Apache the South Texas Whitetail

Derrick_Apache_Cover

Growing up in Texas everyone dreams of being able to go to south Texas and hunt the Muy Grande. Some people just get lucky and I was one of those people. Thanks to some awesome in-laws, I have been able to hunt the south Texas brush country for almost 12 years now and it is definitely one of those special places. Up until this year my biggest deer was a 159” 10 point that I had taken on the same property at 585 yards. Based on the way we do our deer management, this year was finally my year to take a big one.

I knew my year had been coming, so in the previous years when I went to the stand I was always looking for the younger deer that one day would be the mature trophy deer. I had narrowed in on two bucks that I really wanted to hunt. We started out early in the year running cameras like most people. I soon realized that one of the bucks I was watching had really gone down hill and the unexpecting deer we called “Apache” had really grown up and was a really nice deer. I could not wait until the season opened. In the past years we have really always hunted hard for management deer and it was always a long season for me, knowing I had picked a mature trophy buck I expected nothing different.

Opening week came and I was in the stand as soon as I could get to the ranch. Our place is under DMP 3 so that came in the hot part of October. As Tye, our ranch manager and camera man, and I sat in the hot stand swatting away swarms of mosquitoes, the sun was beginning to set. I expected not to see Apache so I was already planning the morning hunt in my mind and starting to gather my gear. Tye was looking out the blind window that I had my back to when he suddenly said, “I see some bucks moving through the brush, they will cross this sendero so you may get ready.”

Up to this point we had not seen a single buck, so I really expected it to be a couple of young deer. When Apache stepped into the sendero I immediately knew it was him. We got the camera rolling just as we were losing camera light. I got my 28 Nosler steadied and ready to go. He was quartered toward me when I squeezed off the shot ... WHACK ... I knew I had just shot the biggest deer of my life!

We gave it about 10 minutes and then walked down to retrieve him. I got a terrible eerie feeling when we found very little to no blood. How was that possible? It was my 28 Nosler. Tye and I decided to be safe and get the tracking dogs just to make sure. After a short 30 yard trail job, there was the buck!

I immediately saw something strange with one of his antlers. There was a chunk missing. After watching the film back we knew exactly what it was. Somehow, in the split second of me pulling the trigger the buck had dropped his head and the bullet went right through his antler while still managing to break the shoulder and harvest the buck!

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We got the buck back to camp and had him weighed and measured. I expected him to gross somewhere in the mid 170s but he actually gross scored 185 4/8” and weighed over 230 pounds!

I am pretty sure I will never harvest a bigger whitetail in my life and I cannot wait to get the mount back and hanging on my wall.

Derrick_Apache_28Nosler

  • Posted on November 23, 2016