Everything wrong turns out right with 170-class buck

Terrebonne Parish bruiser deer had never been seen before hunt.

When the deer you’re after is a mature heavy-antlered buck, everything has to be perfect to give a hunter the best chance at scoring a trophy. Or does it?

Houma state trooper Carey Kimball was faced with warm temperatures, swirling breezes and clouds of mosquitoes on the afternoon of Dec. 14 when he headed into the woods. Despite these and other conditions that most mature bucks would shun, a massive 11-point buck that later taped out about 170 inches stepped out – and Carey dropped it with one shot.

“I hunt a lease of approximately 3,000 acres in Terrebonne Parish but haven’t had much luck this year,” said Kimball, who goes by “trooper31” on the LouisianaSportsman.com forum. “A friend has access to some private acreage that joins our lease, and he invited me to come with him to check it out.”

His friend remembered a ladder stand he had placed on the property two years ago, a stand that had not been hunted. He suggested that he and Kimball check it out.

“We got to the stand, and it was covered with fallen limbs,” Kimball said. “While my friend tossed down the limbs, I walked around and found some deer tracks and a couple of little buck rubs.

Then the pair went back to the truck to decide where they were going to hunt that afternoon. The decision made was fortuitous for Kimball.

“My buddy had a headache and thought he’d stay in the truck or hunt a ground blind nearby, and (he) suggested maybe I should go sit on the ladder we’d just visited,” Kimball said.

Kimball climbed onto the ladder around 4 p.m., and noticed right away that the breeze was swirling this way and that, the temperature was fairly warm and, as sunset approached, the swarms of mosquitoes south Louisiana is known for made their presence known.

“I didn’t have much confidence, and as the mosquitoes got worse – I’d forgotten my face mask and gloves – I considered getting down and calling it a day,” Kimball said. “However, something just sort of told me to stay with it a little longer.”

So the hunter decided to tough it out, even though he had a possible solution to the biting insects.

“I had my Therma Cell with me, but it makes a loud click when you ignite it and I didn’t want to further alarm any deer that might be in the area,” Kimball said. “Instead, I got my mosquito repellant out of my pack, stood up and rubbed some on my face and head.”

No hunter in his right mind would use insect repellant in an open stand, but it was that or run from the woods.
And, it turns out, the deer didn’t seem to notice the repellant.

“As I sat back down, I heard a stick crack nearby,” Kimball said.

Soon after, Kimball could hear something walking, and it was close. Then the source of the noise stepped into a small clearing 30 yards away.

It was a big deer, but only the tips of antlers showed through the brush.

“I knew it was something I wanted to shoot, so I put the crosshairs on the shoulder and squeezed the trigger,” Kimball said. “The deer dropped on the spot.”

Still not knowing what he’d shot, other than that he thought was a decent buck, Kimball climbed down from the ladder and walked to the deer.

When he saw what he lay on the ground, he texted his friend, telling him he’d just shot an 11-point buck.

His buddy thought Kimball was “messing with him.”

“I finally convinced him that I’d just shot a really big buck, he joined me and we had a celebration right there in the woods,” Kimball said. “We found it hard to believe that this little piece of land was home to a buck this size; nobody had ever seen this deer.”

The buck, later aged at 5 ½ years old, sported 10 heavy, symmetrical mainframe points with an 8-inch sticker jutting out from near one of the brow tines. The buck was scored by three different people who came up with scores ranging from 169 to 171.

Click here to see another photo of the big deer.

“I think all the stars aligned for me that afternoon,” Kimball said. “I just happened to be in the right place at the right time, and it all fell in place for me.”

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About Glynn Harris 444 Articles
Glynn Harris is a long-time outdoor writer from Ruston. He writes weekly outdoor columns for several north Louisiana newspapers, has magazine credits in a number of state and national magazines and broadcasts four outdoor radio broadcasts each week. He has won more than 50 writing and broadcasting awards during his 47 year career.

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