photo of a deer killed by Mike Coxphoto of a deer killed by Mike Coxphoto of a deer killed by Mike Cox

Hunter: Mike Cox

Points: 11 (5L, 6R)

County: Decatur

Season: 2023-2024

Hunt Story

We’ve had this deer on our place for a few years now. The best we can figure, he’s at least 6 years old. About 2-3 weeks ago, we started putting our cams out at our feed sites. This deer was showing up at a feed site on the edge of a dry land peanut field that did not survive the deer pressure/drought situation we had earlier this summer. After seeing this deer on cam, and knowing his age, I decided to give him a try Saturday evening. Friday morning I drove down to our family land in Southwest Georgia from where we live near Hamilton. My cousin and I fed up the feeders and trimmed some limbs around the lock-on at this spot. I drive back in time to help my wife with our 3 young kids Friday evening, and Saturday morning. Once 2-o-clock nap time hit on Saturday, I struck south; a trip I make quite often and even more in deer season. I made it to the stand around 5. Man, it was hot, as y’all know. The cam showed a lot of early deer movement in this area. Not Saturday. 7:20 rolls around and nothing. Shortly after, does and young bucks start pouring into the field. Not long after that, a doe winds me, and the party is over with. Everything spooks, and there I sit with instant regret for leaving my family and driving halfway across the state for one hunt in such hot conditions. Much to my dismay, 7:50 rolls around and a couple does and yearlings come back out. So, 10-15 more minutes of shooting light and I get a little hope back. A couple of minutes later a good 8 appears from the south wood line, not far from where I am. I immediately recognized him as part of the big 11’s bachelor group. Another small 8 comes out. The adrenaline starts to flow, and there he is- the big, majestic, full velvet 11, coming from across the field. Shooting light is dwindling fast, and big boy is taking his time. He didn’t get that old by being a DA. He slowly comes on into the feed sight and feeds facing me for a minute or so. I had no shot. Something makes him uneasy, and he abruptly turns broadside like he may walk off. I stop him, draw back, settle it in the smokehouse, and let it fly. I couldn’t see the arrow due to low light, but he acted like he wouldn’t go far. Called my Dad, cousin, and brother-in-law right after the shot. I then eased down and headed toward the truck. The arrow was right where I’d shot him- a pass through. As I’m walking across the field in the dark- I see him piled up. I couldn’t see him go down due to several trees blocking my view from the stand. From instant regret after those deer winding me, to instant satisfaction. I’m very thankful to the good Lord above to be able to have these experiences with family and friends, and also live in a country where we have the opportunity to do things like this. We need to do everything we can to keep it that way! Happy hunting to all who have taken the time to read!
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