Kara Blessing of Lake Charles has her mom to thank for encouraging her to take advantage of her husband’s invitation to give hunting a try. Prior to the death of her mom some two years ago, Blessing’s future husband Jody, who is a serious hunter, had urged her to consider hunting. Her mom was very special to her and her encouragement coupled with Jody’s urging resulted in Blessing putting the scope on the largest deer she had ever seen.
“Jody and I hunt several public areas around the state, plus we have a 12,000 acre lease in Beauregard Parish near DeQuincy. We plant food plots and use corn to attract deer on the lease,” said Blessing.
One year ago, a big buck had appeared on a game camera, a deer that captivated her attention to the point that she decided to get serious about trying just for him. She had the opportunity to take a smaller buck last season but never fired a shot, deciding to wait for the big one.
A strong feeling
On the morning of October 18, Blessing, who works at St. Patrick Hospital in Lake Charles, awakened from a dream at their camp near their lease. Something told her she needed to get up, get dressed and head for her box stand.
“I told Jody I wanted to hunt that morning and he decided to pass up the opportunity and hang around the camp. He agreed to drive me near my stand and would be hanging by the phone in case I needed him,” she said.
After her husband dropped her off, she walked to the stand, climbed aboard and was settled in before daylight.
A moment of reflection
“One thing I love about deer hunting is the solitude of sitting and reflecting and watching nature do what it does. After getting settled in, I did what I always do when I start to hunt. I sat there in the dark, remembering my mom, talking to her and spending time reflecting on how thankful I was to be sitting here experiencing the outdoors,“ Blessing said.
As it began to get daylight, she was suddenly brought back to reality when she looked up to see a big deer standing in the lane some 90 yards away.
“He was just standing there and when I got my 35 Whelan up and looked through the scope and saw how wide his antlers were, I knew it was the one we had on camera. This was the biggest deer I’d ever seen and believe me, I started shaking. However, I was able to get the crosshairs on his shoulder and squeezed off a shot. Rocking back from the recoil, I was unable to see which way the buck ran.
“I called Jody all excited and told him what I had just shot and he told me to just wait in the stand and he was on his way,” Blessing said.
Locating the big buck
When Jody arrived a few minutes later, she walked him down to where the deer was standing and at first, there was no evidence that she had connected. Disturbed ground indicated the buck had run to the left so the search began. Some blood was spotted on a bush and then further along, more blood was spotted.
“Jody told me to stand at the last blood we found when I spotted a trail that looked like something had gone down it. Jody walked down the trail and then I heard him yell, ‘Oh my gosh!’ He had found my buck that had run only 40 yards from where I shot him. When I walked up on him and saw how big he was, I hugged Jody and then started bawling,” she said.
The buck sported 12 points with an inside spread of just shy of 20 inches. It weighed 180 pounds and was determined to be either 5 or 6 years old. The buck was green scored at 148 inches.
“One thing that impressed me,” said Blessing, “is that we last saw the buck on camera on Oct. 18, 2018. I shot him October 18, 2019.”