Jackson County has earned quite a reputation for outputting world-class whitetails and this year is no exception. On November 12, 2013, Scott Vogt killed an extra-large typical that green scores 187 1/8 gross Boone & Crockett points and nets 175 6/8 Boone & Crockett points. A buck must have a net score of 170 or better to make the national record books and earn the nickname of being a “Booner.”
This mega-buck did not just appear out of thin air. Scott was well aware of this particular buck as were the neighboring hunters. Scott’s daughter McKenzie, missed the buck on opening day of the 2012 firearm season. Scott was sitting with her and quietly whispered, “Take your time.” Before he could finish saying “time” McKenzie shot; cleanly missing the big buck. Between Christmas and New Year’s, Scott saw the buck and knew that the trophy had made it through the gun deer season.
Two of the neighbors, Gary and Wade, collected the 2012 sheds in the spring of 2013. They got together and with an estimated 18-inch inside spread they scored the buck at 160 inches.
On November 3, 2013, Scott got a trail-camera photo of the 15-point buck that ended up sporting a 21.5 inch inside spread. The following Sunday, November 10, Vogt saw the buck tending a doe, in the neighbors corn field. The monster eventually entered the woods on Scott’s property and came within 50 yards without offering a shot. Vogt says, “Every year I take the week off before gun season to hunt the rut.”
This year it would be well-spent vacation days. On November 12, Vogt climbed 24 feet high into a hickory tree. Scott elected to hunt all day. He spent an extended period on stand without seeing a single deer and was actually on his phone when around 5 p.m. he looked to his right and said to himself, “Oh there’s a deer. Oh, that’s thee deer!”
The mega-buck was only forty-five yards away and was slowly sauntering through the woods “like a cow coming through the pasture.” Vogt adds, “He walked to within twenty-five yards and I ‘blatted’ which stopped him broadside. My shot was a double-lung hit. He only ran about 80 yards before going down.”
The Michigan bowhunter was shooting a Mathews Helium that launched a deadly 100 grain Thunderhead. Scott says, “I loaded him in the truck myself and let me tell you that was quite an adventure. When I later weighed him, I found out why that was so difficult; he field-dressed an amazing 252 pounds. In fact, when I saw my first trail-camera photo’s this year I showed his photo to Andy May (who has contributed articles to Woods-N-Water News) and he estimated that the buck would score 150 Boone & Crockett points. The deer’s body is so large that it diminishes the extraordinary size of the rack. I myself guessed him to be 160 inches.”
John Knevel is the official Commemorative Bucks of Michigan measurer who taped the buck believes that this buck may have the largest gross score of any typical scoring buck shot in Michigan with archery tackle. The current State Record was shot last year by Robert Sopsich in Oakland County which officially scored 182 5/8 points. In 1986, another Jackson County
bowhunter, Craig Calderone,
arrowed a buck that scores 193 inches according to the National Pope & Young record books but
is not recognized by the Commemorative Bucks of Michigan according to their bylaws.
The current State Record firearm typical was shot in Jackson County by Troy Stevens in 1996 and officially scores 198 Boone & Crockett points.
Scott says that, “2013 turned out to be an absolutely incredible year.” Not only did Vogt shoot the high scoring whitetail but his daughter shot her first buck with a crossbow and Scott killed a bull elk in Colorado.
Southern Michigan continues the trend of producing heavy racked trophies and when looking at the recorded history, Jackson County looks like the best place in the entire state to score on a top-end typical.