B For most of us, driving hours to the beach during the summer and facing annoying crowds and hot temperatures just doesn’t get our blood pumping. We’d much rather spend those days sitting in a stand with a grunt tube and rattling bag in hand. This was definitely the case for Chris Skinner who works full-time as an aircraft mechanic at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in Fort Worth Texas. Skinner decided to take the last of his saved vacation days and spend them in the big-buck state of Kansas.

C On the last day of the hunt, Skinner had seen very little action and decided to make the long drive back to Texas. Just before climbing out of the stand he heard a stick break to the left of the river bed below. Suddenly, Skinner noticed movement through the thick cover and was shocked to see a massively racked Kansas giant slowly working its way toward his stand. For 15 minutes, he patiently watched this bruiser and desperately tried to calm his nerves. Finally, the buck made the mistake of passing through a cleared shooting lane just 10 yards from his stand. Skinner gave a soft grunt to stop the buck and let an arrow fly that would completely change his outlook on the long trip back home. The buck kicked out its hind legs and ran only 40 yards from his stand before piling up in the brush. If you ask me that beats the heck out of a vacation to the beach! Congratulations Chris on a phenomenal buck and awesome hunt. I wonder where Chris will spend his vacation days this season?—Travis Faulkner