A Large Spring Mule Deer in an Open Meadow
Getty Images, Kerry Hargrove

Kentucky Hunter Harvests Majestic Velvet Buck

Patience truly pays off.

Kentucky hunter Jason Taylor has never shied away from chasing big bucks. Using his hunting prowess, he was able to tag a massive, early-season buck that he's been tracking for several years.

He's owned and cultivated his land for 10 years, turning it into the perfect spot for drawing in deer by creating food plots and bedding areas to keep them coming back year after year. The transformation took quite a bit of work.

"I have taken the old, abandoned pasture fields and tobacco fields, lack of manicured hayfields, old structures, and junk, and completely redesigned the farm. The hayfields are now a solid mix of clover and beneficial grasses with 13 acres of designated annual and perennial food plots," Taylor told North American Whitetail.

Taylor first saw this particular buck roaming his land in 2020, as a young 3-year old with 12 points. Over the next few years, Taylor continued to watch the buck grow, leaving him alone each hunting season. When he saw it in 2022, the buck was an 150-inch, 11-point stunner, but Taylor was after bigger game and left him be.

Taylor noticed that the buck didn't seem to leave the farm very often, but he wasn't showing up on the trail cameras. Taylor also had a hard time seeing him near the feeders. Taylor was able to track the deer heading to a bean field nightly, where he would linger until 4 a.m. After four attempts at targeting the deer, Taylor tried a new stand location.

"I had to get into the stand very early, well before daylight, in hopes of not bumping him on his way back to bed," Taylor said. "It was pitch black and I was hunting an unfamiliar stand that I had hung the afternoon before. As daylight began to break, I had four bucks out in front of me coming from the far end of the field and heading back to bed. This deer was one of them. When they were finally close enough to see in the small bit of daylight, I realized the closest one was my target buck."

Finally, the bowhunter was able to take the deer with a 32-yard shot.

"He's one of my favorite bucks I have ever taken," Taylor said, "and definitely the prettiest."

READ MORE: How to Use Deer Feeding Times to Your Advantage