This was the third trip in 3 miles with crazy elevation gains to retrieve the head and camp the following day. I was contemplating leaving the head behind to collect next year. I was on a couple hours sleep after two days, completely stressed out, hungry, exhausted, hot, and apparently babbling because my son still gives me all sorts of shit about the nonsense coming out of my mouth.
I compare it to what women must go through with child birth. Absolutely insane amount of pain, almost torturous...but I can't WAIT to get back out there to do it again! :)
After a long day this bull died next to a creek about 7 river miles to the road and downstream the whole way. In hindsight it would have been way easier to pack the bull the 4 miles back to the truck but in my head using a canoe and working with gravity sounded way easier. As it turns out the slippery river rocks were about as hard to walk on as anything you could imagine. 30+ hours later from the shot, we made it to the truck and got him home.
Hope I can find it, picture of me packing a load out at sundown in a really bad, bear country and my handgun in the truck. I think my expression, upon reaching flat ground, says it all. Found it...not a huge elk but actually, quite a humorous story behind it. Also, when making the video, "Double Teaming Bulls,", I coined the phrase, "Always shoot small bulls." I was joking but it fit so well with the footage of packing out, up a steep ridge, we left it in. My comment was, "They are running too many cows out here and they have breathed up all the oxygen. That is why you should always shoot small bulls."
LKH - no machoism. We hunt about 8-miles from the truck but a packer helps retrieve our critters. I only had 1-mile to get to our scheduled rendezvous point and I was afraid I was going to miss them. So I stuffed both quarters in my pack and started hustling. When your pack is that stupid heavy, a couple lbs. worth of extra bone is really a moot point anyway. Ha!