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Jay Noll’s 10-Pointer

November 09, 2010

Illinois hunting and fishing

Trophy Tidbits

Scorable Points: 10

Kill Date: November 6, 2010

County: Mason County

Season: Bow

My hunting story actually begins on Monday, November 1, 2010.  I was not able to hunt the Friday-Sunday, so I decided I would accidentally sleep through my alarm to head back to school and go for an afternoon hunt. I climbed into my stand around 3 p.m. that afternoon and saw no signs of deer moving up until almost sunset.  Around 5:50 p.m. I heard running in the timber southeast of me and within seconds I had a big 10-point buck standing behind a tree 3 yards away.  He walked around the area avoiding my shooting lanes for nearly 10 minutes and then when he finally came into an opening at about 27 yards, I drew my bow back and went to place my sight on his vitals.  After looking through my peep sight, I realized that it was probably too dark to take the shot so I decided to let him go and hope to see him again.  Luckily for me, he gave me that opportunity.

Friday November 5, I left Champaign for home as soon as class was over hoping to make it back in time to get into my treestand for a few hours.  However, I did not make it back when I had expected, so hunting was out of the question for me that afternoon. Having exams the following week, I had decided it was probably best I head back to school to do some studying. Who was I kidding? I woke up and knew I couldn’t leave home without at least spending one afternoon hunting.  So around 2:30 p.m. I began getting ready and left for the timber.  I arrived at our shed with my bow and camo at my side.  I loaded up the four-wheeler and headed down the levee to my treestand.  This is when my hopes began to dwindle about the afternoon.  I forgot to check the fuel level in the four-wheeler and about 1/5 of the way to my stand, I knew I would be getting some exercise by walking the rest of the way. 

I proceeded walking the 3/4 of a mile to my stand.  When I got there, I put on all my camo, put out some scent, and settled in my stand around 3:30 p.m.  I then sat and again saw nothing for the first hour and forty minutes.  Around 5:10 I was getting desperate so I pulled out my Buck Bomb scent and sprayed a little on the tree underneath my stand.  Although I did it more out of boredom, I’m glad I did.  About 2 minutes later I heard something coming towards me and it didn’t take long before I saw the same 10-pointer coming through some brush with his nose up.  The next 20 seconds were probably the fastest of my life. 

As soon as he got through the brush, he continued to run towards the 20 yard mark where I had sprayed some scent.  He took the exact path I had hoped for and when his head disappeared behind a large tree I drew back my bow.  I then waited until he was completely in the opening and I gave a little grunt.  He stopped, I shot.  As my arrow took off, the buck dipped down to take off and my shot was high.  Lucky for me, it was just high enough to land in his spine and the buck dropped down immediately.  I went ahead and knocked another arrow and put the final kill shot behind his front shoulder. 

I took a deep breath and tried to calm down, but the excitement took control.  I felt like I was a little kid again shooting my first deer.  I immediately pulled out my phone and sent my dad a text message, “I freaking got him!”  I decided to wait for him to get to the timber so I could get a picture with my trophy, and I made a smart choice.  The buck weighed 220 field dressed, and it took 3 of us to lift him up.  The excitement did not soon go away, and the entire night seemed surreal.  And to think, I almost skipped hunting for an afternoon of studying.  That was the last time I will have any difficulty deciding between those two options.

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