Today’s W2H reader success story comes from Nick Keys down in Ohio, as he regales the story of how he killed his #1 buck “Short G2”. Please join me in congratulating Nick on his great buck! – MK

By Nick Keys

It all started in the early summer when I pulled a card from one of my trail cameras and a buck that I had given the nickname Short G2 showed back up and completely blew up from the previous year. While putting in hard work on the property we hunt, like doing food plots, brush hogging, and remaking old logging roads, only one thing stuck in my mind and that was Short G2.

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As the season arrived I was feeling confident with my bow and had one goal in mind: Out smarting Short G2 and killing him. I had him patterned pretty well, but with our cabin being two and a half hours away from our home being there while he was there was getting tougher and tougher as the season went on. I hunted for him twice early in the season with no luck and then gave the area he was at the most a break. Five days before the Ohio’s antlerless only muzzle-loader season Short G2 had completely disappeared off all of my cameras leaving so many questions left unanswered in my head. Looking at the weather repeatedly the week of October 13th I noticed that there was a cold front moving through that weekend, I also noticed that I didn’t have school that Friday (Oct 17th). With that being said, when my last class bell rung at 2:10 PM, I was rushing out the doors and couldn’t have been anymore excited to get on the road heading for our cabin.

I didn’t have much luck on the 17th and decided to pull my cards after the morning hunt in hopes of Short G2 being back on camera. Once again he was not. He wasn’t the only shooter on the property or on camera, but he was the one I really wanted. With a 12 degree temperature drop and a light rain on Saturday the 18th I decided to head to a stand on an acorn flat that has bedding near by. I got to the stand well before daylight and for some reason I had a gut feeling to sit all day even though I wasn’t prepared for the wind, light rain, and cold temperatures I would endure.

Seeing deer all throughout the day and even passing on a wide 8 pointer left me hopeful as my all day sit was coming to an end and the woods started to get dark. As a doe and two button bucks worked toward the acorn flat to eat they jumped and scattered. As I looked in that direction wondering what just happened, I caught glimpse of him chasing the button bucks away from their mother. I slowly stood up, grabbed my bow, and reached for my grunt call. I grunted at him three times bringing him perfectly broadside at 21 yards. I settled my 20 yard pin right behind the shoulder and let the arrow fly. After striking its mark, my adrenalin completely took control of my body and left me shaking like a little leaf. Rattling the whole stand on my way down, I finally reached the ground and ran towards my arrow, where I found it coated in blood. My dad came to pick me up, while also grabbing my bow and book bag out of the tree stand since there was no way I was going to be able to make it back up with how bad I was shaking. After waiting an hour my dad, brother, and I had a quick track job to my buck, the grim reaper did its job and he only ran about 60 yards before crashing. To say I was excited would’ve been an understatement.

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I would say the keys to my success was bearing the weather sitting all day, hunting where I thought he would be feeding and bedding, not putting a lot o pressure on that area, and putting in hard work during the off season.

– Nick Keys