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Author Topic: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread  (Read 31550 times)

Offline CedarPants

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #90 on: October 04, 2021, 09:37:06 AM »
Muzzy opener 2 mornings ago, I found myself tucked into the woods in an area I'd been catching some recent elk activity on one of my trail cameras.  The fog was thick and it was chilly, with a layer of white frost covering the ground and surrounding tree branches.  Right at sunrise I let out a light bugle to see if anything would respond, but my call was met with silence.  I stayed put and listened to the forest wake up around me, taking time to range different shooting lanes around me.

About 20 minutes later a doe and fawn came grazing by within about 15 yards of me.  They hung around for probably 20 minutes and I swear we made eye contact multiple times, but they didn't seem overly concerned with the human shaped pile of camouflage sitting up against the tree watching them.  Eventually mamma deer winded me and stomped a few times and slowly led her fawn away past and behind me.

I let out a couple of cow calls shortly after that, followed by another light bugle.  Silence.  I thought about moving but it was still only about 45 minutes or so after shooting light and I knew the elk sometimes moved through the little bowl I was sitting in throughout the early morning on their way up to the higher timber.  I decided to stay put and have a snack.  Pepperoni sticks and almonds, breakfast of champions.

A few minutes later while I'm crunching away on my food I thought I heard .......... something.  I wasn't sure what, but I knew I had heard a noise.  I stopped chewing for about 20 seconds and didn't hear anything.  Started chewing again and immediately heard the noise again .... but this time I was able to tell that it was an elk chuckling about 100 yards away.  I don't know if many of you have tried to call an elk with a mouth reed while having your face stuffed full of almonds, but I can tell you from experience it doesn't work.  I swallowed/spit out my food as fast as I could and swished some water around in my mouth and spit that out too and threw in the mouth reed.  I let out a couple cow calls that were immediately answered by more chuckling, still about 100 yards out it sounded like.  I grabbed the bugle and let out a few chuckles of my own, and those were met with silence.

I sat there for what seemed like an eternity but was probably only about 3 minutes, wondering if I should get up and make a move on this guy or stay put and try to call him in.  I decided I'd bugle one more time - a bit more aggressively this time - and see what happened before making a decision on whether to move or stay put.  I let out a quick, but aggressive high pitched bugle and dropped it into several chuckles.  This was immediately met with screaming mad bugle in return, probably 60 - 75 yards away just on the other side of the hill.  He's coming in.

I quickly double check the ranges in my 3 shooting lanes ...... 50 yards,  60 yards, 65 yards.  I had a 4th shooting lane that was only 36 yards away, but the sun had just started peeking through the fog and was literally right in my face in that lane.  I cow called a couple of times and he immediately chuckled back a couple times, close enough that I knew he was on my side of the hill and that I should be able to see him.  I was scanning the woods and that's when I saw antlers trotting up pretty quickly 50 yards straight ahead of me.  He was in a bunch of thick undergrowth, facing me, and all I could see was his head and antlers.  Gun up but no clear shot.  He stands there scanning the surrounding woods for about 3 minutes, chuckling every 30 seconds or so and doing his best to give me a heart attack hoping he doesn't turn and leave.

He finally grows weary of not seeing any elk and slowly turns around.  My heart sinks.  As he's taking his first few steps away, I grab the bugle and let out a couple quick chuckles.  He immediately turns around cuts loose with an ear piercing bugle that carried on for several seconds, with steam billowing out of his mouth.  He then proceeded to murder an innocent young tree before lifting his head and letting rip with another ear splitting bugle.  Still standing facing me, still in the same thick underbrush.  I cow call once, and that did it. 

He turns broadside and walks directly into the shooting lane that has me looking directly into the sun.  I'm squinting trying to see, and he was kind enough to step in front of the sun and block it out with his body while stopping to bugle one last time.  36 yards, safety off - boom.  I'm immediately blinded by the sun again as he darts off, but out of the corner of my eye I catch a quick glimpse of him with his head down running as he quickly hits the thick timber.  I immediately pull out my kit to start reloading but only seconds later I hear the unmistakable sound of an elk crashing through the brush, and then the even more unmistakable sound of an elk crashing to the ground.  Then dead silence.

I reload and wait about 5 minutes and then slowly start to tiptoe in the direction he went.  I hadn't made it 15 yards before I saw him, he had only gone 40 yards and crashed face first into some branches and fell over.  My shot was at an uphill angle and had clipped the top of his heart and took out his far lung, he died within seconds.

This was a solo hunt, but I was thankfully able to get the Ranger within about 300 yards of the bull.  That said though, I'm only 2 1/2 months removed from having the torn labrum in my left shoulder surgically repaired and the physical therapist just last week cleared me to lift 'up to 15lbs'.  She's going to be thrilled to discover how far I've progressed only 5 days later  :chuckle:  Needless to say quartering that thing out and packing everything the short distance to the quad was no easy task with one arm and maybe 1/4 of use of the other arm.  Wife wasn't too thrilled that I didn't call for help, but there's no cell service there and I didn't want to hike over a mile back to the truck and drive out of there to get into cell range.  It was supposed to be nearly 70 degrees that day and I made the decision to just take care of it myself as quickly as possible to avoid any meat spoilage.  I'm a bit sore but it was entirely worth it.  One of my most memorable hunts to date.

Thanks for letting me share, and thank you to the 290 grain Barnes Spit-Fire T-EZ for doing its job flawlessly!





Offline CedarPants

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #91 on: October 04, 2021, 09:38:38 AM »
 Recovered from far side shoulder

Offline ASienkiewich

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #92 on: October 04, 2021, 09:39:17 AM »
Muzzy opener 2 mornings ago, I found myself tucked into the woods in an area I'd been catching some recent elk activity on one of my trail cameras.  The fog was thick and it was chilly, with a layer of white frost covering the ground and surrounding tree branches.  Right at sunrise I let out a light bugle to see if anything would respond, but my call was met with silence.  I stayed put and listened to the forest wake up around me, taking time to range different shooting lanes around me.

About 20 minutes later a doe and fawn came grazing by within about 15 yards of me.  They hung around for probably 20 minutes and I swear we made eye contact multiple times, but they didn't seem overly concerned with the human shaped pile of camouflage sitting up against the tree watching them.  Eventually mamma deer winded me and stomped a few times and slowly led her fawn away past and behind me.

I let out a couple of cow calls shortly after that, followed by another light bugle.  Silence.  I thought about moving but it was still only about 45 minutes or so after shooting light and I knew the elk sometimes moved through the little bowl I was sitting in throughout the early morning on their way up to the higher timber.  I decided to stay put and have a snack.  Pepperoni sticks and almonds, breakfast of champions.

A few minutes later while I'm crunching away on my food I thought I heard .......... something.  I wasn't sure what, but I knew I had heard a noise.  I stopped chewing for about 20 seconds and didn't hear anything.  Started chewing again and immediately heard the noise again .... but this time I was able to tell that it was an elk chuckling about 100 yards away.  I don't know if many of you have tried to call an elk with a mouth reed while having your face stuffed full of almonds, but I can tell you from experience it doesn't work.  I swallowed/spit out my food as fast as I could and swished some water around in my mouth and spit that out too and threw in the mouth reed.  I let out a couple cow calls that were immediately answered by more chuckling, still about 100 yards out it sounded like.  I grabbed the bugle and let out a few chuckles of my own, and those were met with silence.

I sat there for what seemed like an eternity but was probably only about 3 minutes, wondering if I should get up and make a move on this guy or stay put and try to call him in.  I decided I'd bugle one more time - a bit more aggressively this time - and see what happened before making a decision on whether to move or stay put.  I let out a quick, but aggressive high pitched bugle and dropped it into several chuckles.  This was immediately met with screaming mad bugle in return, probably 60 - 75 yards away just on the other side of the hill.  He's coming in.

I quickly double check the ranges in my 3 shooting lanes ...... 50 yards,  60 yards, 65 yards.  I had a 4th shooting lane that was only 36 yards away, but the sun had just started peeking through the fog and was literally right in my face in that lane.  I cow called a couple of times and he immediately chuckled back a couple times, close enough that I knew he was on my side of the hill and that I should be able to see him.  I was scanning the woods and that's when I saw antlers trotting up pretty quickly 50 yards straight ahead of me.  He was in a bunch of thick undergrowth, facing me, and all I could see was his head and antlers.  Gun up but no clear shot.  He stands there scanning the surrounding woods for about 3 minutes, chuckling every 30 seconds or so and doing his best to give me a heart attack hoping he doesn't turn and leave.

He finally grows weary of not seeing any elk and slowly turns around.  My heart sinks.  As he's taking his first few steps away, I grab the bugle and let out a couple quick chuckles.  He immediately turns around cuts loose with an ear piercing bugle that carried on for several seconds, with steam billowing out of his mouth.  He then proceeded to murder an innocent young tree before lifting his head and letting rip with another ear splitting bugle.  Still standing facing me, still in the same thick underbrush.  I cow call once, and that did it. 

He turns broadside and walks directly into the shooting lane that has me looking directly into the sun.  I'm squinting trying to see, and he was kind enough to step in front of the sun and block it out with his body while stopping to bugle one last time.  36 yards, safety off - boom.  I'm immediately blinded by the sun again as he darts off, but out of the corner of my eye I catch a quick glimpse of him with his head down running as he quickly hits the thick timber.  I immediately pull out my kit to start reloading but only seconds later I hear the unmistakable sound of an elk crashing through the brush, and then the even more unmistakable sound of an elk crashing to the ground.  Then dead silence.

I reload and wait about 5 minutes and then slowly start to tiptoe in the direction he went.  I hadn't made it 15 yards before I saw him, he had only gone 40 yards and crashed face first into some branches and fell over.  My shot was at an uphill angle and had clipped the top of his heart and took out his far lung, he died within seconds.

This was a solo hunt, but I was thankfully able to get the Ranger within about 300 yards of the bull.  That said though, I'm only 2 1/2 months removed from having the torn labrum in my left shoulder surgically repaired and the physical therapist just last week cleared me to lift 'up to 15lbs'.  She's going to be thrilled to discover how far I've progressed only 5 days later  :chuckle:  Needless to say quartering that thing out and packing everything the short distance to the quad was no easy task with one arm and maybe 1/4 of use of the other arm.  Wife wasn't too thrilled that I didn't call for help, but there's no cell service there and I didn't want to hike over a mile back to the truck and drive out of there to get into cell range.  It was supposed to be nearly 70 degrees that day and I made the decision to just take care of it myself as quickly as possible to avoid any meat spoilage.  I'm a bit sore but it was entirely worth it.  One of my most memorable hunts to date.

Thanks for letting me share, and thank you to the 290 grain Barnes Spit-Fire T-EZ for doing its job flawlessly!
Awesome! Congrats on the bull!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Online Rainier10

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #93 on: October 04, 2021, 10:18:46 AM »
Way to go man, congrats on a great elk.
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 livin4fishin

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #94 on: October 04, 2021, 10:29:33 AM »
Congrats. Beautiful bull. Great write up.

Online carpsniperg2

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #95 on: October 04, 2021, 11:40:52 AM »
Congrats on a beautiful bull. Love those barnes bullets in the muzzys!
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Offline Gonehuntin01

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #96 on: October 04, 2021, 02:22:14 PM »
Congrats on a great bull and awesome write up. 

Offline swanderek

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #97 on: October 04, 2021, 07:18:26 PM »
Congrats nice job

Offline crowinghen

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #98 on: October 04, 2021, 07:25:47 PM »
Cedarpants-
 That's a great bull and story! I use the same bullet, have the same results- love them!  Congrats! Lot of work for a 1 and 1/4 armed man.

Offline TommyH

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #99 on: October 04, 2021, 07:31:18 PM »
 :tup: Nice!

Offline CedarPants

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #100 on: October 04, 2021, 09:50:31 PM »
Thanks for the love all. Appreciate it. Happy hunting and stay safe out there.

Offline raydog

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #101 on: October 06, 2021, 02:01:49 PM »
Nice write-up Cedar pants! Congratulations

Offline raydog

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #102 on: October 06, 2021, 02:03:04 PM »
Muzzy bull. My biggest one so far. Feeling very thankful

Offline mrgoodwrench

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #103 on: October 06, 2021, 10:57:28 PM »
11 yr old daughter’s first Roosevelt.

Offline Pinetar

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Re: 2021 Elk Harvest Thread
« Reply #104 on: October 07, 2021, 05:25:41 AM »
So............awesome, nice bull!! Good for your daughter and Congrats to you both

 


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