By Bill Hudson

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — When hundreds of thousands of deer hunters take to the woods this weekend, they’ll go there with visions of a trophy buck.

With a little luck, and a lot of woods smarts, you could encounter what a Wisconsin archer did.

Greg Widiker’s Webster High School science class is like few others. It’s not just his sports biology lessons, but the wildlife on the walls.

“All of my land management is to prepare for bow season,” Widiker said.

He hunts his own land east of Webster. His past success hangs in the basement of his home.

“Deer will absolutely go where the white oaks are dropping first,” he said.

For the past three years, he has pursued just one — coming only as close as a few shed antlers.

Trail camera photos tracked the huge buck’s growth. It was out there, but where?

“He’s been the dominant buck on this property, this area for years,” Widiker said.

record deer Western Wisconsin Man Bags Buck Of A Lifetime

Greg Widiker and his trophy buck (credit: Greg Widiker)

Then in September, a trail camera took an image of the buck. Widiker contemplated not hunting on the 17th, fearing conditions were not right.

“I’ve done everything I can to create this sanctuary, not go into it, know that the acorns are going to be the draw, and go in a climber for the first time,” he said.

He had passed on 15 deer when just before sundown, the majestic animal crept into a stand of white oak.

“I put the binoculars up, he’s broadside and his antlers are just a wall of tines,” he said.

Shaking, he took a deep breath and looked away.

“Don’t look at his antlers, just take the shot,” Widiker said.

A lifelong passion was realized in a single shot, fraught with emotions over the animal now held in his hands. It is one of the largest white-tailed deer ever taken in Wisconsin.

Widiker’s advice to other trophy hunters? Be entirely scent-free.

“My boots never walk anywhere but in the woods,” he said. “I’ve found that ozone generators have changed my hunting, I go undetected almost all of the time.”

And Widiker says large bucks will bust your patterns — instead of you surprising them.

“Fortunately I was able to keep my composure, make the perfect shot and have an easy recovery,” Widiker said. “That’s the dream, that’s the dream for everyone.”

Widiker’s deer is very close to the United States white-tailed buck record. It was taken by James Jordan over 100 years ago — also in Burnett County.

Comments (6)
  1. This is the most disgusting thing I have seen posted in a long time. Hunters are cowards and filth. This POS chased this for years…just to destroy it. What a piece of GARBAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. The twisted minds of hunters, they think killing animals is something to celebrate and believe it is something of an accomplishment. They also buy into the “meat” myth. If you eat your victim , its all justified. A Jeffrey Dahmer mindset. It is child’s play to kill animals, few things are easier. They hunt because it is a fun killing game, that gives them a feeling of power, or they have a sexual deviation tied to it, many trophy hunters do. The meat excuse has become laughable. Meat is not something our bodies even process well, no human needs it. And how much money did that meat cost after you add up- guns, ammo, off road vehicles, hotel rooms, gear and gas. It certainly is not needed for survival. This is all ego and selfishness, cruelty for fun. Hunting is an archaic, cruel killing game for the self absorbed, legal animal cruelty protected in a corrupt system. They recruit children and teach them killing is fun like any violent faction. It is not conservation, not population control. This atrocity needs to be burned to the ground, every wildlife agency gutted of hunters, and replaced with real wildlife management that is in place for the wildlife not hunters. Non hunters pay as much if not more for true conservation, hunting has caused trophic cascades and things are out of balance. Its time to get real men in conservation.

  3. Sickening that this would be glorified. The murder of innocent animals. We need help for wildlife to manage and control them not murder them.

  4. Alex Brown says:

    Is this what hunters call “Oh, but we only target the old and the sick”? We all know it’s to satisfy the thrill to kill. All the CONservation talk is just that…a big con.

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