Arcadia’s Thomas Bourn has been a dog hunter all his life — he much prefers to listen to hound music as he waits for the dogs to push a deer over to his location.
However, he decided to climb into a deer stand and still hunt on the morning of Nov. 14 when a big 8-point buck opted to make an appearance.
“I belong to the Pine Knot Hunting Club north of Athens in Claiborne Parish, and one portion of the club is owned by an old fellow who lets me hunt his 120 acres in exchange with me furnishing him plenty of venison over the course of the season,” Bourn said. “I like this particular spot because on one side are about the only hardwoods on the property, and this year they’re loaded with acorns. There’s a heavy thicket on the other side.
“I also plant a food plot and utilize a feeder on this site where I have a box stand.”
On Friday afternoon, Bourn, 34, took off work from his family’s trucking business, drove to the woods and climbed into the stand around 3:30.
“Just before 5:00, I watched some does and yearlings start filtering out of the woods onto the clearing to feed. I was watching seven on one side of me with three others on the opposite side,” he said. “I was surrounded by does and yearlings.”
As the sun began to set and it started getting late, Bourn had pretty much decided that would be all he’d see that day — when he looked up and watched a big buck step out of the brush and move towards the does.
“He started to head back in the thickets when he gave me a quartering away shot from 175 yards,” Bourn said. “I shoot a .25-06 Sako bolt action and when I squeezed the trigger, I knew I hit him because of the way he reacted.”
Bourn walked down to the spot where the deer was standing, saw evidence of a hit and found the 181-pound 8-point with an 18 ½-inch inside spread piled up 50 yards away. The buck was estimated to be in the 140-inch class.
Bourn utilizes trail cams to scout the deer in the area, and he said that while some good bucks have shown up on his cameras, he has never captured a photo of this particular deer.
“This stand has been good to me,” said Bourn. “I have two mounts on my wall at my house of bucks I got off this stand and this one, which is the biggest one I ever got, will be number three.”
Read other stories about big bucks killed this season by clicking here.