ScentBlocker and the Wilmoth's- Family Values and Hunting Traditions

There are so many wonderful benefits to working with a company like ScentBlocker- but honestly- when asked the question of what I like the best, my answer's always the same. I really appreciate what a family oriented company ScentBlocker is. And I'm not alone. Everyone I've met and worked with at ScentBlocker keeps family at the top of their priority list. Now... our family time may be spent in the woods with the kids- but who's to judge?! We're happy that many of our fans and customers are family oriented people too. Recently we heard from a die-hard ScentBlocker fan- Brandon Wilmoth- about the amazing hunts that he and his family had this fall. It was too good not to share, so... in his own words- Brandon's story.

Brandon and Kong! Brandon and Kong!

 

Perfectly Imperfect 

I finally did it - got the buck I had been after all season. Yet I had sadness and confusion going through my mind.  I had gotten early trail cam pictures of the buck back in early September I would name Kong. To me, he was King Kong, the King of my jungle here in Kansas. He had several scoreable points, but the true allure was the extra 10 plus inch tine he had over his right eye.

 

I had three spots set up on the south end of a small farm where he habituated. There was a ladder stand on the southwest side, ladder in the middle along the creek over a food plot, and a pop-up blind on the east side where there were no suitable trees. However, on the east side there is a natural alley I called Scrape Alley as it’s where they would make/check scrapes just inside the timber during rut. I would not step foot on any other part of the farm. I wanted to be a fly in his kingdom.  I was going to hunt smart, not hard, and in the right wind and right conditions.

 

I hunted a couple times in late October and early November but only saw Kong on my trail cameras.  I had placed a camera by each one of the spots I set up to gather as much information as I could to pattern him. He liked the camera and tortured me with all the night pictures he was posing for.

 

As the second week of November was coming and a cold front came in, I felt this could be what gets Kong up in daylight - a love of the ladies and the need to feed.  On the evening of November 11, I sprinted from my job as a middle school teacher.  I had all my gear laid out and ready. A quick shower later and I was on my way.  I chose that night to hunt out of the east ground blind for a couple reasons. One, I was not getting in the woods until 4:15 p.m. (LATE in my eyes) two, it had an easy way in where I didn’t risk bumping anything and its quieter to get in the blind than a stand.

 

Once I was set up I worried the conditions were too perfect and I’d end up not seeing a thing. Thankfully, I was wrong as a couple button bucks came in about thirty minutes into my sit. I was watching them when I noticed a rack appear down the alleyway. He was coming my way. I could tell by the brow tines that this was Kong. Then I saw it. My heart sank and my shoulders slouched in disappointment. He was missing the extra tine over his right eye.

 

Now I had to ask, “Do I still shoot him?” I texted my wife, “Kong is broke!”

BOOOO,” she replied.

 

He was now only forty yards away.

 

You know, this is the deer I’ve been after and he’s still solid even without the extra tine,” I told myself. It was time to end the Quest of Kong.

 

I had brought the crossbow I purchased for my wife to use. I rather liked it and since I hadn’t killed anything with a crossbow, I liked to bring it when I would be in a ground blind.

 

Soon I lowered the aim on Kong and waited for him to step his right leg forward just a bit. I was after the perfect angle, but he took off grunting at one of the does that had worked in.

 

Of course, I’m upset at myself for taking so long to decide I was going to take Kong only to be left with him grunting off. With my head hung, I replayed it in my head, disappointment rising again as I thought about the broken tine. Then some how Kong decided to head back down the alley and back into my sites.

 

This time I didn’t waste any time. He came to forty yards, gave me a small window and I took it letting the bolt launch from the crossbow. He dropped dead. The Quest of Kong was over.

 

The light was fading as I walked up on him, uncharacteristically at a loss for words. I was sad, happy, mad, excited, and even confused. I stood over him in a daze before walking back to my truck to call my dad to help me load him.

 

As I waited for him to arrive, I realized it was one heck of a story and I had been on a great journey trying to get this one Kansas buck.  He was not whole, but he was mine. Perfectly imperfect.

 

My excitement returned, especially when my dad arrived with my three-year-old son Platt who was beyond ecstatic about his Daddy’s big buck.

 

After getting a few photos, we loaded up, pulled the three cards and headed home. When I started looking at the cards the story of Kong and the broken tine started to come together.  I had a picture of him the day before with the extra tine hanging off his head.  The next picture of him only twelve hours later revealed the tine was gone. Should I find the tine, I’ll add it to the mount, but in the meantime, that part of Kong remains somewhere in my woods.

The Wilmoth family in their ground blind. The Wilmoth family in their ground blind.

 

My Wife Jennifer's Buck

My wife Jennifer has wanted to harvest a buck for many years, but for whatever reason (namely her bad luck) she has not had the chance. She’s a full-time teacher and mother of three. Yes, I’m counting myself as I’m pretty much lost without her. She finds my keys, my wallet, and a lot of times the kids after I have been watching them.

 

As the hunting season approached, Jennifer had a different mind set. This would not be the year of bad luck or missed opportunity. She had always hunted with a Muzzleloader or rifle, but this year I picked up a Tenpoint crossbow that would extend her season and enable her to experience the “RUT.”

 

Jennifer and I sat many different occasions together and several times we took our three year old son Platt with us if we hunted from a blind. She was determined to get a buck, but not just any, she wanted a solid one. Heck she even passed on deer. I’m not sure when she became a trophy hunter, but several times she had decent deer out front and would not even consider them.

 

It was a very cold November evening when we tracked out as a family of three, leaving our nine-month-old with the grandparents, to a blind that I had set up and even took my deer out of the week before to see if we could finally get a deer for Jennifer.

 

She was starting to get very frustrated about not getting the right deer in front of her. The previous two evenings she’d sat alone and only seen one deer. On this day, as we settled in and got Platt comfortably warm and armed with snacks and a toy, we didn’t have to wait long for action to surround us. The deer poured in, enamoring Platt as he sat quietly watching as they passed by at a mere five yards from us.

 

Then it happened: a “Shooter” approached. He was a big 8 that I had named Tex after seeing him on my camera. He was walking down the alley right into range.  Jennifer got settled in for a shot and then every deer in the county showed up to block her from firing.  One deer would move, then Tex would turn. We had five bucks in front of us, shielding and protecting Tex. Five minutes into his appearance Jennifer was about to have a stroke, so impatiently eager she was to take her shot. Finally it was clear and Tex was broadside.

 

The bolt flew! I heard the smack and saw it had hit right beside the shoulder.  Tex darted out of the alleyway and into the field beyond our visibility. I jumped out the front window and cut to the field where I could see he was more than 100 yards away. He tucked his tail and ducked back into the timber.  I had a mark.

 

I walked back to the blind beyond excited. I could hear Jennifer and Platt in the blind exclaiming, “We got him! We got him!”  The sight of my wife and my son standing face-to-face and holding hands in shared excitement brought an enjoyment to the moment I’ll never forget.

 

I hurriedly gathered the stuff from the blind and we went back to the truck.  Jennifer then started to question the shot. I told her it was in the ringer, but we needed to give him time.  We drove back home and waited, waited, and waited.  Once we got the kids down to bed, my dad came over to babysit and Jennifer and I left to find her deer.

 

Four hours had passed since she’d released the bolt.  My insides were tearing me apart. I wanted to find this deer so bad but I did not want to show Jennifer I had any doubt. 

 

As we drove to the mark I had from earlier on the four-wheeler, I grew concerned that I couldn’t pick up any blood. I had seen the hit, but sometimes your eyes or bolt can do funny things.  I told Jennifer that we were not going to look very long unless we found blood as I could always go back to where she shot him in the morning and there was no reason to go on a wild goose chase.  She didn’t want to turn back so we agreed to dive into the timber for just a couple minutes.  I told her with the shot she had put on him I would be surprised if he could have made it over the creek so we would check there.

 

Approaching the creek, not five minutes into the timber, there it was: “WHITE BELLY!” I went ahead and acted like a fool, jumping up and down hugging my wife.  We hustled over to Tex and Jennifer got to lay her hands on her first buck. 

 

All the mounts can now go upstairs! I want everyone to see my buck!” she proudly asserted.

 

When we returned home, Platt was awake, unable to sleep in his anticipation of seeing mommy come home with her “big buck!” We celebrated her prize shot and are still relishing in her moment of accomplishment.

 

Jennifer's beautiful first buck. Jennifer's beautiful first buck.

 

WOW! After reading Brandon and Jennifer's stories several times- I'm still at a loss for words. Congratulations Wilmoth family! We're really happy for you. Trophy bucks or not... what's amazing is that you hunt as a family. Those trophy memories will hang on the wall of your hearts forever. Please keep us posted in the future. We can't wait to post the story of Platt's first buck:)

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