For months, Durham County’s Doug Farlow cherished every time he checked his trail camera and couldn’t wait until the first day of the 2016 central deer season to arrive. And at the last few minutes of light on the first day of the 2016 North Carolina deer season, Farlow got rewarded on his family farm in Northern Durham County with the biggest deer he’s ever killed.
Starting in the heat of summer, Farlow watched a big buck on his trail camera grow antlers from short stubby nubs to a massive collection of headgear any North American hunter would be proud to see in their sights. But two weeks before the archery season began, the deer vanished from his normal routine. Even worse, his trail camera stopped taking photos a few days before the season opener. Farrow kept his head up though, and slipped into his tree stand on opening day regardless of his troubles to get a nice surprise right before sundown.
While not working his day job or tending to his herd of cattle on his family farm in Northern Durham County, Farlow focuses on deer hunting. And the big buck that first showed up on June 28th on his camera was his main target for the 2016 deer season.
“I kept him fed for months and he kept coming to the corn pile on a daily basis,” Farlow said. “He was living in a bottomland area covered with kudzu and would come across the old railroad bed to eat every day.”
Farlow got in the stand on opening day at 3:30 in the afternoon to make sure he was there in case the buck decided to show up early. But the afternoon hunt was desolate until right before dark.
“At 7 o’clock, I looked up and saw a big buck jumping across the fence and there was no doubt it was him, and he was coming right to the corn pile,” he said.
Farlow’s corn pile was only 17 yards away and if the deer kept on coming, his shot would be well within lethal range of his Excalibur crossbow. It was getting dark, but the wide-racked buck he’d watched for months finally arrived, and was unmistakable standing in front of him at a distance of 17 yards. Farlow took aim and fired off the fatal shot at 7:02pm.
“It was my third deer with the crossbow, but this was the biggest buck I have ever killed. It was crazy,” he said.
Farlow’s nine pointer green scored 141 5/8’s inches with an impressive spread stretching out to 21 inches on the inside edges.