Skip to main content

The 10 States to Hunt This Year to Bag the Deer of a Lifetime

FB/Midwest Whitetail

If you want to bag the deer of a lifetime this year, these are the 10 states where it could be most likely.

This year if you want to shoot a giant buck, heck, even a deer of a lifetime, there are places to do it, and places that it probably won't happen.

Here are the 10 most likely states for you to get that deer of a lifetime.

1. Ohio

FB/Big Buck Down Outfitters of Ohio

Ohio used to be a great sleeper state. You might as well cross it off the list of sleepers. Ohio is no more a well kept secret, ranking fourth between 2005-2010 in number of B&C entries. Non-resident licenses are relatively cheap and the amount of public land is above average.

2. Illinois

Illinois is pretty much the bread and butter of the Midwest. Everyone knows it's good, and famed counties such as Pike County get a lot of hype for good reason, as the trophy potential is through the roof with it ranking second in the amount of B&C entries between 2005-2010 (299 entries).

3. Iowa

FB/Brent Grosse Northeast Iowa Whitetail Properties

The land of giants, the famed Iowa. It seems like everyone wants to hunt Iowa, and for good reason. It ranks third in number of B&C entries between 2005-2010 and as everyone knows the trophy potential is crazy. The problem with Iowa? Getting to hunt it.

It can be extremely tough to draw a tag in the state for non-residents, taking up to four years for some. Once you do draw, fees are outrageous, and saying public land hunting can be tough is an understatement. With all that said, who doesn't want to be in a treestand in November within the Iowa boarder?

4. Kentucky

Kentucky seems to always be a sleeper state. It actually ranks sixth in number of B&C entries between 2005-2010. It has a long season, the trophy potential is great, and the amount of public land and hunter pressure is sound.

5. Nebraska


I'd still categorize Nebraska as a sleeper state. The eastern half of the state inhibits great number of whitetails and large bucks, and the western half can be great whitetail hunting if you like spot and stalking, or hunting water. There is great trophy potential, and the archery season is now longer going from Sep. 1 - Dec. 31.

6. Kansas

Kansas is a superb state to kill giant bucks, with it also being in the top 10 for B&C entries between 2005-2010. The only issue with Kansas is the lack of public hunting compared to other states, and not being able to get OTC tags. But when you do get a tag and have somewhere to hunt, chances are high that you will encounter a giant.

7. Missouri

FB/MO Magic Outfitters of Northern Missouri

Missouri can be a great state to shoot big bucks while it sits next to Iowa and has a great trophy potential. It ranks fifth in number of booners taken between 2005-2010 and it offers a variety of public land hunting. If you want to hunt close to the famed Iowa, without waiting to secure a tag, Missouri could be for you.

8. Indiana

Indiana is a state that doesn't come to the forefront of many people's mind. Between 2005-2010, it ranks seventh in the country in number of booners taken and holds quite a bit of public land.

9. Wisconsin

Wisconsin claims the most amount of B&C bucks taken between 2005-2010, so you know the trophy potential is great. Non-resident fees are cheap, and there is an abundance of public land littered throughout the state.

10. Minnesota

FB/Outdoor News

Minnesota can produce some great trophy bucks, especially in the southeastern part of the state. It ranks ninth in number of booners shot between '05-'10. Once you get down into that part of the state, it's like hunting Buffalo County, Wisconsin, just in Minnesota. Public land is abundant in the north, but where the majority of the big bucks come from, getting permission is a must as there is a lack of public land in the region.

This season, if you're looking at bagging that buck of a lifetime, you need to find yourself in one of these states.

Did you enjoy this article? You can check out many more great deer hunting articles written by Alex Comstock on his Blog WhitetailDNA. Be sure to follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram


oembed rumble video here


you might also like

The 10 States to Hunt This Year to Bag the Deer of a Lifetime