It's Friday: Time for a First Buck Story



In a Browtines and Backstrap post earlier this week, we asked for first buck stories and photos—and man, did you guys and gals ever respond. Every Friday, beginning today, we’re going to pick a first buck story and post it, right here. Thing is, you’ve got to keep sending them to us for us to keep it going. E-mail Tony and me at!

This entry came from James Seward in Virginia. In his words:

"I saw on Facebook where we could share stories of our first buck or first buck of someone close to us. My personal first buck was 20 years ago when I was 10 years old, but my wife's was in 2008 and is a much more interesting story.

My wife, Kati, and I met in early 2007. I was a redneck from a small town in Virginia, and she was a city girl from about an hour away. When we first started to get to know each other she thought my obsession with hunting was ridiculous, but accepted it. She slowly started to become intrigued by my obsession and realized it was a huge part of who I am. She was very clear about the fact that she could never hunt herself, but didn’t mind me doing it. I knew I would eventually get her in the woods.

When deer season came around in 2007, she quickly realized to spend more time with me, she may want to consider trying to hunt. In spring of 2008, I took her out turkey hunting with me a few times but she was just watching. That June we became engaged and that summer she started shooting a .22 rifle, then shooting skeet with the shotgun and finally worked her up to shooting a muzzleloader. She was a very good shot out to about 100 yards.

The last week of bow season that year we got a few pictures of a nice 8-pointer working scrapes on the edge of a cut corn field. All the pics were at dark, but the edge of this field had several white oaks and a pile of acorns. Does and small bucks were flocking to the acorns during shooting hours, so I set up a pop-up blind on that edge with the plan of taking Kati there on her first deer hunt.

She couldn’t go with me the first Saturday of muzzleloader season, so we finally went the evening of the second Saturday. We got in the blind at about 3:30 p.m. Wind was perfect and I just knew she was going to get a shot at a big old doe for her first deer. After about 30 minutes of sitting, a groundhog popped out under an oak about 75 yards away. I had Kati put the gun up and practice aiming at the groundhog just to make sure she felt steady and comfortable.

After about a minute of that, the ground hog ran back into the woods. Before she could get the gun back down, out steps a buck under the same tree. I knew right away it was a nice buck. He was completely comfortable feeding on acorns, so I knew we had plenty of time to get on him. She finally got on him, and I had my binoculars on him while talking her through everything. She said she was on him good and steady.

He was broadside and I told her to shoot when ready. Gun went off, smoke cleared and on the ground he went. She hit him a little forward but right in the shoulder and it put him down fast. I was so excited, I tried to jump out of the window of the blind to get out, but got stuck, flipped the blind over and left both of us sitting there laughing. It was quite a moment. By the time we finally got to him, he had expired and the rest is history. It was by far the best rush I have ever had in the woods hunting.

Since then we have married, hunted several times together, killed some great bucks and now have a newborn daughter that we will be able to share this love of the outdoors with moving forward. I hope you enjoy the story and the pictures."