May 01, 2023
By Cameron Coble
For the past 25 years, Jeff Crowns and his family have hunted the same permission piece of property in Grant County, Wisconsin. Through doing improvements to the landowner’s barn and property in exchange for hunting rights, Jeff Crowns and his family have secured a great place to hunt.
For the past three years, Jeff and his two daughters have been in pursuit of a giant 9-pointer. In 2019, Jeff’s daughter Grace actually missed the buck at 40 yards. Interestingly, no sheds were picked up from the buck, but he was spotted a few times on the farm when Jeff’s daughter Rose had an encounter with him one day. Unfortunately, she couldn’t get a shot.
On Oct. 22, Rose and Jeff went to “tidy” up a stand they were planning to hunt the next morning. Situated on the side of a hill, the farmer had mowed CRP grass around Jeff’s stand and left one small patch of tall grass 40 yards away.
The next morning, Rose and Jeff anxiously climbed into the stand as quiet as possible. As the sun rose, Rose looked over to the small patch of grass the farmer had left and watched the buck get up from its bed just 35 yards away from the two hunters. Up from its bed, the buck was heading to a scrape not far from the hunters. As the buck was now in range, Jeff watched and waited for his moment to grab his crossbow.
“As the buck looked down the hill, he gave me just enough time to grab my crossbow and take a shot,” Jeff recalls.
At 25 yards, Jeff put a lethal shot on the buck. Rose, who was up above Jeff, saw the whole thing and said to her father, “Good shot, he’s piling up.” Jeff says that he had to catch his breath after the situation ended, and the two waited about 30 minutes before beginning to track the buck. The tracking job was short, and soon the two were staring at a great Wisconsin buck.
“Rose and I just stood there staring at the buck,” Jeff says. “We gave a little prayer to my mother who passed away several years go to cancer. It was a surreal moment, like a prayer was answered.”
Jeff soon called his father and told him the news, and then he joined the two hunters to admire the buck. With a dressed weight of 253 pounds and a 26 6/8-inch inside spread, the big 9-point green gross scores 184 1/8 and nets 173 2/8.