South Carolina’s firearms season opened Aug. 15 on private land in portions of the state, giving hunters a jump on the rest of the Southeast and a chance to kill a buck in velvet.
Jason Hart is an account manager for Mossy Oak/Haas Outdoors. Check out this outstanding whitetail he killed Wednesday evening, and his account of the hunt below:
“After moving back to the South Carolina Lowcountry after being gone since before college (90s), I joined four different hunting clubs/leases this summer. With all of my work travel, I haven’t had the chance to scout or learn the properties like I wanted to this summer. With no scouting, no knowledge of the area and little hope for success (until later in the season), a gentleman who is running one of them was nice enough to set me in a stand overlooking a peanut field on the August 15th opener.
“He had seen some good bucks and put me in quite the spot. At 7:40 p.m. a 120-inch class 10-point stepped out in the field. I raised my binos and it didn’t take me long to raise my rangefinder, and I got a reading of 240 yards. I raised my rifle and got my bean bag rest situated on the shooting rail of the stand.
“While looking at him in the crosshairs, more red covered up green in the top right side of my scope. The biggest deer I have had in my crosshairs in South Carolina stepped in my scope past him about 20 yards behind him.
“It took about a minute to calm my breathing and my shakes before I squeezed the trigger, holding dead on his shoulder as I sighted in my Steyr 300 Win Mag for 2 inches high at 100 yards the day before. He dropped. His buddy ran in circles for a minute and was centered in my crosshairs. I let him walk (it is legal to kill more than one buck a day in S.C.). Hopefully he will survive until next year.
“This is my best South Carolina deer to date and my first deer in velvet (I have been wanting to shoot one in velvet since I was 9 years old and have passed up dozens of smaller velvet-racked bucks over the years). I haven’t scored him yet, but he is a dandy and is going on the wall! Quite the memory on my first day of hunting since becoming a South Carolina resident again!”
Dandy is appropriate! Congratulations, Jason, and good luck to the other hunters in the Palmetto State this season!