Start with the biggest whitetail.

After the success of the 1996 mule deer calendar, it was now time to make this a full time job. No messing around now, it was game time. I sold my successful cabinet shop and ventured off into something brand new and unproven.

I had contacted several people that had some of the biggest whitetail bucks in their possession and figured I might as well start at the top with the Milo Hansen buck.

I had to get the biggest buck of all time in the 1997 calendar so I contacted Milo Hansen and explained what I was trying to accomplish. I was able to secure a slide of his buck (picture below) and this was the beginning.


Below is the re-creation of the Milo Hansen buck from the 1997 calendar. It was created circa 1996. If you would like to read the story on Milo Hansen’s buck, you can read it here.

That wasn’t all.

There were so many big bucks that I was excited to work on that I got a bit overwhelmed. I included the Del Austin buck known as “Old Mossy Horns” and the J. Morgan buck from Saskatchewan among others.

The mighty Del Austin buck from 1962, was shot with a recurve bow.

The styles of the ages.

Below are some photos of two of the heads used for the maiden voyage calendar. Keeping track of pictures back in the day took up a lot of space, both in computer space (very expensive for hard drive space) and filing cabinet space to keep all of the thousands of photos taken organized.

The clarity of it all.

We are spoiled in our current day of digital photos, where a photo taken from your iPhone is better than most photos taken in the 1990’s. The problem wasn’t always the photos I would take of the antlers, but the clarity of the backdrop photos from photographers. Photos today look HD compared to the ones from 20 years ago. I had to request for a bunch of slides from photographers and look through those to decide which ones to use and then send them back. I would then have to get a photo made from the slide and scan it in. Let’s just say, it was a lot of work to just get an image ready to roll. But it was the best at the time so they really stood out.

The rest of the herd.

With so many campfire stories to last a long time, the bucks from the 1997 whitetail calendar were really in a class by themselves. I picked some of the biggest bucks of all time to put in here and I wondered if I would ever be able to top it. There was a lot of research, calling people etc. to locate these bucks. Internet wasn’t really cranking yet with what we have now by a simple Google search. Starting to sound like a grandpa telling his grand kids how tough it was when he was a kid . . .but it was! And the snow was deeper in the 90’s.