Hunter: Jimbo Cloer
Points: 13 (7L, 6R)
Been battling from a hip surgery back in April of this year. Started checking the cameras I have had out and started seeing some really nice bucks starting to show horn growth. It seemed like archery season was upon me in a blink of an eye. I had 5 potential shooters with one target buck taking the lead of my thoughts. I was unable to hunt due to pain opening weekend. Sat in a chair brushed in a couple hours on Sunday of the opening weekend with no luck. Finally with skies starting to show signs of clearing I decided to go Wednesday evening but the pain got the best of me and ended my hunt early... I told myself that Thursday I was going to get in around 5 to 5:30 and sit until dark. After no more than an hour, the target buck along with an accompanying 10 pointer were making their way inside my fence line dressing up each other's scrapes. The 10-pointer would make a scrape and the 13-pointer would be right behind him either doing an inspection or making improvements to what his apprentice had done. This went on for an excruciating hour as they faded out of my sight and over the fence to the property behind me. I was thinking to myself, that's a part of hunting, close but no cigar. Then a few minutes pass and to my right I see movement. The 10-pointer is at the fence smelling the air and doing a little lip curl and hop he's over. I was so focused on him as he was only 25 yards away as he trotted into the thick canopy of short pines. As I turned back to my right I see the body and horns of the target buck tucked blindly behind a hickory tree. He had no sight to me and that was my opportunity. I drew back my bow as he stepped out looking my way. I froze. Seconds seemed like hours and I couldn't hold it anymore. Luckily the first buck had made it out of the pines to the low hanging limbs of an oak and started a commotion as he scraped the ground full of small quartz and rocks. As he turned I let off the tension on my bow and waited for another opportunity. He came in closer to what I had ranged at 30 yards. There was another tree he would pass to give me an opportunity to make another attempt. The plan fell into place as he stepped exactly as I had thought out in my mind and held my breath as I released the arrow. The shot was a little high but true as he ran off and I could see it was a clean pass through. I say and watched as he ran to the fence jumping it with no problem and within a few seconds a loud crash. I was then in every hunter's situation recalling the shot placement and contemplating the choice of my broadheads efficiency. All this was getting to me as I sat for the next hour. Finally I was on the trail, couldn't find my arrow but seeing a drop here and there made me go to panic mode. I realized the buck had crossed the fence to my next-door neighbor's property so I knew I needed to reach out to them for permission. After permission was granted I walked only a few more steps and seen the rack and white belly in my light. I took a moment to say a prayer and knew the hard work had just begun. Luckily both my boys Jay and Josh were home and even luckier was their friend Alex. Got the boys loaded in the truck and off we went. The neighbor was very nice and gave them a tarp to help pull him out and onto the truck. Memories like these are what I remembered growing up and the thoughts of how my Boys would remember this long after I'm gone from this world. Luckily I was able to get a butcher shop that wasn't closed and away I went. The buck weighed an estimated 286 to 288 so I'm going with 287. Thirteen scoreable points with a 22" spread. God is good and thank you for reading my story.