Truck-Buck 2019-20: Public-Land Wildcard Winner, Chase Hemphill
The stories behind the Truck-Buck Contest winners and the bucks that earned them a spot in the Shoot-Out.
Public-Land Wildcard: Chase Hemphill, 137 4/8
Public Land: Chestatee WMA, Lumpkin Co.
Date: Dec. 12
Chase Hemphill, 35, of Blairsville, is an outdoorsman through and through.
“I have been hunting since I was a small child with teachings of my father, uncles and grandfather,” Chase said. “I live from deer season to fishing to turkey season to fishing every year; with a little small game mixed in. I spend almost all my free time in the woods or on the water, and all the good that comes from my time spent is by the grace of God.”
For a Dec. 12 hunt last season, Chase was headed to familiar ground in the Lumpkin County mountains on Chestatee WMA.
“I found this buck’s rub line in 2018, saplings the size of a quarter either twisted in a knot at the top of the ground or broke off at the ground. After waiting a year for this hunt, I came back to the same ridge where I had found the rubs in 2018 and found more of the same, only fresh and more abundant,” he said. “I took a vacation day at work and made the approximately 2-mile walk extra early to be certain no one got there before me.
“The morning was cold windy and slow at best. About 9:15 a.m. a doe came walking in from behind me. I watched her for a moment wondering why she didn’t have a buck with her. She fed around in front of me, stopped, looked back and grunted. Then I heard something walking behind me in the leaves followed by a three hard grunts. As I tried to turn to look, he came crashing in on my left at less than 10 yards heading straight for the doe. All the while I’m trying to pick my jaw off the floor and remember what I’m supposed to be doing. When I got rifle shouldered, I mouth grunted loudly, the buck stopped, I took the shot, and the rest is history.”
And history is it—Chase’s 13-pointer netted 137 4/8 and is the No. 1 buck of all-time from Chestatee WMA. It also ranks No. 11 in the Lumpkin County all-time rankings.
Chase didn’t win his scoring period, Week 13, but as the highest-scoring public-land buck that didn’t win a week, he’s in the Shoot-Out for a chance at the truck from long-time Truck-Buck sponsor John Megel Chevrolet. Chase has already won a $250 gift card from Agri-Supply, a safety harness from Hunter Safety System, a multi-tool from Havalon and some Antler Addict and 4S Draw from 4S Advanced Wildlife Solutions.
GON’s Official All-Time Chestatee WMA Buck Rankings
Rank Score Name Year County Method Photo 1 137 4/8 Chase Hemphill 2019 Lumpkin Gun View 2 129 3/8 Terry Poole 2012 Lumpkin Gun View 3 128 Barry Hollifield 2006 Lumpkin Gun View 4 123 7/8 Kyle Withrow 2018 Lumpkin Gun View 5 118 Daniel Reeves 2006 Lumpkin Gun 6 117 1/8 Shane Kirk 2007 Lumpkin Gun View 7 114 Kevin Wood 2005 Lumpkin Gun 8 112 Shane Kirk 2012 Lumpkin Gun View 9 108 7/8 Kevin Wood 2006 Lumpkin Gun
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