Editor’s Note: Forty-seven year old Kevin Faver of St. Augustine, Florida, is a charter-boat captain. “But I always tell people I fish to hunt,” Faver says. “I’ve been wearing Mossy Oak my entire hunting career and been on the Mossy Oak Pro Staff for 5 years.”
As I’ve mentioned, a giant Florida buck will score 110 to 120 on Boone & Crockett. So, each year I take two trips out of state with some friends of mine and go to Indiana, and the years I get drawn for Kansas, I’ll hunt there.
A few years ago I took a buck with my PSE Evo bow that scored 168 on Pope &Young. When I go to Kansas to hunt, I try and set-up the trip, so that I can be in a tree stand on November 10 and plan to hunt all day on that date. I often leave home and drive to Kansas on November 7 or November 8. I’ve discovered, in the area that I hunt in Kansas that Veterans Day, November 10, has been a magic day for me. On that date every year, when I get to hunt in Kansas, I always see large numbers of bucks chasing does.
On November 10 a couple of years ago, I was hunting a Kansas creek bottom. On my right was a grassy plateau. Late that afternoon, I watched a 4 point cross the little creek in front of me – only 20-yards from me. I saw him turn and go up to the top of a grassy plateau. When he reached the top, the 4 point stopped and looked hard to my right. As I looked in the same direction, I spotted this huge buck walking sideways with his ears pointed back and rut on his mind. He kept coming broadside to me.
Earlier that morning, I had used my range finder to identify landmarks that were at 30 yards all the way around my tree stand. When I first saw the buck, he was at 50 yards. I said to myself, “Just keep on coming to my 30-yard landmark.” Just before the buck reached my 30-yard landmark, I drew my PSE EVO and released the arrow. I had aimed right behind the front shoulder, and my shot was a little low. So, I assumed I had a heart shot. As I waited in my tree stand, rain began to fall. I had to make one of two choices. Go after that buck immediately, or let him stay overnight (the weather was cool, so I knew the meat wouldn’t spoil), and go get him the next morning. I knew this was the biggest buck I ever had seen in the woods when I was bowhunting. I didn’t want to run the risk of losing this animal however, by possibly jumping him up, if I immediately went to find him. Just as I was trying to make the decision, a flash of lightning popped nearby. I realized the wrong thing to do was for me to stay in the tree stand. I came out of my stand and went back to camp, believing the next morning I should be able to quickly and easily find my bow buck of a lifetime. The weather got much worse before clearing the next morning. I searched for my deer, but we couldn’t find him.
In Florida, if you can’t locate a deer you’ve shot late in the afternoon, and you have to leave him overnight, then the next morning when you go to the spot where you’ve arrowed the deer, you start looking for buzzards circling the dead animal. In Kansas, when you’re searching for a deer that you’ve arrowed late in the afternoon, you look and listen for coyotes. When we returned early the next morning to search for my deer, we saw several coyotes going toward a certain area about 1/2-mile from where I had shot the deer. We went to that spot, and sure enough, the coyotes had discovered my buck and had begun to eat on the hindquarters. However, we were able to save the front 2/3 of my buck, and there was no damage to his head, neck and/or shoulders. I couldn’t believe how big this buck was, especially compared to the deer I had taken in my home State of Florida.