Wisconsin: 3 Record Typical Bow Bucks in 4 Years!

Back in 2012 I posted this blog on the 14-point monster shot by Dusty Gerrits in Fond du Lac Country on November 6 that year. It net-scored 189 3/8 inches, and was the new state archery record for typical whitetail. I was so impressed with Dusty’s buck that the next summer I went up and filmed a popular BIG DEER TV segment with Dusty at his hunting cabin.

Some 11 months later, on October 11, 2013, bowhunter Adam Hupf shot a 13-pointer in Dodge County that edged out the Gerrits Buck to become the new Wisconsin archery record typical. After the mandatory 60-day drying period, the rack was panel-scored in Green Bay and measured an official 191 6/8 inches.


Dusty and Adam don’t live that far apart, so they got together for a few beers, shared stories and sent me this picture (that’s Adam and his record buck on the left, and Dusty and his #2 giant on right).

Well, at least Adam’s buck lasted as the state record for a more than a year (23 months to be exact).

From Wisconsin Buck and Bear: At approximately 2:55 pm on Thursday November 5, 2015 a huge buck was cruising a steep hillside…in west-central Wisconsin. Seventy-five yards away archer John Kassera…sat patiently waiting on this warm breezy afternoon. The La Crosse County 5×5…was arrowed at 20 yards….

Wi kassera buck

Earlier this year in January, the Kassera Buck was panel measured and officially netted 193 4/8”—the 3rd state record typical arrowed in the last 4 seasons!

Three STATE RECORD TYPICAL BOW BUCKS in 4 years seems unbelievable, and it is really. But then consider that Wisconsin ranks #1 in the nation for Boone and Crockett typical whitetails, with 1,131 bucks in the record book, 382 more than 2nd place Illinois.

It would not surprise me if another new record is shot this fall in Wisconsin; until the typical net approaches 200 inches in the state, it’s feasible that the record will continue to be broken in 1- or 2-inch increments.

And there’s a very good chance that if a hunter breaks Milo Hanson’s world-record typical of 213, he or she will shoot it in Wisconsin. In fact, this might be that buck.

BIG DEER TV Wins 3 Telly Awards

telly award big deer tv 2015The Oscars are Sunday night.

“Who cares?” you ask, and I agree.

I only bring it up because we were honored recently with 3 Tellys, cable television’s version of the prestigious film awards.

In the TV Programs category at the 36th Annual Telly Awards, BIG DEER TV won a much- coveted Silver for Entertainment for “A Dream Buck For Krista.” In this episode, cancer-survivor Krista Dick, a wonderful and inspiring young lady, and I persisted over 2 years and 4 hunts in South Carolina and finally got her buck, an old 5 1/2-year-old warrior. It was one of the most emotional and uplifting episodes I have ever produced, one of my all-time favorites. I gained a friend and hunting buddy for life.

telly krista

Big Deer also won a bronze Telly for Editing for our work on “Acts of Valor,” during which we shared the woods and told the stories of two Iraq veterans and American heroes. We took home another bronze in the Videography subcategory for “The Shed Hunting Obsession.”

In a press release announcing these awards, Mitch Petrie, VP of programming for Sportsman Channel, said, “It is a tremendous honor to receive these awards for our television series. Mike Hanback…along with the entire Outdoor Sportsman Group staff take great pride and careful planning to create such (a) unique series. We work with a superb internal production and editing staff – so hat’s off to everyone for their winning efforts.”

I have the fun and easy part: traveling around and hunting and talking about it. Behind the scenes, we have a very talented group of producers, writers, videographers and editors, and these awards are testament to their hard work and commitment to make Big Deer TV a top-level hunting show.

The new television season kicks off this July on Sportsman Channel. It’s fitting that this season, our 5th year anniversary of doing BIG DEER TV, the adventures and episodes you’ll see are bigger and better than ever.

Thanks for coming along for the ride and setting your DVR and watching, I appreciate your support.

Big-Buck Dreams Come True In South Carolina

sc jordans buckLet me introduce you to my new hunting buddy, 15-year-old Jordan Beri. Last Friday evening Jordan, who has spina bifida and is paralyzed from the chest down, shot this 212-pound, low-fence giant in SC. Jordan dropped the fully mature deer w/one shot. I have never been so proud. I was at least 10 times more excited than he was!

Before our afternoon hunt, we held hands and Jordan led us in a little prayer. He’s been a preacher since age 4 and has traveled around the South preaching at revivals. His dad, Patrick, told me that often at these events other preachers come up to Jordan and say, “Boy, let’s pray that one day you’ll walk again.”

To which Jordan replies, “You don’t have to pray for me, sir, I know God will take care of me. Let’s pray for others who need it.”

This is one special kid. Watch this inspirational new episode of BIG DEER TV on the Sportsman Channel later this fall.

Photos below: Jordan and I mugging in the blind…the big deer just before we shot him…a legit 212 pounds on the scales, the heaviest buck that has ever come off the property we hunted.

jordan and i

big buck


BIG DEER TV Tonight: “Blood Moon Rising”

oregon desert campAll-new episode tonight on Sportsman Channel 10 ET/9C. Here are some clips from the script you’ll see and hear:

“I’m on a high desert adventure in the Oregon Outback with Big Deer producer Justin and his buddy Nick. 

“At first glance the high desert appears to be a harsh moonscape. But upon further inspection, you see pockets of water and prime habitat that support the numerous wildlife adapted to thrive here…

“Oregon’s high desert is a landscape born of fire. Beginning some 3 million years ago, a string of young volcanoes in eastern Oregon began erupting and covering large terrains with lava flows of basalt. This igneous rock…formed from the rapid cooling of lava exposed at or near the surface…rises into immense columns where muley bucks seek shade on the northern exposures.

The last day of our hunt in Oregon coincides with a unique astronomical event…a total lunar eclipse known as a “Blood Moon.” As the Earth eclipses a full moon, the direct sunlight is blocked, but the sun’s rays still light up the moon and give it a crimson glow. Justin hopes this is a cosmic portent of good fortune as he makes his last-ditch effort…

As you will see in this show, the size of the adventure matters much more to us than the size of the buck.

Tune in or set your DVR, and as always thanks for your support.



New Season BIG DEER TV Premieres Tonight on Sportsman Channel!

Cali buck 2014.jpg compress

All-new episodes of my TV show start airing tonight, Wednesday July 1, at 10 PM/9C on Sportsman Channel.

Over the next 6 months watch as we travel to some amazing destinations to hunt some amazing deer: the high desert of Oregon…snow-laced Sheridan, Wyoming…a wheat farm in the shadows of towering Mount Hood and Mount St. Helens…the plains of western Kansas…the deep bush of Saskatchewan of course…and more.

cali wine country

First stop tonight, the beautiful wine country of California’s Central Coast. A lot of people don’t realize that there is still much beautiful and remote country left to hunt in Cali, but you have to find the right place and go with the right people. I sure did. Doug Roth, one of the best hunters in the state, and I hunted a 22,000-acre private ranch, and during my visit in September, we were the only ones on it. Zero pressure, and that’s how you kill big deer of any species.

Watch and/or set your DVR for tonight 10 PM Eastern on Sportsman. Thanks as always for your support!