When Iowa’s “Walking World Record” buck stepped into the sights of 15-year-old Tony Lovstuen’s muzzleloader on September 29, the boy fired a shot heard ’round the whitetail world, killing the largest nontypical whitetail buck ever taken by a hunter. If the buck’s green score of 3224/8 points holds after the 60-day drying period and subsequent Boone and Crockett Club panel scoring, it will beat the previous hunter-killed record, Ohio’s Beatty Buck, by 176/8 points. It should also rank as the No. 3 nontypical overall.
Hunting on family property in southern Iowa during the state’s youth deer season, Lovstuen killed the deer that’s been a legend in whitetail circles for four years. Referred to as the “Albia Buck” (named after the town), the monster was no secret: Video and trail camera shots of the deer and its sheds have made the rounds on the Internet, attracting the attention of whitetail fanatics everywhere.
“Hunters from all over the United States, even the world, have been trying to get deer tags to hunt in Iowa because they wanted to hunt the Albia buck,” says Dale Ream, records director of the Missouri Show-Me Big Bucks Club and one of the two official scorers who measured the green rack.
Tony Lovstuen was hunting with his father, Doug, on that life-changing morning when he fired a sabot. Rampant speculation has placed the value of the deer’s massive rack from $100,000 to $1 million. The caped head is at the taxidermist’s.