting, and the doe hops the fence into the CRP field I'm on. And then I saw a buck in the bushes. Thinking it was probably one of those pesky 8's, I raised my bino's. Holy crap! That's not those 8's! So I ditched the binos and got a death grip on my bow!

Now the doe is in the field, and he's in the woods, behind the fence. And to make it worse, I can swear that deer was looking right at me. I was sure he was looking at me, but then he looked at the doe. Maybe he wasn't looking at me, I guess I'll never know? He had that look where he didn't want to be in that open CRP, but when he saw the doe, he was changing his mind. He actually walked in a small circle twice like he was leaving, but the doe overpowered his senses. He finally jumped into the field, and at that moment I thought I might actually get my chance.

When I entered the stand that day, I layed down a scent trail. I took a four foot piece of grass, and dipped the tassle in the lure. I made a trail that just happened to be near where those deer were, to my stand. The doe and buck were over 50 yards away, and it was getting towards sundown. I was shaking just thinking about the possability of getting a shot.The doe was just taking her time browsing, while the big buck was tending her. She was slowly getting closer to me, and if she got more than 15 yards from him, he would move closer too.

Then she hit my scent trail. And she smelled it , nose to the ground, 10 yards closer to my stand! She was pretty much coming into range now. Then he hit the scent line, and followed it even closer than she did! I could have rushed a semi far shot at any time, but I felt I could do better, I wanted tehm closer and they were doing it. Dang they were slow! I remember how majestic that buck looked tending that doe. Then my opportunity came. He was right in front of me at 30 yards broadside. Everything was perfect when I let go.WHACK! Perfect hit.

He traveled pretty far after being double lunged. After 150 yards he jumped a sturdy 5 foot fence, and I started to doubt my shot. I found him in the thickest stuff ever about 50 yards from there. I could smell him before I found him.

I guess I'm over ranting about my $566 tag! It was worth it.

This is Dwight and Arlene, the owners of the farm that gave me permission to hunt it. Super nice folks!

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Other pics of the buck

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Here's a pic of my Iowa buck about 10 mins before I shot him. It's blurry, but it's all I got.

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Oh, and remember the droptine 10? Well it turns out I got a couple more pics of him. After I tagged out on my buck, and I was doe hunting, guess who showed up under my stand, broadside at less than 20 yards? Oh yeah, he's not a droptine I found out. When I wiped the tears from my eyes, I noticed it was a flyer, sticker point off his left G2. Anyone ever have to pass a buck like this?

Not only did he come under my stand the day after I tagged out, but he came under me while I sat ANOTHER stand the next day, two days in a row, two different stands!!!

I filmed him both days and I'll post it if I ever figure out how. Enjoy

Click on the second pic, its a vid.

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A buck will see you three times, and hear you twice, but he's only gonna smell you once.
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Stanley
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Stanley » Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:12 am

I looked again BH took second.
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:13 am

Here is mine from last year (2014)


This story details the craziest day of hunting I have ever experienced in my life!!

This hunt came together from observations I made over the years based on past rut sign and current activity from a few weeks ago when I took a day off from hunting to scout. I narrowed down a likely rut cruising spot that I knew would be good when the timing was right. Little did I know how right that gut feeling would be! :o

Up to this point I was having a really tough season. Only saw one good buck from stand opening weekend but beyond that action was very limited. I hunted hard the whole last week of October seeing a few here and there but nothing I wanted to tag. On Halloween I became violently ill with a nasty stomach virus and it was litterally impossible to hunt. I missed a few days and was really bummed knowing I was missing some prime days but then decided i was going hunting the next morning no matter how bad I felt. Finally on 11/4 I was ready to attempt the rut spot that I had a good feeling about since I had a west wind. I slept in a little and headed out at 9:00 a.m. to set up.

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Ended up sitting till dark and not seeing a deer on stand. After closing I was standing at the base of my tree packing up and a doe walked past me less than 10 yards away and never saw me.

Decided I was going to do an all day sit on 11/5 because I still felt this spot had the right ingredients for some cruisers if the time was right. Got all set up in the morning and everything was dead quiet again. At this point it was mid morning and admit I was starting to have some doubts and even posted on the Beast about lack of rutting activity but decided I was here till dark no matter what. Shortly after my first cruiser came past and started what was going to be the most incredible day of hunting I have ever experienced. It's going to get confusing so I will number each buck to identify them.

Buck #1 was at mid-morning and was by himself cruising downwind of doe bedding. He was a 10 pt probably 135-140" but never gave me a good shot.

Somewhere around 9:30 a.m. all heck broke loose! :shock:

A hot doe was coming with 6 bucks hot on her tail. I have seen 2-3 before but 6 is just nuts. Heard them coming over 150 yards away and sound like a freight train headed my way. The amount of grunting from 6 bucks is just mind boggling as you can imagine. Each buck had his own voice and it was a very cool chorus of individual grunts. At this point my focus was on buck #2 who was right on the doe because he was a giant 10 pt at 160"+ that I wanted badly. Right behind him were 3 scrub bucks I'll call bucks #3, #4, and #5. They were all year old forkhorns and maybe a small 6 pt. The big buck kept putting his head down and charging them to protect his doe but the were relentless and kept on following. I had shots at the smaller bucks but again couldn't get a clear shot at the big one! :doh: This is the reason why and the only spot I didn't have a clear shot. Both big bucks went behind this mess.

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Finally the last two bucks caught up with the group. Buck #6 was a smaller 8 pt and buck #7 was a good 130" 10 pt. Of course he went behind that same tangled mess and no shot! About 10 minutes later a forkhorn buck #8 showed up late for the party. He followed the hot doe trail to join in on the madness. At this point I could hear they were out in the cattails chasing hard and by watching the tips I could see their location. At this point all I could do is sit back and hope they come back around.

Everything was quiet and suddenly shortly before 1:00 p.m. a nice 9 pt buck #9 came from the direction the chasing was. Thinking he came along the cattail/timber transition and picked up her scent. Funny thing is he was directionally challenged because he was following her trail the wrong way!! :lol: Good for me because he was headed for my shooting lane and I knew he was a shooter. I came to full draw and needed one more step from him and he would be mine. Wouldn't you know it that one step turned him and he walked straight away with no shot. I gave him a few grunts but he just ignored them and kept going. At this point I was getting frustrated having so many good bucks in range yet never had a shot! :angry-banghead:

Around 2:30 p.m. another cruiser came by a smaller 8 pt buck #10. Then a few minutes later a smaller 6 pt or 8 pt buck #11 was searching inside the edge of the cattails.

Everything was quiet until 3:45 p.m. and then all heck broke loose again. Here comes another hot doe....still not sure if it was the same one as earlier but I saw she had a good one (buck #12) trailing her. I decided he was a shooter and looked like a good 8 pt. At this point I was commited and had my bow ready in shooting position. They were heading right into my scent stream so I had to make a quick decision. I could see more bucks coming in the background and out of the corner of my eye caught a glimpse of the giant (buck #2) following back a ways. He stepped back in the cattails so I thought my chance on him was done so I focussed on the one behind the doe. At this point I decided after a day like this I was not going home without tagging a buck. As soon as buck #12 hit my shooting lane I drilled him at 30 yards. I saw my glowing Nocturnal bury and disapear right in the sweet spot! The buck took one jump and walked away slowly towards that cattails. Within seconds he was getting tippy and toppled right over in less than 15 yards from the shot. Never even made it to the water at the edge of the cattails. :dance:

At this point the giant (buck #2) came back out to see what the commotion was. He kept walking but would have never given me a shot. After that the other bucks in the background kept coming. Another small 8 pt (buck #13) a 6 pt (buck #14) and finally a small 5 pt (buck #15) This last buck refused to leave even after I whistled at him and waved my arms to scare him off. Finally he wandered off and I decided to go tag my buck since he hadn't moved since he went down in view from my stand.


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It's was a crazy day to say the least. Ended up seeing 15 different bucks and a few of them multiple times. For public land this is absolutely crazy. Funny what one or two hot does can do. Up to this point I had a very difficult season so this is proof that you should never give up because your season can change in an instant.

He is a 7 pt with broken brow so actually now a 6 pt. I had to make a quick decision and thought he was an 8 pt when I shot. He has a 17 1/2" spread and dressed out at exactly 200 lbs on my scale. 30 yard shot and he dropped within 15 yards on the edge of the cattails. He was dead very quickly from a heart shot. At least I was able to get him out with my cart so getting to my truck wasn't too bad.

Here is the shot.

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He turned as I shot and was slightly quartering to when I shot him thru his right shoulder blade, thru the arm pit, heart and then exiting the right side at heart level. Just found the arrow today so I stuck it thru for visual purposes. Muzzy did a great job again! 8-)

I have shot everything from a spiker to an 11 pt but don't have a 6 pt or 8 pt. in my collection of racks. When I shot I thought I was taking care of the 8 pt void. Now that I have a good 6 pt a big 8 pt is hopefully in my future.

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This kill is a very bittersweet moment for me. I lost my dad and best hunting and fishing partner back in January 2014. I miss him every day but never more than now during the hunting season. It's a very empty feeling not having him calling and asking how I have been doing hunting because he loved hearing my adventures and think he hunted thru me because he couldn't get around as much anymore. Not being able to share this unbelievable day of hunting with him is very difficult because I know he would have loved every second of it. This season I used a lot of his old hunting gear and his old grunt call was with me every day. I can't help but wonder if he had a little influence on this day and was up there enjoying the show. It's the only reasoning I can come up with for experiencing a day like that. This ones for you Dad, thank you very much for everything you have given me by introducing me to this great sport.

Hope everybody enjoyed my story. It's a day I will never forget for the rest of my life. Ending it by tagging a good buck was truly icing on the cake! 8-)

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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Spysar » Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:26 am

Stanley wrote:I looked again BH took second.


Right on. Jackson is the man!
A buck will see you three times, and hear you twice, but he's only gonna smell you once.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Jackson Marsh » Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:06 am

Spysar wrote:
Stanley wrote:I looked again BH took second.


Right on. Jackson is the man!



I voted for BH that year, he had a great year.......I've also been told JM can be difficult :think:

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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:08 am

Jackson Marsh wrote:
Spysar wrote:
Stanley wrote:I looked again BH took second.


Right on. Jackson is the man!



I voted for BH that year, he had a great year.......I've also been told JM can be difficult :think:

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Neil your two winning stories are my favorite of all time. Hard work determination and big bucks to top it off. :clap:

Post em' up I wanna read them again. 8-)
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Jackson Marsh » Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:18 am

Tried to edit post and I deleted it??

I'll get the stories up tonight.

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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Kraftd » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:08 am

This will be awesome for those of us who haven't been around since 2010. Thanks guys, great idea!
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Spysar » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:16 am

A mod has to copy and paste for us. We have no edit on our old stuff. Or maybe I don't know how to do it...
A buck will see you three times, and hear you twice, but he's only gonna smell you once.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Jackson Marsh » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:25 am

2011. I've been bow hunting for 8 years and starting 3 years ago I was getting frustrated with lack of buck sightings, so I decided to do something about it. I started scouting in the off season and found some promising looking areas. Many of those areas did not pan out, although I did kill a decent public land buck that year (2009), I felt I was still not in the game. After the 2009 season I continued scouting and found even better areas, my 2010 season didn't end in a kill, but I did see my first mature public land buck (three of them). I had been a lurker on this site, but finally ordered "Marsh Bucks" and "Hill Country Bucks" and studied them closely, and more importantly used Dan's tactics for scouting and planning a hunt. Countless miles of scouting during the winter and spring months (and 5 cases of poison sumac over the last year) had me excited to hunt in 2011. It was a slow start to the season, on the second weekend after the bow opener I saw three deer. I did not see another deer until November 5th despite hunting every weekend. Needless to say I was getting a little frustrated and was questioning my tactics. Starting November 7th I had eight straight days off and was planning to make the most of them. I had been saving a spot I had scouted out this winter by using Google Earth and putting boots on the ground. This area was a mile back into the cattails and is a long narrow island ending in a point covered with young poplar trees. Virtually every small tree had buck rubs. While scouting this area I found numerous buck beds, but with the layout and access, I did not see how I could hunt it early season with out blowing out the bedding areas. In the snow I also observed two different sets of very large tracks traveling the length of the island.

On the morning of November 7th wearing hip boots I started slogging into the island, this took me an hour and a half. I found my tree and using my Lone Wolf hand climber climbed about eighteen feet. As I was getting situated I noticed a small bow hook in the tree! Imagine scouting out an area, getting up at a crazy early hour, hiking through cattails, marsh grass and muck for an hour and a half, climbing up a tree on an island which is a quarter mile long, and having a bow hook from another hunter in your tree. I thought "oh great" and proceeded to wait. I heard numerous gun shots from waterfowl hunters but did not see or hear any deer activity. At 9:14 I texted my brother in Iowa, whining about how long of a slog it was to my stand and that I hadn't seen a darn deer. I turned my phone off and after a few minutes I thought I heard something in the cattails at the end of the point (130 yards away). Standing up I saw two does and a buck. The does crossed the island and headed into an open grassy area to the west. Luckily the buck headed towards me on the eastern edge of the island. He got on a trail between the cattails and the woods, had he continued on the trail it would have put him directly downwind and in a thick brushy area just behind my stand where I could not shoot. Just as the buck was about to enter into the brush he made a 90 degree turn and passed behind a large tree (I drew my bow). Had the buck continued straight he would have given me an 8 yard broadside shot. After passing the tree he made another 90 degree turn and came directly underneath my tree. He had his nose right on my hip boots, when I buried my arrow 25 inches deep into his back. The buck bolted and I could see my arrow sticking out 4 or 5 inches. I watched him run into the grassy area that the does were in and lost sight of him near a large cottonwood tree. I texted my brother at 9:35 "I just stuck a hoss" :D . I sat down and had the "shakes" (I was not cold). With my binoculars I studied the ground below my stand and observed bright pink blood and white hair, thankfully my arrow had penetrated all the way through the deer. I waited an hour, then climbed down from my stand. I followed a good blood trail into the open grassy area and saw the blood entering the cattails (this made me nervous) the deer had run about 200 yards. I walked to the edge of the cattails and peaked in, my trophy was dead ten yards into the cattails. I drug him out of the cattails, took some pictures, tagged him, field dressed him and made a few phone calls. My brother asked how big was he and I told him he was at least 130 inches. I packed up my gear and hiked back to the truck to eat lunch and grab my trophy sled deer hauler. Arriving back at the buck I began dragging him out at 1:20 PM. What ensued over the next five plus hours was not fun or glamorous. You would never see this on a hunting show, but this was what I had to go through to tag a "Marsh Buck" I ended up dragging that darn buck over 1.2 miles in hip boots. I still feel it today. I have not "arrived" as a public land hunter, but I am on the right track. Thank you Dan for your DVD's and online videos, I'm sure you don't make a ton of money with them but they are very much appreciated.

I scored him at 154 inches, my biggest ever.


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Front View
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Side View
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Kill Tree
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View from stand

p.s I need friends :lol:


2013

viewtopic.php?f=287&t=22171
“The Grinder” An Iowa Public Land Buck



I drew an Iowa 2013 buck tag and focused my hunting on two separate approximately 2000 acre properties. I scouted these two properties over the past two summers to get a feel for access and deer movement. I had never hunted these two areas, and the plan was to hunt fresh stands every hunt, jumping between the two properties until I had a feel for buck movement and hunter pressure. This is not a story about knowing a property thoroughly; this is about grinding it out until you kill a buck.

I started my hunt on November 1st, and before noon I had seen a spike buck, a few does and a nice ten pointer which cut below the ravine funnel I was sitting in. November 2nd I hunted the same property, but two ridges to the east. After setting up I saw two flashlights bobbing up the hill, I promptly turned my light on and the other hunters turned around and hunted elsewhere. I ended up seeing three different two year old eight pointers, one of which worked a couple of licking branches and made two scrapes twenty yards in front of me, it was a cool encounter. Monday November 4th I had my first shot opportunity at a nice eight pointer, probably a mid 130’s buck. I decided to pass the shot. After he stopped in some brush I got my binoculars on him and regretted not shooting him, he was a nicer deer than I thought.

The rest of my hunts were incredibly slow, an occasional spike buck and a few does, no mature buck cruising at all. From November 1st through November 8th I did 7 all day sits. If I was going to go home without a buck it was not going to be because I wasn’t in the woods hunting.

November 8th I finally had a mostly south wind which is what I wanted for this stand. I accessed the stand from the top, through a ravine. When I got perpendicular to my stand I cut up the hill. I had three does come through at about 5 yards before shooting light. About 12:30 two does came in behind me silently and the lead doe caught me moving. They didn’t stomp or snort; they just turned around and left. I was really irritated with myself; I had allowed my mind to wander and was not in full predator mode. Had that been a big buck I would have blown my opportunity. This really focused me, over the next two hours the bow never left my hand and I never sat down. I did not want to get caught flatfooted again! Around 2:35 I noticed a buck cruising towards the northeast near the bottom of the hill. I gave him a grunt and he stopped, another grunt and he turned up the hill towards me. He stopped in my shooting lane, facing me, no shot. When he turned to leave I drew my bow. He was out of my shooting lane and I only had a small window to thread the arrow through, I bleated to stop him and pulled the release.

At the shot he mule-kicked and headed down hill and into the ravine, then silence. The shot felt and looked good, so I climbed down to look for my arrow. When I was tromping around I heard him run out of the ravine and up the other hillside. I watched him tumble down the hill and land with a crash in a large dead fall at the bottom of the ditch. Buck down!

I took a few pictures, gutted him and hauled my bow and stand back to the truck. It was going to be a chore getting him out of the ravine by myself. While I was walking back to the truck, I ran into two college students scouting for a hunt the next day. I asked them if they would like to make $50 cash each to help me drag a buck out. They said yes…….it was the best $100 dollars I ever spent. With three of us dragging we had him back to the truck in an hour.




Front View


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Side View

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View from the stand.


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Buck’s view.


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Rub on buck’s trail.


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Where he died.


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Aerial. Red = wind direction. Purple = my access route. Gray = buck travel route.



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Topo.



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I was not successful because of skill, or any great knowledge I possess. I just kept on grinding, day after day, until I killed a buck. Sometimes that’s what it takes.


Looking back I could have done a better job editing etc...definitely needed more paragraphs in the first story :lol:

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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Stanley » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:50 am

I think we are up to speed I moved the stories to ease the hassle for the best story tellers involved. We still need one more (Czabs) to fill the billet.
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Post Your Story Here.

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:58 am

Czabs 2012 story here............



“Ochocresto” a Public Land Cattail Slob

The story of Ochocresto began in 2011 when my buddy Mike and I went out shining some fields around the public hunting areas. It was a successful night out in November shining, we filmed I believe 4 or 5 different bucks we would put an arrow through if given the chance. One of them we named Ochocresto. He actually peeled across a plowed field and across the road right in front of the truck. Before we could get the camera on him with good light he was halfway across another field and leaping for safety. We ended up getting a little bit of footage as he escaped into the darkness. We guessed him at 2 or 3 yrs old with LOTS of potential.

Skip to 1:10-1:14 in the EZ Vision Teaser video
[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLofuVJDyGE[/bbvideo]

As my 2011 season fell apart without any shot opportunities on any bucks I was after, I decided to really put my time in scouting for the 2012 season. I worked second shift in the winter of 2011. When I got done at 4am, alot of times I would wait for the sun to come up so I could go out and scout. I walked a TON, covering as many miles as possible and trying to really figure out a couple of my favorite public hunting grounds. I found lots of beds, tracks, rubs, and really tried to take the time and learn how the deer were using the land to their advantage, to stay safe from hunters. I stumbled across a bed I knew a big buck was using, and it was in an excellent location. A thick island in the middle of the cattails consisting of redbrush and thorn trees. It was an ideal location for a big buck, so I picked out a tree. Here are some pictures of some rubs and the bed from the island...

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Soon turkey hunting was in full swing and before I knew it, it was time to film some velvet bucks and put trail cameras out! I went out as much as I could in between working and going to school, but I managed to have the best yr filming deer in velvet. I had a really cool encounter 5 yds from my tree with a buck I named Pinner. He has 12 scorable points and he was blessed with thick long brow tines. He will likely be high on my hitlist for next year if he makes it. I ended up passing this deer at 30 yards a week or so before I put an arrow through Ochocresto.

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I do not want to show the film of me passing him at this time...

In July sometime I drove out to film some deer. I elected to film from the truck, I had a bad wind for sitting that night and time was a factor. I set my sights on a very wide racked buck that looked suspiciously similar to the buck we named Ochocresto the year before! I ended up getting some film of him but out the truck window and shaky, it isn’t the best quality.

[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWM-ViHQ0D8[/bbvideo]

As soon I filmed him a bell rang in my head and I was thinking back to that bed I found in winter/spring time on that island. Later that week I waited for a rain and ventured out into the thick vegetation to put out a trail camera. The area I was putting the camera would not spook the deer from where I was actually planning on hunting. It was in between where I found most of my beds (that one bed in particular) and agriculture fields. I didn’t even want to take the chance of messing anything up so I went out with a nice rainfall. When I came back in late August to check my camera (again on a rainfall) I was pleasantly surprised what ended up on film! I remember that morning like it was yesterday, flipping through the pictures on my SD card. It was him, the one I was after..and now #1 on my hitlist. Judging by the pictures I guessed him at around 150” as a mainframe 8, and he was coming from beds I had scouted from the public swamp! Talk about a long wait for season opener...here are some of the pictures I managed to get of him...

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He went the rest of the summer unseen...

Finally the opener in WI. I filmed my buddy Mike in the AM and he almost connected on a 130inch 8 point we named TC. After the eventful morning I set my sights on Ochocresto and that bed I thought he was using. I was actually nervous, like I was playing in a championship baseball game, or I was about to step in the ring with Tyson. My stomach hurt, and I wasn’t even in my stand yet! That PM was it. I had a good wind, it was opening night, the weather seemed right, all my gear was good to go, I was on with my bow, fresh tape in the camera, cleaned the lens, confidence was at an all time high.

I arrived in the parking lot at noon thirty and slowly made my way to my ambush location. It was hot, really hot, and with my 50 plus lbs of gear I needed to be extra careful and quiet. This was a solo mission, there was no room for error and noise was a factor, so my cameraman/hunting buddy Mike stayed back and hunted elsewhere. After trudging through the swamp I finally arrived within 100 or so yards to my stand location. I was going to be sitting on one side of the island while he was bedded on the other side of the island. He had a nice trail coming out 15 yards from my tree going in the direction of the ag fields and I was confident this setup was going to work. I snuck with what we had of wind on opening night and slowly and finally made my way to my tree. There was a nice trail with big tracks and rubs coming right past me. Exactly what I suspected. The wind was a little shifty. I threw my milkweeds every so often and a couple of them would linger his way. I was not feeling good. I made it this whole way and I was going to get busted. Sure enough I put my first strap of my Lonewolf stick around the base of the tree and bam, I heard a deer bust out and leap through the cattails on the other side of the island. Anger and sadness set in. I went through all of this and just got busted by what I think was Ochocresto. Here is my reaction...

[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egMDqrSE9Hc[/bbvideo]

The rest of the season I hunted beds and hot areas I scouted in the spring. I ended up seeing the most bucks I’ve ever seen. I actually pulled back on a really nice 10pter in the 140-150 class on my birthday (October 6th) with bad camera light and a bad shot I opted to pass him. When it hit November my confidence level was just not there. I went through the entire season missing only 1 weekend (due to heavy rain) and I just couldn’t get the job done. With lack of time in the woods because of school and work it was really dawning on me that I was going to go another year without shooting a buck. I got close a lot of times but I just couldn’t get close enough. I thought to myself “what does it take? I put my time in scouting, I learned more than I ever learned before. I’m seeing the deer. I just can’t connect for one reason or the other” It was very frustrating. There were some aspiring words from members on the Beast here that kept me going.. along with my own drive, I wasn’t going to quit. All I could do was keep on keeping on. And that is exactly what I did.

Finally it was the last weekend before the gun season here in Wisconsin. November 9th was the date and I was going to be hunting one of my best untouched (atleast by me) rut stands I had scouted out in the springtime. It was downwind side of a very large bedding area and a hard transtion line with lots of BIG rubs and beds. I had it marked on my GPS and had all the gear ready to rock. I didn’t want to drag myself with all my gear that far through the dark so I ended up going out at around 11:00 am. (First time I ever did that) I hiked out there full of energy with all the sleep I got, and I was ready to go and make this one last run of a weekend. The temps were in the mid 40’s and it was a pretty overcast day with a nice breeze. It seemed like good rut conditions to me. Finally I got to my tree, I picked out from the previous winter. Before I even got halfway up the tree with my sticks I could here grunting. I didn’t even want to look. I wasn’t going to shoot anything off film so It didn’t even pay. It got me throwing up my sticks a little faster though! Finally I latched on my stand and climbed up. I could here more grunting and chasing! “Crap! I forgot my bow rope!” I quickly climbed down from the tree and grabbed my camera gear and bow. To tell you that was safe at the rate I was climbing up that tree would be the biggest lie I’ve ever made!

Ok. Finally I got my camera arm base ratcheted to the tree. Camera arm is locked into the base. Camera put on the fluid head. Quiver off. Release on. Arrow knocked. Ready to rock. Suddenly more grunting and chasing in the cattails ahead of me. I could see movement and a rack. It was a decent 120ish” buck chasing a hot doe. By the time I got settled down and the camera on him and focused he was gone. he came through at about 50 yards. After seeing that I was fully prepared for a good day on stand. Not even ten minutes later I hear grunting and chasing coming from the opposite direction. I get the camera swung around and I sat waiting for something to film. Sure enough a couple more minutes went by and some more crashing, and it was coming my way. I hit the record button on my camera and out came a huge racked buck chasing a doe with another smaller buck lingering behind. I zoomed the camera on him focused the camera and I just about lost my breathe when I he came into focus. It was him. Ochocresto. My #1 target buck that eluded me all year. He was about 70 yards at this time blowing at the the little buck and panting like a dog in the hot months of the summer.

There was a trail that came 10 yards past my stand that he was standing on and he was facing my direction! This can’t be happening right now I thought to myself. I was just glad to see him. It was him. AND HE’S A SLOB. He started making his way my way chasing the little buck away and making a couple rubs on his route to my stand. My heart was pumping mad. I felt like it was going to happen but to my surprise the doe went the opposite way and there he went. He turned around and followed the doe back into the thick bedding area where I had another tree picked out. I was sick and pumped at the same time. I just filmed Ochocresto at 70 yards! But I could be sitting in that other tree I picked out and I could have had a shot at him! I didn’t even know what to think. I was full of emotions.

I looked at my phone at it was noon thirty. I sat the next couple of hours or so and didn’t see a deer. 3:00pm rolled around and from back in front of me where I saw that smaller buck, I heard some more chasing going on. Here comes another buck chasing a doe and It was a good one. I could catch glimpses of his rack on my camera and It was a definite shooter even after seeing Ochocresto I was set on shooting this buck. He was nice. The doe made her way to me and was at 25 yards. As the buck stepped out from the cattails I could see, it was him! He made his loop and came back around. You got to be kidding me! He made his way to 25 yards away broadside and I had no shot. That is a disgusting feeling let me tell you. I was trying my hardest to make it work but there was just no shot.

Finally the doe turned and started quartering away from me. I grabbed my rangefinder and started ranging. 25 yards. 30 yards. 35 yards. 40 yards. Alright I got 1 shot at 40 yards, this has to be it. I swiftly shoved my rangefinder back in my pocket and moved my pin up to 40 on the tape. I swung my camera around and made sure It was on record. Here we go. He galloped out of the thick red brush and stopped perfectly in the opening at 40 yards while stepping up on root. Almost like he was posing for me. I settled the pin and let the arrow fly. WACK! He jumped back to 50 yards and literally stood there for a good 30 minutes. He slowly walked away into the cattails about 70 yards away to where I thought he bedded down. There was a hole in him up high and forward and I thought I hit him there. I was just sick. It was in no mans land and I thought I just made the worst shot on the biggest buck of my life. Even though the shot felt great when I let it go. I got down left my stuff in the tree and snuck out about 20 minutes before dark. I purposely circled around the area and out, didn’t even want to look for my arrow and possibly spook him.

I was a mess. On the phone with everyone trying to figure out what just happened. I went online onto the Beast and made a post. I tried to figure out what happened. Watched the video on my editing system about 100 times and realized I didn’t hit him high. That hole was there on the video when I filmed him at noon! So did I even hit him!? After slowing it down and watching closely It looked like I made a better shot than I thought. A touch back but it was the back lung area. He was quartering towards a little though so that made sense, maybe coming out the guts?? To make a long tracking story short. It was the longest night of my life. I got about an hr of sleep and went and picked up my buddies dad at 5:30am the next morning. It rained that night and we had a heck of a time finding blood but we kept with it. Spots here and there for a good 800-1000 yards. On last hopes, about 6 hrs in, about to think this was it we weren’t going to find him. We were walking together down a trail and my buddies dad yelled “What’s that!” There he was 10 yards away in the cattails. Ochocresto. The biggest buck I’ve ever hunted. He was right there, laying there stiff, as a board. We finally got him out at 7:30pm. Talk about a drag...the rest is history it was the most exciting day of my life, and I couldn’t be any more appreciative and thankful for that deer. I put my time and work in and I got a buck of a lifetime. He ended up scoring 169 4/8” gross and 152 Net.

I am not going to post the whole video but I will post a couple small clips of the hunt and trophy pictures.

I do not want to post clips of the shot at this time.

Ochocresto when I saw him the first time at noon..
[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yYx_5QMVUY[/bbvideo]

Ochocresto when I saw him at 3:00pm coming in close, 5 minutes before the shot...
[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCTYD0knvk8[/bbvideo]

Here is Ochocresto after the shot when he stood for 30 minutes, 50 or so yards away. If you look closely you can see a hole where the grass makes an X on his body. That is originally where I thought I shot him. Glad I didn't shoot him there! :mrgreen:
[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CgS-WLc3Reo[/bbvideo]

This is me and Ochocresto after 6 long hours of tracking. I just found him.
[bbvideo=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eq9KjZGcp8k[/bbvideo]

I am sorry for the quality of the video clips. It looks so much better on my computer. When I eventually make the full video It will be quality. Thanks for reading my story. :mrgreen:

TROPHY PHOTOS...

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Re: Past Big Buck Contest Winners Stories Here 2010 to 201

Unread postby DaveT1963 » Wed Dec 16, 2015 12:05 pm

Very inspiring stories, great bucks and we'll written. I don't know why, but I had envisioned Dewey to look like Fred Bear..... :)

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