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Author Topic: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!  (Read 4374 times)

Offline Matth

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #30 on: September 06, 2019, 02:26:38 PM »
That bear knew you weren't packin.

Offline trophyhunt

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #31 on: September 06, 2019, 02:27:18 PM »
You scout without a pistol?  No way would I do that, cool experience though!
ďIn common withĒ..... not so much!!

Offline deadyote

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #32 on: September 06, 2019, 08:55:12 PM »
I had my pistol...just not the rifle.  Yeah, I'd have been a bit nervous if I didn't have my pistol.   Still was a cool experience. 

Offline deadyote

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #33 on: October 13, 2019, 09:30:34 PM »
Sorry it took so long to post this, but work and the family were more important, so here it is and it's long so be prepared.

Well the hunt didn't go as expected.  I didn't get a bull, but had the most fun along with the most frustration I have ever had during a hunt.  I also want to say thank you to the folks who I chatted with from this forum.  Your info either lead me to a new area that I checked out or confirmed that the areas I had already been hunting were the right place to be, so thank you very much.  I am all for sharing info and if anyone has questions about my hunt and the places that I found elk, just ask.  Also, I can't say how lucky I am to have a wife and kids that let me go do things like this.  Ley gave up lots of summer weekends so that I could put the extra work into this hunt.  I also want to thank my buddies, Jake, Tommy, and Justin for coming over and giving me a hand on this hunt.  The time you gave up from work and family to join me mean the world to me and you guys are the best!!!

I got up to my spot the Wednesday before the hunt to set up camp and do a bit of checking on some dandy bulls that I had located over the summer.  I stayed out of the areas and glassed from afar so as to not spook the animals out the area. 

Saturday morning, my buddy Jake was with me and we got into an area where I had seen some monsters as well as had multiple giants on game camera.  We get in and hear a bugle 5 minutes into light.  Unfortunately, we get another 5 minutes into getting closer and the wind does a 180 and the elk say later!!  We tried to follow them, but they were really quiet that day.  We get further in and to a spot that I know has elk and we see three small bulls and one bugle a LONG ways off.  We decide that since we've only heard the one bugle since daylight, lets go after that one.  We get over to the spot where we think the bull is and it is now blowing 40 with gusts even faster.  Then the snow moves in.  We couldn't see 75 yards and then wind was ripping, so we find a group of trees hunker down and start a fire and eat some lunch because the weather said it was only going to last for a couple hours.  Well, the snow didn't stop and neither did the wind, so we jump into the trees and try to find something on our own.  After a few hours of that, we decide that we better start heading back to the dirtbikes because we may not be able to get them out with as much snow as we were getting.  Just before dark and without finding anything else, we get to the bikes and the cold decided to kill my battery.  So we jump start that thing and just barely get the bikes out and back to camp. 

Sunday we get up and drive to an area that I had scouted and seen a couple bulls.  We start the hike up the hill and we don't hear or see anything.  Very little sign, but I had called in a bull the weekend prior so I knew there were elk in there somewhere.  We tried to find something, but it was still blowing like crazy and snowing.  Eventually we work to another area and get set up to glass and we start hearing bugles.  Hell yeah!!!  We find a decent 6x6 that had some unreal fronts....like 22" 2nds.  He just didn't finish up top and he had a broken royal on one side, so we decide to not go after him.  Maybe later, right?  We also find a smaller 6x7 that has 4 cows that is a long way off and we didn't have enough time to get to him that night, so we just watch.  Then just before dark we see a huge 7x7 with no cows moving very quickly across the draw and into a timber patch.  We had maybe 5 minutes of light and thought, we're coming back tomorrow for that guy!!!

Monday we get back into that area and we see the broke 6x6 again and he is losing his mind bugling every 20 seconds.  There is a couple other bugles in the distant, but with the wind, we aren't sure where exactly they are.  So we move around to locate one of the other bulls and jump a huge herd that we guessed had 40 plus in the herd due to all the tracks in the snow.  We didnít see the bull, but guessed that he was decent because of the size of his cows.  We ended up coming back later that day to see if the bull was talking and we got nothing, so we werenít sure if we sent them way out of the area or what.
Tuesday we hike into another area and see a couple smaller 6x6 bulls with just a few cows with them, but not much sounding off that day.  My buddy Jake must get home, so we run back to camp and get him headed back home.  Since I was alone for the evening, I went back to an area where the broke 6x6 was and I just knew there were other bulls in the area, so I sit and glassed for a bit and then I hear of the bulls sound off down in this hole.  I drop down into the hole and get around a finger ridge so the wind is right and start sneaking in.  Now I am new to calling elk, so I try to do more spot and stalk due to that fact, but Iíd cow call once in a while just to keep the bull talking.  Once I get down into the timber, I can tell that I am on one side of the creek and he is on the other.  There is a small line of timber at the creek, so I canít see the bull or his cows.  I keep sneaking in, the wind is staying right, and I get within 100 yards and can still not see the elk.  After a couple cow calls, it sounds like the bull is coming in, but he stops on the other side of the creek and wonít come over.  So I try bugling and that really pisses the bull off.  While he is bugling, I am sneaking in closer and have a good trail to get across the creek.  Once I get to the creek and the bull is above me about 75 yards, I think heís got to step out.  The wind is still good and I see a glimpse of a couple cows, but no bull yet.  It is about dark and out of sheer desperation, I grab a stick and start raking a tree and bugling.  The bull lost his mind even more, but stayed in the jack firs and I never got a look at him.
Wednesday my buddy Tommy and I head to an area where I had checked out during the summer and was only about a mile or so hike in, but held some elk.  We see a small 6x6 sleeping on the way in, but once he woke up and moved along we continued on.  We got to a knob where we can hear and glass really well and we hear elk about 2 miles away and they are going crazy.  I get the spotter out and we see an area that has 9 or 10 bulls and 75 or so cows in a drainage.  Back to the truck and drive over to where they were.  Once we get there, I get out of the truck and climb a small hill to look into the drainage and one bull with around 30 cows is 300 yards away.  The wind is wrong, so we drop back down and decide that with all the bulls around if we try and work around them that itíd be best to stay put till the thermals change and then we can go after this bull.  He is a stud 6x6 and heís been in the same spot all day.  The hard part about where he was is that it is wide open, but has some small rolls in the terrain to give us a chance to get close.  So we hang out for a bit and I go check to make sure they are staying put and all is good.  Then I go check one more time, Patience is not my virtue, and while peaking over a pile of rocks, the wind must have swirled towards the elk because a couple elk pick their heads up and start moving out.  Well, luckily for me they all run towards me and stop at about 140 yards.  I am just waiting for the bull to follow.  Well the cows file through and stop in spots that would have been a very good shot because I was lying prone in hopes that the bull follows.  Well, the bull doesnít follow.  But the cows go over the ridge towards all the other elk we had seen.
So we decide the group either busted everything out or joined the rest of them and they are just a ridge over.  We hoof it back down and get a half mile or so above them to make sure the wind is right and climb to see if the elk are there or not.  On the way up, I jump two deer, one small buck and a doe.  They run off luckily away from the elk.  We keep climbing and I spot another 3 deer, all legal bucks and one is a dandy 4x2 with a huge body.  We wait until they feed over the ridge away from the elk and I get to the top and see a couple cows feeding 200 yards away and hear a couple bulls bugling.  The wind is good and I wait until the cows get over the ridge until I sneak up closer and get prone on a pile of rocks.  Just then two bulls pop up on top of the ridge.  One is the stud 6x6 and the other I canít tell because he is in a little mess of burned trees.  The 6x6 begins to walk towards me and stops at 161 yards and looks like he is going to walk back up the hill, but Tommy lets out a couple cow calls from 50 yards behind me.  The bull stops and turns broadside and I am comfortable out to 175 with my muzzle loader, so I decide that Iím going to shoot this bull.  This is the biggest bull I have ever had my sights on and I do my best to control my breathing and pull the trigger smooth.  I shoot and the bull does nothing.  He then walks about 3 or 4 steps and gets wobbly legs like he is going to go down.  The bull then walks another 5 or 6 steps and beds down on the top of the ridge.  All the other elk are still there and the bull is bugling.  We have about an hour until dark, so we sit tight and wait because we can still see the bull.  About 30 minutes later, the bull still has his head up and then he gives out a really weak bugle.  I think to myself, crap, heís not going to die from that shot if he is still bugling.  It is wide open with a few burned trees between the bull and I, so I try and belly crawl to a tree that would put me at 150 yards and I could get another shot into the bull.  I get maybe 10 yards and the bull pegs me and Iím stuck.  The bull gets up and walks over the top, so I get up and close the distance.  I get close to the top of the ridge where he went over and Iím seeing blood, but not a lot.  I slow down and start thinking look for his antlers and he jumps up at 30 yards and runs.  I see him run about 300 yards and bed down again next to a huge burned tree.  While he was about to be, I saw where the bullet had struck and it was high and I thought in between the vitals and his spine.  I was 99% sure that bull would be fine.  I feel like S*^T!!!!  Itís almost dark and I have no chance at getting to him, so we decide to mark where he is and come back in the morning. 
I shoot more than most and am very comfortable with my weapon, but I didnít get much sleep that night thinking about the shot, did I follow through, did I jerk the trigger, was I not calm enough, etc? 
Thursday, we wake up super early and meet up with another buddy Justin and get over to where the bull was last seen.  The wind is completely wrong, so we stay on the other side of the ridge and wait till the thermals change.  It is super cold, so if the bull died, Iím not worried about the meat going bad.  Once the wind is right, we hike up the ridge and again have to wait on a couple deer to move along.  Once we are at a spot that I can see where the bull was last seen, I see my bull standing next to his cows walking around bugling.  I knew it was my bull because of his antlers as well as a hole in his right side.  Well, he is alive and doing well, which is a good and bad feeling.  We then start setting up a plan to get back on this bull and Justin says he hears a vehicle.  Now we parked my truck on the road that can take you too where the elk are, but I would hope that if someone saw that that they would stay out of the area, since we were already there.  WRONG and it gets worse!!!!  I see the truck drive around a knob and is facing us on top of the hill, so we jump back behind the ridge and are waving our arms trying to let them know we are here and donít continue.  The truck continues to a spot where they can now see the elk and the driver gets out with his rifle and the elk are fully aware of the truck now, so they are on full alert.  I start whistling at the driver to get his attention and I hear the wife/girlfriend in the passenger seat yell, Get in lets go, go, go!!!!  The truck then punches the gas and rallies towards the elk.  We watch as the elk start running out of dodge.  The truck goes behind the ridge, but we can still hear the engine reved and then we hear a BOOM!!! 
I have never seen such unethical hunting in my life.  There is no possible way they could have made an ethical shot on the running elk from where they were.  We decide that since they blew the elk out of the area, we needed to run over another ridge and see if we can watch where the elk went, so off we run.  We get to the ridge top and see the elk walking down a finger ridge, so down we go.  We then catch up to them a half a mile or so away and they have now dropped down and over a creek bottom and back up the other side.  After them we go because there is now three bulls in the group and they are bugling like mad.
So we are chasing the elk and they are making it real easy because all three bulls are within 100 yards of each other and they are all bugling like mad.  We get to a spot where we are about to start calling and the bull that I shot steps out at about 100 yards.  Justin sees him first and hits the deck, Iím in front and just a bit more to the left, so I donít see him for another couple steps, but he sees me at the same time I see him and he runs down into the timber.  There still bugling, so we keep following.  We end up sneaking to a spot where there is a small depression between them and myself and Tommy and Justin go behind the knob and start calling.  I work into an area where there is a very well used game trail and above it is pretty open and below it is thick.  The wind is blowing uphill, so I canít get on top the the elk because they would have seen me, so I am 75% down wind of the elk and the one bull is doing nothing but growl.  I stayed there for 20 minutes trying to find an antler, a leg, anything through the trees, but nothing.  It was unreal cool being 75 yards away from three bulls and having a bugle every 5 seconds.  After a bit, the wind switched for 2 seconds and the elk didnít run out of the area, but they moved along.  We try to keep up but they beat us up and over the hill and we decide that we canít make it over there before dark, so we hoof it back to the truck and go check a spot that Iíve hunted before and seen elk.  On the way over, we see the truck that shot at the elk and I get their license plate.  I so badly want to post it here, but Iíll keep it to myself, even though it is BULLS^!T how he is hunting!!!  Just before the spot to start hiking in, we see another truck with a bull in the back that is a solid 6x6 and we stop and chat with them.  They just pulled that bull out of the area where we were headed. 
We go anyways and end up seeing a really nice 5x6 that I knew how to get to the next day because he popped out just before dark and we didnít have time to get to him.
Tommy had to leave Thursday night and so Friday it was me and Justin.  Iím really frustrated with myself for missing the shot, for having the elk get busted by some guy throwing lead, and the fact that the crowds are showing up for the general elk season that I decide that I want to go check out the broke 6x6 and try and get him.  We set up just before dark and he starts bugling on command and is in almost the same area.  I knew that he and his cows would feed down into the timber below, so Justin and I hang out until the thermals are going to switch and then we go get him.  So we get set up to go and we see a truck drive the road up above us and then about 20 seconds later we hear them shoot.  The elk go on high alert and then another shot about 20 seconds later.  Now the elk are moving, but not real fast.  Then another shot and the elk pick up their speed.  Not sure what the guys are shooting at, but we start down the hill to see if we can get in front of where their going and shortly after we realize we canít keep up with them. 
So we hoof it back up to the truck because I want to hike out this ridge and see if we can get on top of where the elk are headed.  So once in the truck, we head down the road to get turned around and the truck is parked in the road with the doors open and a guy standing on the side of the road.  I ask if they got something and I get a real confused look.  I ask again if they got something and I get the same confused look.  So, Iím a little irritated that another group of elk got busted out by another hunter.  So asked the guy, You just shot three times, did you get something?  The guy finally realizes what I was asking and says that he just got a couple grouse.  AHHHHH!!!  Just my luck, but at least this time it was legal.  So away we go to find some other elk.  Once we get up top, I glass a long ways off and spot the same three bulls that we were chasing the day before and it still had my bull in it.  The biggest of the three is a monster 6x8 and they are headed into a hole.  I think I know how to get there but had to do some research on my onyx.  This whole time I had been wanting to get back into the spot we went on day one, but do to the snow and it being a couple mile motorcycle ride in, I was not sure we could make it.  So, Justin and I decide that we think the snow has melted enough and we are going to give it a try.  Well, we made it in and start hiking.  We make it down to where I had my game camera and I go grab it and we work our way up to the ridge and about 100 yards from the ridge we hear a bugle and itís close.  So we try and get the wind right and start working in.  We get within to 100 yards of the bull, but heís moving away and then the wind shifts, and heís gone.  So back up to the ridge and off we go to find more elk.  Well we get to the spot where we saw that 5x6 and the wind is blowing straight down he should be in some trees 90 degrees to our right, so I let out a couple cow calls and he lights right up and is much closer than we expected.  So we make a plan to drop down the finger ridge and get below him and work up to him.  Just as weíre making the plan 5 does below us blow out and run right to the bull.  Which then makes him get up and leave as well.  So we keep working to find a bull that we can get on and the wind picks up, which makes hearing anything real hard and we donít see or hear anything else for the rest of the day.  Justin had to go home that night and my buddy Jake came back.
Saturday we get up real early and plan to get into the spot where I had seen the three bulls.  We get to a little spur road about an hour and a half before light to hike in and there is a camp set up there.  The guys are still asleep, but due to our truck one gets up and we chat.  I let him know where Iím going to go and he says that that is where his buddy was going to go also.  I let him know that I have a quality bull tag and he replies that we go ahead and heíll stay out of the area for us.  Super stoked and say thanks a ton and off we go.  We get a couple miles in to an area where there are no motorized vehicles allowed.  Just at light we get to a spot where the elk are sounding off everywhere around us.  One bull sounds super big and is all growl and we start working into where he is.  The wind is perfect and my only guess is that another hunter or something spooks that bull and he and his cows run over every ridge that we can see.  He was that giant 6x8 that I saw with the other 2 bulls.  He was huge!!!  Well, we are still hearing bulls, so we try to get one the next best sounding elk.  We get to a spot and we get pinned down by 5 bulls on a small ridge.  The biggest is the bull I shot, thereís another really nice 6x6, a small 6x6, and two raghorns that are too bust sparring to pay any attention.  The wind is not very good, but they donít seem to mind, so we eventually keep moving once they move over the small finger ridge.  Just then we heard a shot from way up above us and that spooks a couple of the bulls.  We still have a few bugling, so we work over to them.  About 20 minutes later, someone a couple miles away starts practice shooting and spooks a few more of the elk up over the knob we can see.  Our only game plan now is to get on top of that knob and try to get the elk that got spooked up there.  So as we work our way back and above the knob, my buddy Jake hears a quad.  Once we hear that, then we see more elk leave the area.  Now, this is an area where there are NOT supposed to be motorized vehicles, so Iím pissed.  We run up and meet the guy on the quad and it the same guy I talked with where I parked my truck.  He asks if weíve seen anything and I say, ďYeah, the elk you spooked out of here from your quad.  And your not supposed to be in here with any motorized vehicle.Ē  He replies that heís been in here for 4 days and I reply back NO motorized vehicles in here!!!  The guy then says he is going to head back to camp, so we continue up the ridge to try and get on top of that knob.  About 30 minutes later, Jake and I hear the quad again and guess what he is now driving on top of the knob where we were heading.  And we start seeing elk run from there.  I am HOT at this point, but we see one shooter bull running towards where we were heading so we start booking it and try to cut him off.  We didnít make it in time, but we set up to call because there were two bulls bugling in this burned out timber patch.  I start calling a Jake sees a bull move through a small hole, but I canít see it and it was too far for a shot anyways.  So we decide that we need to run back behind the ridge and get above the elk and try that way.  We get behind the ridge and start hoofing it up hill and we see another hunter.  This time Iím frustrated, but he has every right to be there and heís not on a quad.  Plus the one guy looks like heís in his 80ís and I say kick ass buddy.  Donít think they ever saw us, but they were headed to the same spot we were.  I then decide that if they go in the timber after the elk, I know exactly where the elk are going to go if they get spooked.  They are going to run down this really tight cut which is only 130 yards across, so we go set up to ambush them when they come that way.
We get set up and I see the two hunters work into the timber, we hear the bulls stop bugling, and we just wait patiently.  After about 5 minutes, guess what we hear?  The same quad is now driving the road on top of the other side of the cut that we are sitting on.  We start seeing elk running along with deer because this guy is scaring the entire canyon out. 
Iím losing my mind at this point and am not sure what to do.  We are 8 or 9 miles into the day and keep getting screwed by this guy on the quad.  Back to the truck to another spot we go.  We donít see anything for the next two days and the hunt ends with nothing but tag soup. 
Iím really trying to focus on the good parts of the hunt because we were on elk everyday and I got to hang with some of the best friends a guy could have.  The experience was awesome and I learned a ton.  I think the one thing that really stings is that I had one opportunity and I messed it up.  Luckily the bull is alive and well and I am 100% sure of that, but I didnít get to put any meat in the freezer and this may have been the only opportunity to shoot a really big bull in my lifetime.  The tag godís may shine on me again, but Iím not counting on it.  I have just reserved myself to the fact that I now get to live vicariously though my buddies and my boys, which Iím ok with. 
Sorry this is so long and you may have not made it to the end, but like I said at the beginning, if anyone has this tag and wants pointers.  Iíll give you my number and we can chat.
Iíll try and post some of the bulls I had on game camera as well as phone skoped during the scouting trip.  Plus, I did call a bear into 10 feet because of this tag, which was *censored*!!!         

Online duckmen1

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #34 on: October 13, 2019, 11:33:30 PM »
Sounds like you gave it your all and made the most of your hunt. Unfortunately bad luck occured. Darn. Still a heck of a lot of elk to play with and keep you busy. I always cringe seeing quads head over east knowing in my mind what kind of hunters they might be. That sucks to deal with. Especially on such a hunt that had the potential to fill a great tag. Much respect to you and everyone that helped in that adventure.
My prey is my biggest enemy. That's why my first shot is lethal.

Offline Mr Mykiss

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #35 on: October 14, 2019, 06:01:40 AM »
Holy smokes!! Iím speechless.

PS: Any chance we can have Cryder translate this post??

Offline bornhunter

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #36 on: October 14, 2019, 07:38:44 AM »
Great story. Thanks for sharing.

Offline slowhand

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #37 on: October 14, 2019, 09:18:55 AM »
Great story  :tup:
I enjoyed reading every bit of it.
I have been there before with a bull tag and all the frustration, pressure, and adventure that goes with it.
When time passes you will look back and realize how much fun you had and how little of a difference getting an elk would have made to your memories.
I am now in the same boat as you. waiting for another once in a lifetime chance at a amazing tag.
Seahawks
Hunting
Fishing
In That order

Online Rainier10

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #38 on: October 14, 2019, 09:42:54 AM »
Great story  :tup:
I enjoyed reading every bit of it.
I have been there before with a bull tag and all the frustration, pressure, and adventure that goes with it.
When time passes you will look back and realize how much fun you had and how little of a difference getting an elk would have made to your memories.
I am now in the same boat as you. waiting for another once in a lifetime chance at a amazing tag.
:yeah:
I had the archery tag a couple years ago and ate the tag.  Had an amazing time with highs and lows.  I remember the highs much more than the lows at this point.

Thanks for the update.
Pain is temporary, achieving the goal is worth it.

I didn't say it would be easy, I said it would be worth it.

Every father should remember that one day his children will follow his example instead of his advice.


The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of HuntWa or the site owner.

Offline elkrack

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Re: Colockum Muzzy Tag Selected!!!
« Reply #39 on: October 14, 2019, 10:38:56 AM »
Sounds like an amazing time! :tup:
life's tough its tougher if your stupid (john wayne)

 


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