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The story of this buck started back in June. The “RYE 10” was the first shooter we had showing up on our Reconyx cameras when we first put them out for summer. He was nicknamed the RYE 10 because we found his shed and got his first pictures in our CRP Rye field. He loved the cameras and was on five of the six cameras we had out on that portion of the farm. I was certain that this buck was four years old. He was definitely one of the many on our fall hit list.

After flying in from Wyoming on October 1, I was headed straight to the farm to start the Illinois archery season. The evening of October 2nd, I was hunting what we call the West End food plot. This was a plot planted in Biologic’s Last Bite and it was BEAUTIFUL! That evening we had a southwest wind, which was absolutely perfect. About an hour into the evening, we had several does in the field. Thirty minutes before last light, 8 Ball and the RYE 10 entered the foot plot at about 80 yards. I could not believe how big RYE 10’s body was, it was huge! We watched those two bucks the rest of the evening but never could get them within bow range.

Fast forward to November 16 … Opening day of Illinois gun season! The last 7 days I had filmed big brother try to kill one with his PSE. The week had gotten slow as it passed and big brother did not get to fill his tag. The RYE 10 had disappeared on Reconyx cameras since October 9th. He lived on our west end all summer and early fall but I wasn’t sure where he was now. First light of opening day of IL gun season brought several does. We were seeing a ton of deer out of our cedar tree Big Game ground blind. I was hunting a deer that we call Chewy. Chewy is a four year old 160’ 13 point. An hour after first light, I heard several shots across the road from our neighbor to the west. A couple minutes later, there were several does running across the CRP field in front of us. A few minutes after they passed, I could hear hoof prints getting closer to us. Out of nowhere, the RYE 10 came running ten yards right in front of the blind. I grunted loud to stop him. We went fumbling to get the cameras rolling and the TC ready. As soon as the cameras were on him, I left him have it with the Thompson Center Omega. He ran 150 yards through the field and fell on camera. The tall perfect rack four year old 10 point that we call the RYE 10 was down for the count! I just donkey punched my second buck over 150’ in two weeks! Boy was I glad the neighbors didn’t get him.

Big brother passed on a big mid 140s 8 point during the remainder of the weekend. I am now tagged out, but he still has two tags left that were going to do our best to get filled! I am very blessed to have taken two of my best bucks to date in the last three weeks. Dream Season the Journey keeps on rolling and hopefully big brother can get one down soon! Good luck to everybody and Happy Thanksgiving!