Advertisement

Tommy Johnson’s Tift County Typical Giant

Bill Cooper | August 1, 1994

During the 1993-94 Georgia deer season, Dodge and Telfair were the only counties last year to place deer in B&C’s all-time record book, however, one other buck, taken on December 5 in Tift County by Tommy Johnson, came awfully close. Tommy’s buck, an awesome 12-pointer with 25-inch beams and 13 1/2-inch back tines, had an outstanding gross score of 177. Unfortunately, deductions due to two unmatched lines on the right beam plus a three-inch abnormal point dropped the final total to 166 5/8 typical B&C points. This score was high enough, however, to qualify for B&C’s three year awards book.

Here is Tommy’s hunt story as told to GON last year: Tommy was late getting into the woods that fateful morning, but it turned out for the best. He was hunting with Mike Wommack, of Chula, on a 480-acre farm about 10 miles west i of Tifton. The land is 80 percent fields, with woods only along Little River.

Tommy and Mike parked the along a center pivot in a cut field. They were 30 minutes late.u^m it was already light enough to across the field. They split up and Tommy was walking through middle of the peanut field heading toward his stand at the edge of the woods. He had his Remington Model 700 .270 rifle over his shoulder. He didn’t have a round in the chamber.

This Tift County 12-pointer was taken by Tommy Johnson on Dec. 5, 1993. Tommy’s buck had an outstanding gross score of 177, and it’s final net score after deductions was 166 5/8, just short of the 170-point minimum for the all-time B&C record book.

Suddenly Tommy saw a buck running across the field ahead of him. The buck was within 20 yards of the woods when it began to slow up, and Tommy had already worked the action on his rifle and dropped to one knee. When Tommy fired, the buck dropped. About 15 seconds passed as Tommy watched the buck through his scope, and then the buck tried to get up and Tommy got a good look at how big its rack was, and that’s when he started running toward the buck. Meanwhile, Mike had heard the shot and saw the buck, and the buck was now running, too.

“Shoot him!” Mike yelled.

Tommy developed a sudden and severe case of buck fever, and he can’t remember if he dropped to one knee again to shoot or if he simply fired offhand, but he does know that he shot at the buck again. That second shot put the buck down for good.

What followed was a long bout of whooping and hollering that could be heard across most of Tift County.

 

Tift County All-Time Buck Records

Rank Score Name Year County Method Photo
1 172 Mayo Tucker 1982 Tift Gun
2 170 Alan Parrish 1990 Tift Gun View 
3 170 Eric Mullis 2020 Tift Gun View 
4 166 5/8 Tommy Johnson 1993 Tift Gun View 
5 160 7/8 Tye Cottle 2018 Tift Gun View 
6 179 7/8 (NT) Andrew Grimes 2018 Tift Gun View 
7 154 Monty Veazey 1986 Tift Gun
8 153 5/8 Chris Carlisle 2018 Tift Gun View 
9 175 6/8 (NT) Luke Fletcher 2009 Tift Gun View 
10 175 (NT) Nathan Dowdy 1996 Tift Gun View 

 

Tommy had found a huge shed on the property the season before, so they knew there was a big buck in the area. But the buck hadn’t been seen and there weren’t any scrapes or big rubs on the property. Interestingly, Tommy’s giant buck showed no signs of rutting—its neck wasn’t swollen and its hocks were not very dark and didn’t stink at all. Even though his buck didn’t make “The Book,” Tommy can take great pride in knowing that he had Georgia’s third best buck of 1993—and he made the cover of Georgia Outdoor News magazine in the August 1994 edition

Become a GON subscriber and enjoy full access to ALL of our content.

New monthly payment option available!

Advertisement

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Advertisement