Ice Lake hunter bags once-in-a-lifetime buck

ICE LAKE—It has taken a lot of years, but Ice Lake hunter Lee Hayden has finally harvested a gigantic buck that he has been targeting in the area.

“I’ve been after this one for the past five years,” Mr. Hayden told The Expositor. “He’s not a young deer, he is older and very wise.”

The 13-point, 218 pound field dressed buck, “is the heaviest and has the largest rack than any deer I have ever harvested,” he said from his Ice Lake property on October 22. He explained, “I shot him with my crossbow from 40 yards.”

“This was my third encounter with this deer, he won the first two encounters,” said Mr. Hayden. “In years previously I’ve had two brief opportunities to get him, but I’ve never had a chance for a shot in the past. This time he presented himself for a clean shot.”

Mr. Hayden said the buck is between seven and a half and eight and a half years old. “They don’t get to be that big unless they are smart, wary and cautious.”

“The other encounters I’ve had with this deer took place over the past few years. “I have been targeting this buck for a few years. Rene Fortin harvested a very large deer last year in the area, which was one of the sons of this deer. I knew the one Rene got as well, which was one of two huge bucks that were shot on our 400 acres of hunting property last year,” he said, noting, “the older buck I harvested had put the run on the two younger ones.”

“I was thrilled, very happy to get this buck,” said Mr. Hayden. “But it was also somewhat bittersweet. I had seen this deer on trail cameras as well as the two encounters. I had the utmost respect for this deer.”

“He is a true trophy deer,” added Mr. Hayden.

Attention all hunters! Don’t forget to send your prize bucks into Tom’s Big Buck Roundup. Full details can be seen in the ad on Page 10.