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Jody Macon’s 27-pointer

October 20, 2003

Illinois hunting and fishing

Trophy Tidbits

Scorable Points: 27

Kill Date: Oct. 20, 2003

County: Pike

Season: Bow

Wonder why people travel from all over the country to hunt deer in Illinois?

Bowhunter Jody Macon of Brandon, Miss., can tell you. He’s got at least 27 good reasons for an Illinois visit hanging on his wall.

Like many hunters, Macon heard about Pike County in west-central Illinois. When he found an outfitter named Hadley Creek, he figured the match was a natural since his daughter was also named Hadley.

His first visit in 2002 yielded a 125-inch 8-pointer that was found only after he had returned home to Mississippi. But it was in mid-October of 2003 that Macon, who was then 34, found out what Illinois big buck hunting is all about. Despite hunting in temperatures that reached the high 80s, Macon headed to a stand thanks to encouragement from his friend, Roby.

By 3:45 p.m. that afternoon he had deer all around him. For a moment, Macon considered shooting a doe to test out his new bow. But he couldn’t get a clear shot. Good thing that.

A few minutes later a buck wandered into range. A big buck. At about 40 yards the buck started walking away and Macon let fly an arrow. Unfortunately, the arrow hit a tree limb. The buck then ran off and stopped about 100 yards away.

But rather than continue off into the sunset, the buck decided to walk right back toward Macon. Finally, after 20 minutes of pawing acorns, the buck worked to within 18 yards of Macon. This time his shot was good, if a bit high behind the shoulder.

Rather than track the deer that night, Macon and some Hadley Creek guides waited until the next morning. But they could not find the buck, leaving Macon a long, depressing 9.5-hour drive home. The next morning, though, he got a call from Hadley Creek telling him they had found his buck. So Macon drove back to Illinois, tagged his buck and celebrated taking a non-typical buck that scored 211 3/8 inches.

The rack grossed 219 5/8 inches and had 16 abnormal points on an 11-point typical frame. The main beams are 21 7/8 and 22 3/8 inches and the inside spread measured 19 1/8 inches.

Click here to read Jeff Brown’s story on Macon’s buck in Illinois Game and Fish.

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