Hunting a Dorchester County soybean field on Sept. 25, McKinnon dropped a buck that sported an 11-point rack - a 10-point frame and a drop tine - that weighed in a 253 pounds.
McKinnon didn't have to wait long the day he killed his trophy. He slipped into his stand at about 5 p.m., hunting the same stand for just the sixth time over the first six weeks of the season.
"I don't hunt the same stand every week, because I try not to pressure the deer too much," he said.
The conditions were dry, overcast and breezy as he approached his stand, where he used his scope to notice a fresh rub about 80 yards away.
Three does and a yearling came into the field, which is part of a tract of private property that McKinnon hunts, at about 6:15. They were plainly visible along the browsed edge of the field, but nearly invisible once out among the taller beans.
At 6:45, the big buck stepped out near the fresh rub, and it looked directly at McKinnon - who had seen the buck twice before without being able to get a shot.
"He took one more step, and I put the crosshairs on him and squeezed the trigger," McKinnon said.
The Remington .270 rifle, Simmons scope and Core-Lokt ammo did not let him down. Shot through the shoulder, the buck collapsed in a heap.
McKinnon was in disbelief as he approached the buck. The closer he got, the more stunned he was. One of his first thoughts when he got close enough to examine the deer was that its mass was unbelievable.
The buck's rack had a 16-inch inside spread, with bases that were 6½ inches in circumference. The longest tines were eight inches, and the rack carried a 4½-inch drop tine. It was the biggest buck of McKinnon's life, and he called his father, who came with a bucket-loader tractor to get the deer out.
"The best part of the rack is that drop tine, because it is so rare in my hunting area," McKinnon said.
The buck's age was estimated at 4½ years old.
Kenneth Cordray, a taxidermist at Cordray's Deer Processing rough-scored the buck's rack at 135¾ points. But it was the deer's body that really stood out. Michael Cordray said the buck was the heaviest he's weighed in 17 years in the business.