All I could do is sit and watch as the big nine point walked out of my view on full alert. It was only seconds earlier that my arrow had zipped just inches over his back as he stood in the wide open at 20 yards. My setup worked, My Antler Ice did it's job, The buck read the script, but I blew it!! I was Deflated and ready to give in, I knew my chance was gone and soon nightfall would signal my departure from the tree and the long drive home to Western New York from Southwestern Ohio.
I played that shot over and over in my head a thousand times in the long solitary drive home, but before exiting the woods on that fateful night, I had gathered my trail cameras and SD cards as I thought my season was over in Ohio, but I couldn't have been more wrong.
I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason, and although I didn't realize it at the time, but hidden amongst the pictures on one of the SD cards revealed a giant whitetail that appeared out of no where. And as I looked at pic after pic on the computer, the next day, I realized I would soon be making plans to head back to Ohio.
With bow season winding down, and the shotgun opener in just days, my plans were set and I was once again heading to the great state of Ohio in search of the buck we named Wide Boy.
Opening morning, As the sun came up , the first buck was already walking the Antler Ice drag down by my stand set up. It was a small, young deer, but every hunter knows the first buck of any hunt is an exciting, and welcoming sight. But that would be it for the first morning sit, one deer and alot of rain.
Leaving the stand to get dry and warm, and make a plan for the afternoon quickly turned to stalk mode as 2 doe sprung from the laurel when my escape from the woods led me past their beds. But as the two doe exited the ridge, Wide Boy was there! And he followed the doe into the valley.
Wide Boy was surprisingly still displaying rut behavior, so I knew I had to get in front of his does, to try to cut them off.
After spraying Antler Ice doe n heat on my boots, to cover my scent, and repositioning in the bottom ahead of where the deer had gone, it wasn't long and there he was,,,, Wide Boy. Pushing a doe in the thickest cover that the state had to offer. I could have rushed a shot, hoping and praying that it hit its mark, but any deer, especially one this big, this incredible, deserves an ethical harvest. So the deer walked, knowing that his doe would eventually get him in trouble, and just after a few tense moments Wide Boy was lured into one of the very few openings and stopped just long enough for my 12 gauge slug to drop him in his tracks.
I had done it. Wide Boy was mine. I knew he was a monster, but pictures and even seeing him in real life was no comparison when I walked, I mean ran, to where he has laying on the Forrest floor and held him by the antlers. He was even more incredible than I could have ever imagined.
Wide Boy sported an impressive greatest width of 30 inches and had 16 score able points. A true Midwestern giant that topped a 162 inches. Wide Boy was a buck of a lifetime and I am reminded of the journey that I took to get him every time I see him in my trophy room.