photo of a deer killed by Jack McKenziephoto of a deer killed by Jack McKenziephoto of a deer killed by Jack McKenzie

Hunter: Jack McKenzie

Points: 13 (8L, 5R)

County: Effingham

Season: 2018-2019

Hunt Story

It was the evening of November 3rd and only the second time I was able to go hunting with my Dad this year. I found a buckeye on the way to the stand and kept it in my pocket. We got in the stand, and the wind was light and in our face. We didn't see any deer for about an hour and half, but a tree frog in the stand kept me entertained. Then, I remembered my buckeye! I pulled out the buckeye and almost immediately a nub buck came out. About five minutes later a 4-point with a broken right main beam came out. The 4-point ran after the nub buck and scared it out of the field. Out in the woods, the nub buck started blowing and then the 4-point ran out the other direction and started blowing also. My Dad told me it wasn't good for the deer to blow the way they were, and our chances for a good buck were dropping. After about five to 10 minutes, my Dad suggested I get the buckeye out again because we needed some luck. I pulled the buckeye out again and started to rub it with my thumb, hoping for a buck. Just a few minutes later a young 8-point came out. Before this hunt I had only ever killed a spike and some does. I asked to shoot the young 8-point, but my Dad told me it was too young and would be a great deer when he got older. The 8-point only hung around for a few minutes and also ran off like he was spooked. We weren't sure why the young deer were acting the way they were because the wind should not have been allowing our scent to reach them. My Dad was discouraged but I kept rubbing the buckeye and hoping. All of a sudden I saw a big buck come out of the woods about 200 yards away! I told my Dad, who looked at the buck and told me he was a good buck, and I could try to get him. My heart was beating 100 miles an hour and I was breathing really fast. The deer came in a little closer, and we were worried he would spook like the other deer did. My Dad told me to calm down and shoot when I felt like I had a good rest and could make a good shot. I squeezed off the shot and the deer started to run! I thought for sure I missed! My dad was watching and felt like I made a good shot. Thankfully, the deer only ran about 40 yards and laid down in the field. This was the biggest buck I had ever seen and we got him! I was so excited and thankful to be able to harvest such a nice and unique buck!
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