I’ll start this column with a confession: if there were mule deer in my area, I’d probably ignore whitetails. Not sure why I’m so obsessed with mulies, but I’m completely taken with their beauty and size, as well as the rugged and beautiful habitats they occupy. I’ve hunted mule several times with a bow and never been lucky enough to tag one, a situation that’s become my life’s goal to remedy.

With that in mind, I had to send in a photo of my friend George Ruther and his latest buck. George lives in Vail, Colorado, and I spent some time with him last September as my cousin, a friend, and I were in the area on an elk hunt. George literally runs up mountains to get in shape for hunting season, and he spends weeks scouting the Rockies for good deer and elk. He guided my cousin to a B&C; mulie last fall, and George has a monster buck in his home that nets over 190” B&C.; In addition to being a great guy, Mr. Ruther is a one-man wrecking crew on big game, so I was pleased when he sent me this photo last week. Hunting on Colorado’s rifle season opener, George passed shots on five decent-to-good bucks looking for something special. Well, Buck #6 sure made the grade. The giant mulie is a 7X8 with a 29” outside spread and an 11” drop tine. Great buck, George!