Ever stand in front of a classroom full of little deers, look down, and realize you’re naked (or might as well be)?
Being busted by a button buck can wreck a deer hunter’s self-confidence.
When this happened to Danny Boyer last season, the bowhunter from DeSoto, Mo., realized he had to change something about his setup, and none too soon.
When his ill-fated morning hunt ended on Saturday, Oct. 26, he asked his brother-in-law, Eric Coleman, to help him move a ladder stand from one end of his new Randolph County lease to a little horseshoe-shaped winter wheat field he wanted to hunt. And rather than position the stand so that it faced the field, they leaned it against the backside of the tree, facing the woods, to give Danny more cover.
Besides, standing and shooting back toward the field would be much easier from a double ladder stand than from his old climber.
Danny, 36, had never hunted the property before 2013. He and Eric, along with Danny’s brothers, David and Bobby, had joined the 630-acre lease arranged by his boss at a metal fabricating plant, where spiral staircases and iron fences are manufactured.
The land is four hours from DeSoto, not exactly close enough to hunt on a whim, so their visits were overnighters, their quarters the boss’s nearby cabin.
They’d set out some trail cameras prior to the maiden season, but nothing exceptional had been photographed. Still, they knew the area held potential. The neighboring landowner had shown them a photo taken the previous year of a magazine-worthy buck.
Danny drove up to the cabin on Friday, Oct. 25. En route, he stopped to buy a new package of Rage broadheads.
The next morning, he saw only a couple of does and a button buck — the one that busted him — from his climbing stand overlooking the plot of winter wheat. It was a narrow field, only about 30 yards wide.
After he and Eric hauled in and set up the double ladder stand about 30 yards from the tree he’d climbed that morning, they went in for lunch.
Danny climbed the 20 feet into the newly set stand at 3 p.m. David was hunting about 500 yards away, and Bobby was only 200 yards from him.
Eventually, four or five does came onto the field to feed on the wheat. When they left, they passed almost directly underneath Danny, which raised his hopes considerably.
Soon, Danny’s cell phone started vibrating. David had shot a doe amongst a group of 15 or 20, which explained why deer were blowing in the woods between them. When Danny turned to look in that direction about a minute later, he saw a huge buck standing just 17 yards from his tree. It, too, was looking back toward the distant commotion.
With the buck’s attention elsewhere, Danny grabbed his bow and took the easy shot. The buck bolted after being skewered, and Danny was convinced he heard it stop, wheeze and fall.
Texting his brothers was the last thing on his mind.
“I was so excited, I yelled,” he said. “I couldn’t help myself.”
Bobby heard his brother woohooing, so he joined him a few minutes later. The two of them trailed the deer for 25 minutes. It had traveled only 75 yards.
Hunter: Danny Boyer
BTR Score: 209 6/8
– Photo Courtesy Jennifer Boyer
This article was published in the October 2014 edition of Rack Magazine. Subscribe today to have Rack Magazine delivered to your home. Read Recent RACK Articles:
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