#2 STAN ATWOOD Top 100 Santa Rosa Island Mule Deer Bucks
This is such a quintessential Santa Rosa Island buck and photo! This monster was shot by Stan Atwood near dusk out at the end of Bee Canyon. Pocket Field is in the foreground and San Miguel Island in the background. If I keep staring at this photo, I might start crying. I can just relive that return trip over the Burma Road in the dark, knowing that a monster buck is in pieces in the back of the truck. Before long, the fog would be rolling in and the wind will be picking up. We had such a great thing going out there and provided such great experiences to all our clients. Why couldn't we be allowed to continue this prosperous program?
Don Anderson guided Stan on this hunt, and from what I heard, did a great job in getting Stan on this buck. Stan and his wife Pamela came to the Island three years. One year they filled up the whole hunt with their family. Now that was a great trip. This buck of Stan's doesn't have the mass of the last two entries, but boy does he have the frame and the nontypical points. These deer orginated from the Kaibab Plateau. I can completely imagine this buck roaming the Grand Canyon rim. The deer, as you might remember, were transplanted to Santa Rosa Island in 1929. This translocation included 30 mule deer, mainly young does and yearlings. It took many years for the deer to acclimate to the Island, but once they did, boy they prospered. They did so well that they overpopulated this 55,000 acre Island. This was accentuated by also having thousands of cattle and pigs, and hundreds of elk. Many people never thought these deer would ever amount to anything. Once MUM and the Vail and Vickers got their heads together and decided to manage these herds, we were able to develop mule deer bucks like this one that Stan shot. The other thing I remember about the Atwoods is the time I guided them in 1999. The deer hunting wasn't as good back then, so I was flabbergasted when they turned down a 31" 4x5 buck that I showed them. Even back then, they were only interested in 200"+ bucks. And that buck was only in the low 190's. Still, up to that point in the SRI history, clients just didn't pass up on mature, heavy 30" bucks. I was surprised they turned down that buck, but also respected their resolve to only shoot bucks that they would truly wanted.
Congratulations Stan, you shot the 2nd biggest buck on Santa Rosa island! You are an important part of the hunting history fabric of Santa Rosa Island.