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Giant Bucks Of The Pines & Post Oak
"I am very thankful I didn't check that camera until I did," Willis said. "Otherwise, I wouldn't have been able to leave that other stand alone. I would have been 1,500 yards away when he stepped out in my oat patch."
KIMBERLIN'S GIANT FROM GRAYSON COUNTY
Interestingly, the tract that Kimberlin hunts, which spans a meager 96 acres, is roughly 10 miles from the Hagerman Wildlife Refuge, one of the top-ranked archery hotspots in the entire South.
Kimberlin was hunting a woodsline adjacent to an old stock tank when the big buck came sneaking in. The rut being in full swing, the hunter had already passed up shots on several deer in the 140 class. "I saw 14 different bucks that afternoon and had several of them in shooting range," he recalled. "It was one of those rare days when the deer were running everywhere."
The hunt turned magical at about 5 p.m., when Kimberlin saw a large buck approaching about 30 yards away. For some reason, however, the buck changed course and began walking straight away from Kimberlin's tree stand.
Certain that the big buck was about to leave the area, Kimberlin used his mouth to simulate a grunt-wheeze call; the trick worked beautifully. "He came unglued when I did that," he said. "He came stomping across the tank dam and tore up about 15 trees over the next 30 minutes. Then he walked about 8 yards from my stand."
Kimberlin drilled the buck through the heart; it took three steps and dropped within seconds. The buck ranks No. 2 among Region 5 non-typicals behind Jack Brittingham's 202 3/8 net Anderson County monster.
LITTLE KID, BIG BUCK
It was dark-thirty -- the bewitching time for white-tailed deer -- when the buck stepped into the freshly planted food plot. "Bradley had missed a big deer at about 225 yards earlier in the day and he was about ready to take a shot at a big 9-pointer we'd been seeing," the senior Chapin said. "I told him he should wait, because we knew there was a bigger deer in the area.
"He's glad he waited now."
The buck stepped out at about 150 yards and was heading away. The youngster shouldered his .243 and waited patiently for the buck to turn broadside.
"He squeezed off the second the buck turned and made a perfect shot," Chapin said. "It was a really neat experience seeing my son shoot the biggest buck of his life."
Chapin's buck, an 18-pointer, grosses 179 1/8 and nets 177 1/8.
THE REST OF THE BEST
The non-typical lineup went like this: Mike Chance, Hunt County, 183 6/8 gross, 172 5/8 net; Carroll Moran, Navarro County, 179 6/8 gross, 168 net; Region 6 Typical; Steve Coulter, San Augustine County, 158 gross, 155 net; Margie Seaman, Angelina County, 153 3/8 gross, 151 7/8 net; Dana Day, Cherokee County, 157 3/8 gross, 151 5/8 net; Brian Vickery, Marion County, 155 2/8 gross, 151 2/8 net.
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