After spending more than 30 years hunting deer, elk and squirrel and reeling in his share of fish, Derek Carrington, a member of Roofers Local 23 in South Bend, Indiana has seen a lot. He never expected, however, to come face-to-face with a monster buck and a camera lens at the same time. It happened just like that during Derek’s recent experience as a featured guest on the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance’s Brotherhood Outdoors TV show, when the crew took him on a Kansas whitetail hunt. Share Derek’s excitement when he spots the biggest buck he has ever seen Sunday, April 6, at 11 a.m. ET, on the Sportsman Channel.
“This was the trip of a lifetime,” said Derek, of Buchanan, Michigan. “Since I was small, I was always watching the hunting and fishing shows. I never thought I’d be the one who got to go.”
Derek said it was his dad, a retired union roofer, who started him early, fishing bluegill and hunting squirrels. By the time he was 18, he learned how to bow hunt. “It’s still my passion,” he said.
Now, like his dad, Derek enjoys taking his two sons, Hunter (8) and Holden (5), out on his boat to fish for perch and salmon near their home on Lake Michigan but said it’s not just about the catch or the harvest. “It’s the laughs, sharing stories,” he said. “It’s the best feeling in the world.”
It became clear to Derek on the first day of the Brotherhood Outdoors trip that hunting deer that have room to grow on hundreds of acres out in Kansas is quite different from hunting on smaller lands, like he is used to doing in Michigan. “It’s so much broader and wide out there,” he said.
On the first day of the hunt, Derek sits, watches and waits patiently all day with co-host Julie McQueen but to no avail. “We didn’t see one deer,” Derek said.
The next few days of the hunt present quite a different story with deer running everywhere and a huge buck that Derek calls, “an absolute giant,” showing itself to the crew at about 500 yards away. No shot. The next day, they see that same big buck again, and still they could not get a shot.
The episode culminates with unplanned thrills and added excitement in the final moments of the last day’s hunt. The crew had pretty much wrapped production; show co-host Daniel Lee Martin had already put down his camera. Things were really winding down when Julie and Derek called on their “good luck candy bar” snacking ritual hoping for what Julie calls, “a hail Mary” at the last hour.
Watch Derek and the crew scramble to grab the cameras and get off a shot when suddenly, out of nowhere, comes that monster buck running straight across the land, right in front of them at about 250 yards out. Derek pulls off a hasty shot and misses! When that taunting buck jumps a fence, will it make its final getaway?
Tune in to Brotherhood Outdoors on Sundays at 11 a.m. on Sportsman Channel.