A number of you have speculated that since I was in New Zealand I must have shot something. Well, you’re right. This is a red stag who had a collision with a 225-grain .338 Barnes MRX bullet at 230 yards. He was between 8 and 9 years old, and weighed in the neighborhood of 475 pounds. Although it was near the end of the rut, he had been eating instead of fighting and fornicating which accounted for his high weight.

He’s a 10×11 and scores 352 SCI points, which puts him in the Gold Medal category. This notwithstanding, he is only in the middle bracket of shootable stags. I saw a couple of animals (at twilight, naturally) that would have gone way into the 400s, and they looked like something out of the Ice Age.

I’ve been saying for years that Africa is the best hunting available; but I may be wrong. Factoring everything in, it may be New Zealand. The full story will appear in the April, 2010 _Field & Stream