Lee and Tiffany Lakosky are widely known as fastidious whitetail managers, land managers and conservationists, notorious for the monster whitetails they tag each season. While much of their notoriety is based around whitetails, Lee and Tiffany hunt a plethora of different game species. Lee says nearly half of their episodes each year are centered around mule deer and elk hunts, noting that last year he took four elk and only two whitetails. Lee and Tiffany explain that they take about a month each year and hunt the west for sheep, mule deer, elk and mountain goats. The other eleven months of the year they spend working hard on their personal properties/farms, planting and maintaining food plots and creating ideal whitetail habitat.
Lee and Tiffany will talk about a recent DIY spot and stalk mule deer hunt in Utah where they both found tremendous success. Lee says that both he and Tiffany went into the hunt targeting specific bucks, but when Tiffany’s buck disappeared into thick cover they ended up relocating to his hunting spot where she ultimately shot the unique muley he had been after. Following her shot, Lee says he went back to Tiffany’s hunting spot and on the first stalk was able to harvest the buck she had initially been after. Although they don’t plant food plots and manage the land in Utah like they do on their home farms, Lee and Tiffany say there is still a management plan in place. Using age structure, and self-restraint, they only take deer that are at least 5 years old and preferably, 6 to 7 years old. Lee says he always has the future in mind and this year when he saw a couple big non-typicals that were about 5 years old, he decided to pass knowing that these bucks could reach their full and impressive potential with another year or two of growth. Spot and stalk mule deer hunting with a bow isn’t an easy task. Working to get within bow range of very evasive muleys is tough and it requires a certain skill set, a willingness to work and dedication to get it done. Lee says that it’s a tough hunt and that’s why he loves it, adopting a “the harder the better” kind of motto. He says that his goal is to shoot all 29 North American big game species and notes that every time you hunt something different, you learn something different to make you a better overall hunter. When bowhunting out west, he specifically notes the challenge of shooting longer distances and how they have become better shooters as a result of their western hunting experiences. While whitetail hunts on their properties only require 20 to 30 yard shots, or a bit further, they explain how accurately shooting 100+ yards in the west makes you a better all-around shooter.
Finally, Lee and Tiffany talk about raising the next generation of hunters, their two kids. Lee says as a kid he was obsessed with whitetails, and probably because growing up in northern Minnesota he didn’t see very many. Today, after a lot of hard work, the Lakosky’s have whitetail rich properties that most would envy. They say that their biggest concern, as well as biggest challenge, is to help their kids understand and appreciate the hard work that has gone into creating such successful properties. Looking to the future when their kids are ready to hunt, Lee says he wants his kids to hunt with a bow first. The discipline and practice it takes to become proficient with a bow paired with the patience it takes to get within bow range and ultimately to get a shot opportunity, is something that requires skill. Both Lee and Tiffany say that these are the kind of lessons that will not only make them better hunters and outdoorsmen and women, but more productive members of society, too.
Also, make sure to tune in to #DeerWeek, on Outdoor Channel and Sportsman Channel beginning Monday, September 17th through September 23rd at 7 p.m. ET! It’s wall to wall deer hunting action, so be sure to head over to DeerWeek.com for a full programming schedule, recipes, gear and lots more!