Guest post by Don Pickell, who shot this tremendous buck Sept.23. What a rack, and huge body:
Indiana Urban Zone bow season opened September 15. I had just returned from a DIY elk hunt in Colorado, and I was back in my deer stand trying to shoot a doe since Indiana has implemented an Earn a Buck rule in the urban zone. I finally earned my buck tag and went to check a trail camera where I had velvet pictures of a buck I called "Heart Stopper." He was a buck I passed last year as a 3 yr old and he made a tremendous jump in antler size this year. When I reviewed the pictures, he had been moving during daylight hours. I knew this was my opportunity to get a chance at him since he was unpressured and on a daylight pattern.
On the morning of September 23, I climbed into my stand and had the best day of my life! I was watching 2 smaller bucks filter through when they snapped their heads up and turned to view their back trail. They started to get nervous and jumped into the corn. I heard a twig snap; as I turned my head Heart Stopper was walking the same path! As I came to full draw, he was broadside at 10 yards.
I had barely shifted my weight when the stand made a faint sound. He snapped his head up and was staring right through me. At this point, I knew this was the shot I have dreamed and waited for my entire hunting career. I settled the pin and released the arrow. As the arrow buried into the vitals, a flood of emotions ran through me as the buck crashed through the corn. My dream buck had just become a reality.
Since I did not see or hear the buck go down, I backed out for a couple hours in case the shot was not as good as I thought. We tracked him for nearly 100 yards and walked up on him in a dried up creek bed. As I knelt down, I never thought I would kill a bigger buck than I did 4 years ago (picture below, that was Outdoor Life's Deer of the Year) but lightning struck twice for this bowhunter. I started to reflect on all the time and hard work I put in during the off season preparing stands, clearing entrance/exits lanes and checking trail cams. Heart Stopper is a 8 x 7 and roughly gross scored 187 and field dressed 225 lbs. Whatever the final score ends up being, it is a buck of a lifetime.--Don
Special thanks to Steve P. for turning us on to this story. Both Don and Steve are Mossy Oak pro-staffers and tremendous hunters. comment