Tony Johnson of Chesterfield County was sitting in his “old man” condo stand on Dec 5 thinking about a big buck he and his son had been hunting for a couple of years, when he saw what looked to him like a little buck. Upon closer inspection, he realized the deer was a shooter, but he didn’t realize it was the very buck he’d been thinking about. He killed the 15-point buck which green-scored 161 5/8-inches, and feels blessed the deer came to him.
“We’ve got tons of photos of this deer on trail cameras throughout our property, and he’d recently been spotted on other clubs’ cameras miles away from our hunting land. One of our friends had just seen it a day or two before on his camera that was about 4-miles away from where I was hunting,” Johnson said.
“I figured our friend would get that deer after hearing it was on his trail cam that far away. He’s the kind of hunter that doesn’t miss, so I really wasn’t thinking I would see that deer. A doe came out on the power line that my condo overlooks, but the doe wasn’t paying any attention to the corn pile. It was focused on something else,” said Johnson.
It turned out that the doe was paying attention to a buck that was trailing it.
“I scanned the area to see what she was looking at, and I saw what appeared to be a small buck. I was texting a family member that I’d just seen a little buck when I noticed the doe getting really skittish. I looked back toward the buck, and I could see it better now, and I realized it was worth raising my gun for,” he said.
At that point, Johnson had already killed four bucks in the previous two weeks, and his son had been teasing him about having a “golden horseshoe where the sun don’t shine,” and Johnson was starting to feel like the luck was still with him.
“The buck was just barely in the woods and it popped out into the power line. I shot it, and it bucked like a bronco and ran off. I got down to look for it, and saw something about 50-yards from where I’d shot it. I looked at it through my scope, and it looked like a ribcage sticking up. Right then I knew it was the best buck I’ve ever killed,” he said.
Once he got to the buck, Johnson finally realized it was the buck he and his son had been after for the past couple of seasons. He shot the buck from about 50-yards away with a Browning X-bolt 7mm-08 and Zeiss scope.
Carlisle Sutton of Sutton’s Taxidermy green-scored the buck and will be doing a shoulder-mount for Johnson, who has never had a buck mounted before.
“I’ve killed some nice bucks over the years, and I’ve had some European mounts done, but this deer deserves something more than that. I feel blessed he came to me, and I feel like he deserves a special mount,” said Johnson.
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