Harris County 14-Pointer Wasn’t Hunter’s Opening-Day Target Buck

An 8-year-old bully buck was what Clay Johnson was looking for on opening day, but when this velvet deer showed up, he quickly switched his target.

Mike Bolton | September 13, 2022

Change of plans when this 14-pointer showed up for Clay Johnson on opening-day afternoon in Harris County.

Clay Johnson is thankful that his deer hunting buddies are there when he needs them, but he sure was glad that they were a little slow in answering his text last Saturday.

Clay, of Dallas, was hunting a Harris County farm that belongs to friends on Saturday when he suspected that the buck he was targeting had shown up.

“I set up a ground blind on a travel route between a bedding area and a supplemental feeding area we have,” he said. “I was targeting an 8-year-old buck we had been looking for. He’s a real bully, and we wanted to get rid of him. Two bucks were coming through, and I thought that he was one of them, but I wasn’t positive. I took a photo and sent it to my buddies for identification. They were hunting on the same property. It took them 10 minutes to get back to me. By that time, both bucks had already left.”

A little frustrated by his opening-day missed opportunity, he decided to sit there and wait to see if the target buck would come back. It wasn’t long before he saw a different buck heading his way.

“There was no way I was passing this buck up,” the contractor said.

Clay waited for the big buck to get in range before he let an arrow fly from his PSE bow. It was a perfect shot.

“I sent a text and told my buddies to call Hadley’s (Taxidermy) and tell them that we’re bringing them one,” he said with a laugh. “They came to help me look for the deer, and it had only gone about 50 yards.

“It was my biggest buck ever and the first one that I’ve ever taken in velvet. With all of its splits and little stickers, it was 14 points. I plan to get it scored soon, but one scorer has already told me that the main-frame was 150 points before the splits were counted.”

The big buck wasn’t totally unfamiliar to Clay. He had had it on camera before.

“We had a couple of photos of this deer,” he said. “We only had him on camera early season and late season. I don’t know where he was going the rest of the year.”

The only bad news for Clay is that he will not be eligible to enter the buck in GON’s Truck-Buck contest.

John Megel, who provides the Chevrolet truck to the winner, is my brother-in-law,” he said. “I’m not eligible.” 


Harris County Best Bow Bucks Of All-Time

Rank Score Name Year County Method Photo
1 170 2/8 Jeff Foxworthy 2018 Harris Bow View 
2 161 7/8 Glenn Garner 2017 Harris Bow View 
3 161 4/8 John Lester 2018 Harris Bow View 
4 184 7/8 (NT) Mike Strickland 2010 Harris Bow View 
5 160 2/8 Hal McGinnis 2003 Harris Bow View 
6 153 1/8 Jay Foxworthy 2009 Harris Bow View 
7 152 6/8 Glenn Garner 2017 Harris Bow View 
8 152 2/8 Rich Milliner 2011 Harris Bow View 
9 152 Jeff Foxworthy 2013 Harris Bow View 
10 148 4/8 Glenn Garner 2009 Harris Bow View 


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