Hunter: Haley Mitchell
Points: 10 (5L, 5R)
On December 10, 2020, my fiancé Derek and I decided to go hunt a planted rye grass field that afternoon where it’s not uncommon for us to see 25 deer grazing between the hours of 4:30 p.m. and dark. We got to the stand and settled in around 4:10 p.m. that day and to our surprise we only had three does come out into the field by 5 p.m. This was odd. We were sitting there, talking about all the possibilities as to why there were only three deer in the field by that time when I suddenly caught movement off to my left. It was a large buck coming out of the thick bedding area and into the field. It was a buck that Derek and I have spent many hours tracking and hunting over the past few months since the first time we saw him back in September on a trail camera. We named him “Triple Beam.” Now Derek, to my advantage, had tagged out early this year, so unfortunately for him, it was up to ME to take this big buck! He lumbered out of the wood line and sniffed the air and licked his nose. The uneasy does began to ease back toward the woods and he followed. I got my Browning BLR .243 into position and waited until he presented me with the perfect shot. When he did, I fired and he dropped where he stood. It was a clean and ethical shot. Derek and I first bumped in the excitement and we couldn’t believe that “Triple Beam” had actually just gave me a shot and now he was down for the count at approximately 100 yards from us! We got down as fast as we could, I don’t think either of us touched a single rung on the ladder, and ran to see him and finally put our hands on him. We took lots of pictures as the sun set over the neon green rye fields. We sat and talked about how thankful we were for the sweet lady who was so kind as to let hunt her land and who, over the months have come to know affectionately as “Nana”. She has just been so sweet to us and we are so thankful for her. We couldn’t wait to tell her and show her all the pictures we had taken.