I can't say I really have any history with this buck that fell on the morning of November 1, outside of one long range glassing episode on a humid July evening. Numerous pulls of trail cameras never revealed this giant non-typical, but I assumed he was always around. I was certain his core area was on a piece of private ground which I did not have access to, but I did have access to two farms adjacent to this property. I knew the odds of seeing him outside of the rut were not high, but, we all know that when bucks begin searching for does, their range begins to expand a little bit. I knew there was a chance, but it remained slim. The morning of November 1 dawned clear and cold with a temperature of 22 degrees, no wind and a heavy layer of frost on the ground. Its the kind of morning one looks forward to all year, when you can hear footseps approaching from seemingly hundreds of yards away. I wasn't on one of the properties adjacent to his core area, I was a couple farms away...even less of a chance to see him. I was settled into my treestand, a pinch point between a field edge and ravine located on a steep hillside, about 25 minutes before legal shooting light. At exactly legal shooting light I could hear heavy, deliberate footsteps approaching, but it was still too dim to make out a deer. Finally at a mere 25 yards, a nice buck appeared directly in front of my treestand. I could tell there was alot of antler on top of his head, but I couldn't tell exactly what he was. This portion of Minnesota has a 4 point restriction on bucks and based on the volume on top of his head, I was 99% sure this buck had 4 points on one side, but not knowing for certain, I had to let him walk. He got to 15 yards, turned broadside, and walked away with me thinking, "if only he had given me another 6 or 7 minutes, I could have seen him clearly." He took his time sniffing the ground as he slowly continued away from me, towards the deep ravine and out of sight. Just as he was completely dissapearing, I could again hear heavy footsteps, this time coming from behind me but moving in my direction. It was now light enough that seeing a rack would be no issue. As the footsteps neared, I made a slow glance over my left shoulder, and thats really all it took, one glance to know there would be no hesitation in taking a shot if this buck continued on his path...15 yards away. I never looked at the rack again. Instead of taking the path going 15 yards to the side of my stand, he veered off onto a logging road that would take him just a hair over 30 yards past my stand. When this stand had been hung in July, there was no activity on this logging road, all the traffic was on the trail, and I never cleared a shooting lane to the road. I began scanning desperately for a shooting lane ahead of him. Finding what looked to be a clear shot I drew and waited for him to hit the lane, but he hung up just yards away, sniffing what later turned out to be a doe bed in the frost. I glanced at him and said to myself, "he's open, he's quartering away but wide open!" I swung the bow the few yards, put the pin at the back of his rib cage and released. To be honest it happened so fast, I don't remeber being properly acnhored, having the pin completely settled and ever hitting the trigger on my release. At the shot, he mule kicked and took off on a dead sprint to the ditch and quickly out of sight, but I heard one loud crash in the ditch, then another, a brief rustle of leaves, a couple seconds of silence, then the sound of a deer running away. What had just happened, was my shot any good, I didnt remeber the anchor, hitting the release or even aiming....I just hoped all the repetition and muscle memory I developed through the summer played out. The mule kick, the mad dash to the ditch and the crashing had my almost cmpletely convinced me he was dead in the ditch, but I heard that deer running away. Was he dead or was I in for a long track. I decided if he was dead, he wasn't going anywhere, and if he wasn't, it wouldnt hurt to give him some time. I spent the next two hours waiting in the stand, replaying the shot and convincing myself he was dead in the ditch, then convincing myself he had continued running. It was a painful two hours. At two hours, I headed down my climbing sticks, my feet hit the ground and I glanced at the ditch. That was another deer running away, because my buck lay still in the bottom of the ditch. I covered the 100 yard trail quickly and looked down into the ditch, in awe. There lay the biggest buck I ever have and probably ever will take. 21 points, 20 1/4 inch inside spread, 2 true drop tines and 2 flares off his G2s, field dressed at 260 pounds so he was well over 300 pounds on the hoof. I scored him at 229 1/8 but honestly, trying to determine where a couple of these points originate in the palmation is tough, but I'm certain I'm within 5 inches. I work hard each year to put myself in the right places, but there certainly is a large degree of luck in being in the right place at the right time for a buck of this caliber. I was truly blessed and ever thankful to be in just that spot.