There’s no such thing as a ‘typical’ archery season. When the two trophy bucks Mark was targeting on his Iowa farm were killed by his friend on an adjacent property and he couldn’t find any others to chase, he adapted by heading to Missouri.

Mark’s experience has taught him that due to higher doe numbers in the Show-Me State, the rut kicks off a few days earlier than in Iowa.  With no clear trophies to chase up north, he pulled the cards out of his Reconyx cameras on his Missouri farm and found a heavy-bodied eight pointer consistently on his feet during daylight.

The BioLogic Non-Typical Clover field was a rut riot during Mark’s evening hunt. Multiple young bucks came through the clover field harassing does. 30 minutes before sunset, with the moon on the rise, a single doe picked her way through a pinch point just 40 yards from Mark’s position. Three minutes later, her suitor showed up following along the same path.

With the buck at 42 yards, Mark came to full draw on his PSE Carbon Air and stopped the deer. As the shot went off, the buck dropped eight inches to make his getaway. The Rage impacted him high and in the spine, causing the giant eight to drop in his tracks. A quick follow-up shot put a swift end to him.

Mark was happy for his friend and neighbor to have killed those two Iowa trophies (one was over 200 inches), though it did throw a curveball at his archery season. Instead of wasting time focusing on what could have been, he made a plan and took action to keep his season moving forward…even if it wasn’t what he envisioned.

In the end, Mark was able to take a great Missouri buck. Who knows? Maybe there’s something bigger and better than he anticipated in store for the remainder of his Iowa archery season.

As told to Tim Kjellesvik.