My buddy Sheldon, who for years helped me find and shoot monster bucks up in Saskatchewan, now works in the oil patch in northern Alberta. One dark, frozen  night last week Sheldon got bored and decided to clean out his laptop—and found this lost video, which he’d shot with his phone one morning in November 2010.

I had never seen the video until now, but it brings back memories. I had killed the 300-pound giant less than an hour before Sheldon shot this clip. I remember I was in a daze as I sat there and jabbered. I remember how the woods smelled of spruce that morning…how thick and bristly the buck’s hide felt…how hot his blood was on my hands when we opened him up.

He gross-scored 209, the biggest deer I will ever kill.

I remember that we took our time lugging the beast out of the woods, enjoying the day and our time together. Back at the truck Sheldon and I toasted the hunt and the buck with cherry whiskey. I can almost taste it right now.

What a day…what a deer…what a life.