#89 Santa Rosa Island Mule Deer Buck-- Joe Massolo
Joe and his guide Chad had an epic hunt during that Sept 2011 trip. This buck was shot the last morning of the hunt. Several years earlier Joe, knowing that 2011 was our last year, booked himself for two trophy bucks. On the previous day, Joe also shot a beautiful 194 SCI buck. As well, they saw an even bigger buck but couldn't close the deal. That particular buck was finally shot by the National Park Service's extirmanation team a couple days after they began shooting elk and deer from the helicopter in mid- October. We were allowed to score the head and it tallied something like 222! I'm pretty sure that Chad has that head in his Santa Rosa Island collection. That was appropriate since he hunted that buck the whole 2011 season but a client was never able to put a bullet into him. For people who hunted SRI, they understood the size of the Island-- it was a real hunt. For those who never had the chance to hunt it, it's hard to grasp how big 55,000 acres of huge canyons, coastal terraces, and rough ground can be. There were so many little hiding spots that the deer could utilize. To our chagrin, many bucks would elude us.