A couple of things make this a particularly intriguing hunt. The Rolling Plains is part of the eastern or Panhandle mule deer zone that's produced some of the state's biggest bucks in the past few seasons. Wilson said this new ranch has been lightly hunted for several years. Who knows about poaching pressure but no more than three bucks per year have been legally killed here. The entire region has enjoyed a good-weather year - a mild winter followed by a wet spring and early summer. Wilson figures more than 20 inches of rainfall for certain, maybe as much as 26 or 27 inches. That's a prime situation for producing big bucks.
The clincher is the farm land here. The 20,000-acre ranch consists of 17,000 acres of rough canyon country, including the headwaters of two small rivers. The remaining 3,000 acres is used to farm wheat, milo, corn and soybeans. Supplement a desert mule deer's normal forage with farm crops and the results could be interesting. Wilson said local wardens and biologists tell him to expect bucks weighing 200 and 250 pounds, with antler spreads 18 to 25 inches and the potential for something much better. "It should be a fairly easy hunt," predicts the outfitter. "There's a good road system, so you can drive to most of the hunting areas. We will........(continued)