Belton, S.C. hunter downs trophy buck in Anderson County

Brian Davis of Belton, SC killed this monster buck in Anderson County on Nov. 1, 2018.

Mainframe 9-pointer had one sticker point

Brian Davis killed a 10-point buck that’s been green-scored at 172 5/8 inches on Nov. 1 while hunting from a tripod stand in Anderson County, S.C. Davis killed the buck around 7:50 a.m., but he was beginning to think it wasn’t meant to be.

After observing the big deer through trail camera photos for the past two seasons, Davis finally got a look at it in the flesh on Oct. 31, but he he didn’t get a chance to pull the trigger on that evening hunt.

“Starting last season, he showed up on our trail cameras but disappeared. And this season, almost all our photos of him were at night. He showed up during daylight on one of our cameras on the evening of Oct. 30, but I was in a different stand at the time. The next afternoon, I hunted that stand. It overlooks a field surrounded by pine thickets, and just before I got out of the stand, I saw a big buck. It was him, but it was already too dark to shoot,” he said.

Davis was pleasantly surprised at the massive size of the buck’s rack.

The next morning, Davis got back into the stand, and before long, a doe came out and walked around in the clearing for a minute, then went into the thicket. It came out five minutes later, and this time the big buck was following her. But once again, before Davis could get a clean shot, both deer darted back into the thicket.

“I was thinking, ‘here we go again,’ and started to get discouraged. I thought that might be the last I would see of the buck. Then it seemed like forever, but luckily, they came back out of the thicket,” he said.

The waiting pays off

This time, the buck presented Davis a clear shot from about 75 yards away with his Remington .270. He pulled the trigger, sending a 150-grain Core-Lokt bullet to the deer’s spine. It dropped on the spot.

“I got lucky with the shot, because a few days earlier, I dropped my rifle and the scope was the first thing to hit the ground. I didn’t think it hurt it, but that shot was definitely high. Luckily, it was just high enough to break the deer’s back and not miss. I sighted in my scope later, and sure enough, it was a little high,” he said.

While some hunters experience the dreaded phenomenon known as “ground shrinkage,” Davis felt the opposite.

“You never really know from looking at trail camera photos just how big a deer’s rack is. I mean, I knew it was a good one for sure, but I was still surprised once I got my hands on it. That’s when I could really tell just how massive the antlers were, and it had a 24-inch spread. It’s just a really big rack. Even bigger than I was expecting,” he said.

Brian Cope
About Brian Cope 1318 Articles
Brian Cope of Edisto Island, S.C., is a retired Air Force combat communications technician. He has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of South Carolina and has been writing about the outdoors since 2006. He’s spent half his life hunting and fishing. The rest, he said, has been wasted.