#26 FRANK HIGGINS Top 100 Santa Rosa Island Mule Deer Bucks
When you first look at this buck, you know it's big. But is it really a 220 buck? Then you start analyzing the complete picture and you begin to appreciate what this muley actually has. Also, he is a 6x6, so this photo doesn't highlight his four extra tines very well. In another month after this photo was snapped, the extirmination program for the herds of the deer and elk began.
Sometimes, when you weren't on the hunt, and look at the photo in some canyon, it's hard to decypher where on the Island it was. Well, this picture tells its location pretty easy. There aren't too many canyons like this one that has Santa Cruz Island as it's backdrop. Las Cruces wasn't known for producing great numbers of big bucks, but every once in a while it would surprise us.
This buck was guided by Tom McCay, who started his stint with MUM back in 1992 when he sat in on the pig eradication bid proposal session for Santa Rosa Island. He sat next to Wayne, and the owner of the Island, Al Vail. They struck up a conversation, and Tom has been a great friend and trusted partner ever since. Tom is a great guide, but much like Tim Kelley, their focus has never been on the photo side of things. I'll be seeing Tom tomorrow. He's a passenger on a road trip with me, along with another former SRI guide Andrew Atkins.