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East Texas Public Buck #8055369 11/18/20 07:58 PM
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ndhunter Offline OP
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Pretty nice Public Land Buck. What a way to start your day.

[Linked Image]

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/te...-land-a-little-luck-and-the-15736214.php





Last edited by ndhunter; 11/18/20 07:59 PM. Reason: add link
Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055379 11/18/20 08:10 PM
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As the article says, truly the buck of a lifetime!


Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055388 11/18/20 08:19 PM
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That is a dream buck. I'd love an 8 like that.


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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055396 11/18/20 08:25 PM
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What a buck flehan


Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: hook_n_line] #8055399 11/18/20 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by hook_n_line
That is a dream buck. I'd love an 8 like that.


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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055416 11/18/20 08:47 PM
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I like the mass and dark color of antlers!

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055419 11/18/20 08:49 PM
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To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.

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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055424 11/18/20 08:53 PM
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Texas Dan Offline
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Where big bucks often go to die of old age.

Very nice.


Dan

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055426 11/18/20 08:54 PM
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eeks333

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055433 11/18/20 09:04 PM
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Wow! Dang nice buck!


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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055456 11/18/20 09:28 PM
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What a great write up and what a great buck. 150+ 8 points are not common. Congrats to the hunter. That buck is going to make a great mount.

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055471 11/18/20 09:37 PM
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snake oil Online Content
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Mass out the azz


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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055492 11/18/20 09:45 PM
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Wow that’s nice

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055594 11/18/20 11:31 PM
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Congrats on a great Buck!

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055608 11/18/20 11:38 PM
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I am on a couple of other sites that deal with East Texas hunting and one concerning the Davy Crockett Forest in particular and people are killing some outstanding bucks! This one really stood out though.

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055617 11/18/20 11:45 PM
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Unbelievable deer. My dream buck.

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055648 11/19/20 12:20 AM
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Very nice


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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: 4Weight] #8055677 11/19/20 12:43 AM
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Originally Posted by 4Weight
What a great write up and what a great buck.


For sure.

The article tells the story how pure luck is often the key ingredient in deer hunting success.


Dan

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: MoTex] #8055679 11/19/20 12:44 AM
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Originally Posted by MoTex
I like the mass and dark color of antlers!


See y'all around the campfire.

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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8055690 11/19/20 12:50 AM
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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8056097 11/19/20 10:58 AM
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Wow!

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8056127 11/19/20 12:00 PM
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Great 8 cheers
Opened the link it wants you to subscribe which I did not or go to home page which I did, could not find the article, will you copy and paste it here.

Last edited by Stub; 11/19/20 12:03 PM.

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Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8056315 11/19/20 02:45 PM
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Very nice!!!

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: Stub] #8056375 11/19/20 03:23 PM
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Here you go

Quote
East Texas public land, a little luck and the deer of a lifetime
Matt Wyatt Nov. 18, 2020

A deer hunter can spend an entire existence in search of a free-ranging whitetail buck of legendary status.

Despite the time and effort, few will ever realize this dream.

Occasionally, though, fate smiles and luck triumphs in the most unlikely of ways.

That’s what happened last Tuesday when Lukey Smith strolled into Davy Crockett National Forest late one balmy morning and forever etched himself into the lore of Texas deer hunting.

That day, in those woods, he stumbled upon the deer of his life — an 8-pointer that scored 159 2/8.

Smith wasn’t even there to hunt. He was scouting for a place to hunt in Trinity County for the first time. The 38-year-old had never hunted deer in Davy Crockett National Forest. He’d only hunted raccoons there with his father back in the 1980s.

“I wasn’t hunting a big deer. I was hunting for a place to hunt big deer,” said Smith.

He’d not been seeing much at the spots he usually hunts in Polk and Angelina counties, so he thought he’d give the national forest a try with the insistence of his brother-in-law, Walter Matthews. Smith was not much of a public land hunter, but Matthews grew up hunting Davy Crockett and knows it well. And Smith was raised on the adage that when things get tough, you “gotta get down and go hunting, you just can’t keep sitting.”

So, the pair of Diboll natives drove up a forest service road and parked around 9:30 a.m. They waited until later in the morning to begin their scout as to not disrupt any fellow hunters.

Smith and Matthews trekked deep and began scouting the hardwood bottomlands. They walked around like they owned the woods and weren’t trying to be quiet. They’d sit for a while and then get up and scout around and sit back down again.

Smith was only a couple hundred yards away from Matthews when he sat down for the last time. In his safety orange shirt, he planted himself under a pine tree with a little bush in front of him. He didn’t have much cover when the biggest deer he’s ever seen popped out 40 yards from him.

The buck looked like a trophy hunter logo that’d be found on the back windshield of a truck. And it kept getting bigger in Smith’s eyes. Fortunately, over 30 years of hunting experience took over and Smith raised his .257 Roberts before the buck fever set in.


The deer was not just a beast when it came to antlers. The 5.5-year-old Pineywoods king had been hardened by time and elements. It took three rounds for Smith to bring him down. He’d later find non-lethal squirrel shot embedded in the deer’s hide.

It was a minute past noon when Smith dispatched the buck. Matthews, hearing the barrage and thinking his brother-in-law had just tore into a pack of hogs, arrived quickly and nearly “passed smooth out” as he bore witness to one of the most impressive deer harvests to ever occur on Texas public lands.

The two celebrated before realizing they were truly unprepared to harvest this deer. They’d walked all day and plunged into the depths of the Davy Crockett National Forest, further than they realized.

It took three and a half hours to drag the buck a thousand yards out of the woods. The two toiled nearly to the point of collapse. Good friend Jonathan McGuire, who grabbed a few Gatorades and burned rubber, showed up to save the day.

“That was a hell of a drag. I never want to do that again. Unless it’s a deer equal to that one,” Matthews said.

Smith took the deer to Lufkin to be scored by Adam Huggins, an official scorer for Texas Big Game Awards. Huggins tallied up the 159 2/8, including a nearly 20-inch inside spread. He, too, had never seen a bigger 8-pointer. It is one of the biggest 8-pointers ever taken off Texas public lands.

Both hunter and scorer consider the buck a testament to the effectiveness of antler restrictions. A regulation that requires harvested whitetail bucks to have a 13-inch minimum inside spread has taken deer management in Texas to a new level over the last two decades. The regulation began as an experiment in six counties in 2002 and went into effect in Trinity County in 2009.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department implemented the antler restriction to lift the age structure of bucks, tighten the rut and subsequently shorten the fawning season. Fawns have a higher survival rate from prey when most are put on the ground at the same time, improving the overall health of the herd.

For hunters, though, this has increased potential to harvest a trophy as older bucks are left on the landscape.

“The 2.5-year-old bucks that were traditionally harvested are being protected until at least 3.5. And by then they’re pretty smart and may make it to 5.5 and older,” said Bill Adams, TPWD’s Pineywoods ecosystem project leader at Alazan Bayou wildlife management area.

Smith's buck spent years taking advantage of ample habitat. Davy Crockett National Forest covers over 160,000 acres and Trinity County alone accounts for over 67,000 acres of it. The Neches River bottom provides chunks of hardwood habitat with good acorn production and food sources. When the river floods, plant succession is set back. New growth and thickets provide excellent bedding areas.

“With a little age, good groceries and good genetics, the environment can certainly produce some whoppers,” Adams said.

“Accessing river bottoms sometimes can be a challenge. So, I think a lot of those big bucks are preserved for only those few that really want to get in there and get after it.”

Smith and Matthews are among those few.

Smith was in the right place at the right time. But to say it was just blind luck would be selling him short. Smith’s been sitting under trees since he was seven and spent several years as a hunting guide. He knows what he’s doing. He knows what to look for, and he found it.

Adams added that pre-scouting with maps online and reaching out to experienced hunters in social media groups can be keys to success for those interested in hunting public lands.

The massive 8-pointer shatters stereotypes, showing what’s truly possible in East Texas and on public lands. East Texas is traditionally a challenge to deer hunters. Deer densities are generally lower than other portions of the state, while hunting pressure can be higher. Heavy acorn production can keep deer off feeders, for those hunting private land, and the thick cover can keep deer concealed.

“I don’t think there’s a critter in Texas more challenging to hunt than an East Texas whitetail,” Adams said.

Smith’s buck adds to the growing portfolio of East Texas monsters. While most will never see a deer like this, the frequency with which hunters in East Texas harvest big, mature bucks is growing.

Smith is now a full endorser of public land hunting. The buck raised the bar for not only him, but his four sons as well, and perhaps all those who’ve laid eyes on it. Matthews, without pulling a trigger, considered the hunt one of the greatest experiences of his life. Neither will ever forget it.

And it can happen to anyone.

“The chances and the possibility are always there. I’m just an old country boy from East Texas. I would have never paid $10,000 to kill that deer on a ranch. I never would have done it,” Smith said.

“I think it will change the way people view Texas public hunting lands from this point forward.”



https://www.houstonchronicle.com/te...-land-a-little-luck-and-the-15736214.php

Re: East Texas Public Buck [Re: ndhunter] #8056456 11/19/20 04:04 PM
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Thanks cool story up Questions any guess on live weight and I assume you field dresses it before dragging it 1,000 yards.


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