Hunter: Morrell McCaskill
Points: 17 (6L, 11R)
Well, the actual encounter happened pretty fast. This deer just showed up on camera on the night of the 21st. We had never seen this deer before but knew he was big and I hoped to catch him chasing on the cool morning after the rain and front moved through. When I got to the stand that morning, there was already a spike at the feeder. He chased a doe into the pines shortly after good light. Everything was quiet for a few minutes when suddenly another doe stepped out at the end of the food plot. She trotted across the field only pausing once to look behind her. When I angled the binoculars towards where she came from, there he stood in the morning sunlight. He trotted after her across the field as I scrambled to raise my rifle and get him in the scope. I hollered to stop him but he stopped facing me directly giving me no shot. He started back trotting after the doe only to get to the sage brush quicker than I thought at over 200 yards from me. Worried I wouldn't get another shot at him, I pulled the trigger. I knew the shot wasn't my best. After waiting a couple of hours, we returned to begin the trail. Right off the bat, my wife Juli quickly found hair at point of impact confirming a solid hit. With no blood to trail, we searched for around an hour until I decided to follow the trail I thought the doe and other buck chasing her took through the pines and into the clear cut on the other side. About 60 yards into the clear cut, there he lay only 100 yards from the shot. After waiting anxiously for 3 hours, after all the worst thoughts going through my mind, after a few prayers and some much needed encouragement and assistance from Juli and our friend Rob, I had my hands on the biggest deer I have ever seen on the hoof. He is bigger than we all thought. Boy am I glad Rob was there to help me drag him out! He was over 250 pounds on the hoof and gross scored in the mid 170s, I have only dreamed of harvesting a buck of this caliber! We have had an unbelievable year! My wife has taken her first buck (another bruiser) and I have taken my biggest ever! I am humbled and blessed.