Illinois Outdoors at
RulesIllinois Outdoors at

Big Buck Stories

Submit your hunting stories here.

NOTE: To be eligible you must log in as a user and use the following form.

Auto-login on future visits

Show my name in the online users list

Forgot your password?

Register as a new member

Thank you for participating!

Big Buck Stories Categories

1960s :: 1980s :: 1991-92 :: 1992-93 :: 1993-94 :: 1994-95 :: 1995-96 :: 1997-98 :: 1998-99 :: 1999-2000 :: 2000-01 :: 2001-02 :: 2003-04 :: 2004-05 :: 2005-06 :: 2006-07 :: 2007-08 :: 2008-09 :: 2009-10 :: 2010-11 :: 2011-12 :: 2012-13 ::

Bob Kizer’s 15-pointer

August 20, 2010

Illinois hunting and fishing

Trophy Tidbits

Scorable Points: 15

Kill Date: 11-7-07

County: Cass County IL

Season: Bow

November 7th, 2007 will be a day that I will always remember. It too will be a day my two hunting partners Mike Pesava and Craig Wilcox will also remember. We hunted the West Central Illinois for the last four years. The trip has always been productive, well for Mike and Craig that is. The first year hunting this location Mike shot a nice 8 pointer, which is now displayed on his wall. I saw a lot of bucks that year including my first drop tine deer. He stood 10 yards away on the side of a hill that put me eye to eye but no shot. Later that morning my opportunity at a nice buck came about and I missed it. Just my luck!

The second year once again Mike and Craig did their thing, but guess who came up short? You got it me!

The third year the boys do it again. Two nice 8 pointers and a doe. I shot a deer that year also, but it didn’t quite measure up.

Then came year number four. The year to remember. We arrived at camp on Sunday morning excited about the next day’s hunt. We off loaded the gear into the cabin as soon as possible, so we could get to the woods and put our stands up. We decided to hunt the spot Mike and Craig hunted year number one. The same place that Mike had shot a nice 8 pointer.

The next morning bright an early we headed for the stands. The air was cool but not brisk. The morning started off slow but the action picked up for me later that morning. I saw a couple Does pass through and a nice 8 pointer skirt the hillside but too far away for any shots. Craig and Mike had no action Monday, but Craig found enjoyment calling turkeys, which almost led to Craig getting one.

Day 2
We sat in the morning and had no action, so we decided to pull our stands. Heading deeper into the revien, which to my surprise was a dried up riverbed. My eyes lit up when I saw that talk about a natural funnel for deer to travel. I just knew that I wanted to hunt this riverbed. Craig and I walked the riverbed seeing all kinds of deer tracks and scrapes. We then came upon an area that just took us by awe. The scenery was just beautiful so we took a break and shot some photos posing by a downed tree. The whole woods and the area just took your breath away. The bright yellow leaves in the trees had carpeted the ground. I just knew I wanted to hunt this area. If not for a deer then maybe just for a piece of mind. Then Craig and I scouted the area. Craig eventually found his location to put up a tree stand. I was undecided as to where I was going. I kept getting pulled back to the river’s edge. Something about that spot where we took the photos was drawing me back there. So, I placed my stand next to a log where we shot the photos, and hunted the rest of the day with no action. Later when Craig, Mike, and I hiked back out of the woods, we told each other where we had placed our stands. Craig made a joking comment “Don’t pick it because it’s pretty”.

Day 3
The day we will all remember. We got into our stands before sunrise. It was a cool morning you could see your breath. The temperature was around 17 – 20 degrees. The sun was rising and the turkeys were on the move. I turned around with my back toward the river watching the turkeys on the hillside just hoping one would venture my way. Then about 7:45 – 8:00 am I heard some shuffling walking to my left behind the tree that I was in. I leaned back poked my head out from around the tree and got the surprise of my life. Walking down the dried up riverbed came the biggest buck I had ever seen in my life. It startled me so much I’d liked to have fallen out of my tree stand. Thank God for safety harnesses! After calming myself down I realized that I was in a bad position. I had to turn completely around in my stand. I took one more glance at the monster and saw an opportunity where I could quickly turn around in my stand.

When the deer passed along side the riverbank I did a one, two, three and spun around. As I was turning around in my tree stand, I locked on my quick release. I was so afraid to look at the deer thinking that he had seen me move. But when I looked back he had come from behind the bank of the river. Still walking like he had no care in the world with his head down. Looking at the rack one more time I couldn’t believe what was coming my way.

I thought my God this deer is going to walk right in front of me. I knew the spot the deer needed to be to where I could get a shot through the tree in front of me. But the deer had other ideas. It stopped about 15 yards in front of me. Instead of continuing to walk the river bottom he stopped at a water hole and immediately jumped up on the bank, causing him to spot me in the tree. At this point the buck stood approximately 8 yards away. He looked at me for what seemed forever and I thought that the opportunity to take this deer was gone. Jumping back down into the riverbed, he turned and started to trot in the opposite direction.

As I gripped my bow I felt as if someone had just kicked me in the guts. Raising my Hoyt, I pulled back at full draw, set my pin, and waited for the deer to stop. After approximately 42 yards he did just that. Taking a deep breath I released my Easton arrow, with a 125 grain thunderhead, I watched as the arrow hit slightly further back than I had anticipated. Fearing that I had gut shot it, I watched as the deer ran 50 – 60 yards, then I lost sight of him. I decided to give him time to drop before tracking him.

During this time I help Mike track and field dress an 8-pointer that he had just shot. By this time I was ready to look for the monster. Mike and I met up with Craig and began tracking him. Craig was in the lead, I was behind him with my bow in hand in case we kicked the deer back up, and Mike was bring up the rear. The trail was spotty at first but as the deer slowed the signs got better. At about 50-60 yards from the point of impact Craig slowing his stalk. I am not that experienced of a tracker as Craig is but it started to worry. I was behind Craig about 10 – 12 feet when Craig looked back at me with a look on his face that just could not be explained. You just had to be there. Never saying a word, he motioned for me to come up by him. Standing at the edge of the river, I thought the deer bedded down back in the riverbed and that Craig saw him as he looked down over the bank.

Coming up to Craig, I thought that I might have to draw back, at that point Craig grabbed my coat and pulled me to him pointing, he said “There’s your deer, look at the size of that … (Well we’ll just leave that word out). When I looked down and saw the monster lying there, we began hugging, high-fiving each other, and yelling like we had just won the lottery. I was so overwhelmed my knees began to give way. I had to sit down as Craig and Mike looked down at him in awe. I counted 9 points on one side and asked how many more were there. We then slid down the bank and counted 15 points. My nerves were shot. We spent about an hour taking field photos giving my nerves time to calm down before field dressing him. However, an hour was not long enough. Worried that I may cut myself while dressing him, Craig offered to do it for me.

A special thanks to Craig Wilcox for his expert tracking skills and cool head, and Mike Pesava for his all his hard work in helping me get that monster back to camp.

Your CommentsComments :: Guidelines :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

Next entry: Josh Wolf’s 8-pointer

Previous entry: 2010 Classic: B&C Non-Typicals

Log Out

Big Buck Contest

Submit your storyLone Wolf logo about a memorable deer hunt from 2010-11 or from the past to enter the Lone Wolf Stands Big Buck Stories promotion. Starting Sept. 20 we will be giving away nearly $3,500 in tree stands and gear to readers who submit stories and pictures.

RSS & Atom Feeds

Outdoors Archives

February 2020
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Copyright © 2007-2014 GateHouse Media, Inc.
Some Rights Reserved
Original content available for non-commercial use
under a Creative Commons license, except where noted.
Creative Commons