This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.
GRANT: This week we celebrate Veterans Day. Veterans, gosh – I can’t think of a more deserving group in all of America; those who served in the past and those that are currently serving. One of the causes they served for was our right to vote. This is election week and I want to encourage everyone to go vote. If you’re a legal voter in the United States, go vote. Even though it’s the rut, go vote. If a cold front is bearing down on you where you are, get out of the treestand and go vote. Veterans, thank you for this privilege.
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ADAM: I have so many great memories at the family farm. At a young age, turkey and deer hunting became a passion of mine and many of my greatest hunts have happened right there in Douglas County, Missouri.
ADAM: The farm is a working cattle farm and the turkey hunting has been fantastic even at an early age. But the deer hunting, well, that’s required a little extra work. The area is in cattle country. Most of the fields are made up of fescue pasture while a lot of the woodlands have been grazed by cattle as well, leaving sparse food for the wildlife. This may be why a lot of my early hunts involved deer drives, long hikes, and unfilled tags.
ADAM: Trying to increase the amount of native vegetation growing in the area as well as improve the visibility from the stand, we went in this past winter, cleared out the cedars and allowing more sunlight to reach the forest floor.
ADAM: Knowing the opportunity of having a great stand in the timber, close to bedding, now we just needed a hit list buck in the area.
ADAM: Sticker Eight is a 4 ½ year old buck that we’ve been tracking across the farm over the last couple years.
ADAM: Matt and I had a great encounter with this buck during the first week of season last year. This year we followed Sticker Eight from velvet to hard antler and tracked his movement throughout the entire farm. As mid-October rolled upon us, Sticker Eight started showing up near a stand Matt and I hunted last fall we called Doll Heart.
ADAM: With the recent cold front passing and the wind switching back out of the south, Matt and I grabbed our gear and headed to Doll Heart. This was the first time in the stand after our work this past winter and it was exciting to see the changes.
ADAM: (Whispering) It’s October the 22nd . This afternoon Matt and I are at my family farm. Little spot just west of our food plot we call Amarillo. We did a little TSI work in here and cut out some invasive species – other species that were choked up too much. So there’s a lot of logs on the ground; deer are loving it. There’s a lot of native browse coming up thicker this past growing season. So, a lot of food in here as they work from the bedding heading up to the main food plot. So, it’s October 22nd. So you never know what can happen, we’ll see what is in store for us tonight.
ADAM: As the shade reached the forest floor, Matt spotted the first deer.
ADAM: As we peered through the brush, he noticed antlers and a small kicker off the right G2, it was Sticker Eight.
UNKOWN: (Whispering) (Inaudible).
ADAM: Sticker Eight was the top hit lister on the farm and he was slowly working into range.
ADAM: Watch this buck move through the timber. He’s completely comfortable and he’s lovin’ the native browse.
ADAM: We watched Sticker Eight step by step move closer and closer.
ADAM: Finally, he seemed to be headed towards an opening. It was time to shed the nervousness and prepare for the shot.
ADAM: (Whispering) Ready?
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah.
ADAM: (Whispering) Smoked him, didn’t I?
ADAM: (Whispering) We could go to Kansas in two weeks, or next week, and a 200 could step out but I would still be more proud of that deer right there. On the family farm. Matt says there’s a buck back here behind us. We turn around and it is this Stickers Eight. And he comes up in slow motion eating on the native browse that we came in to try and basically let it grow more. And he was feeding on the natives just like we wanted.
MATT: (Quietly) Could it get any better than that?
ADAM: (Quietly) It could not. He is down 10 yards from where I shot him. He had no idea what happened. Feeding a deer with the native browse, doing the prescribed fires, planting the food plots, doing all the work and then getting to harvest him that fall – there is not a better feeling as a hunter and as a wildlife manager so… (Sigh)
MATT: (Quietly) Call your brother, get your brother.
ADAM: (Quietly) We’re gonna enjoy the heck out this one. Stickers is down.
CHAD: (On phone) Really? Awesome!
ADAM: (Quietly) He came up 40 yards, center punched him, down in 10 yards.
CHAD: (On phone) We did all that work and it came together.
ADAM: (Quietly) Exactly, exactly.
ADAM: Oh, that feels good.
ADAM: Oh my goodness.
MATT: Painted red ain’t it?
ADAM: Painted red.
ADAM: He looks good. Oh my gosh! Oooo, holy cow! Look at that deer right there. Main frame eight – he’s got this little kicker off the back that’s why he’s called Sticker Eight. Holy cow! Oh my gosh. Oooo. Thank you, Lord.
ADAM: Here he is, the Sticker Eight – oh my gosh. What a deer – look at that. I don’t know how wide he is – he’s a lot wider than I thought he was.
MATT: (Background) Yeah, yeah.
ADAM: He’s got great 2s. Not bad 3s either. And pretty good beams. Wow! Little bit of kicker back here.
ADAM: I couldn’t believe it. Years of hard work, sweat, blood, and tears from managing mature deer on the family farm had finally paid off. What a great time for Matt, Chad, and myself to celebrate. We’d drawn up the plan last year and we got to watch it all unfold with Sticker Eight.
ADAM: (Inaudible). …right through the ragweeds. Let’s put that tailgate down, we’re still (Inaudible).
ADAM: We don’t get to get up here and hunt here as much but when I do and I’m successful, I gotta share it with some people that are very special to me – headed to my grandparents. Grandpa is 92 years old – WWII vet. A lot of who I am is because of him and my grandma. So every time we have a great hunt we usually go share it with ‘em. So, we’re headed to their house now. Can’t wait to show it to ‘em.
FAYE: And it was on the farm?
FAYE: Wow! Very well.
ADAM: There you go.
FAYE: My goodness.
JUNIOR: He’s, he is a pretty good one, isn’t he?
ADAM: Hunting the family farm is all about the memories, the relationships and sharing the success with others.
ADAM: It’s a big ‘un.
FAYE: It’s a big ‘un.
ADAM: We celebrated late into the night and we can’t wait to get back to the family farm to plan our next project.
GRANT: Adam’s success is a great reminder that even small habitat projects can yield big results.
ADAM: I killed something.
GRANT: Recently, my dad was able to tag a buck with his crossbow and that seemed to be the best medicine since the chemo. Got him all fired up – so now he’s out fall turkey hunting.
GRANT: Missouri has a fall shotgun turkey season during the month of October. Our food plots are doing very well and there’s no acorns so I knew it was only a matter of time. If dad was patient, he’d see some turkeys while sitting on the edge of a plot. Even after a few sits with no turkeys in range, dad was still eager to go every time I gave him a call.
GRANT: During Missouri’s statewide youth season, I hunted with Rae and Matt took dad turkey hunting.
GRANT: They opted to go to a plot we call Blue Hole. We had a fairly good pattern of turkeys moving through there during the afternoons on our Reconyx camera.
GLEN: Well, here I am again – turkey hunting on the boy’s place. I love it. There’s nothing like hunting. I’m 86 years old and I enjoy every minute of it. Got – get one in my sights and I’m gonna do the best and lay the boom to him. Grant has been good to me, I appreciate him letting me hunt. I really love it. I’ll do the best I can to try to get one. Thank you for everything, son.
GRANT: After they’d been in the hay bale blind awhile, Matt noticed a group of toms at the far end of the plot.
GLEN: (Whispering) Are they one coming on each side?
MATT: (Whispering) No. We’re gonna shoot those ones. You shoot the first one up there – (Inaudible) he’s behind us now.
GRANT: With two tags to fill and after the first one flopped, Dad wisely stayed on the Winchester.
GRANT: Dad waited patiently – take the shot – second tom is down.
GLEN: (Whispering) Is that what you wanted?
MATT: (Whispering) That’s what I wanted, sir. Good job, good job.
GRANT: This is another great example of where the FieldPod really helped out hunters here at The Proving Grounds. At 86, if dad would have had to held up the shotgun during all that time, probably would have been a little bit tiring – although he was so pumped up, he might have tried to do it. But it paid extra dividends as dad was able to stay steady waiting for the second bird to offer a clean shot.
GLEN: (Whispering) That feels fine cuz I’ve been hunting 2 or 3 days to get him. And who would have thought just at dark they’d come a walkin’ up the field and they spread out just right for me to get two shots. I sure appreciate the son letting me hunt and I do the best I can. Man, 86 years old – still shooting turkeys – he’d done a lot.
MATT: (Whispering) I would say so, sir. I don’t think those turkeys have much more to say.
MATT: (Quietly) Whatcha think?
GLEN: (Quietly) They pretty good turkeys.
MATT: They’re great turkeys. And you were right; you had just leaned over and asked me what time they’re flying up. And I think I had said maybe 15-20 minutes we’ve got left. And I looked back to the right and down the food plot – here they come.
GLEN: Well, I was about to give up on ‘em.
MATT: We’ll take these birds back and get ‘em cleaned up –
MATT: Thanksgiving’s just around the corner, I think we’re set.
ADAM: Right here, Grant.
GRANT: I really admire dad’s energy. At 86, he’s eager to go hunting every time I give him a call. It’ll be rifle season soon here in Missouri and he’s got another tag in his pocket.
GRANT: If you’d like to see some of the outtakes and footage we just don’t have time to share during the episode, check out the clips tab at GrowingDeer.com.
GRANT: Fall is a great time to get outside and enjoy Creation. But you know what? It’s important every day – no matter what the conditions are – to slow down and listen to what the Creator is saying to you. Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.