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Thankful
 

It was October 2003 and I was on my first guided whitetail bow hunt with IMB Monster Bucks outfitters in Pike County Illinois. This would turn out to be my "greatest hunting experience" of all time. It was the third morning of my hunt and the weather conditions were perfect. My guide had dropped me at my stand location well before daylight. My tree stand was facing the opposite side of the hill overlooking a creek bottom. At first I believed this set up would prove to be unproductive. I quickly learned that you "Do not guide the guide".

As I sat there thinking, that I was not going to see a deer, I heard a splash in the creek behind me. I glanced in that direction and saw a doe and two fawns. It was not long before I heard another splash. Thinking it was the same three deer, I looked over and to my surprise saw nothing but horns. Within seconds the big buck was under my tree. I turned and drew my Clear Water bow as the big bruiser walked right into my shooting lane. As soon as I squeezed the trigger on my Tru-Ball release, I knew the Beamen 340 ICS carbon arrow, tipped with a Spit Fire 85 grain mechanical broad head had found its mark.

After realizing I had just harvested a "Buck of a Lifetime" I sat down to reflect on what had just happened. First I thanked the Good Lord above for a wonderful day and the opportunity to harvest such a beautiful animal. I then proceeded to climb down from my tree stand to admire the "True Illinois Monster". He was a non-typical 12-point that would later score 162 3/8.

I would like to give special thanks to Darrin and Glenda Bradley co-owners of IMB Monster Bucks. I would also like to thank Tyler, Houston, Bob, Tony and Dave for all of their help and hard work. On a final note, the accommodations provided by Andy Sprague and his mother Pat at Kinderhook Lodge are second to none.

Smokey

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