St. Charles Herald-Guide

Lighting strikes in same place for deer hunters

By Bruce McDonald - December 29, 2011

Hunting from a box stand setup on the edge of a 20-acre pasture, Warren Fremen of Luling dropped a 9-point buck most hunters would be proud of.

Mike Becnel, also of Luling, had invited Fremen to make a deer hunt at Pretty Creek Hunting Club near Union Church in Jefferson County, Miss. Hunting from a box stand, Fremen caught movement around 7 a.m. and dropped the nice 9-point.

Fremen was hunting the new moon phase and had the wind in his face, placing the deer upwind from his location. To his surprise, the big buck had no idea he was being watched when he walked out into the pasture.

Two weeks later, Becnel was hunting the same box stand. This time the moon was in a full phase and the wind was in his face.

Becnel would leave with a big buck.

"I like to be in my stand before daybreak because bucks like to move around daybreak on full and new moon phases," Becnel said. "The same goes for sunset. Big bucks like to move just before last light. I shot my 11 point around 6:35 a.m., 30 yards from where (Fremen) shot his buck.

"My 45/70 found its mark and dropped the big buck in his tracks."

Becnel had the task of caping the big buck for the taxidermist and getting the meat ready for processing. He has plans to enter his buck in the Big Buck Contest at the Louisiana Sportsman Show in March.

Tips for caping a

trophy buck for a shoulder mount

•With a sharp knife slit the hide circling the body behind the shoulder at approximately the mid-way point of the rib cage behind the front legs. Slit the skin around the legs just above the knees. Cut along the brown hair and white hairline to the chest. Now cut up to the ribs and across to the sternum. Make cuts for both legs in the same manner. Begin skinning the deer hide down to the head. Be careful not to cut the skin.

•Skin down to the neck stopping approximately 3 inches below the base of the ears. Circle the neck, cutting down through the spinal cord. After this cut, the cape and head should separate from the body. Roll up the hide and head and place in a dry plastic bag in the freezer until it can be transported to a taxidermist.

•Additional notes: When field dressing a trophy to be mounted, donít cut into the skin around the chest, brisket, or neck. If blood gets on the hide to be mounted, wash it off. Also, avoid dragging the deer out of the woods with a rope. Place the trophy on a sled, game cart or four-wheeler. Rope, rocks and dead branches from trees can damage or puncture the hide. If you need to drag the deer out with a rope, attach the rope to the base of the antlers and drag it out carefully.

Warren Fremen with a 9-point buck killed at Pretty Creek Hunting Club in Mississippi.
Courtesy Photo
Warren Fremen with a 9-point buck killed at Pretty Creek Hunting Club in Mississippi.