Since bow season, Coty Ingram of Newland, NC had been trying his hardest to bring down a buck that was the talk of Avery County hunters — a big-bodied 13-point that had turned up on a lot of folk’s trail cameras. On a Thanksgiving morning hunt that almost didn’t happen, the mostly nocturnal buck slipped up, and Ingram was there to take advantage.

“Pretty much everybody around me knew about the deer,” said Ingram. “The sticker off the brow tine is how they knew who he was. It’s 9 inches long.” 

Although the buck was easy to distinguish on trail camera, coming across him in the daylight was a different story. Ingram’s camera was filled with shots — taken either before he got in the stand in the mornings or after he left in the evenings. The only thing worse was when he didn’t show up at all for 2 weeks.

“The first day of rifle season he came back,” said Ingram. “I got one daylight picture of him at 7 in the morning. Tuesday came, and I got an evening picture of him at 4 o'clock. It was shaping up to be good.”

As good as things were looking, Ingram, who works for the local power company, got a call to come in to repair a broken line at 2:30 in the morning before he was to hunt. But, he packed his gear in hopes of still making it into the woods.

“We finished fixing the wire around 6:30 that morning,” said Ingram. “I got a biscuit and coffee and went straight to the woods; got in there after daylight and sat down in the stand.”

Around 8:30, Ingram saw a doe that winded him, easing off shortly after appearing. Nearly an hour later, charging down the side of the mountain and into the valley of the 11-acre tract he was hunting, came the buck he was after.

“I've never seen a buck do this, but he’d just take his horns and rake the saplings out of the way while he was trotting down though there. I kept having to zoom my scope out because he was coming in so quick; he was only 100 yards away when I first saw him. I grunted at him and got him stopped at 20 yards. He gave me a quarter-to shot and I put it on the shoulder.”

Ingram fired a 120-grain Remington Core-Lokt bullet from his Remington 700 .25-06 into the buck, which took about 4 steps and froze. Ingram shucked another bullet into the chamber and fired again. This time the deer dropped to the ground.

Ingram’s buck weighed 220 pounds and received a gross green score of 145 ⅜ inches. The inside spread spans 19 ½ inches, between main beams of 21 and 23 ⅜ inches. The longest tine following the 9-inch sticker is an 8-inch G3.