Seagrove, N.C. huntress arrows 8-point buck

8-point buck

Chesney’s luck leads to second-chance buck

Chesney Luck of Seagrove, N.C. thought fortune had deserted her on opening day of archery season after arrowing an 8-point buck that eluded attempts to find him. But she got a second chance on Nov. 3, 2021 when she shot the 8-point buck within 100 yards of her first encounter with him.

She shot the buck with a .308 rifle on that second-chance sighting. But 53 days earlier, she’d shot the nearly perfect-racked buck with her compound bow. But it wasn’t a good shot, she said.

With the buck in range during that first hunt, Luck pulled back the drawstring of her bow. But the whitetail stopped behind a tree on a path leading to a field Luck was covering from a Loc-On stand. Holding the compound bow at full draw finally forced her to let down the arrow.

“That’s when he turned and started back in the direction he came from,” she said.

She redrew and touched the release button with the buck 30 yards away. Her arrow struck the animal’s right side, but “farther back than it needed to be,” she said. “I knew I’d made a bad shot.”

After waiting a couple of hours, Luck called her dad and husband. They tracked the deer for a half mile until blood signs disappeared, then grid-searched the area with no success.

Heartache turns to relief

“I had a lot of heartache,” she said. “I was worried the coyotes might get him or he’d die without us finding him. Since that day, we didn’t have trail camera pictures of him.”

A month and a half passed. Before each following hunting trip, she sprayed Hughes Outdoors Scent on her boots and around her stands. Luck figured the deer may have scented her, causing him to stop his walk toward the field.

On Nov. 3, Luck got in the stand and saw a doe after about 30 minutes. Then the 8-point buck she’d previously arrowed showed up.

“After I got my scope up, the buck walked out of the brush,” she said. “I remember thinking God had given me a second chance.”

But when she squeezed the .308’s trigger, the deer disappeared into the cutover’s tangle.

“I sat for a while, calmed down, then got down and tracked signs of a good hit,” Luck said. “It was so much of a relief and excitement to find him.”

The arrow apparently hadn’t penetrated deeply because she didn’t find wound evidence on the buck’s body.

The 8-pointer’s antlers totaled 130 inches, and Luck felt sweet redemption finding him.

“I’d also missed a big buck while hunting in Ohio with my husband. So that was a disappointment,” she said. “Taking this buck and knowing he hadn’t suffered was a big relief.”


Congratulations to Luck, who is now entered in our Bag-A-Buck contest. Click here to enter your buck in the Carolina Sportsman Bag-A-Buck contest. We’re giving away some great monthly prizes, as well as a Grand Prize that includes a Millennium M25 hang-on deer stand and a 2-man, 2-day hunt for deer and hogs at Cherokee Run Hunting Lodge in Chesterfield, S.C.

About Craig Holt 1382 Articles
Craig Holt of Snow Camp has been an outdoor writer for almost 40 years, working for several newspapers, then serving as managing editor for North Carolina Sportsman and South Carolina Sportsman before becoming a full-time free-lancer in 2009.

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