Real Name: Wayne Hoffman TG Nickname: Biggie Hoffman Age: 49 Height: 6'4" Weight: 362# Home State: Georgia TradGang member number: 26 Member Status: Sponsor, Charter Member Years traditional bowhunting: 38 Number of traditional Big Game kills: I used to keep notebooks on each kill. The date, the bow and arrow, the circumstances and even a little drawing where the hit was. I stopped after 220 cause I thought the numbers weren't important.
(TG)- Tell us about yourself.
(Biggie)- Big ol fat, greasy, biscuit eater who LOVES killin stuff with arrows.
(TG)- How long have you been bow hunting with traditional gear?
(Biggie)- 38 years. Only mmmmmmmissed one big game season when Uncle Sam had me busy. 1973 I think it was. I had a real bow before I started kindergarten.
(TG)- Any heroes? Any role models?
(Biggie)- Theodore Roosevelt. A fascinating man who did more for this country's development than anyone. His contributions to the outdoors and conservation are endless.
(TG)- What got you started bowhunting?
(Biggie)- My Dad was a bowhunter back when only a handful of people dared to accept the challenge. It was natural to me. I trailed along as soon as I could keep up. I didnít know there was any other way to go about it till I was 8 or 9 years old.
(TG)- Do you have any favorite memories or kills that stand out?
(Biggie)- My 1st Montana bowhunt. I saw 66 deer the 1st morning stand. Pretty impressive when I don't see that many in two seasons at home. Half where bucks, 6 were shooters. It started a love affair with a place that remains special to me. I'd move there but Jill doesn't like the cold.
(TG)- Do you remember the first animal you took with a traditional bow? Tell us about it!
(Biggie)- I was 13 years old hunting an apple orchard in Lycoming County Pa. with my Dad. I was trying sight pins on my 45# recurve. A doe was broadside eating an apple and I shot right under her. A few minutes later she came back and stood in the exact same spot and reached for the same apple. That's the ast one she ever ate. It was special cause it was my 1st deer and also, Dad was in a tree 100 yards across the field and saw it all.
(TG)- Can you tell us a bit about your preferred hunting combo?
(Biggie)- I gravitated to a longbow around 1990 or so. I just seem to shoot one better. It's more a natural extension of me than a recurve although I love the lines of a recurve. Currently I shoot a Black Widow osage longbow. Denny Sturgis told me I just HAD to have one. I gave in to Uncle Barry Wensel telling me how much better penetration he got with carbon shafts a few years ago and ordered some 350 Heritage shafts from 3 Rivers with weight tubes. Gotta admit, they shoot great, are consistent and penetrate like nothing I've ever had. I usually use a bowquiver, Great Northern and am sold on the Razorcaps Broadhead. A tough thing since I was one of the inventors of the Woodsman broadhead. I just feel like Phil carried it to the next level and besides, I used to think sharpening heads was part of the rituals, now I think it's just a good way to cut my fingers :-)
(TG)- What is the one piece of advice you would give a new hunter to aid him on his hunting ventures?
(Biggie)- Don't fold to peer pressure. Always do the right thing in the field ESPECIALLY when no one else is watching. When you get old like Herb and Dano, you'll have no reason to regret anything.
(TG)- What is your favorite animal to hunt?
(Biggie)- I LOVE big whitetails. Every season I'm amazed at something a buck does to me. Their instincts are incredible.
(TG)- Do you have or prefer a certain method of hunting?
(Biggie)- To kill big bucks on a regular basis, ya gotta use treestands. Besides, it gives me an excuse for scouting trips and stand hanging trips. I get to be in the deer woods year round. I know guys have killed big deer on the ground and out of blinds but I said "on a regular basis". You can increase the odds by holding out for a certain buck or not taking a shot over 15 yards. The best I've ever seen at this are the Wensels. I've had the good fortune of hunting with them allot over the years and I'm always impressed at the way they set a goal and achieve it. Gene's buck last year, Woody, was killed cause he wouldn't shoot at anything else. And he had some gagger bucks walk by waiting for that one deer.
(TG)- Does any of your family hunt or fish?
(Biggie)- As I said my Dad has always hunted and fished. Due to his age and health, he can't go much anymore but I'll always "owe" him for treating me to such a wonderful lifestyle. My whole life revolves around my bowhunting. One of my brothers is the kind who goes the night before the season opens and tries to find arrows. My other brother could care less about shooting or hunting. Odd because we were all brought up in the same hunting environment with the same opportunities.
(TG)- What or who first got you involved in traditional bow hunting?
(Biggie)- My Dad.
(TG)- Do you have any bowhunting goals or plans for the immediate future?
(Biggie)- As my Georgia friends know, I've "retired" from the politics of bowhunting. I'm leaving the fight to the younger guys with all the energy. My bowhunting goals now are to go more and spend more time with my friends. As far as any animals or trips go, I'm up for anything at anytime!
(TG)- Do you make any of your own gear?
(Biggie)- No. I have no natural ability to make anything. I'll leave that to the guys who do :-0
(TG)- Where is the one place you would really just love to hunt?
(Biggie)- I've worked my whole life to be able to go where I want to go and hunt what I want to hunt. That's meant leaving allot of other stuff undone. But with those sacrifices, I've been able to go on these hunting trips. My next commitment may be Australia. I haven't decided yet.
(TG)- Do you primarily hunt private or public ground?
(Biggie)- Both. More and more public ground is getting harder to find. The lease option had grown here in the south immensely. It's very difficult to find public land here that gives you any opportunity at taking an animal. Some people say you can enjoy being in the woods no matter what. I think you are kidding yourself. We all know that no-one would enjoy fishing much without a hook on the end of your line. You've got to have an opportunity every now and then.
(TG)- Do you prefer evening, mid day or morning hunts?
(TG)- Do you normally use anything like scent covers or attractants, camo, or calls?
(Biggie)- I think all of that stuff is way overrated. If a big whitetail gets downwind of you, he's gonna smell you. I don't care how much cover scent or secnt-lok stuff you use. My hunting clothes are camo for two reasons. Most of the best clothes are made by hunting clothing people, warm, waterproof etc. and it's the easiest way to keep my hunting clothes separated from my everyday stuff. That way it gets special treatment in the washer and dryer. I'll do some grunt calls when the time is right but use my mouth usually. Of course elk and moose demand some calling, but I don't buy every new call that comes out on the market. I think I've had my Larry D Jones cow elk call for 20 years!
(TG)- Do you do any small game hunting?
(Biggie)- Once a year we do a rabbit hunt and once a year a squirrell hunt. It's a gathering of old friends more than anything although we do kill some game. We used to quail hunt some but loose too many arrows cause you can't use a flu-flu, they don't go fast enough to catch up to a quail.
(TG)- Tell us what your dream hunt would be.
(Biggie)- I think I've been on my dream hunt. Our trip to South Africa was the greatest trip I've ever been on. 10 days of touring the country and learing some history and culture and ten days of hunting where everything was done in a professional manner. My wife was with me and my best friends were in camp too. Marty & Ruthann McMahon, Gene & Donna Wensel, Bob and Marylin Burton. It was like starting all over. Every tree was new and every bush. Every animal was new and every bug or lizard. Made me realize there is a whole world outside of the US to experience. I'm hesitating going back cause I want to remember that trip exactly like I do. If I go back, I could come away with a different opinion and you know what? I DON'T WANT TO!
One thing I have noticed about Biggie is his willingness to give back to the sport he loves. He has held offices in many bowhunting organizations, written for magazines, always active in the St Judes auction, he was the first to return his interview form, and is probably one of the few individual sponsors of Tradgang. Rumor has it he was even a pretty fair tournament archer at one point. And yall noticed the part where he quit counting kills at 220, guys this is one to listen to when he is giving out advice. Some folks may think he got his nickname from his physical stature, but I think he probably got it because the size of his heart.