Chris Prickett first learned of the buck in August. He had placed some trail cameras in an area near his home in Ohio, and immediately began capturing images of the buck. Each weekend during the late summer when Prickett checked the cameras, new pictures of the deer would appear. In fact, Prickett got to see the progression of the deer’s antlers from velvet to hard bone in September.
As the Ohio bow opener neared, the buck’s picture was captured less frequently, but Prickett still had more than 120 pictures of him. It was almost as if the buck was fond of having his picture taken, so Prickett decided to name him Hollywood.
In mid-September, just a week before the season opened, Prickett spotted Hollywood bedded in a bean field in the middle of the day. He knew his best chance for killing Hollywood was early, as he feared the buck might leave the area as the rut neared. Plus, Prickett himself had to be out of town for two weeks in October.
“The stand that I had to hunt him from was sketchy,” Prickett says. “I had to walk in on a lane between two cornfields and sit in a small grove of trees with limited cover. The buck would have to walk right in front of me in order for me to have a shot. The wind would be a huge factor in whether or not I’d even be able to hunt the area.”
Prickett knew hunting in the afternoon would provide his best chance at the buck, but favorable winds were only forecast for three days the week before the hunter had to leave town.
“I figured Hollywood was bedding in the standing corn most of the time, and I had several does wind me while I was hunting, before I ever saw him. I thought the gig was probably up,” he says. “But I stuck with it and kept going to the stand. The afternoon of October 2 was rainy, but the wind was favorable. There was very little action early on, but finally, at 7:15, I spotted antlers passing through a corn row. I knew right away it was Hollywood, as I could see a recognizable sticker point coming off his G2.”
The buck approached quickly, and was 20 yards from Prickett’s stand by the time he could clip his release to his bowstring. Prickett quickly drew his bow and bleated with his mouth. The buck stopped and Prickett released the arrow.
“When I got down, I found very little blood on the arrow or the ground, so I let him go until the next morning,” he says. “The next day, tracking was tough. We followed the trail for a couple of hours and realized he’d come out of the cornfield and walked the farm lane I’d used to enter and exit my stand. We continued to track him, and after 200 yards, we found him laying not 70 yards from where I’d parked my truck the night before. I could actually see the area where he fell from my back porch. I don’t know how he was able to go that far, as it was a perfect double-lung hit.
“Hollywood scores 162, and although he’s not the biggest buck I’ve ever seen, he’s one I’ll always remember because of the saga that went along with hunting him.”