The last few years I’ve been fortunate to spend a lot of time in the elk woods and have written up a few successful hunts that I had. Having killed bulls each of the last 3 years and posted a recap, I considered skipping this year, but decided to try something a little different. This year’s recap will hopefully be through someone else’s eyes. This quick recap is going to be through the eyes of someone who shot her first gun last year, shot her first bow 5 months before the season, and prior to 2018 had never done more than hiked your typical Denver hot spot hiking trails or camped more than 10 yards off the road.
My girlfriend tagged along in 2018 for a couple of scouting trips to the high county and then accompanied me for two trips in September. On the second trip I shot a solid 6x6 bull that she helped track, cut up, and haul out. It was decided then that next year she was going to give it a go with the bow.
Best of luck brother I’ll be looking for your recap!
Bring it man!
By August, we decided, 25 yards was about her max and 15-20 yards would be much preferred. Last summer we spent a lot of times in the woods, hunting mushrooms, checking cameras, and exploring new areas. There was only 1 time we almost broke up after MY “shortcut” turned into shale cliffs, a rushing gorge and deadfall over your head. Looking back, I should have never brought her there, and I was an A-hole. I can admit it! ??
BTW..... Ralphie’s little brother’s name in “A Christmas Story” was, indeed, Randy.
Thanks for sharing
Good luck, Robb
Although still in the camp that 425 grains is a light side arrow, it is over 10 grains per pound of draw weight and with 175 grains up front, would work for even bigger critters!
Thanks for taking us along.
One question. Why is every pic you take from behind, and every pic she takes is from the lead??
Ambush asks an interesting question/makes a good point! The answer may be layered and complicated!
And possibly oxygen deprivation!!!!
There is always a ton of anxiety come opening morning. How many people would be at our turn out? Would we have competition? My solution is to beat everyone. My buddy and girlfriend looked at me like I was crazy when I told them we were going to be up at 3am and at the turnout 2.5 hours before shoot time. With an hour hike to the elk, we’d have an hour plus to sit and listen...and wait! All of it came together and we were the first truck at the turnout and heading up the mountain in the dark. Perfect!
Nobody was catching us on foot, and luckily Lou and Gray Ghost couldn’t get their bikes where we were hunting. The three of us snaked our way up to the spot we were going to start our day, 300 yards from where my bull died last year.
Let me rewind this for a second. Throughout the summer, I thought a lot about how our early season encounters were going to go. “Should I leave my bow at home?” “Should I play backup to my buddy and girlfriend?” “Should I try to kill the first legal bull and spend the rest of the season helping them?” I ended up carrying a bow with the idea of playing backup. I was the official elk caller and my mission was “simple”. Get them their first elk! Little did I know that opening day would be a long day!!
With lots of time to listen for bugled in the moonlight we waited, the anticipation through the roof. If you guys are like me, you expect every bugle to be answered by an elk. The last 2 years I’ve heard bugles early and I expected the same. Of course that bugle never came. We slowly worked our way through a bog, me in the lead, the girlfriend got on my heels, and my buddy a few steps behind.
The woods were silent as the first rays of the morning sun lightened the dark skies. I’m a bugler, some would say an over bugler. I kept at it though, willing a bull to respond. We got to a sliver of trees that split 2 meadows. My buddy went to one meadow, and I stayed in the other.
We called back and forth for close to an hour, silence. “Well this sucks!” I’m an impatient person and was ready to move on. Finally, painfully, my buddy showed up. Well?!
He had 2 elk come in. A cow and a calf came into our cow calling party. He said when they were a couple feet away they bolted. A couple feet?! Well at least someone was getting some excitement!
We pushed on, and got to the top of the hill with seeing or hearing anything else. Well this isn’t what I expected! I had played out opening morning 100s of times and it never involved us getting to the top of the mountain without getting into elk!!!
We checked a wallow from last year and it was dirty already! At least there was an elk somewhere on the side of this mountain!
It was only 9am, but the hunt was pretty much over unless we wanted to tromp around in their bedding areas opening day. The girlfriend knew what was coming. It was her least favorite part about last year. It’s time to sit down and wait for the evening hunt! I sleep like a rock, and pretty soon we were in her double hammock and I was sawing logs. Wake me up in 7 hours!
Surely the girlfriend captured that moment of pride:-)
We moved down to a spot that overlooked a big meadow. I left them and made the mile hike down a knife ridge that overlooked a huge canyon. The knife ridge was absolutely stuffed with fresh tracks and rubs!!!!!!
We hustled back to the point where I spotted the elk. We had a little over an hour of shoot time left, but the wind wasn’t favorable. We needed the sun to drop below the ridge to get the thermals headed down hill.
We immediately spotted elk, but none had horns. We sat for a good while hoping the two bulls would pop out into the meadow we saw the cow and calf earlier in the morning.
Unfortunately they never popped out and with light fading we made a play. We headed toward the closest meadow along their path where they entered the timber. The idea was to SNEAK into the area, put the 2 shooter 30 yards in front of me, 20-30 yards apart, and call the bull right down the middle! As I led our motley crew, SNAP! I look back as my girlfriend gives me the shut up look and steps over the stick she just stomped. She makes a better elk than an Indian. New plan. We go fast and noisy, like a herd of Clydesdales, or elk. This worked much better and we were on our way!
We made it to the meadow and I set them up in front of me. Cow call, cow call, grunt. The silence of the day was beginning to frustrate me. I could see across the canyon, now about 700 yards, where the cows were earlier. A cow popped up and mewed to my bugle. A little excitement!!!
Ten minutes later, another mew! This one was straight down the hill from me. I gathered my flock of hunters and with 20 minutes left of legal light and our wind blowing directly to the cow below us we decided to make a move.
I’m going to attempt to tell the next part of the story through my girlfriend’s account. It’s not exactly how she saw it, but it’s how she described it to me.
“He’s obsessed with the wind. It’s all he talks about when we’re hunting. We go 10 feet and he’s letting out his little home made wind floaters. A cow called to us a few times and he came running up to us like a little kid going to the Christmas tree on Christmas morning. He wanted to move down to where the cow was calling, hoping she had a bull with her. Of course we couldn’t go right to her. We had to make a giant loop around her, remember the wind obsession? When he‘s after an elk, he goes into a different gear and off he went, somehow walking at a runners pace. Every 100 yard he covered, we made it 50. Every 50 yards he covered, he would turn back and look at how far back we were, flail his arms in disgust, and take off again! We struggled to keep up and soon he was in and out of the trees, and I was sure we’d lose him. As I ran to keep up I sunk my foot to my ankle in a bog. I cursed him just a little as the mud went into my boot.
We made it to the creek below with more of his encouraging arm flailing. ‘We only have a couple minutes, and there’s a bull on the hillside where those cows were!’ He reported back. Now we were all excited. He ran up to the edge of the creek and ranged a tree at the top of the bank. He came back and told our friend it was 30 yards. He told him to go to that spot at the edge of the water and we would drop back and call. Don’t make a peep he told him as he headed for the spot.
Pretty soon he was cow calling and bugling. It was too far for me to shoot so he had me hang out, hoping to get a curious bull to come by our friend. By now, it was pretty dark down in the bottom of the creek, but we still had 10 minutes left of shoot time.
His ADD was in full throttle. He would cow call, then bugle, rake a tree, cow call again. The cow we heard earlier was now above us and he kept watching up the hill. As soon as I had decided nothing was coming in, I looked up on the bank. ELK! ‘There’s an elk right there’, I whisper, yelled. My boyfriend grabbed his bow, nocked an arrow and ranged the bull. He was standing on the edge of the bank, what seemed like 40 or so yards above us. He looked huge! He was looking down into the black hole we were in and I could tell he knew something wasn’t right, but it was dark down along the creek and he couldn’t tell what we were.
I was pretty sure my boyfriend wasn’t going to shoot. All he talked about was how he wanted to wait for a big bull. How he was going to try to get us our elk early. And what happened to our buddy? That bull must have walked right by him! All of a sudden my boyfriend was at full draw. Can he even see it still?”
That’s about as close as I can come to her account. Mine was similar, annoyed at how slow they were coming down the mountain, amazed that elk appeared out of no where. I ranged him at 43 yards with the angle adjustment. He looked plenty big enough standing broadside, skylined on top of the creek bank. I could tell he was a 5x5 and my desire to hold out melted into a puddle. I came to full draw, my single pin slider set at 30 yards, put my pin for a 45 yard shot at the top of his back. “Pull through the shot. Don’t you dare punch that trigger!”
PS- how'd the double hammock work out?
"And if I tried that thong thing with my girlie we'd be upside down on the ground in seconds.."
Lou, you say it like that's a bad thing.
Just roll you out on the ground and jump up and down on your back a few times!
Good to go:-)
A couple of feet past the blood, an arrow! I was shooting an Easton axis 260 with a 25 grain iron will insert, 25 grain iron will collar, and 125 grain german kinetic silverflame XL. Finding the arrow intact and undamaged was great, having it covered in blood was even better! The grass and brush were tall and following blood was tough. Luckily there was quite a bit of it! At times I could walk in the dark at a normal pace following the blood splatter. It’s amazing how much blood is in an elk! The good news was the elk was getting closer to the truck with every step. The bad news was we weren’t finding an elk, it was dark as could be, the brush was waist high and I had zero idea which way the elk went and as the blood started to fade, the chance of finding him would be next to nothing. We had a pretty solid tracking plan. The girlfriend would stay at last blood and my buddy and I would go out in front. When we found blood, she would move up to the next blood spot and we would continue out in front.
We made it about 200 yards from the first blood when I saw him piled up just down the hill from us. What a relief! Eleven months of thinking about elk, 5 scouting trips, hours of scouring google earth and on x maps, and more squats than I care to think about and my season was over 12 hours into opening day. I didn’t have punched tag remorse, I was on cloud nine, but maybe later in the season I might have little remorse! ??
We made it back to camp, 21 hours after we left. What a freaking day. We were beat! We hit the sack and set our alarms for 30 minutes before sun up. I didn’t want the sun beating down on the elk hanging in the tree and I dragged myself, and them, out of the tent and to our turn out. We got the second load of meat without any issues, minus the deadfall, and we were on our way north, headed for Denver, by noon!
Two to go!
And we only got through opening weekend!
Got a good feeling that there will be more arrows flying:-)
Although I will say I've never thought about 2 people in one - that might be interesting.
Great read, keep it com'n
1. Bull Fever
2. The Single Most Amazing Day Ever in the Elk Woods
I’ll even try to include a couple YouTube videos.
Anxiously awaiting installment 2!
Do Buddy and GF have names, or you just don't want to share the limelight :)
Oh, and yet another awesome hunt recap from a member of the NoCo Bowsite get-together gang..
The next morning we added 1 more to our crew, well 2 if you count the horse, and we snaked our way up the mountain. Once again, we had the woods to ourselves, and after a mile or so, we stopped so I could bugle into a big meadow. I was still waiting on my first bugle of the year and I rang out a PERFECT locator bugle. My bugle was rewarded with a response!!!! Then another!!!! Oh baby! Here we go!
I couldn’t get half a bulge out without him coming over the top. He got angry, quickly. He had a herd of cows with them and satellites running around the outside. He was working his way to us, slowly, painfully little by little. We took turns cutting eachother off, we took turns abusing aspen trees, it was almost like we had our own little dance going. I knew he was there, he couldn’t have been more than 50-60 yards away. My heart was beating out of my chest and I was out of breath from calling. All of a sudden a thunder of hooves to my right. A satellite bull walked right into my buddy. So much for the head on a swivel! ?? Dang, that was chance number 2 to get one of them their first elk with a bow!
The bull retreated back to the spot where we started our dance. I knew the tango was over, but I kept at it. His enthusiasm had waned and now he was bugling every few minutes. A small spork made his way toward us, feeding as he went. He was a goofy looking little guy and I got some video of him with big daddy still bugling in the background. I heard a snap of a twig in front of me and two satellites were feeding our way! We’re back in the game! The two bulls kept coming, now 50 yards away. Another 10 yards and we’d be in action. I don’t know what ended up happening, but they vanished. I can only assume they saw something as the wind was still perfect. I ran over to my dad, he had a cow come in, but didn’t shoot. I went up to my buddy, and asked him about the satellite bull that came in. He never saw him until it was too late. It would have been a 20 yard shot. Damn! The big bull had now move further up the mountain and was no longer interested in me or my bugles.
At least you got a piece of him there at the end:-)
Looking forward to a continuation of the adventure!
Extremely well told to date!
That was the first time I saw where my buddy was. He was up the hill and behind me about 15 yards. There was a small shelf that he was on, the blocked part of the bull’s body. Basically, the entire bull’s body. The only shot he had was the top of the neck and head. I guess the success I had the previous hunt with the neck shot made him think he might be able to replicate that success. We followed the bull around the corner and back to the edge of the timber. He stood there with his cows bugling! We had split the herd and half of his cows were still in the timber behind us, while the other half now joined him out in the open meadow. He looked very much alive and very reluctant to leave.
I left my bugle at my pack where the elk first came out of the timber and now I was trying to bugle at him using cupped hands over my mouth. It sounded like crap, but he didn’t care. He worked his way back toward us, and his cows. He disappeared behind some small aspens, now only 70 yards away. My buddy was to my right and we were trying to figure out what to do when a satellite bull came storming in. He was a small 4x4 and he had one thing on his mind. Finding that hot cow that the herd bull just abandoned. At 15 yards he hit the brakes, facing me head on. My buddy was at full draw. It was obvious that the bull he hit was still alive and most likely going to stay that way, but was he really going to stick this bull? The bull turned and nervously walked to our right, now broadside at 12 yards. At that moment I was pretty sure he wanted to commit suicide. Elk hunting is hard, but those bulls were making it seem very easy. Finally, the bull had enough and trotted off toward the bull and cows.
My buddy and I looked at eachother. Un-freaking-belieavable. Back to the wounded bull. Where did he go? I called for the first time in a couple minutes and BOOM, a response. It was now back where my buddy shot the bull, and it appeared the hit bull went back to his other cows and was standing his ground. I cut him off with my best, nastiest bugle. A cracked branch, the sounds of a hoof hitting dirt and there was an elk. He was closer to 5 yards than he was 10, his head low, swaying back and forth. It was amazing how intimidating the bull was coming through the baby aspens. Both of us were still on our knees, facing up hill. My buddy’s bow was in his hands, on his lap, when the bull stopped, head down, inches from the dirt. He stared holes into me. I didn’t move, or flinch, or blink. He was close enough that I could hear him breathe.
I don’t have a ton of pictures going forward unfortunately. I need to do a better job of stopping and taking pictures.
As the bull left I realized he wasn’t the herd bull that got shot in the neck. I can only assume there was a very hot cow in the herd and all of these bulls were trying to crash the party.
We went back to where the shot was fired and followed the bulls tracks. We found some blood within a couple feet of the hit and the blood trail last about 100 yards. I never found another drop of blood after searching for 3 hours. We had no blood or no tracks to follow and we gave up. We spent 3 more weeks in the area and never saw any birds, smelled any dead animals, or found anything that made us think he died from the shot. I’m confident the bull survived the flesh wound.
What a day! My dad and GF had already gone back to the truck and we decided to join them. We still had an evening hunt after all! By that point I had lost count of how many opportunities we had to get my buddy and girlfriend their first elk. I believe that the count was up to 5.
Back at the truck we had lunch, took a nap, and decided that we would go back to the same spot for the evening hunt. After all, we didn’t even touch the elk that were bugling first thing in the morning! We made the hike back up an hour before the end of shoot time and when the sun started to drop below the ridge and the wind started to shift downhill, I let out a bugle. Another response. By now, I felt like Cory Jacobson. I couldn’t blow my bugle without a bull responding. The bull was a long way away and we didn’t have a ton of time with the setting sun. Off we went!
If she had come, there’s no doubt she would have been sitting next to me when the herd bull came out of the trees and she would have had a 4 foot shot.
Then again, that evening probably wouldn’t have happened if she had shot her bull that morning!
I set up next to a big aspen tree. I cow called a coupe times and the bull responded with another, barely audible grunt. I cut him off with a bugle. Again, I coaxed him with a cow call while I raked the big aspen in front of me. He let out a slightly more agitated grunt and I cut him off again, elevating my intensity. We played this game over and over, the only difference was that each time he got more aggressive and so did I. After a good 10 minutes, he was screaming back at me. It was playing out just like elknut would describe it. I could tell he was pacing back and forth, each of his bugles coming from the same elevation, but from different sides of the hill above us. Finally, he broke! I raked a tree, he screamed at me, and I lip bawled back over the top of him. He bugled again, this time closer. I, slowly, peaked around the tree. HOOOOOO LEEEEEEEYYYYYY EFFFFFF….here he comes. He was on an absolute string. Head low, swaying back and forth. I didn’t dare screw this up with my cell phone camera. He was a dead elk walking. I couldn’t see my GF or buddy, but I was confident they were about 40 yards ahead of me. The bull was only 80 yards from me at this point, so he was about to enter the redzone. He was laser focused on me and his eyes and ears never left the spot he heard me.
At 70 yards, I waited for the arrow to go off. I wanted more than anything for my GF to get the shot. My buddy had his chance already and the reality was, she needed a sub 15 yard shot. The bull kept coming though and I decided I would stop him. It crossed my mind that I hoped they didn’t shoot each other because from my calculations, the bull was going to be about 10 yards from each of them when he finally got to them. The bull never changed pace, 60 yards, 55 yards, 50 yards. I tightened the diaphragm against the roof of my mouth. 45 yards, 40 yards. I barked. He stopped, bewildered. THWACK! I knew the sound of a bow going off would come any second... I waited. It didn’t come. I peered to the left. Where is she?! Why isn’t she shooting?! I looked right. No sign of my buddy. WTF?!! Someone shoot this freaking bull!!!!!!
I'm yelling at GF and Buddy to shoot!!!!
Like clockwork, he came straight back to us. I threw a cow call over my shoulder and ranged him. He was 35 yards and quartering toward us. “DRAW!” I whispered. She came to full draw as he ducked behind a tree. He stood behind the tree and slowly walked past it. She was shaking, and I knew I had her draw too early. As he got to the next tree, “let down” I hissed. She let down, but at this point she was obviously a mess. He was at 30 yards now, still working closer. “Get ready to draw!” She started to put tension on the string as his head disappeared behind another aspen. “DRAW!!!!” She came to full draw and now the bull’s vitals were behind the tree, with his head on one side and butt on the other. Two more steps. I told her to use her 30 yard pin and aim low. He was 27 yards at that point. He came out, perfectly broadside. “SHOOT!”
I enjoy the heck out of the story (and photo's), but stop teasing!
He spun and trotted back down the hill. “You have to aim! You didn’t even look through the peep!” She responded with “well you told me to shoot!” She had me there. I told her to stay there and I ran away from her, putting her directly between me and the bull. I started calling again, with her 25 yards in front of me, and the bull still at the edge of the timber, bugling at us. Pretty soon I could see him picking his way back through the aspens, closing the distance once again. I dropped down the hill, cow calling and bugling as I went. I wanted him to focus on me, and I knew at that point, her only chance of killing an elk was for it to be super close.
By now, it was getting dark. It’s not often you have a bull in shooting range and when they are it usually doesn’t last long. This bull stayed in range for a good 15 minutes!!!! I stopped counting the amount of times I had him broadside less than 20 yards! Legally we were in great shape, but it was getting hard to see the sight in the dark timber. It was now or never. I was now a good 50 yards past her and I had no idea where the bull was. “THWACK”! She just dropped the bow string!! My heart skipped a beat!
And just like the outfitters reviews, I certainly hope you're going to have GF and Buddy tell their side of the story, in their own words, here on Bowsite.
Or maybe Bunyaner...
Can’t tell from the picture but would be very cool if that arrow is covered in blood!
Gotta luv it when you’re neck deep in elk!
Agree with Ambush, we need to hear it from the GF and Buddy now!
I am sure they will have a lot of great insights from another point of view!
She had 1 arrow left. I asked what happened to the first one. She responded “I shot it into the ground”. WHAT? I started laughing again. Why did you shoot it into the ground? She was at full draw when I barked at the bull when he first came in, but with her being down hill, the only thing she could see was his head and horns. She got tired of holding at full draw and when she went to let down she fired off an arrow into the dirt. Of course, it was the iron will! We searched around and finally found it, about 3 feet from where she was kneeling, buried in some grass.
We went over and tried to get her arrow out of the tree, but that broadhead became a souvenir. I was able to unscrew the arrow. The last arrow was a donation to the elk gods. We headed back for the truck in the pitch black. WOW! The bull never actually took off. We finally gave up when darkness fell. I’m not sure how long the encounter lasted but it was around 15 minutes. My dad has been sitting on his horse the entire time watching the show. It was the first bugle he had ever heard up close. I think he ended up hearing 40-50 of them. It’s still hard to believe we didn’t kill an elk that day, but if we had killed the first bull at 4 feet that morning, we wouldn’t have experienced that evening’s hunt. I guess glass half full it was a good thing the deadly duo couldn’t hit water if they fell out of a boat.
Luckily, we had 1 more weekend.
And well told...
Still waiting to hear how the GF put up with you going nuts with all that action and no one killing an elk:-)
That could be taken a couple ways depending the inflection.
As in “ boy, help your Uncle (j) Jack off that stallion”
We made it to the top without seeing anything else. I spotted a solid 4x4 buck. I had been packing my bow the entire trip with a mule deer tag in my pocket.
I made my way to where he was feeding, covering about 500 yards. I peaked over the hill, nothing. There was a little swale and another big opening. I wasn’t sure where he went, but I thought there was a good chance he was over that swale. I slowly walked down a game trail. I had to cross a small drainage ditch then over a jump to get to the big meadow. When I dropped into the ditch I looked left and there was the buck. We saw eachother at the same time and he bounded out of there. Son of a gun! He was less than 15 yards. If I would have slowed down and peaked to the left, I would have had a 12 yard shot.
We finished the day without any more excitement.
The next morning we tried a different spot, but only found some grouse. I claimed a grouse and lost and arrow. I guess it was a good trade.
The last weekend of the season arrived with high hopes and expectations. We snuck out of work early and made it in time for an evening hunt. The clouds moved in and we made it back to the same spot we got into them 2 weeks earlier. The cattle were thick and the elk tracks were a week old.
We kept moving and as the sun dropped below the ridge we heard a bugle. It was far off and we didn’t have time to get there before the end of shoot time. The bull was coming our way and we backed out quickly and quietly.
That night the wind came up. It was absolutely howling. The next morning we woke up to more wind. Our high spirits weren’t quite as high. We snaked our way up the mountain, heading for the bugle from the night before.
Half way up the mountain and a few hundred yards from where we heard the last bugle from the night before I sounded off with a locator. Boom, an immediate response. Back in business!
The wind was a nightmare. It would blow 20-30mph one way for a while, then come back the other way. We waited for 15 minutes trying to figure out how to approach the bull. Our best bet was to come in from the side and hope the wind would continue to blow left to right, then right to left.
When we got within 100 yards I bugled over him. The bull had been bugling nonstop on his own. After I cut him off he shut up. I worked for 10 minutes trying to get a bugle. He was gone. We stopped and talked about our plan.
Then he bugled again, a half mile up the hill. I bugled and he bugled. Ok, let’s try again. We silently made our way up to him again. We closed the distance to 100 yards again and ran out of cover. We were in a strip of tree, 100 yards long and about 12 yards deep. I put my buddy on the left side of the strip, about 20 yards from the end and the gf on the right, a couple yards back from the end of the strip. If the bull went left he would run right into my buddy. If he went right, the gf would have a 5 yard shot. I backed behind them 30 yards and waited for him to bugle.
He bugled and a let out a soft cow call. Silence. Another cow call. Silence. Hmmmm. I squealed. Silence. Wtf?! After 5 minutes I bugled loud, followed with a grunt. He responded, 400 yards away. What a scaredy cat. He was a runner.
Frustrated. I made my way up to the gf. I told her he was gone. She got up, and we talked for a few seconds. I told her I wanted to peak around the corner then we’d go get our buddy and come up with a plan.
I walked around the corner and here comes a bull. A solid 5x5 coming in silent to the calls. He hadn’t seen me and was coming our way, still about 50 yards away. This elk was in trouble. If my buddy didn’t shoot him, he was going to come right to my gf.
I turned and ran, “here he comes, get ready!!!!” I didn’t even slow down. She dove back into the corner to grab her bow and get ready!
As I ran by her I cow called like a cow heading out. He was going to come around the corner where she was tucked into the trees. When he cleared the edge she’d have a 5 yard, broadside shot!
OK so now GF, pick a hair, let the oxygen out of this bad boy!
By the way great thread! Let hear the conclusion...
I ran back 20 yards and turned around and reached down and grabbed my bugle. I looked up and there was the bull, staring at me. He turned and bolted. WTF!!!!
I hung my head and walked back to her. She was ready, arrow on the string, release on the loop. She said she could see his legs under the tree branches. He needed to go 3 more steps. I felt terrible. She would have killed that bull and I messed it up. Regret number 2 for the GFs Hunt. Why did I stand out in the open? And how did that bull get there so quickly?!
We went and found my buddy. He had buried himself in a little hole. The bull walked within 30 Yards of him but he was buried so far in the trees he didn’t have a shot. His spot choosing left a lot to be desired!
He said that when I cow called as I was running back to my hiding spot the bull started running after me. That made a lot of sense because he shouldn’t have gotten there that quickly.
The next day the wind continues to howl. We got on 2 different bugles and worked a bull that never finished.
That ended our 2019 elk season. 2 elk were harmed, I elk was killed, and lots of chances were missed.
We signed up for the TAC in glenwood and the hike to hunt in winter park.
Thanks for following along! It was a fun year and writing this out brings back a lot of fun memories.
Edit - looks like I was typing my post just as you were entering your final post. Great job!
Ok I was just laughing out loud by the image of a grown man running by his gf screaming like a cow elk. My wife is looking at me like I'm nuts.
Spend some time with the buddy on site selection. Get the "hiding" out of his system and have him work on gettin a good backdrop.
Take notes so we get just as good a story next year.
Hopefully your buddy and GF stick around for round 2:-)
What a fun season you all had! Congratulations!
It's frustrating being the caller sometimes because you'll have the shot opportunity and the shooter doesn't. It's still fun!