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Bing Bryant Buck: 211-Inch Non-Typical Bruiser

bing_bryant_fBeing three generations of hunters, fishermen and sportsmen in general, the Bryants of southeastern Saskatchewan have developed a great family legacy in the outdoors. And they've enjoyed special success on mega-bucks, having taken a number of big deer over the years.

When September rolls around, the guys pull out the archery gear and game cameras. It's "go" time. Living in good whitetail country, they've always tended to focus on that species, but in 2013 another opportunity came along. Bowman Bryant, the youngest of the clan, drew a mule deer tag.

On a cold September evening, Bowman and his dad, Darby, were out spot-and-stalk hunting for a trophy to fill that tag. After an unsuccessful hunt, they started the long walk back to the truck. They were close to reaching their destination when all of a sudden Bowman stopped in his tracks.

There it lay: a 100-inch whitetail shed in the grass by an old grain bin! Darby saw him lift it up like the Stanley Cup and rushed over to see the magnificent antler for himself.

That evening, I had the pleasure of viewing that monster right antler, and the Bryant boys quickly changed their tune from muleys to a once-in-a-lifetime whitetail.

Later that week, the guys headed out to the majestic whitetail's area and started placing game cameras in areas they thought the big boy might pass by. The main worry these hunting fanatics had was whether or not the giant had survived one of the area's toughest winters in recent years. After a grueling Saskatchewan winter with heavy snow and wildly cold temperatures, it's never hard to imagine a mature buck might have succumbed to nature and be gone forever. A buck could shed his antlers and still die prior to green-up.

A week went by with no game camera pictures of the giant. Then, in mid-September, the Bryants' farmyard neighbor told them about the huge, drop-tined whitetail he'd seen the night before. The next day the guys took the shed to his house to see if it had any resemblance to the buck he'd seen. The neighbor is a shed fanatic and expert hunter, and upon seeing the antler assured them the deer was still alive.

bing_bryant_2The Bryants spent hours that week setting up more game cameras and moving to new spots where the deer had been seen. That weekend, the final camera they checked revealed a set of antlers that filled the computer screen. It was him! The buck now had six drop tines and more mass than imaginable.

That weekend, I went over to see the photos of this giant. I couldn't believe what I was looking at. I assured the guys this was a once-in-a-lifetime deer. Nobody understood that better than longtime hunter Bing Bryant, the family patriarch. Owning a family bakery, Darby is accustomed to not getting a lot of sleep — but nothing makes your pillow harder than dreaming about how to outwit a monster whitetail that has six drop tines!

The next week the family put up several stands for muzzleloader season, hoping the non-typical might travel past one of them. They could only hope he'd become a regular at one of their spots. But as moose season started in their home area, other hunters began touring the big buck's home turf. This left the Bryants with only a few pictures over several weeks, and even those had been taken miles apart. This magnificent whitetail was a giant for a reason, and they knew they could just hope to get one chance at him.

It was now only two weeks until opening day of the regular gun season: time to move the cameras to see if they could pattern this giant once and for all. After a week, the Bryants headed out to check their cameras. After going through all of the spots with high expectations, they were disappointed to see photos of but a few does and a handful of small bucks. It left them with little hope of finding what they were looking for.

Then, on one of the last cameras, they discovered pretty good deer activity. Flipping through that card's images, the three hunters suddenly cracked smiles that had been bottled up for a few weeks. There the buck was, in all his glory. He was a regular at this new spot, coming to feed daily and running does past the camera. The chances of harvesting this great whitetail had just increased in a big way.


Of course, the hunters still had to be realistic. This deer had lived as a king for years, all while limiting his profile to one found shed and one known sighting. Even with photos now showing him to be locked in on this new location, shooting him didn't figure to be easy.

The next day, the Bryants set up the blind they'd take turns calling home for rifle season. On every good wind, you could count on one of them being in the blind, awaiting the appearance of mega-mass and drop tines.

A rare east wind on opening day of gun season took the blind out of play, but every day for the next week someone was in it — all without a single sighting of the buck. In fact, there was minimal deer activity of any kind there.

The second weekend of the season, I called the guys to see how things were going. We'd talked about the winter storm that was only a day away and that the big boy might just show himself because of it.

Conditions were perfect as the Bryants set out for their weekend hunts. However, the giant still didn't show. Seeing every deer but him from the blind made the hunters wonder if this king of a buck might be onto them.

When Monday came around, it was time to start the work and school week for Darby and Bowman. Bing, having the afternoon off, decided to slip into the stand and put in some more time.

After a few does came by, all of a sudden the hunter saw what looked like a moving tree coming through the brush. It was the buck — and he was walking right in, only yards from a perfect shooting lane!

bing_bryant_1Bing, being a veteran hunter, couldn't believe the feeling of buck fever the giant immediately sent through him. As the buck approached the lane, he lowered his nose and took off after a "hot" doe, leaving Bing to watch his tail end fade away into the trees. In his entire hunting career, the eldest Bryant had never known such a feeling.

Ten minutes went by, feeling like a full day in the blind. Bing's stomach was turning circles, and his mind kept replaying what had just walked away. But then it happened: The buck showed himself again! This time, he was coming from a different direction, following the doe and weaving his giant antlers through the snow-covered poplars.

Bing raised his 7mm Rem. Mag. and set his sights on the small shooting window the majestic whitetail was headed for. When the deer's vitals reached the crosshairs, the veteran marksman put a bullet right on target. It felt as if lightning struck as the shot echoed in the crisp evening and the big brute crashed through the frozen trees. All then came silence — except for the sound of Bing's heart pounding in his chest.

After waiting a few minutes, the hunter walked down the trail and came to the magnificent whitetail the family had spent all fall after. Bing then called Darby, along with Bowman, and awaited their arrival so all three hunters could lay their hands on the prize together.

bing_bryant_chartWhen the Bryants lifted the heavy, dark rack out of the snow, they couldn't have had a better family feeling. They'd achieved what they worked so hard for. All had played a role in harvesting the Bryant buck. After taking some photos with the monster, the hunters returned to the family farm, where we friends were able to lay our own eyes on a truly great Saskatchewan whitetail.

This magnificent buck took the Bryants on a hunting adventure that will stay with their family forever. It's the kind of deer story most can only dream of, but with hard work and determination, three generations of hunters were able to make the fantasy come true.

This tremendous buck ended up measuring 216 2/8 gross inches, with a net of 211 2/8. Now Bing, Darby and Bowman can't wait to get back into their deer stands this season.

Kyle Heuerman

Any serious whitetail hunter knows that it's not often that we get a second chance on the buck of a lifetime, or even a first chance for that matter. But luck was on the side of Kyle Heuerman and his girlfriend Jennifer Weaver when they put an arrow through this 196-inch Illinois brute. Read the full story.

Joe Franz

We estimate he was 7 1/2 years old. That's based on photos from 2010, when he clearly wasn't over 3 1/2. When I got him he weighed over 300 pounds on the hoof, as suspected. Official B&C measurer Glen Salow came up with a 'green ' gross score of 258 7/8 inches. After the 60-day drying period, he again taped the rack. This time he got a gross non-typical score of 261 3/8, with a net of 230 7/8. The gross score evidently makes this the highest-scoring wild whitetail ever harvested on professional video. Read the full story.

Jon Massie

Jon's no stranger to free-ranging whitetails across the central plains, having guided a number of clients to trophies and harvesting many big ones himself. In fact, going into 2013 he'd shot two net Boone & Crocketts: one a non-typical scoring over 200, the other a typical from public land. With such success behind him, Jon felt all of his hunting dreams already had come true. At least, he did until a buck he'd never seen showed up on one of his trail cameras. Read the full story.

Tom Boyer

Knowing I couldn't even come to my knees without breaking the little concealment we had, I decided to lie on my left side, using my left elbow for as solid a rest as could be achieved within the slight incline of the old fencerow. But when I shouldered the rifle, the sight of the crosshairs oriented at a 10-4 o'clock angle was definitely a different look from the normal 12-6 position we all practice from. Even so, I didn't figure that would matter if I aimed at the right spot and squeezed off a clean shot. I settled the crosshairs where I needed to place the bullet and steadied the rifle. Whispering 'fire in the hole ' while floating the crosshairs on the spot, I gently squeezed the trigger until the recoil removed the buck from my view. Read the full story.

Teddy's Buck

With a whopping 40 inches of non-typical growth, he has a gross Boone & Crockett score of 215 3/8. The rack's 21 6/8-inch inside spread certainly helps to show off its unique character. He was just a special deer, and very much a result of patience in both management and hunting. Read the full story.

Ryan Sullivan

Ryan Sullivan was only 19 when, during the 2013 season, he arrowed an Arkansas buck of gigantic proportions. Like many of his fellow Arkansans, Ryan is a deer and duck fanatic. For several years, however, he gave up most of his duck season to lock horns with the world-class buck. Read the full story.

Junior Key

Junior's outstanding whitetail is the biggest ever recorded from Monroe County, and he ranks as one of the Bluegrass State's top bucks from the 2013-14 season. This great non-typical also is the latest member of Kentucky's all-time Top 30 list. Read the full story.

Mikell Fries

At 16 yards, Mikell took aim at the giant and released his arrow. In an instant, the shaft had passed through him. The deer instantly whirled and ran out of sight . . . but then, within seconds the archer heard him crash to the ground. 'I remained in the stand for several minutes to gather my thoughts and calm down, ' Mikell says. 'I'm sure the entire encounter only took a few minutes, but it seemed an eternity. ' Read the full story.

Bill Robinson

Three double-digit tines of 10 2/8 to 13 5/8 inches, plus 7 1/8- and 9 3/8-inch brows and a 21 3/8-inch inside spread, add plenty to this regal crown. Put everything together and you have a gross 9-point frame score of 193 6/8. That's as big as it sounds. Typical asymmetry and 11 6/8 inches of abnormal points total 25 1/8 inches of deductions, so as a typical, the deer nets 'only ' 168 5/8. But the 8×5 rack's total gross score of 205 4/8 is much more reflective of its stunning size. Regardless of score, the Robinson buck is clearly a marvel of nature. Read the full story.

Nick Drake

The action was fast and furious right from the get-go. At daybreak a doe busted through the cedar thicket with an eight-point suitor following close behind. The doe, however, wanted nothing to do with her pursuer and jumped into a nearby pond in an attempt to flee the buck. This, however, wasn't the last of the action. Nick continued to watch several bucks harass does throughout the morning, but chose not to take a shot at them. Read the full story.

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