Other bucks chased does all around hunter as he drags 17-point buck out of woods
Jordan Jessup of Pilot Mountain, N.C. killed a 17-point buck that tipped the scales at 205 pounds in Surry County on Nov. 20, 2020. The buck has been green-scored at 131 inches.
Several does and younger bucks showed up early during Jessup’s hunt and stayed around, chasing each other even as the hunter recovered the big buck from the woods. It was a pretty wild hunt, from beginning to end, he said.
“Around 4:45 p.m., I was observing several small does in my food plot. A small 8-pointer chased a doe behind my stand. As the hot doe and the small buck entered the field, I was on high alert,” he said.
Then things got interesting in a hurry.
“All heck broke loose. As the hot doe entered the field, not only was the small 8-pointer behind her, but two more 8-pointers followed. All were 2 1/2- to 3-year-olds and I was passing on them. But I knew with a hot doe, anything could happen. So I was ready with my Thompson/Center Triumph .50 muzzleloader,” said Jessup.
As a third buck stepped into the clearing, the hunter noticed movement behind it. It was a fourth buck, and Jessup studied it closely as it made its way into the field.
“I couldn’t tell right away what it was since I had no real history with the deer. I could tell he had a good frame. Then I looked at the buck’s body and determined it was a mature buck, something that I had set my management goals on killing,” he said.
The buck ran about 85 yards
Having identified the buck as a shooter, Jessup wasted no time.
“I took aim and sent a 250-grain bullet his way. With all the smoke, I could not tell initially if I hit him. It was a little longer than a 100-yard shot. By this point, it was 5 p.m,” he said.
With daylight beginning to wane, Jessup got out of the stand to investigate.
“I reloaded and went to check if there was blood at the initial shot. I was relieved to see that there was. And it was full of bubbles. I knew I hit him good. As I followed the trail, he was down about 85 yards away,” he said.
Strangely, Jessup realized he was far from alone. The other bucks and the hot doe were running all around him, even getting to within 35 yards of him as he dragged the 17-point buck out of the woods.
“You got to love the rut!” he said of the experience.
The buck was a main frame 8-pointer with a kicker off its right G2, and it had lots of trash around the base of its antlers. Of its 17 total points, the buck had 15 scorable ones that added up to 131 inches.
Jessup attributes his success to letting smaller bucks walk and trying to harvest several does each season.
“When the doe to buck ratio gets too far off, I have noticed that I see less rutting action and fewer mature bucks on the properties that I hunt. And of course, it’s always a plus to have a good reliable muzzleloader,” he said.
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