Whitehouse’s Marlo Bitter has taken the lead in the Women’s Division with a 9-point Llano County buck scoring 122 6/8.
“Our family of four went to spend the Thanksgiving holiday at our family’s Prairie Mountain Ranch in Llano County. We arrived Tuesday evening and the afternoon of Thanksgiving Day is when I had my first hunt alone, as I’d taken my 7-year old daughter with me to the blind the day before,” Bitter said.
“I hadn’t seen much until about 5:30 and then I noticed a doe coming out from a low spot between two mountains. I watched her for a few minutes and then noticed a big buck chasing behind her in my binoculars so I instantly put the binoculars down and started looking through my scope to be sure he was a shooter,” she said.
While some hunts turn into a game of hide-and-seek, Bitter’s hunt came to a quick end.
The buck had a 16 7/8-inch inside spread and a 20 2/8-inch longest main beam. The longest tine measured 7 4/8 inches and the largest base measurement was 3 3/8 inches.
Bitter leaps over Flint hunter Kim Oldham who was the division’s first leader of the season with an 8-point Concho County buck that scored 113 1/8.
Brad Morris, Flint, leads the South Texas Adult Division with a 10-point Dimmit County buck scoring 139 6/8. His daughter, Sydney, 10, is first in the South Texas Youth Division with an 8-point buck on the same ranch that scored 128 5/8.
Mason Barker of Bullard leads the North Texas Youth Division with an 8-point Smith County buck scoring 138 6/8.
Hunters may still register for the contest. Participation is free, but hunters must register at least 24 hours in advance of taking their deer. Hunters may register at any of the contest sponsors: Army/Navy Store of Tyler, 1201 E.SE. Loop 323; East Texas Seed, Cotton Belt Rail Yard; Lynch’s Food Store, 3400 E. Fifth; Mac s Gun Shop, 213 E. Elm; Noonday Gun Trader, 14674 U.S. 155 South; and Still Life Taxidermy, 1415 E. Tyler St., Athens.
The contest is for open-range deer only. No deer taken on a fully enclosed, high-fenced property may be entered.
The contest features three adult divisions North Texas, South Texas and Women s; and two youth divisions North and South Texas. The youth division is open to hunters 16 years old and younger.
First-place winners in each adult division will receive a Remington .270-caliber rifle and a shoulder mount of their deer. Second-place winners are awarded gift certificates.
Winners of the youth divisions will receive a shoulder mount of their deer. Second- and third-place finishers will be awarded gift certificates.
All deer to be entered in the contest must be taken to either Still Life Taxidermy or Lynch’s Food Store.