Many times, the best award-winning opportunities come once in a lifetime. For experienced local hunter Logan Fountain, his trophy moment came in his deer blind high in a tree on Lamar County soil. The local archery hunter, who was inspired by his grandfather to partake in the sport at age 13, sat and waited for a deer to come in sight.
As the sun was setting on a warm Tuesday night, Logan began to gather his gear and head home for another hunt for a different day.
“The night of Nov. 10 is when it was. It was an extremely warm day for this time of the year, and this was peak time,” Logan said. “This piece of property I was on, I had been scouting it quite a bit, and it just seemed like a spot you could potentially see a really good buck. There was a lot of good cover, and I figured he wouldn’t have to move from that spot too much. I didn’t see a single deer all night in that stand, but the other four nights I saw deer there. They were small bucks and doe — nothing I particularly wanted to shoot. I thought I was going to get skunked tonight. It was getting dark and the next day was colder to have better activity in the morning the next day.”
Since the prospects looked bleak, Logan was about ready to call it a night. However, his ears alerted him of a potential deer in the area. Once he heard rustling in the foliage close to some marks and carvings in nearby trees, the action picked up for Logan.
“I lowered my bow down to the ground and undid my safety harness and I saw the flicker of a tail. As soon as I saw that, I knew it was a deer,” Logan said. “I got my binoculars out and I saw that huge, wide rack and the first words I said were, ‘That’s a shooter.’ As quickly and quietly as possible, I slipped my bow out and he didn’t sense me under the dark brush. I’ve gotten buck fever before, but my heart was racing because this was the biggest buck I’ve ever seen. I was shaking.”
With newfound hope and a rush of adrenaline, the mammoth whitetail deer waltzed slowly through the woods completely unaware of Logan’s presence. Even though the anticipation was at an all-time high, Logan did not allow nerves to extinguish the huge opportunity just a handful of yards away from him. Quick thinking and crisp execution eventually led to an unbelievable moment for Logan as he sat high in the trees. He lifted his Bowtech Carbon Knight bow he has used since 2014, and the challenge was on for Logan.
“After the deer came out, he went under a cedar tree and was raking his horns in the top brush and making a scrape in the ground,” Logan said. “I knew I had to do something to pull him over there to me. I turned my head away from him and I called to him through my grunt call. I turned my head and I gave a couple really soft grunts through my grunt tube. He stopped what he was doing, and I could tell he was listening. He turned towards my tree and walked straight towards me. When he was in the thick of the brush, I started to draw my bow back. Normally, I don’t like taking quarter-two shots, I settled the pin right behind the shoulder, and I released my arrow then heard the pop. He reeled around and took off into the brush — it sounded like the whole woods were coming down. It got kind of silent for a second, and I heard some leaves and brush crashing, which you associate with the deer coming down. After that, it was dead quiet and I began to shake — I thought I was gonna fall out the tree. It was incredible and I couldn’t believe what had just happened.”
After he landed the arrow right where it needed to go, the battle was won but the war was not over. The massive trophy buck limped off into the woods as the sun began to set. Logan did not want any doubt surrounding the certainty of the kill or location of his trophy deer, so he thought quickly by asking for assistance.
“Chris Franklin in Fannin County and Zan Hoskison from Pecan Gap, Texas helped out a lot with this one,” Logan said. “If you get a slick trick magnum broadhead on a deer, they make big wound channels, so it did not pass through. I only had one entrance, so I knew blood would possibly be limited. I got out of the tree and started to look, and then my lights started going dim on me. I started to panic, but I told myself to calm down. I just went to get some fresh batteries for my flashlight and called my friend Chris to see if he could help.
I told him what happened and I told him I needed his help to find it if possible. He came out and helped and he knew someone with tracking dogs that could find deer with a lot of success. I told him to bring his friend and the dogs, and we all went back to my tree stand once they all got here. The dogs kind of acted like something was out there as we were coming in, and the dogs kind of circled over by the creek there when they were released. They got to sitting still on the GPS that Zan was tracking them with, and sure enough, they found the deer. They didn’t even go 50 yards away from where we were.”
Once it was found, Logan said the deer was an 8-point buck with a 25-inch wide rack. The mature male whitetail deer was estimated to be between 4 to 4 ½ years old and weighed more than 200 pounds. Finding a whitetail buck of this description is a rarity to say the least. While many hunters try to keep tabs on deer and their growth through game cameras and other tracking methods, this once-in-a-lifetime deer seemed to appear more mysterious than expected. Its appearance was a surprise, but the markings it left in the area previously provided Logan with an extent of foreshadowing.
“It was more of just a lucky find,” Logan said. “I didn’t have any game cameras in the area, but I noticed some past and present rubs on these trees, and there was a really big scrape near the tree I set up in, but I knew there was something cruising through there. I knew there were some small bucks, because I have seen them, but I knew internally there was something good hiding back here.”
Luck was on Logan’s side Tuesday night as the monster deer will provide Logan with a freezer full of venison and a quality shoulder mount of the buck to come in the near future.
“This is by far the biggest deer I’ve ever seen or gotten to kill, so he is definitely going to a taxidermist and do a shoulder mount,” Logan said. “I took him over to Ray’s Processing plant out there in the R.C. Club by Highway 28. He is just going to overload the freezer.”
Logan said local game warden Bryan Callihan and his son Kaden have helped grow his passion for hunting. In addition to this, Logan has aspirations to be a Texas Game Warden. The local hunter had even bigger fortunes outside of the deer blind earlier this year when he got engaged to his fiancé Rachel Kennedy. For more sports coverage, click here.