August 22, 2023
When Daniel Lappe left his home in Indiana on Sunday Nov. 13, 2022, he had no idea that he would return with a world-class non-typical whitetail. During the 45-minute drive to his hunting ground in Henderson County, Kentucky, he anticipated just another day in the woods. He had taken a few does on the property before, and since he had to work the next day, he hoped to quickly tag a buck and be back early!
Daniel’s ladder stand overlooks a 400-yard-long canola field. After a few minutes of sitting there, he admits to thinking, I’d almost rather be at home watching football! Then he noticed movement far down the field. That turned out to be a doe. She was headed his way, and she had a big buck on her tail.
“She ran the entire length of the field with him behind her,” Daniel remembers. “Then they stopped broadside 120 yards away right in front of me.”
Daniel was looking at a giant non-typical. The quick events had his heart pounding, but it didn’t take long for him to get the crosshairs on target. “When I touched the trigger of the .300 Win. Mag., he took five steps and stopped,” Daniel says. “I really thought I had missed! So, I chambered another round and was ready to shoot again.”
The buck then turned away from Daniel, took five more steps and crashed! His hunt was over, right on schedule. “It was not quite dark yet, so I was still thinking I would be home early,” Daniel laughs. “But that turned out to be wrong.”
After tagging the buck and loading him into a side-by-side, and taking a really good look at the rack, Daniel decided to hang the deer overnight. Then word about the deer got out, and folks started calling and coming by to see his trophy. “That turned it into a very late night,” he recalls.
Social media helped to spread the word, too. And one of Daniel’s friends, who had just bought a place near Daniel’s hunting spot, admitted later that he had been after the deer hard. He shared trail camera photos with Daniel.
“Even the Kentucky game warden called and asked me a few questions,” Daniel says. “He said everything was legal, but he wanted to get some info so his phone would stop blowing up!”
The left side of the buck’s rack carries heavy mass, bladed points and a gnarly brow tine. The right side features a more regular brow and an incredible tangle of points. All this pushes the gross score to 234 7/8. This giant non-typical is far more than just “a buck” like Daniel had been hoping for. And missing the football game turned out to be a smart move!