Thrill of victory overcomes agony of defeat for Yazoo hunter

Drew Beith killed this monster buck, which was estimated to score close to 160 inches, in Yazoo County on Jan. 31.
Drew Beith killed this monster buck, which was estimated to score close to 160 inches, in Yazoo County on Jan. 31.

Drew Beith’s world changed about a month ago when a monster buck showed up on his Yazoo County game cameras. Beith had several trail cameras out and when this big bruiser showed up, another 8-point in the 140-class departed for parts unknown.

Beith turned his focus towards the new buck and he was almost tortured by the fact that he had to watch the buck day after day, night after night before he could get the wind direction needed so that he could hunt the buck.

“I finally got a south wind and hunted the stand on the final day,” Beith said. “During my morning hunt almost everything that could go wrong did. Thankfully, I was in the right place at the right time despite a series of setbacks and was able to make a good shot when it presented itself.”

The “new” buck ended up being a main frame 10-point with a kicker on his G-2 that had broken off and he had one more sticker. The buck had a tall rocking chair rack that was estimated to go near 160 inches!

South wind needed

Beith is from Benton, and he hunts about 10 minutes from home. He had  been after this trophy buck since it came into his world a month ago. Due to his stand location, wind direction agonizingly kept him off the deer.

“I had to have a south wind to hunt this buck,” Beith said. “I had a Millennium lock on stand in the hills of Yazoo County.”

All of the agony was about to change on the last day of the season Jan. 31, 2022. However, not without a lot more angst.

As Beith walked into his stand before daylight on the final morning he stopped for a minute to check his game camera app. He didn’t want to run the buck out of the patch if he was there. As it turned out there was only a small deer in front of the camera, so he confidently went on to the stand hoping the deer wouldn’t spook and warn all of the other deer in the area. But then…

“I got to within 30 yards of my stand, and the woods exploded with deer running in all directions,” he said. “I eased up to the stand and sat there 45 minutes waiting for daybreak. Another deer came in and started blowing and left. Then about 8:30, my neighbor shot three times with a rifle, and I thought it was all over. I thought, ‘that’s just great’.”

One more chance

Beith feared the worst and could only wonder if the neighbor had shot his target buck. Nothing else came into the field and no deer were showing up on his trail cameras, so he decided to head back to the house for lunch.

“I was going to go to another stand that afternoon, so I lowered my bow to the ground and got into my cart and drove back to the truck,” Beith said. “Before I got there, I realized that I had left my bow on the ground by the stand.”

Instead of going back and getting the bow, Beith changed his mind and decided to hunt that stand again that afternoon. He was disgusted with how the morning hunt went, but didn’t want to change things after leaving the bow at the stand.

“That afternoon my brother, Thay Montgomery, went back hunting with me, and I took him to a stand, then got back into my stand about 2:30. I was  really hoping for a glimpse of the buck and a good shot too,” Beith said. “I finally saw a couple of spikes walk out and start feeding and then something got their attention. Then I looked up and saw a buck’s horns sticking up through the trees!”

The buck walked into view at 5:45 with only minutes of legal shooting light left.

“I started pulling my bow back as the buck walked directly toward me, but the arrow came out of the cradle and I had to let it back down,” Beith said. “All three deer spooked and ran a little ways and I thought I’d missed my chance.”

A done deal

The buck had run out to 40 yards, a long way for a last-minute shot, but he turned and started making a beeline towards Beith after he saw the spikes heading back.

“As soon as he offered me a shot I let the arrow fly,” Beith said.

Thwack! The sound of the arrow striking the buck indicated a good hit.

“The buck ran about 100 yards making all kinds of noise and racket and then it got quiet,” he said. “I was sure of a good hit then, but I got down and went to my arrow and found guts on it.”

Beith’s heart sank at the sight of the guts on the arrow, something that usually means a poor shot. He had mixed feelings, but immediately called Ben Ward, who recovers deer. Ward couldn’t come, but he told Beith that whatever he did, not to go in there if the deer had been gut shot, just wait for the dogs. He recommended he call Chase Therrell.

Chase Therrell and his Catahoula Cur dogs pose for a photo with Beith after his trophy buck was located.
Chase Therrell and his Catahoula Cur dogs pose for a photo with Beith after his trophy buck was located.

Calling in the dogs

Beith called Therrell at 6:30 and Therrell told him that he’d be there in a few hours and they’d get on him then. More agony — a long wait lay ahead.

“At 10:00, Chase Therrell, his Catahoula Cur dogs and I arrived at the scene of the kill, and he turned the dogs loose,” Beith said. “We couldn’t find any blood, but the dogs took off just the way the deer had gone. Therrell asked if there was a creek in there as he studied his handheld GPS. I told him there was and then he said that the dogs were in the creek now.

“We got in there about 100 yards away and saw the dogs gnawing on the buck. That’s when the celebrating started,” he said. “The deer ended up dying right where I heard him fall and it was actually a great shot. I put it right behind his front shoulder and it went through everything. The Gold Tip arrow and Swhacker broadhead cut through the heart and lungs and came out through the intestines.”

It’s always better to be safe than sorry and Beith was vindicated when they found the buck and learned he’d made a swift, clean, kill with his Mathews VXR bow. In the process a lifetime memory, including the full range of high and low emotions, was made!

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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