In 2010 I was lucky enough to tag this beautiful triple main beam buck. It is not my biggest, but it is my favorite, not only because of his character, but also because it was truly my most exciting hunt to date.
Let’s start with a little background on this buck that I refer to as “the triple”. My husband and I got our first pictures of this buck in October 2010. You can only imagine our excitement when we saw him! However, my husband was a little more excited than I was because the pictures were from a trail camera that was much closer to his stand than mine. I really didn’t think I would ever see this buck.
My husband was on a mission;he wanted this buck! He hunted the stand where he thought he had the best chance of seeing him. And, sure enough, the triple showed up. But, it just wasn’t in the cards. He was able to get off a shot but the arrow hit a twig and he missed. I was devastated for him. I really wanted him to get that buck! He went back out the next day and sat in his stand for 12 hours, but the triple was a no show.
A couple of days later my husband talked me into getting up and going out with him. I was really tired and didn’t feel like going, but I went anyway. He returned to his stand where he had seen the triple and I got settled into mine. About 30 minutes into the hunt I could hear loud crashing from behind me. The next thing I knew there was a doe being chased by 2 bucks. They flew by so fast that I really couldn’t make them out too well. I knew the first buck was small but didn’t really get a look at the second one.
They ran up the hill in front of me and I couldn’t see them anymore. I decided to grunt a couple of times and see if I could get one of them to come back my way. Then all of a sudden this big bodied buck comes staggering back down the hill, his mouth all slobbery, and grunting all the way! Even though I knew he was big bodied, I couldn’t make out his rack. It was covered with weeds and pine branches. The only thing I did know was that he had short tines. If I had studied the pictures of the triple as thoroughly as my husband had, I would have realized it was him. But, I didn’t study them because I really didn’t ever expect to see him. (Needless to say, now if we get a picture of a great buck, I am studying it!!).
So I just sat and watched him stagger around, foaming at the mouth while I was deciding if I wanted to shoot or not. I could tell he was an old buck and a big buck but I was hung up on the tine length. It wasn’t until he moved and and was standing directly across from my stand that I realized it was him. Once I did realize it, I wasn’t sure if I could get a shot off without getting busted. But, somehow I did manage to make the shot. However, I didn’t feel confident about it because he did bust me. Then, I had to make that call, “Honey, I think I just wounded your buck.” Those words were really hard to get out. It would be bad enough if I had killed the buck he wanted, but to wound it would be even worse!! (Then again, wounding any animal is devastating!)
I sat tight in my stand for a while. When I finally got down I was thrilled to find lots of blood. My husband soon met up with me and told me that he found the buck on his way over to help me track it. I was worried about his reaction to me killing the buck that he so badly wanted. But he was excited for me!! I think he may have been even more excited than me, if you can imagine that. But that’s what makes him not only a wonderful husband, but the best hunting partner anyone could ever have!! And, now we both get to enjoy seeing “the triple” hang on our wall everyday.