A three-season quest ends with a giant typical whitetail
|Rack Report Details
|184 6/8 inches
|Time of Year:
|October 27, 2019
|Lucas County, Iowa
|Mathews bow Bowhunting
It's not often a hunter has the opportunity to chase a Boone & Crockett typical. That's exactly what happened to Brook Current this season, though … and then some. But it was a long journey getting there.
I grew up the youngest of four boys, Current said. As a young kid, I'd always be up at 3 a.m. the first Saturday of the season to help my brothers and father pack for their once-a-year deer hunting trip. When I turned 12, I was finally old enough to carry my own gun and be a part of the hunt.
Sadly, his father passed away five years later. After his passing, the hunting group grew apart and Current prepared for college. He drifted away from hunting and fishing and focused solely on studies and starting a family.
Eventually, he met a co-worker and friend who brought him back to his roots. It's once again a way of life for him. It's how I live, Current said. Do the right thing. Put in the hard work. Treat things ethically and fairly. Respect the game. And go down the right path. Good things will happen.
Today, Current hunts a 118-acre tract of private land in Lucas County, Iowa. In December of 2017, I purchased my first recreational hunting farm, Current said. I found a piece of heaven that needed a lot of work. It was rolling hills covered in locust, cedars, thorn bushes and a few hardwood timber draws.
The pursuit for this 5 ½-year-old buck started soon after signing the dotted line. In 2017, Current passed on two 15-yard encounters with this buck (from the same treestand). He found the buck's matching sheds the next spring.
In 2018, I invited a friend from Tennessee to come and hunt my ground with me, Current said. It took him a few years to get a tag and I knew how much it would mean to him to harvest such a beautiful buck. During his stay, he also had an opportunity at this deer.
But he didn't connect on him. His friend took a 35-yard shot at the buck. Unfortunately, it ducked the arrow. A clean miss right over the back.
A week later, my neighbor called and said his cousin thought he hit the buck and wanted permission to look for blood (and the deer) on our land, Current said. I received a text the next day that they found the arrow, but no blood or buck. After that, I kept close eyes on my cameras. He showed up again with no wounds. Those few weeks sure were an emotional roller coaster. I had a thousand questions with no answers.
Current had to get back in the tree and hunt the deer. But it never came together. The buck survived another season. We set our goals on shed hunting and learning the travel patterns of the deer better, Current said. We bulldozed a food plot in the bottom near one of the main creeks and put in two more staging food plots around the farm.
That proved extremely beneficial and really set the stage for the following season. In the spring and summer of 2019, we focused on raising the soil quality of the existing food plots and extended the total acreage from 7 to 11 acres.
Then fall — and deer season — finally arrived. On October 27, Current quietly slipped along one of the established entry routes. He made it to the tree without bumping the brute. Light wind helped conceal him visually and audibly as he eased along and settled in for the hunt. His friend and longtime hunting partner, Chris Weese, climbed into his own stand to the South. Hopefully one of them would get a crack at the target buck.
The conditions were pretty good. He had 50% cloud cover with a variable wind out of the West. The temperature was in the mid 40s.
Needless to say, deer had everything they needed in the general vicinity, too. I was sitting on a hilltop fence row, Current said. In front of me, a north-running fence tied into a west-running fencerow. I had two gate openings on each fence that created a crossing trail. Along both running fences were some old hardwoods. Straight past that was a large CRP bedding field that was surrounded by more hardwoods. The hilltop dropped into a hardwood drainage valley to my left. On the right, a 20-yard-wide, half-acre food plot with clover, winter peas and radishes ran about 150 yards. Behind me was a creek that held water year-round.
Immediately after settling in, a small button buck stepped out of the CRP. Numerous does and fawns fed around him as the afternoon sun dipped closer to the horizon. As it started to set, a doe and fawn walked down the trail, but soon left. Then, they came back out. Or so Current thought. I originally believed it was the older mature doe just coming back to check things out and maybe grab one last bite of food. But then, I realized it was the main buck we were after. He was on a mission.
The deer quickly closed the distance and stopped just shy of his treestand. He paused for a few seconds, but eventually turned around to leave. Current made a faint mouth grunt to stop him. The deer halted 7 yards out and presented a perfectly broadside shot opportunity.
I quickly drew the bow, aimed and let the arrow fly, Current said. He instantly took off and my arrow and lighted knock were sticking out of him.
The deer jumped the closest fence, circled 20 yards to the left, jumped the same fence again, and ran down into a drainage. It covered 60 more yards, stopped for a few seconds, and crashed just out of sight.
I texted Chris first, Current said. He thought I was playing a joke on him. I got down and took a picture of the broken arrow and some blood on the leaves. I followed up by texting my wife to inform her I was going to be late … and for good reason.
The recovery proved to be an easy track, and the two hunting buddies found the buck right where Current heard him crash.
It's very hard to put the buck or the hunt into words, Current said. I feel it's God's way of showing me that patience, practice and hard work pay off. I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to chase a buck like this. And holding this deer brings back past memories I had with my late father.
After putting the deer on social media, a neighboring hunter 1¼ miles to the North reached out to Current. Apparently, the buck always summered on his property. The buck always left and headed for Current's farm shortly after losing its velvet. In 2018, the deer arrived on October 8. In 2019, it showed back up on October 10. There's a lesson in there somewhere.
The buck ended up scoring a whopping 184 6/8 inches. But that isn't the core message in this story. It's about a journey that one man took to get back to his roots. It's about the true meaning of deer hunting.
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