Closing the Book on “No-Name”

So my story begins two years ago. I had three big bucks on trail camera and one was an absolute stud. I made the decision he would be the only one I shot that year. I called him Touchdown and was able to shoot him on November 2, 2013. The other two bucks that he ran with I had several encounters with throughout that season. However, I passed on them both because I felt they needed another year. One was a solid 110-115 inch wide eight point which I had named “No Name.” Not very original I know.

Anyhow, I got trail camera pictures of “No Name” in February and was very glad to see he made it through the season. I could only hope what I thought he would blow up into in the next year. As the spring and summer months went by, I was not getting any trail camera pictures of “No Name.” I knew he had made it through the season but wasn’t sure if he moved out of the area or what. I adjusted my trail camera set to try to locate where I felt some bucks were traveling and low and behold he showed up.

Not only did he show up, but he also grew up into a great buck. I decided that if I was blessed with an opportunity to shoot him, he would fit the bill. I hunted hard this season with many all-day sits. I asked off work more days than I would recommend.

It was tough getting out being a full-time college student and working almost full time also. Any chance I had though, I was out. I had hoped to get an opportunity at “No Name.” I was not seeing a lot of buck activity period and was a little worried with how my season would go, but I was persistent. I had asked off work on November 7 and planned to sit all day. My manager granted me the day off. It was calling for rain all day, and he even asked me if I wanted to work since it would be raining. I knew that I needed to hunt whenever I could if I wanted an opportunity at a good buck. So there I went, walking to the stand as it was raining. Most would think I am nuts but I was excited for my day in the stand. I got rained on and rained on, but it wasn’t too bad actually. I had a small spike come through and a doe and fawn fed on acorns by me early in the morning. I continued to sit even though I had not seen much movement.

As the evening went on, I saw another doe that bedded down within 35 yards of me, but not much movement. Then right before 5:00 p.m. I saw the same spike in the morning come out of a thicket and start browsing. I turned my video camera on and started filming him. I caught more movement from the thicket and here came “No Name.”

I was simply shocked at how big he had gotten in a year. He walked just out of range at 44 yards and started going away from me. I knew I needed to act fast if I wanted to get a shot on him. I quickly grabbed the grunt tube and gave it three aggressive grunts. This perked his interest and he turned around and stared for what felt like an eternity. I believe he was looking for a deer that made that grunt. He did not see one obviously and started walking away again. I knew I needed to try to make him mad and get him to come in. I snort-wheezed at him which is a very aggressive sound to a whitetail. I explain a snort-wheeze as saying “Hey you want to fight.” This ticked him off and he tilted his head and puffed himself out. Here he was walking slowly towards me.

The adrenaline was starting to kick in. My knees had already begun shaking. I told myself the first good clear shot I had I was taking it. Here he came slowly walking in an aggressive posture. I pulled back and picked and opening in the trees to aim. Once he got to that spot, he surprisingly stopped on his own. I settled my pin on him and hit the trigger. Instantly I saw my shot was a tad low but I definitely double lunged him. I knew from previous success that the Wasp Z-Force would do its job and kill him quickly. He did a big mule kick on impact and ran about thirty yards and was feeling it. He then walked into the thicket and I lost sight of him. I went looking for him over an hour and a half later with my dad and brother. The blood trail was very good and short lived since he only made it 80 yards. When the flashlight hit him, I realized that I had just shot “No Name.” His story has ended but  will never be forgotten. I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to hunt these whitetails. 

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