Chasing Velvet – Week 5 – TN Velvet Buck Hunt Recap

The much anticipated, and somewhat controversial, Tennessee Velvet Buck Hunt took place this past weekend across the Volunteer State. Tennessee bowhunters jumped at the chance to climb into the stand and wait out their first velvet buck. As expected, there were some really nice bucks taken over the course of the 3-day hunt.

We checked in with our friend, Josh Taylor, to get an update on how things went down for him over the weekend. Here’s the recap of Josh’s hunt…

I just got a new farm to hunt two weeks before the velvet hunt took place. My buddy lives on the backside of the property and had been seeing a great buck in a bean field every afternoon. I set up a trail cam and had pictures of the deer every afternoon between 5:10-5:30, entering the field from his bedding area. I set my ladder stand up on the edge of the field between his bedding area and where he’d been feeding. I had 5 does enter the field at 5:00pm on the first evening of the hunt. A little later, I had 4 bucks come into the field, including a nice 140″ 9-pointer. I knew the big 10 had to be close, so I just waited and watched the show. Sure enough, like clockwork, the big 10-pointer stepped out at 5:20. I shot the buck when he walked by my stand at 15 yards and he didn’t go 50 yards. He is my biggest archery buck yet.

Velvet buck - Josh-Taylor

Josh with his velvet buck trophy.

Canaan White of west Tennessee also got in on the velvet buck action on day 1 of the hunt. With a football game on Friday night, Canaan had to make his move quick, and that’s exactly what he did.

“Canaan begged me to let him hunt before school that morning since it was the first day of the 3-day velvet hunt,” says Canaan’s dad, Jimmy. “We decided to let him hunt on the first morning since he had a football game Friday night and wouldn’t be able to hunt that afternoon. He smoked a pretty velvet 8-point at 20 yards. The deer ran about 80 yards and piled up. He was as pumped as I’ve ever seen him. And he still made it to school on time.” 

Velvet buck - canaan-white

A great buck for Canaan, and he still made it to school on time!

The hunt came on the heels of a cool snap of weather moving across the state earlier in the week, bringing overnight lows in the 50’s. However, by Friday the weather was already warming back up, bringing the heat that we’re accustomed to at this time of the year. Overall the hunt proved to be a success for a number of hunters across the state. We’ll be watching for harvest updates and stats from the TWRA as they become available.

The velvet buck hunt decision for Tennessee hunters was approved on a 2-year plan, so bowhunters can already look forward to the 2019 velvet buck hunt in the Volunteer State. Be sure to check back for more updates on this year’s velvet buck hunt as well as updates from some of our guys hunting in Kentucky and out west as archery deer seasons officially kick off this next week.

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