December 8: Terry Drury

Iowa deer camp is always the highlight of Terry’s deer season, especially this year because brother Mark did the scouting on a big 12 pointer called the “Mabry buck.”

But it wasn’t just Mark he was looking forward to spending time in camp with. Taylor, Tracy, Wade…the whole gang would be in. Deer hunting is always priority, but it doesn’t hurt that the food and drink aren’t bad either.

The target buck was one with history. Cardinals hitting coach John Mabry had passed on this deer when the buck was 4.5 years old. Mark had multiple Reconyx trail cam images of him also. Now at 6.5 years of age, the buck was a giant.

Armed with Mark’s Traditions Vortek, the brothers headed out to a Muddy Bull blind perched overlooking a BioLogic Radish plot planted strategically into a standing bean field. This was the same spot Terry had killed the “Lost and Found” buck in 2013 and where Mark has killed a number of other giants. As the afternoon progressed multiple deer poured into the field and split their time between the radishes and the beans.

A good four year old popped out to feed and then the Mabry Buck stepped out. Mark immediately made a positive ID on the deer and Terry pegged him at 90 yards with his Leupold range finder. The buck continued feeding his way in closer until he got to 75 yards. At that point he went head-down into the beans and began feeding in earnest. As he fed he eventually turned broadside, giving Terry just the opportunity he needed. Locked into a stable shooting position in his Muddy chair with the Traditions extending out the window, Terry held the Leupold scope crosshairs steady on the buck’s rib cage just behind the shoulder as Mark steadied the camera.


A plume of white smoke billowed from the gun’s barrel as a prototype bullet in the Traditions Smackdown line impacted both lungs. Mark behind the camera and Terry behind the gun, both guys knew it was a deadly hit. The buck darted for the timber and piled up a short ways away.

As he did with the two deer he killed prior to this one during the season, Terry offered up a prayer and said a “Thank you.” to his Dad who had passed in March of 2017. Once again, Iowa deer camp did not disappoint thanks to Mark’s diligent pre-hunt scouting and also to John Mabry’s decision to  pass on this deer in 2015.

As told to Tim Kjellesvik.