Kayla Thurman didn’t get the opportunity to hunt much last season due to an impending wedding and all the preparations involved, but she’s making up for lost time — taking a nice, 10-point buck — and Mississippi’s season is still young.
It’s hard for Thurman to get away from her work as a nurse practitioner, but with the long evenings this time of year, she can sometimes make an evening hunt. She has a favorite stand overlooking a food plot that her father plants every year on their property in Lawrence County near the Fair River. Its planted in oats and is flourishing with the help of recent rains.
This past Friday, Oct. 16, the stars were lining up for Thurman. She had been waiting on a north wind to hunt her stand, and with a cold front that had arrived that day, the conditions were ideal.
She got on her stand about 5 p.m., and a couple of raccoons kept her entertained for an hour. At 6:15, a spike buck entered the plot on the woodline, followed by a 10-pointer. Shortly thereafter, a doe and yearling entered the green field on the opposite side of the bucks.
The bucks were 80 yards away, and Thurman was shaking at the sight of the 10-pointer’s rack, hoping he would come close enough for a shot. The doe and yearling passed by at 40 yards, and the two bucks trotted across the plot, heading toward the does, but they stopped before leaving the food plot.
Waiting for the perfect shot
Thurman ranged the 10-point buck at 45 yards, stood up took a good rest for a shot with a PSE Fang crossbow. She put the crosshairs on his shoulder and waited for him to turn for the right angle. When he offered her a shot, quartering away slightly, she squeezed the trigger and let fly a Carbon Force Thunder Bold and 125-grain Grim Reaper broadhead.
The buck went straight down with a lethal hit.
“I was so nervous and shaking,’ Thurman said, “I immediately called my mama and told her and Daddy to get up there quick, I had gotten one, and I was scared.”
The 125-inch buck had a tall, heavy rack.
Thurman is no rookie, having taken an 11-point buck with the same crossbow in 2016. She usually hunts by herself, but she had, sort of, someone with her for the 10-pointer — she is seven months pregnant with a baby boy due Dec. 23.
“I’ve wondered if John Luke Thurman will be a deer hunter,” she said, laughing. “I guess he’s already made his first hunt.”
Thurman and her husband plan to hang a skull mount of the 10-pointer in the baby’s nursery.