Illinois Bowhunter Bags Giant 22-Point Nontypical

Illinois Bowhunter Bags Giant 22-Point Nontypical

Posted 2022-12-09T11:29:00Z  by  Michael Pendley

Rack Report Details
Buck:243 2/8
Time of Year:November, 16 2022
Place:Fayette County, Illinois
Weapon: Mathews V3X   

Some deer are special. Illinois bowhunter Xen Mcallister said every hunter in a five-mile radius knew about this buck. And they were all chasing him.

I had trail cameras of him the year before, Mcallister said. He was probably a 190-plus-inch inch deer then. I never saw him in person, but other people had. People would line up to glass whatever bean field he was feeding in before the season came in.

The huge buck is remarkably symetrical.

Fast forward to this year. Mcallister got the first trail camera photos of the deer in late April.

"You could tell he was going to be huge," he said.

On Nov. 16, Mcallister had a rare day off to spend in the stand.

With shotgun season about to start and the rut kicking in, I knew it was a good time to be in the stand, he said.

Mcallister took his buck to Korte Meat Processing, which shared the first photos on social media.

He hunted till 11 a.m. and saw some young bucks chasing, but no shooters. Mcallister climbed down and headed in for lunch.

I don't normally head to the stand early in the afternoon, but something made me think I probably needed to head back to the woods, even with the stiff wind that was blowing that afternoon, he said.

At 2:20 p.m., he climbed back into his stand, which was in a small stand of timber surrounded by ag fields. He was positioned about 40 yards back from the field edge but could still see into the neighboring cornfield.

Less than a minute expired between first sight of the buck and the time it was down.

At 2:27 p.m., just a few minutes after he settled in, Mcallister was shocked to see the giant buck standing in the field just 150 yards away.

I was surprised to say the least, I had trail camera photos of the deer, but I'd never seen him in person until that moment, Mcallister said.

Mcallister knew he had to get the buck's attention to hopefully bring him over the fence and into bow range.

I grunted twice," he said. "The buck stopped and looked my direction, and then started to walk my way for a few steps. Then he stopped and looked back the way he came, like there was a doe back there he didn't want to leave."

While Mcallister had multiple trail camera photos for two years, this was the first time he had seen the buck in person.

Knowing his only chance was to ramp up his calling, Mcallister gave a loud snort-wheeze. The big buck instantly stared his direction and came on a fast walk.

He was coming fast," Mcallister said. "I told myself to get it together. This was going to happen. He came to 75 yards, then to 50. At that point, he paused. I tickled my rattling antlers together and he locked on. At that point, he was coming. He jumped the fence and came in to 15 yards. I had been fumbling with my range-finder trying to get a range on him as he came, but then he got close enough that I realized I didn't need it and just concentrated on getting the shot."

The period from the first sighting to the shot happened so quickly that Mcallister didn't have time to get shaken up.

The buck was well within range but still walking. Mcallister came to full draw with his V3X. He gave the buck a light meh to stop him. When the buck stopped, he released the arrow. The shot looked good, and Mcallister watched as the giant buck bolted 80 yards before piling up.

He was busting through the cover like a bull in a china shop, he said.

When Mcallister got to him, the buck still had a ton of brush and limbs stuck in his rack.

Everything happened so fast from the time I first saw him till the time that I shot that I didn't have time to get excited," he said. "It was probably only 45 seconds from the time I saw him till the time I saw him go down. But after I shot and saw him fall, I started to shake. My only thought was to get down out of my stand without falling."

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When he walked up to the buck, Mcallister knew he had something special.

I've killed a few bucks, all with archery equipment, and my biggest up till that point scored 163," he said. "This buck dwarfed those deer."

Several hunters in the area were after the buck.

Mcallister soon started to hear from other hunters in the area who had been chasing the buck.

One guy showed me the busted arrow where he had shot at the buck and missed just a couple of weeks before, Mcallister said.

With all the attention, Mcallister decided to get ahead of any possible rumors and called the local game warden. He showed him where he had been hunting and where the deer was standing when he shot.

It turns out that the buck was traveling, (as) other hunters in the area almost two miles away had pictures of the buck earlier that morning, Mcallister said.

Other hunters nearly two miles away had trail cameras of the buck earlier on same day.

Mcallister took his buck to a local processor, Korte Meat Processing, which took and posted a couple of photos on its Facebook page. The post quickly went viral with more than 10,000 shares and thousands of comments. It's easy to see why. Mcallister's buck is a main-frame 6-by-6 but has 22 scorable points and a remarkably symmetrical rack for a nontypical deer. Mcallister had a certified scorer measure the rack and came up with a massive 243-2/8 gross and just 7-¼ inches of deductions for a net of 236 inches green score. If that holds after the buck has gone through the required drying period and is officially scored by Boone and Crockett, Mcallister's buck will easily place in the top 50 all-time Illinois nontypical deer ever taken.

It's funny. I was just in the right place at the right time. If I had stayed at the house for a few extra minutes or had stopped at the gas station for a snack or something, I probably would have never even seen this buck, much less killed him, Mcallister said.

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