The stories from the Big Buck Zone’s “Blue-Collar Bucks” come from everyday hunters who work hard for a living, but hunt even harder during their free time. These hunters do their homework and don’t rely on guides or fences to get the job done. Take Michael Thompson, for example. Mike works fulltime as a mechanic for the Locart Jet Company in Texas. However, when deer season is open you can bet the farm that Thompson and his friends will be in a treestand somewhere. Thompson hunts a lot in his home state of Texas and he also enjoys chasing the monster bucks of Kansas when he has the opportunity to miss work.

43fa Check out this giant Texas buck Thompson nicknamed “Hoss” that he dropped with his bow during the rut. While in the stand, Thompson was surrounded by deer and observed several small bucks chasing does. With all the activity he decided to mix things up and hit the deer with some grunts and estrous doe bleats. Seconds later, Thompson heard heavy splashing in the creek below his stand and caught a glimpse of a tall-tined bruiser chasing a doe. He told himself to stop looking at the massive rack and clipped on his release. The doe passed by his stand with the rut-crazed buck right on her tail creating the perfect shot. According to Thompson, this was the biggest buck he had ever encountered with his bow and it really put his nerves to the test.

“I could see the buck with my peripheral vision following the doe right toward my stand. As he came into my shooting lane, I gave him a baaap and he threw on the brakes. I touched my release and watched as the fletching disappeared behind the buck’s shoulder. I was shaking so badly that I probably would have fallen out of the tree if I had not been strapped in with my safety belt. I had worked so hard for this deer and probably spent over 82 hours in the stand before finally getting a shot, but it was all worth it in the end. The buck had G2’s that measured right at 13 inches and G3’s that were just over 11 inches long with a gross score of 164.

43f9 Talking with Thompson and covering this story has made me want to put away my shotgun along with my turkey calls and grab my bow. I know it’s just April, but I am already fired-up and thinking about September. Thanks Michael for sharing this remarkable story and trail camera photos and reminding us all of how much fun it is to be in the woods during the rut!—Travis Faulkner