Milestone Hunt Ends With Tagging A Texas Trophy [Big Buck ALERT]

When Steve Simpson headed afield on Nov. 12 packing his trusty HuntStand app he was setting a personal hunting milestone; he returned our final, Week 10 winner.

by Mark Melotik

HuntStand Pro Contributor MORE FROM Mark

When Steve Simpson headed afield on Nov. 12 packing his trusty HuntStand app he was setting a personal hunting milestone; he returned our final, Week 10 winner.

At 69 years young, when Steve Simpson headed afield this fall he knew he was setting a personal deer-hunting milestone; what he didn’t know was that a few more surprises were on the way courtesy of his Nov. 12 hunt. For sending in photos and HuntStand success story of a beauty 9-point Texas trophy, Simpson is the final, Week 10 winner in the 2021 HuntStand Big Buck ALERT contest. The win earns Simpson a sweet hunt pack from ALPS OutdoorZ: the versatile Covert pack (see below). The weekly win also makes Simpson eligible for our Grand Prize drawing early next week (more on that below).

“I took this buck on Nov. 12, while hunting on family property in Van Zandt County, Texas, with plenty of help from HuntStand. The (modern gun) season started on Nov. 6, and I hunted the first three days, but saw no shooter bucks during daylight hours. I had previously seen this buck only on camera, and only at night, along with some others.“Two of my favorite HuntStand features are the accurate weather forecasts, and solunar information complete with sunrise/sunset times, barometric pressure, and maybe my favorite, the major/minor hunt times. After the season’s first three days I didn’t return to my stand until Friday, Nov. 12, which was the next time Huntstand had forecasted favorable conditions for my elevated stand, located in a hay pasture surrounded by woods behind me and to both sides.

“HuntStand accurately forecasted that it would be a calm, clear day, with a major morning hunt time between 6:57 and 8:57 a.m. My stand faces west, and this buck came out about 90 yards to the north, walking slowly to see if any does were in the area. I let him get about 30 yards into the pasture, then mouth grunted; he stopped and I shot using my Mossberg Patriot 350 Legend, with Winchester Extreme Point 150-grain ammunition.“At the shot the buck jumped up and darted to the south, but I could see it was hit hard. After checking the shot area I found no blood, and was feeling a little sick until I looked to my right and saw a set of antlers near a round bale. At the recovery there was no ground shrinkage, and when I field-dressed him I found the bullet had gone where I had aimed. However, the deer’s shoulder was far enough back when I shot that it was shattered; the bullet had also taken out both lungs but did not exit.“At age 69, this marked the 50th year I had hunted whitetails in November. It’s been 50 years and I’m still learning. There is a lot more information to be gleaned from the HuntStand app, and I will continue to use it while hunting does after Thanksgiving. In the end, you still have to make the shot, but HuntStand makes it much easier to pattern deer during all stages of the rut. Thank you HuntStand!”Team HuntStand has now chosen 10 weekly winners that we’ve shared with the extensive HuntStand community; EACH weekly winner will receive the versatile Covert Pack (valued at $59.99) from ALPS OutdoorZ (see above). This unique compact design will take you from deer season to waterfowling and everything in between. It’s ideal for hunters who want to pack light but still carry essential gear. For cold-weather comfort, deploy the pack in front of your torso, and utilize the integrated hand warmer channel between the belt and main compartment. You’ll also find a clear smartphone pocket on the main compartment lid that offers safe storage of your mobile device.

All weekly winners will now be placed in a drawing for our Grand Prize: an ALPS OutdoorZ Impulse Pack (valued at $199.99; image above). This ultra-quiet design won’t betray your presence when your next trophy is closing in, thanks to ALPS’ new Deadquiet fabric; it features outer fleece with a polyester backing and incorporates a membrane between the two fabrics to help keep out moisture. The zipper-less main compartment allows you to access items quietly and easily; a series of magnets and an aluminum hook secures the top lid when needed. Ideal for ground blinds or treestands, the flat-bottom structure allows the pack to stand up independently. Included are an ambidextrous quiver holder, two deep side pockets, a drop-down pocket to carry your gun or bow, a two-piece adjustable waist belt with pockets, and a hydration pocket with two side ports.

Team HuntStand would like to thank all who entered our 2021 contest, and shared their amazing photos and HuntStand success stories. Stay tuned for news of our Grand Prize winner coming next week!



HuntStand is the #1 hunting and land management app in the country. It combines advanced mapping tools with powerful map layers to allow users to create and share the best hunting maps possible.