When a trophy buck crossed Jerry Hester's lane within minutes of the same time two days in a row, Hester had one eye on his watch and another on his shooting lane on the third day. Incredibly, the buck punched the clock again just as he'd done the previous two mornings.
"The buck showed up at 8:31 on Thursday (December 1); at 8:39 on Friday and I killed him when he walked the same trail Saturday at 8:44," Hester, owner of Quality Ford in Coushatta recalled.
Hester didn't take a shot either Thursday or Friday because he couldn't get a good view of the rack either day.
Hester took the whole week off work to hunt and he did it for one reason – the bucks were on the move and he used his trail cameras to let him know that the rut was on.
"I have about 10 trail cameras that I keep out on the property I hunt and I check them daily. When I start seeing bucks on the move, that's when I take off work and go get in my deer stands," Hester said.
Over the past several seasons, this modus operandi has paid off in spades for Hester as he has taken several really nice bucks scoring from the 130s to the 150s anchored by a buck scoring 176 in 2001. Incredibly, all of Hester's trophies were taken less than a mile from his home in the village of Martin in Red River Parish.
The stand where trail cameras revealed most of the action was taking place is located on a utility line that stretches 300 yards to Liberty Creek. Although he can see the lane across the creek, he is unable to bush hog past the creek.
"On Saturday, it was windy and fairly warm and actually the wind was wrong blowing from me toward the creek where I'd seen the deer two previous days. I put out plenty of Code Blue Doe in Estrous scent with a dual purpose; to attract a buck and hopefully to mask my scent," said Hester.
Right on schedule, the buck came out of the woods, crossed the creek and when he stepped out into some tall weeds on the other side, Hester shot.
"I shot him at 332 yards; I use a Burris Eliminator on my rifle, (a 308 Savage Tactical), which is a range finding device that allows you to compensate for distance. I squeezed the trigger and heard the "whump" letting me know I'd hit the deer. I walked down to where I thought he'd be and I spotted him at 40 yards when he jumped up and ran," said Hester.
He called his son to bring a track dog, the dog picked up the trail and within minutes, Hester was putting his tag on yet another Red River Parish trophy buck.
The buck, a main frame 10 point with two extras for good measure, carried an impressive set of head gear with seven on one side; five on the other.
The rack carried heavy mass, eight-inch brow times with one brow time split and an inside spread of 18 ½ inches. Hester green scored the buck at 167 1/8. The buck, which weighed only 160 pounds, was estimated to be 3 ½ years old.
Hester decided not to enter his buck in a big buck contest because of his experience with the 176 he'd killed 10 years prior.
"I took that buck to Simmons Sporting Goods and it didn't even make the top ten. I'm not going to drive that far," Hester chucked, "to take a 'little' one like this."
Glynn Harris Outdoors is proudly sponsored by DSK, Ltd. of Minden.