Field and Stream - - GIANT -

Last Novem­ber, Austin Pon­tier killed an Iowa buck that many thought could top­ple Milo Han­son’s typ­i­cal world record. Though the Pon­tier buck fell short at 1941⁄8 B&C, it is the Iowa cross­bow record, and one amaz­ing an­i­mal. Here, Pon­tier shares the re­al­ity of glimps­ing whitetail hunt­ing’s Ever­est.

On the night I killed the buck, my friend posted a cou­ple pho­tos on social me­dia.

By the next day my phone was ring­ing off the hook. It was al­most im­me­di­ately over­whelm­ing. Ev­ery­one wanted to hear my story.

I heard all the ru­mors: that I didn’t have a le­gal cross­bow per­mit, or that I’d shot it be­hind a high fence.

The best one: I’d shot it at night, with a ri­fle, over a min­eral lick. At first it made me mad, but I de­cided not to get sucked in to the jeal­ousy and drama. It still amazes me that hunters can talk like that about other hunters.

Any­one who shoots a gi­ant should prob­a­bly call the lo­cal game war­den.

That helps nip the ru­mors. I’d keep the buck off social me­dia for a while, too. When you do tell the story, be pre­pared. Peo­ple go a lit­tle crazy over big bucks.

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