And an impressive young hunter

Jacob Clark of Columbiaville, Michigan is starting to be well known to his taxidermist. The 24-year-old arrowed this beautiful 17-point Michigan buck in Lenawee County during the morning hunt on Friday, October 20. The buck is a main frame 12 pointer but adding in all the stickers that measure give this buck even more “wow” status.

He was hunting the family lease that he and his dad John have enjoyed hunting on for years, a fact that shows how serious this family is about their deer hunting. The buck featured 23 6/8-inch main beam on the right side and 23 1/8 on the left. The bruiser had 9 inches of abnormal points for a green score of 167 1/8. Obviously, the bucks exceptional widening really makes him special.

Jacob says he was in the stand before first light taking up a position between two bedding areas. It’s in an area that they have worked hard at accessing carefully without spooking the deer. He blew two short grunts followed by one longer grunt, put his call away and clipped on his release and immediately caught movement. The big buck came in on a string looking for the mature buck that was invading his territory.

He shot the buck right in his shooting lane at 25 yards. The deer mule-kicked and ran about 30 yards, then stopped and stood for approximately 10 seconds, he then turned and walked down into the adjacent swamp. Jacob backed out and allowed the buck to bed down, which it did only 125 yards away. Just to be on the safe side they brought a dog in owned by Ken Jordan of Yale but were able to find the buck right away. Jacob feels the buck was dead five minutes after the shot, but he wanted to do everything right.

Jacob Clark of Columbiaville with his wide racked 17-pt. record book buck.

I have personally known the Clark family for many years. Jacob’s father John was my partner on the Michigan Walleye Tour back in the mid-1990s. I’ve known Jacob since he was young, and it has been special watching this young man learn to love the outdoors and become a very accomplished hunter and angler. John tells me he had Jacob in a goose blind at 10 months old. Jacob’s mom Tammy and sister Kristin are both great supports and Kristin has been known to throw around an arrow or two herself.

I spoke to Jacob’s dad John about this great deer and heard some very positive things that every deer hunter around the state should listen to. John said they have a philosophy when it comes to deer hunting and that is to, “worry only about what they can control, not what the neighbor’s philosophy is, so we personally don’t shoot smaller bucks, we have control over that.” That makes a lot of sense and has paid off for these hunters. Both John and Jacob have several very nice bucks to their credit. Jacob certainly seems to have the drive and hunting ability to harvest many more in his lifetime.

When discussing his great buck Jacob mentioned a few things that really let me know his hunting IQ is well beyond his young age. He said, “When it comes to big bucks it becomes extremely important to control the situation or the situation will control you.” Wise beyond his years.

They work very hard at being able to manage each hunt and actually build deer funnels to make deer take certain routes. They don’t tread in bedding areas at all, and tread very lightly on areas they hunt only accessing with the right wind. They also try to always drive in and drop the hunter off at the stand. John says the minute a hunter walks back to the stand the deer are alerted, but they aren’t bothered at all by the sound of a tractor or UTV moving across the property and then going back to the house. It sounds like this hunting family tries to do all the little things that are important in being successful.

When they aren’t deer hunting, this duo hunt geese and turkeys as hard as anyone in the state. They still walleye and salmon fish regularly, and Jacob has recently started guiding for geese out west when time allows. It is the best testament to take our children into the outdoors with us as it never leaves them. It seems congratulations are in store for the entire Clark family.