The advantage of youth can extend way beyond the lack of fiscal responsibility, work deadlines, body pains and all that stuff us older folks deal with on a regular basis.
There’s also deer hunting, and 14-year-old Kade Lott is a perfect example.
In early November, during the youth season, the St. Aloysius 8th grader was able to hunt with a gun while his father and hunting mentor Brian Lott could only carry a crossbow. Brian put the youngster in a position to kill a monster 10-point in Sharkey County.
“On opening weekend of youth season (Nov. 3) Kade and I went to our hunting camp in Sharkey County,” said Brian Lott, who lives in Valley Park about halfway between Vicksburg and Rolling Fork. “I dropped him off at a stand in the woods and I drove to a stand on a pipeline that crosses our property. He saw a couple of does but no bucks.
“Around dark, as I was fixing to climb down and go get Kade, I looked up and saw a large silhouette walk into the pipeline. I couldn’t clearly make out the antlers but I knew it was big, bigger than anything we usually see around there. It was too dark to see well and I was hunting with a crossbow so at 300-plus yards I knew I was never going to get a shot. I waited for the deer to disappear into the woods before I got down.”
When they returned the second weekend, on Nov. 10, dad knew exactly what needed to be done.
“I told Kade he needed to hunt the pipeline and wait this buck out,” he said. “Kade’s young, so waiting while a food plot is full of smaller deer isn’t his strong point. We got to camp around 3 o’clock that afternoon and we loaded up and I dropped him off on the pipeline and got him settled in.
“I rode to another stand and sat down. At 4:30, I text him to see if he was seeing anything.”
The response text: 155 does :(
Dad knew the youngster, who has hunted since he was 6 years old and has harvested several bucks, needed encouragement. The frown in the text was telling.
“I texted back that was ‘a good thing; it means the deer are moving,’” Lott said. “Around 5:15 I was tired of sitting so I collected my things and started walking back to my Ranger.”
That’s when he heard the crack of a rifle.
“It was his 7mm-08 Encore echoing across the field,” the dad said. “I texted him ‘???’ and he replied with ‘BIG BUCK!!!’”
Brian Lott raced to the pipeline and to the foot of Kade’s stand.
“I asked him how big it was and he said ‘I don’t know; all I saw was horns,’” the dad said. “He came down and we grabbed the flashlights and walked down the pipeline about 120 yards and started looking for blood. Kade found the blood trail and we took off.
“About 50 yards through a cane thicket, there laid the buck. I approached first, in case it was still alive. The brush was so thick all I could see was the tip of one antler. I thought to myself, ‘I’ve heard him say it was a big buck before and it not be.’”
Not to worry this time. When dad reached this buck, and grabbed the antlers, he hollered two words: “Oh Wow!”
Kade came running and added three more words: “Oh my God!”
The celebration began.
“After that it was just handshakes and hugs,” Lott said. “This young man has hunted hard for many years and it finally paid off. That day will be forever engraved in my mind.”
The typical 10 had great features, including one 24-inch main beam and the other 23¼ inches. The inside spread was 18 inches and its longest tines were 11 and 10¾. The deer grossed a total of 156 inches and with the few deductions should net about 150. It weighed 238 pounds and was aged at 5.5 years.
“I don’t think we’ll ever forget that day, either one of us,” Lott said.