Rack Magazine



By Buckmasters

One of the biggest whitetails felled in the South in 2016 came out of the Peach State, proof that two heads (and guns) are sometimes better than one.

One of those heads belongs to Shannon Sledge, who owns a dairy farm near Ty Ty, Georgia. The other rested on the shoulders of a friend who’s also an employee, Skippy White.

Skippy had been keeping tabs on and hunting a giant whitetail on the dairy’s property for three seasons. In all that time, he neither saw nor retrieved trail camera photographs of it while the sun was shining.

Shannon had no history with the deer prior to Nov. 2, when his giddy friend called him.

Skippy had just seen the previously nocturnal buck heading into a 10-acre woodlot, presumably to bed, and he thought the two of them – he and his boss – stood a better chance of shooting the deer before it died of old age.

Shannon arrived at the Worth County farm two and a half hours after the phone call.

“I never hunt my place because I didn’t want to intrude on his hunting,” Shannon told Georgia Outdoor News. “Hunting there was like a fringe benefit for him. He’s put cameras out all over.”

Skippy had two treestands ready when his boss arrived. He’d imagined they would climb trees and wait out the deer.

Shannon, however, couldn’t spend the rest of the afternoon deer hunting.

“I can’t sit all day. I just can’t do it,” he told his friend.

“If you’d seen that big son of a gun, you could,” Skippy replied.

They came up with a new plan.

Skippy was the only one carrying a climber when they struck out for the buck’s bedding area. Shannon held both a shotgun and his rifle.

They wound up following a power line to the woodlot. When they reached a little creek, Shannon noted some above-average hoof prints and declared he would stop there, but he changed his mind almost immediately because of the limited view.

After walking a little farther, Shannon took up a position near a well used deer trail, and Skippy continued on for another 50 yards. The plan was for Skippy to ease into the woods and hopefully jump the buck.

The deer’s choice of when to rise from its bed and which way to run afterward would determine which of them might get a shot.

“We couldn’t have planned it any better,” Shannon said.

Pushed out of its daytime sanctuary, the buck ran straight for Shannon. He shot at it with his rifle, but the fleeing deer appeared unscathed. Shannon then shouldered his shotgun and sent three loads of 00 buckshot at the animal.

That did the trick. The plenty scathed buck dropped less than 50 yards farther into its flight.

“I felt bad for shooting Skippy’s deer, but he was happy for me. He really was,” Shannon said.

Copyright 2024 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd