My current hunting buddy is my step daughter’s son Champ. He is a natural born outdoorsman and at 11 years old he’s spent more time in the woods; and likely knows more about woodsmanship and understands more about locating and hunting our local wild game, Whitetail deer and wild hogs, than most 30-40 year olds do. I’m not lying, Champ knows his way around in the woods.

The Friday after this Thanksgiving Champ wanted to zero in on a big wild boar showing up regularly on his SpyPoint mobile game camera. While he was doing that, I hunted in a weather worn, years old tin shed 250 yards west of Champ’s ground blind. As time passed my area got nuts with deer activity, all does, but that’s ok because the rut is coming on right now and this steady flow of does in and out of my area might get the attention of a nice mature buck.

Three of the members of our deer lease were also down to hunt, Richey, John and Collin Cottrell. I kept up with everyone by texting them and they were seeing deer also. An hour before dark 5 does were scattered around my area. Something caught their attention and all of the does looked in the direction of an area I couldn’t see — south of my dirt-floor tin shed.

Suddenly … from the right, a buck walked into my view, only a few feet away from my shooting cut-out. He was a big, mature buck, 5 1/2 or more in age. He was a buck that holds down the nickname of the “Crown Buck” because of his unusual straight and evenly spaced up tines, the high shape of his rack and the circular shape of the main beams.

I quietly stepped backward.

Woops! He looked into the cut-out, right at me.

CONTINUED…