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Andy Bundren’s 18-pointer

November 03, 2008

Illinois hunting and fishing

Trophy Tidbits

Scorable Points: 18

Kill Date: 2008

County: Union

Season: Bow

EDITOR’S NOTE Here in the words of Andy Bundren of Marion is his hunt for an 18-point Union County buck during the 2008 archery season that netted 197 3/8 inches.

I’d seen him the year before five times but kind of never could get the angle on him. I had him at 40 yards in an alfalfa field, but I didn’t quite get the angle up to take a comfortable shot.

And I’d seen a deer two years ago during shotgun season that could have been him. I’d seen a good one in there. So then I hunted hard for him and saw him those five times.

But it’s a small farm. Everybody has seen what they think is the same deer. So (in 2008) I went in and hunted two or three times when the wind was right and never saw him. So I thought I’d give it a last-ditch effort to try to get him before shotgun season.

My wife had asked me the night before if I wanted one last try at him. She said pick up the girls and go out.

I work until 3:15. So I set my stuff out the night before. Took my scent proof shower in the morning and I high-tailed it home from work. I got my stuff, took off towards the woods. I walked in. Said a little prayer like I always do, that God would give me a chance to see this big one and give me a chance to kill him. And that’s basically how it worked.

I walked in and I got my tree stand on the tree I wanted to be at. And just before I jumped in I have a habit of looking around. I looked over my left shoulder and saw some movement coming. I thought, “Aww, I need to get ready just in case.” But I thought, “Aw, it’s just a doe.” So I kind of watched. I didn’t want to put on my head net if it was just a doe coming by. But then I noticed it was making a scrape about 80 yards away. So I knew it had to be a buck.

All I could see was the bottom of the main beams. So I knew it was a pretty good one. Illinois hunting and fishing

He turned and came down the ridge toward me at about 35 yards. I knew it was the one I had been looking for.

So I got ready, trying to gauge where my clear spot to shoot was.

But he had that big-buck intuition and he just stopped and looked right at me for five minutes. We had a little staredown. I thought, “Aw crap, I’m busted. There’s no way.” You know how big bucks are, they aren’t going to give you a second chance.

And so he turned and took five running steps up the ridge and I went ahead and pulled back and got ready so if he did step into the opening I might squeeze off one. And he stopped, but his head and his neck were the only thing in the hole. I thought, “I’m not going to take a neck shot.” So I thought, “He’s roughly 30 yards. As soon as he turns his head I know what he’s going to do, he’s going to load to the ground and take that first step and when he does he should run right into it.”

And that’s what happened. He turned his head to leave and I shot and double-lung and heart shot him and it came out of the front shoulder. And he ran 100 yards.

Illinois hunting and fishing

But by the time the sound kind reverberated to me his back hip was in the opening and I thought, “Oh, I just shot him in the back hip. And that’s bad.” So I went up and got into my tree stand and waited about 45 minutes. A doe came by with no bucks behind her and she was in heat. And I thought, well maybe that’s a good sign that if he wasn’t there he might be dead.

So I got down and lucked upon some blood a few yards from where I shot him. I marked it and called my cousins in for reinforcement.They came in and it took us five minutes to find him and he wound up having 18 points.

I got blessed basically. I’ve been hunting 14 years. I ran track for the University of Southern Mississippi.

That’s one reason I decided to move back to Illinois. I’m from Marion and they always say you’ve got to hunt where the big ones are to kill a big one.

The buck grossed 203 inches and netted 197 3/8 inches and had G1s that measure 13 4/8 and 12 3/8 inches.

Illinois hunting and fishing

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congratulations, that is an unbelievable deer

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/03 at 08:43 AM

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