Halloween Night provided both tricks and treats for Steve Crenshaw of Anderson, who admits getting physically sick when he missed a big buck across a huge food plot, then got well when the buck gave him a second chance he didn’t blow.
Crenshaw was sitting in the middle of the food plot just before dark when he spotted the 140-inch buck about 275 yards away. He turned completely around in his stand, took aim with his .270 Browning and missed the shot, running the buck back into the woods.
“I had been looking the other way all evening, so I would never have seen him otherwise, but I had seen a big hog come out back there right at dark a few evenings before and turned around to see if that hog had come back out. Instead it was a massive buck,” said Crenshaw. “When I missed, I was literally physically sick. Even though the deer was 275 yards away, I couldn’t believe I’d missed.”
Several minutes later, while Crenshaw was trying to recover from the experience, the big buck did the unthinkable and trotted back out into the food plot. This time, Crenshaw’s aim and shot were true, and he toppled the big deer where it stood.
“I’d been hunting hard all week,” said Crenshaw, “and we had been seeing a lot of really nice deer both on this property that I hunt in Anderson County and on some other property that I hunt in Greenwood. That buck was looking hard for some does, and I guess he was more interested in looking for them than his own safety.”
Crenshaw, like a lot of Upstate hunters, understands that Anderson County has been producing more than its share of record book sized bucks of late. He believes the trophy animals produced there are a combination of environment and trophy management by the hunters in the area.
“We don’t have as many does in this part of the county as other areas, but we do have a lot of food in the form of agriculture that grows some nice bucks,” said Crenshaw. “We also have a lot of hunters around here who trophy manage their herd. I know my neighbors and they just don’t shoot small deer. That gives them time to grow.”
Crenshaw’s deer was green-scored by his Chip Hamilton, his long-time friend and local taxidermist who estimated that the buck will score in the upper 140s to nearly 150.
Crenshaw said he was unsure exactly how the buck would be scored officially, he said the deer was fairly symmetrical as a typical buck, but he could also understand if it was judged as a non-typical deer because of the placement of two tines on its right beam.