John's Journal...

Texas’ Ford Ranch – A Dream Hunt for Everyone

Day 4: Texas’ Ford Ranch Offers Many Trophy Deer for the Taking with Quaker Boy Calls’ Michelle Kirby

Click for Larger ViewIf you’re a hunter, one of the most-important ingredients for a successful marriage is to find and marry a woman who understands the obsession for hunting that we all share. You’re doubly blessed if your wife is a part of that obsession and enjoys the sport as much as you do and can share in the excitement of a successful hunt whether it’s you or her who takes the game. Chris Kirby, the president of Quaker Boy Calls (, has found such a woman in his wife Michelle. Michelle Kirby has taken plenty of deer and really enjoys hunting with her husband Chris. When Chris pulled up to Michelle’s stand after an afternoon hunt on a recent trip to the Ford Ranch in Melvin, Texas, Michelle looked at her husband and announced, “We’ve got issues!” Just a day earlier, Michelle had taken a buck that would score in the high 140s on Boone & Crockett.

Click for Larger ViewThe night before each hunt, Forrest Armke, the ranch manager, shows all the hunters aerial photographs he has taken of the trophy bucks available on the ranch. “Back up one picture,” Michelle requested as Armke was showing the pictures of the trophy bucks. “Look at the brow tines on that deer. His G1s have got be 12 or 14 inches.” All the hunters were in awe at the length of the brow tines of the buck in the photograph. Even after Armke had shown 12-more photographs, Chris Kirby asked, “Forrest, go back to that photograph of the buck with the long G1s. I can’t believe they were that long.” That night, all the hunters named that particular buck “G1.”

Click for Larger ViewAt the Ford Ranch, after you take your trophy buck, you have the option of taking four does or a pencil-horned spike and three does. After the next hunt, Michelle explained that, “I was sitting on my stand, looking for does, when this huge buck appeared. As he got closer, I could see that he had tremendously-long brow tines. So, I picked up my rifle and laid it across my lap. I knew if I took a second trophy buck, Chris would have to pay for a second hunt. I put my CVA .243 on my lap, while I was trying to decide what to do. Luckily, the deer walked off, solving my problem as to whether to shoot or not. But 10-minutes later, that deer came back to my stand site. And, I got a really-good look at him and realized that he was ‘G1.’ I picked-up my rifle from my lap, although I still hadn’t made the decision. But as I looked at G1, something happened. And before I knew it, the rifle was on my shoulder, the crosshairs were on G1’s shoulder, and my gun went off. Click for Larger ViewWhen I went out to inspect the deer, sure enough, it was G1. I wondered if Chris was going to be happy with me, because I took the best buck I’d ever seen in my life. Or, would he be mad since I’d shot a second trophy buck, and we’d have to pay for another hunt? I didn’t know how Chris was going to react. So, when he got out of the truck, I walked-up to meet him and said, ‘We’ve got issues!’”

However, when Chris Kirby saw G1, he was elated. “Michelle, that’s a buck of a lifetime; I would have really been upset with you if you hadn’t shot this deer. In your lifetime, you’ll never see a buck with brow tines this size. I’m really proud of you.” Chris Kirby’s attitude and Michelle’s decision reflect the key family values that have always and will always be associated with the family hunting tradition.

For more information about the Ford Ranch, you can call (325) 286-4572, email, or go to

For more information about Quaker Boy Game Calls. go to (

Tomorrow: The State of Texas' New Hunting Targets – the Axis Deer Invasion at the Ford Ranch

Check back each day this week for more about "Texas’ Ford Ranch – A Dream Hunt for Everyone "

Day 1: John E. Phillips Made His Weirdest Bow Shot Ever at a Ford Ranch Texas Buck
Day 2: Texas’ Ford Ranch – a Great Place for Beginner and Expert Deer Hunters
Day 3: Quaker Boy Calls’ Chris Kirby Takes His Dream Buck at Texas’ Ford Ranch
Day 4: Texas’ Ford Ranch Offers Many Trophy Deer for the Taking with Quaker Boy Calls’ Michelle Kirby
Day 5: The State of Texas' New Hunting Targets – the Axis Deer Invasion at the Ford Ranch


Entry 591, Day 4