Brother and sister deer slayers harvest trophy Christmas bucks

McKinna Powell, 21, experienced the hunt of a lifetime on the day after Christmas. Powell, a junior in Bio-Medical Engineering at Mississippi State University, enjoys deer hunting with her family and she can shoot pretty good too. She was hunting in Humphreys County with her family and was on the stand with her boyfriend, Hunter Marlow.

Two does came running into the field from behind the stand and then a couple of young bucks came in and chased them around. After a few minutes of the running and chasing, the bucks turned on each other and started fighting. It was quite a remarkable sight, but nothing compared to what happened next.

“We had been watching the small rack bucks when I guess a larger one heard them and came out,” McKinna said. “We couldn’t tell just how big he was because he was on the edge of the woods at first. I told Hunter I thought it was the 4-point coming back in. Then Hunter said, ‘No, you’re going to shoot him.’”

A massive buck with a rocking chair rack came running in the patch chasing and they tried to get him to stop a minute for a shot. Marlow yelled and the deer locked up.

Boom! McKinna’s Remington .270 rifle roared as she pulled the trigger and the buck vanished.

Finding the buck

McKinna’s father, Jay Powell, came out to help look for the deer and they started at the shot site and started in the direction the buck had disappeared.

“I found a little blood on a tree,” Jay said. “She was shooting a .270 so it wasn’t the amount of blood you’d expect. We went about 20 yards into the reeds and thick stuff, and he was laying there dead. He didn’t make it far before he collapsed just out of sight.”

“When we got to the buck, we were excited and amazed at just how big he was because we hadn’t been able to get a good look at him and it all happened so fast,” McKinna Powell said. “He was a main frame 9-point with a 20-inch spread and was huge, weighing 250 pounds.

“This is my third buck and the best yet, scoring in the mid 140’s. I’ve always enjoyed coming to camp and being with my family and eating some good food.”

Harvesting this monster buck was icing on the cake for this talented young lady.

A family affair

Whenever you have a family of athletes and hunters there’s always some good-natured competition and camaraderie no matter who it is, and the heat was on for Wyatt Powell after his younger sister harvested her trophy buck. Wyatt was hunting another buck, maybe even a tad bigger, that had appeared on their radar screens a couple of weeks before.

Wyatt Powell went on to kill the trophy buck on Dec. 27, the day after McKinna killed hers.

“Wyatt was in a stand set up like a cross where the lanes are 350 yards long,” Jay said. “It’s a good morning spot and good place to hunt during the rut since you can see a long ways in several directions. We’d captured him on game cam pictures recently and my youngest son had seen him while hunting a few days before Wyatt finally saw him.”

Jay told his son about the buck, so Wyatt went hunting on Dec. 26.

“I actually had a great hunt and saw some good bucks and an absolute Cow; a huge buck that day,” Wyatt said. “The next morning I was back at the same stand looking for the 10-point and saw a couple small bucks and a doe early.

“At 8:45 a.m. I looked up and saw the buck walk into the lane at 250 yards. I shot and the buck turned around and looked. I was shooting a .280 single shot that is really accurate, normally, so I was scrambling to get another shell in there.”

Sealing the deal

Wyatt put the crosshairs on the buck and the shot hit him in the neck, with the bullet coming out the shoulder. The buck dropped straight down in its tracks.

“Wyatt’s buck weighed 230-pounds, sported 10 points with a lot of mass going all the way out to the ends of the main beams and it green scored 152,” Jay said. “The inside diameter was about 20-inches wide!”

Not too many hunters get to kill trophy bucks like McKinna and Wyatt Powell did, and it’s even more rare for siblings to do it on back-to-back days.

About Michael O. Giles 390 Articles
Mike Giles of Meridian has been hunting and fishing Mississippi since 1965. He is an award-winning wildlife photographer, writer, seminar speaker and guide.

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