Two years of persistence paid off for Jeremy Knight on September 14 when he landed what he calls his buck of a lifetime.
The 33-year-old Kentuckian first saw this dream buck on a game camera he runs on the farm he hunts in Franklin. “I checked my camera on June 22, 2013, and saw this huge buck in velvet. He was bigger than anything I’d ever seen on the property and looking at him I just said, ‘Wow!’”
Knowing that he’d have to put in some serious work to get a crack at the tobacco-farm monster, Knight set mineral licks throughout the property to keep the big buck—nicknamed Stickers—in the area, and placed game cameras to track the whitetail’s movements.
The work paid off, and by the time bow season rolled around in September, Knight had a good idea of where he should place his ground blind. He was hunting that blind on a cold, rainy morning when he first saw the bruiser in the flesh. Knight watched the deer amble through the woods until he stopped within twenty-five yards of the blind. Knight aimed and released.
“I was just sick to my stomach. Just sick over the thought that I’d missed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Disgusted, Knight left the stand and stayed away from the farm for more than a week. “I hoped my not hunting would put the buck at ease,” he said. The plan worked—Knight caught repeated glimpses of the elusive monster on his game cameras after his first encounter.
“Of course, all the pictures were night shots. The deer went completely nocturnal on me.”
Still, Knight hunted twice a day, seven days a week, in an attempt to get another shot—be it archery, muzzleloader, or rifle-at the animal. That never happened, however, and the season ended.
Knight kept the cameras in place during the off-season in an attempt to keep tabs on the buck. The buck came and went from the property sporadically, but remained on the farm for the most part. Until the 2014 season opener, that is.
Knight's Kentucky buck is eligible for OL's Deer of the Year program. Upload a photo of your own 2014/2015 buck for a chance to win great gear from Gerber and land your deer on the cover of Outdoor Life magazine.