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Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)

 
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Silentstalker
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Aug-09-10, 
11:32 AM (MST)
"Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

LAST EDITED ON Aug-09-10 AT 11:34 AM (MST) by Founder (admin)

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In early January the hunting forecast for myself looked like a general season type year. I had drawn my deer, bear, and elk tags over the last few years here in Utah and only had points for Moose. Even with general season tags, I was extremely excited as my son Dustin had just turned 12 and his career as a big game hunter was about to begin. Hunting with family and friends has always outweighed the importance of inches and width. This year would be no different.

When the Expo came around, My Dad (Wade), Brother (Cory), and I went up to the show and applied for our "normal" hunts. Not really hoping or expecting a tag. After all, Cory and I have both drawn Wasatch Expo Elk tags in the past. No way lightning could strike again right??

Well, The results were posted and there was Dad's name! He drew a Book Cliffs archery deer tag! What a stroke of luck! All the years of applying with the unsuccessful letters have turned to incredible luck for our family. We have truly been blessed. Dad hunted the Book Cliffs archery deer hunt two years ago with my Sister and they both harvested great bucks! I had the opportunity last year to harvest a nice buck out there as well. The excitement began to build as soon as we found out he had a tag in hand. Our plans for the regular draw changed as well.

Dad's Buck

Tenille's Buck

My buck

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  Table of Contents  

 Subject   Author   Message Date   ID 
 RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-09-10   1 
  RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-09-10   2 
   RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-09-10   3 
    RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-09-10   4 
     RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-10-10   5 
      RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-11-10   6 
       RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-11-10   7 
        RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-12-10   8 
         RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-28-10   9 
         RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-28-10   10 
         RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-28-10   11 
          RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-29-10   12 
          RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Aug-29-10   13 
           RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   14 
           RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   15 
           RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   16 
           RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   17 
           RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   18 
            RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   19 
            RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-01-10   20 
             RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-03-10   21 
              RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-15-10   22 
              RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-15-10   23 
              RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-15-10   24 
               RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-19-10   25 
                RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-19-10   26 
                 RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-21-10   27 
                 RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-21-10   28 
                  RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-22-10   29 
                   RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Sep-22-10   30 
                    RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Oct-22-10   31 
                     RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Oct-25-10   32 
                      RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Oct-30-10   33 
                       RE: Book Cliff...  Silentstalk...      Jan-01-11   34 

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Silentstalker
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Aug-09-10, 
01:58 PM (MST)
1. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Knowing we would be out on the Book Cliffs to help Dad fill his tag, I chose to apply for the Book Cliffs archery elk tag. That way if I drew we could hunt together. I knew full well people don't draw with 0 points. I applied Dustin for the youth elk hunt and my Wife for a Book Cliffs rifle deer tag. My good friend Jerry was also applying for the Archery deer tag out there and although he did not have max points, he had a shot at a tag.

About this time I began the process of finishing my basement. There would be plenty of time to scout for Dad's hunt in June and July. While downstairs framing one day, the door bell rang. I first thought nothing of it and went back to work. The kids will get it I thought. The door bell rang a second time. Up stairs I went to find the mail lady standing at the door with a certified letter from NAHC (North American Hunting Club). Much to my surprise I had won a new Mathews Reezen bow in thier Big Game awards!! WOW, Talk about cloud 9!!! What a fast, smooth bow! With the addition of a string stopper to this set up, It is nearly vibration free! Now if I can just shoot it is well as it can perform!!

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Silentstalker
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Aug-09-10, 
02:51 PM (MST)
2. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

LAST EDITED ON Aug-09-10 AT 07:28 PM (MST)

Well, the time came to start checking credit cards and I did not do it for a few days. No rush. I finally broke down and checked. Wham, a charge of $280.00 How could that be? The Youth elk tag is not nearly that expensive. At that moment I realized I had drawn my 3rd LE Archery elk tag since 2004. I was overcome with guilt. My buddies will never let me live this down! It is not really "fair" for me to draw but I know the draw gods will soon turn from me and I will take them while I can!

I called Dad, Cory and Jerry. The congrats and high fives over the phone were quick and sincere. A bit of teasing went along with it. We soon found out my Brother in Law drew a Wasatch LE archery elk tag, 3 friends drew Wasatch LE muzzy tags, and Jerry (aka Broadsideshot)and his Bro in law also drew Archery Book Cliffs deer! What an amazing year we are set to have! We quickly got down to business. We soon had scouting trips planned, locations picked out from past experiences and spots on the map to check out. Based on what we saw on last years hunts and scouting trips, We were very optimistic!

Pics from last years trips:


Bill,

Just saw your message in your last post. I hope the rain stops for you and your friends hunt. I wish you luck and am sure our paths will cross on the books! Good luck to each of you reading this post!!

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Silentstalker
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Aug-09-10, 
03:32 PM (MST)
3. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

In the life of a hunter there really is no such thing as the off season. If your like me, you go from big game to small game to big game with fishing and scouting trips mixed in. This year was shaping up to be a pretty busy year! Dustin drew his 1st turkey tag and I wanted to make sure he had every opportunity to shoot a bird.

The first weekend proved very difficult with heavy hunting pressure and quiet birds. We had a great trip and finally found birds as we were set to come home. With that knowledge in the back of our minds we drove home and prepared for the next weekends hunt.

The second trip proved to be the one! We set up on birds at first light. As dawn crept over the horizon, the sounds of ATV's and trucks on the roads became louder and louder. We had turkeys flying down all around us as the first truck approached the base of the canyon we were in, stopped, got out and slammed their doors and began calling repeatedly while talking in almost a yell to each other. Immediately the birds went silent and slipped out on us. Frustrated, we paused for about 1/2 hour to let them get away from us and calm down before pursuing them. We then proceeded to play cat and mouse with this flock for the rest of the day. Pausing once to hike back to the truck to eat lunch. That afternoon we relocated the flock and after several close calls with toms and jakes, Dustin finally put the smack down on a great first bird. What a rush to experience the intensity of an all day stint chasing these wiley birds. Our day started at 3:30am and ended at 5:30pm. The smiles say it all as Dustin saw the efforts of hunting smarter and harder then most even if it was "only for a turkey". I will cherish that day for the rest of my life!

The proud hunter!

Bird was almost as big as he was!

This hunt was more rewarding than any hunt I have been on.

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Silentstalker
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Aug-09-10, 
09:48 PM (MST)
4. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

After the Turkey hunt was over it was time to buckle down and get my basement finished and start shooting my bow. Scouting started about mid to late June. Our 1st cameras were placed on some very promising spots.

The use of trail cams have really created a whole new element to the hunt that I find incredibly exciting. Don't get me wrong, I prefer to be on the hill glassing and beating the hills finding new spots to hunt, but once found, it is sure fun to see what animals you may encounter in an area! Often it is exactly what you want to hunt, other times it is not!

Here are a few of our 1st pics!

Has anyone mentioned that there are a ton of bears on the Book Cliffs?? Here is one of many!

There are quite a few of these as well!

Even a few of these running around!

Look at this gal with her bling on! Must be going out on the town tonight!


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Silentstalker
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Aug-10-10, 
03:03 PM (MST)
5. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Did I mention my friend Jerry (Broadside_shot) drew a deer tag also? We spent a lot of time out there last year scouting for my deer hunt. Jerry has a great knowledge of the unit and loves to scout and hunt big bucks! A few years ago Jerry hunted the Books for elk. Here is a link to his elk hunt! It is very well worth a look. Great thread! Check it out and then come back here. We will see what is on this camera!

http://www.monstermuleys.info/cgi-bin/dcforum/dcboard.pl?az=show_thread&om=8271&forum=DCForumID12&archive=yes


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Silentstalker
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Aug-11-10, 
04:05 PM (MST)
6. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Now that you have seen the great story and bull Jerry shot out there, you can tell the excitement that has been building for the last few months inside my mind! I am a total wreck! I can't focus or stay on task for very long. My mind is always drifting away to a distant waterhole or side hill where I can imagine great bulls feeding and bulking up for the rut which will soon be here!

The time came to check Crooked Horn Spring. When I first approached the camera, my stomach sunk as I saw the camera was on the ground. I wondered how long it had been that way. Did I get any good pic's?

Lucky for me when I turned it over It took a picture of me and showed over 800 pictures. By the time stamp of the last pic it was in the dirt for over a week.

Here is a good sample of what we found on the camera.

Nice looking young bull!

Decent bull for June.

Again, nothing huge but a solid bull.

This bull in the upper left caught my eye. Cool management style 5 point. There are a few in the area. I am a sucker for odd ball bucks and bulls!

And here is the most developed bull so far. I have named him Hook due to the curvature of both of his 4th's. He has great 2nd's as well.

So far it looks like there are some great bulls in the area. No monsters, but that is not the end goal. I want to have an enjoyable hunt that I can share with my Friends and Family. So far so good!

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Silentstalker
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Aug-11-10, 
07:36 AM (MST)
7. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

After checking the camera at Crooked Horn and being on "cloud 9" we decided to set another camera on a different water hole to see the quality in that canyon.

It was not until July 24th that we got the next peek at what had come in at both locations.

Unfortunately my camera malfunctioned at Crooked Horn. It only took pictures for 3 days and then went to "sleep". I called the manufacturer and they suspected it was a bad battery in the camera. Most of the functions were working. It just would not take pic's!

Here are a few it took.

This bull is going to be nice when he gets a bit older. Look at those fronts!

And here is a fairly heavy 6x7 bull.

Over on waterhole #2 we call the Dome Wallow.

Momma bear and her cub.

The variety of wildlife is amazing!

Momma Cougar and her Kittens.

A pair of Eagles.

Pretty nice 5 point we call Spiral due to his spiraling main beams!

And last but not least, My friend Hook. I am pretty sure this is the same bull. I hope to have better pic's this weekend to break him down a little more but my gut is telling me he is the same bull. I would really like a shot at him. Goofy 5th on his right but I think he is a great bull.

I am off soon to check the cameras. When I get back I will update the thread and let you know what we found! Thanks for following along. I hope your enjoying the ride as much as I am!!! I leave for my hunt in 1 week! Good luck to each of you on your hunts too!

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Silentstalker
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Aug-12-10, 
09:58 AM (MST)
8. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Apparently I forgot to post the link to a new Pic of "Hook". Sorry about that. Here he is.


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Silentstalker
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Aug-28-10, 
05:32 PM (MST)
9. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

The trip out to check the cameras and glass bulls was very productive! We found several of my favorite bulls.

Here is a sample of what came in.

The bulls were definitely starting to strip their velvet.

Hook was back a bunch and cleaned up nicely!

Even "6 pack" my #2 bull was coming in pretty regularly.

A cool bull we call "Fronts" was in too.

The 1st bull I saw this year was also back!


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Silentstalker
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Aug-28-10, 
05:32 PM (MST)
10. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Over on the Dome,

The action had slowed a bit and the better bulls had disappeared.

Here are a few of the ones still hitting regularly.

We called this bull Lumpy because of his bladed fourths. The one on his right has to small lumps projecting back.

Sure are a lot of great 5 points.

Couple of young 6 points.

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Silentstalker
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Aug-28-10, 
05:32 PM (MST)
11. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

It finally came time to leave for the hunt! It took forever to arrive but the time was finally here!!! Yeah!

Checked the cameras right before the hunt started and the action on the water had slowed a bit. Much needed rain had recently fallen and the elk did not need to come in to get there drink. I also noticed the bulls had started drinking more at night and in smaller groups.

I had decided to hunt Crooked Horn Spring due to a higher volume of bulls and much bigger ones too. The night before the hunt, 6 pack dropped by for a drink!

Opening morning was finally here! I did not sleep much that night as the anticipation of what might be was thick in the air for our small group of hunters. We each set out our own way as we went after our target animals. Jerry, Dad, and Brian each had put great bucks to bed and I had a great waterhole to sit! Good luck all. The time and effort scouting was about to pay off!

Once settled in my stand, I calmly waited for the sun to come up. Just about 15 minutes before good shooting light I herd elk coming my way. Oh No! They are going to get here too soon to shoot! As they eased in I could start to make out antlers and immediately noticed the lead bull was Hook! He was followed by a decent 5 point.

No way, was this really happening? Was I about to shoot the best bull in the 1st moments of the hunt? After all, I had done my homework, put myself in the position to be successful. My decision was made. As soon as it presented itself, I was going to end my hunt!

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Silentstalker
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Aug-29-10, 
06:44 AM (MST)
12. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

It is kind of funny how quickly an opportunity can go from a sure thing to a huge disappointment in seconds!!

That dang 5 point over took "Hook" on the trail and beat him to the water! This caused Hook to hold up at 30 yards behind some brush completely safe from my arrow!

After about 2 minutes of the 5 point drinking Hook got impatient. He stepped into the opening and threw his horns in the direction of the lesser bull. That 5 point actually spooked like a crazed horse which in turn sent he and Hook racing up on the hillside out of range. They quietly walked off over the hill with Hook not watering and no shot!!

I sat there like a kid who just got his candy taken away by the class bully! I was disappointed to say the least! I was hopefully that Hook would come back in at some point. After all, it was in the high 80's and he had to be thirsty.

This opening day I did something I don't normally do, I sat from 5:25 am till 8:45 pm. For those of you who have never experienced a tree stand for 15+ hours, let me tell you it is a treat! Baking in the sun your mind starts to work against ya!

Thoughts of "The bulls have all left.", "Your scent is keeping them from coming in.", or " Other hunters have blown them all out!". I was in a battle with my mind and with every minute that passed by I was losing!

I decided to take a few pic's to pass the time.

Here are a few of the bird friends I made.

Hummingbird (dead center)

At the end of the day I was pretty disappointed. Clearly the full moon was affecting the watering habits of the bulls.

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Silentstalker
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Aug-29-10, 
06:44 AM (MST)
13. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

This Joker must have been tipped off that I was leaving at 8:45. Check the time stamp!

Another smaller bull came in around midnight.

Day 2

Started like day 1 ended. Nothing coming in. Sitting there with no action I decided I would break for lunch and come back around 4 pm for the evening hunt.

Again, it is like they knew I wasn't there!

Why had I gone from multiple bulls hitting every morning and night to 1-2 a day, and mostly after dark??

It seemed 3 factors were working against me. A full moon, a boat load of deer hunters, and several severe rain storms just prior to our arrival.

That was okay though. I was enjoying the hunt. Enjoying having my Son on the trip along with Dad, Cory and his son, Jerry and his son, Scott aka "swbuckmaster" and his daughter, and Brian and his family.

Being in camp was fun! Good food, Laughter over close calls, misses and what might have been! Hanging around these guy's helps keep a guy optimistic. Besides who ever said elk hunting was easy? Especially bow hunting them on the Book Cliffs!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:25 PM (MST)
14. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

LAST EDITED ON Sep-01-10 AT 08:19 PM (MST)

Day 3 had me optimistic. The bulls had to water today and hopefully in the day light! I sat the morning at Crooked Horn Spring. Again, no visitors! Unless you count squirrels and birds!

I had 1 bull that came in during the early morning.

Seeing bulls in the area gave me confidence in the spot, but at lunch time I decided it was time for a change. Let this spot "rest" while I hunt and check on the Dome Wallow. This move was quite a drive so I scrambled to get there before prime time in the evening!

Upon arrival at the Dome, I pulled my SD card and climbed up in the tree stand. I had no sooner set my second foot on the platform and I heard a commotion coming from my left. I thought I had blown out a small group of elk! I quickly sat down and knocked an arrow.

Suddenly after a short quiet moment, this Gorgeous Sow bear with 3 cubs came crashing into the water. No sneaking for them! It was a full charge! They hit the water and began playing and rolling around. It was 5 minutes or so of the very coolest action I had seen for a long time! The cubs were testing their mettle with one another, Momma was "bathing" in the pond. She even went as far as to wash her hair with a scrubbing motion similar to what you and I may do in the shower. After the bath and few cub fights, they thoroughly watered and moved on.

Here are a few pics.

In this pic, you can see a black and a chocolate cub with the sow and the ears of the 3rd cub also a chocolate bear right in the waterhole by the stick.

That evening I did not have any elk come in but I did here a cow or two softly mewing a hundred yards away or so. I feel like even though I had been on a rough stretch seeing animals, these bears were the start of hopefully a flood of animals! It was just a matter of time.

What a fun night on stand! Sitting has often times been labeled boring and not fun. I can tell you that since sitting became my primary source of hunting elk, I have witnessed some amazing scenes of animal interaction that I could have never witnessed in any other circumstance. Boring while you wait, but the pay off is huge even if you never draw your bow back!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:25 PM (MST)
15. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Day 4 found me back at Crooked Horn satisfied that I had made the correct choice in locations to sit. I was in the right area with the best bulls. Now I just had to make a serious effort by sitting until a good bull came in. Nothing had watered since I left mid day the day before. Unfortunately nothing watered this day either!

I struggled at this point. Please let a cow, doe or small bull water! I did not need to kill an elk to have a good day in stand, but it sure is nice to watch a deer or elk once in a while.

This day it was not to be! No luck. Got plenty of sun!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:25 PM (MST)
16. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Day 5 arrived way to early! The 4:30 AM starts and hikes were taking their toll on me! Not that I was physically tired, more mentally. I was sleeping under the brightest full moon ever knowing that the elk for whatever reason had abandoned the area. I was not too optimistic hiking into the stand that morning and actually toyed with the idea of sleeping in and having a rest day!

Luckily my drive to hunt took over and forced my butt out of bed!

I pulled the SD card like normal and climbed up into my stand. I quickly reviewed my pictures from the night and Bam!!! Hook had watered again but really early in the morning.


Hook watered for quite some time. I was glad to finally see a good bull back on the water but convinced that these bulls had gone nocturnal. I felt like I needed to make a decision. I had 4 days left in my hunt with a follow up trip scheduled the last 10 days of the hunt.

My dilemma was this. My son turned 12 this year. He was patiently waiting for me to wrap up my hunt so he could go hunting deer for himself! This year was really about him and his hunting until I drew my lucky tag!

I always try to shoot a mature animal on my hunts of late and this trip was no different. I had 2 great bulls watering at night, and a 1/2 dozen 300-320 class 6x6 bulls and a few whopper 5 points that were in the area.

I decided right then and there that if possible I would shoot one of these bulls if given the opportunity.

It was now about 5:45 am. I was quietly sitting in my stand when I heard the unmistakable sound of an elk walking across the hillside. Looking at my watch and then my pins, I prayed for two things. #1, that it would get light very quickly! #2 that this would be a good bull!

As dawn broke over the horizon I could make out a great set of main beams. This bull looked good! I layed my bow carefully in my lap and glassed him at 50 yards as he closed in on the pond. With my binoculars I was able to see that he was the biggest 5 point I had seen in all my scouting and also the very 1st bull I layed eyes on this year while scouting! He was a toad! The decision was very easy now, Take him if he gives you a chance!

Now, if it will only get light in time!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:25 PM (MST)
17. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

When Big 5 approached I set my release on the string and told myself to calm down and take my take your time! The bull finally made it to the water and started to drink and I could not see through my peep yet! I prayed for light as I could hear him drinking.

This bull was thirsty! He drank off and on for nearly 15 minutes! As he pulled up out of the water, I drew my bow. The moment of truth had finally arrived. He stepped to his right exposing his ribs and I settled my pin. At the shot he took off light a lightning bolt! I could see good blood immediately and knew it would not be a tough trail to follow.



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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:25 PM (MST)
18. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

After a short trail the 1st thing I saw was this.

Man was I excited to get my hands around those antlers!! What a great bull! After a quick Thank You to the man upstairs, I quickly set about trying to build a tripod (out of rocks)to take a few pictures. The temperature out on the Books gets nice and warm once the sun comes up.

Unfortunately I was unable to move the bull much due to his size and the brush he died in. Here is a pic from where he went down.


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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:29 PM (MST)
19. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

With whale tails of over 30" he is sure a fun bull to look at!

After a quick photo shoot the real work began as I wrestled with that bull getting him quartered up. I made a call to Jerry and told him I had killed a bull and as soon as they were done deer hunting for the morning to meet me at the waterhole cause I needed some help badly!!

Good hunting buddies and friends are hard to come by but when you find some, they are worth their weight in GOLD!!



Even the badlands got in on some meat packing! What a great pack!


Thank You Dad, Jerry, and Brian! What would have taken me all day we did in 1 large trip. What a relief to get that meat off the mountain and into bags and shade! He will feed my family for quite some time!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-01-10, 
07:29 PM (MST)
20. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

For those interested in Trail cams pics, Here are a few of my bull.




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Silentstalker
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Sep-03-10, 
07:14 PM (MST)
21. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Meanwhile back at camp a very fun deer hunt was taking place! Now I had become a pack mule and spotter.

Here are a few bucks we saw.


It takes time to pick through the lesser bucks to find those hidden gems on the Books. With each passing day there were numerous bucks spotted and even a few stalks attempted. Some bucks were passed and even a couple narrowly escaped an arrow due to brush. The time was coming for a buck to hit the dirt!

I am headed out today to help my Brother in Law with his Wasatch Archery elk hunt. I will post more upon my return! Good luck guy's and gal's! Isn't this the greatest time of year!!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-15-10, 
07:33 PM (MST)
22. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Dad was on to a great buck! Opening morning found him sneaking in on this giant typical and moving in to 30 yards. My Brother Cory was guiding him in through the spotting scope. It was just one of those stalks where everything was going right. At 30 yards Dad settled in for the buck to make a move. Suddenly the shot materialized! As he released the arrow, the buck took a side step down the hill and the arrow sailed just over his back! Being a smart old buck he did not panic but put distance between himself and that loud noise that spooked him.

Needless to say, that opportunity set the tone for the rest of Dad's hunt. He set a goal of killing that 180+ buck or a management buck at the end. True to his word, he set out to kill that buck. Passing bucks most would shoot opening morning. I told him he was crazy several times!! Dad got on the big typical 2 more times in the 1st week. Both those times he snuck within 10 yards of him. We could see the buck and him in the same view from the spotting scope! What a rush! Why are you not shooting!!

At 500 yards it seemed to us like a chip shot. From 10 yards he might as well have been a mile away. No vital shot and ethics wont permit a marginal shot even on a buck of a lifetime.

The time soon came to go home and a return trip was quickly planned. More on that later.

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Silentstalker
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Sep-15-10, 
07:33 PM (MST)
23. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Sept 3rd found me in elk camp on the Wasatch with my family. Hunting has ALWAYS been about family for us. I can't remember a hunt in my past where my family was not a key element in my success and vice a versa. This year was going to be the same. This time it was Kevin with the tag. He had waited and waited and finally drawn his archery elk tag!

While in camp it was time to practice and check our bows. Dustin was there to hunt deer for the 1st time ever! Man were we all excited!

Dustin shooting broad heads while I look on.

There is nothing quite like watching your child embrace your passion!

A family that hunts together Stays together has been my motto!


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Silentstalker
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Sep-15-10, 
07:33 PM (MST)
24. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Saturday the 4th found us closing in on a great bull. My Bro. Cory had found him friday night and we were within 100 yards of him while he was screaming his guts out. His challenges were answered almost as quickly as they died off by several satellite bulls. We set up for a calling set and the bull clammed up for a while and snuck out on us. No big loss, the rut was starting and that meant very good things for Kevin's hunt.

On the way out we snuck through a quakie hillside and we found a nice little 2 point buck. Dustin and I ended up 30 yards on the dot from him. At the shot it looked good, but the arrow told us otherwise. He had shot just short of his 1st buck! What a rush! Now Dustin wanted his buck more than ever! More logs on the small fire in his heart and mind!

After checking on a few wallows we found them to be "heating up"!


We were treated to several great sunsets!

We went home from the weekend to work knowing that our next trip would be one to remember forever. We would be back Friday the 10th and stay until a bull hit the dirt or the season ended. Once again the excitement was building!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-19-10, 
12:21 PM (MST)
25. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Friday night we arrived on the Mountain to find a great big bull and his cows already using the waterhole Kevin had hoped to sit. With that in mind he went in Saturday morning hoping he and his cows would return!

But as we know elk hunting, it was not to be. A few does were all he saw. Meanwhile Dustin and I had went out looking for a buck and "scouting" for Kevin on various bulls locations. While we were unsuccessful in finding a buck close enough to stalk, we found the elk.

It seemed we had found 15 bulls with over 100 cows in a canyon we call Symphony hall due to the music the elk play every Sept. And let me tell you this, this concert was in session!

We raced back to camp about the time we expected Kevin to return from sitting and I told him: "Get some food in your belly and get down into that waterhole. The elk are going nuts down there! You will kill a bull!"

So, Kevin changed his plans and went for it! He had 4 different bulls come in, some with cows some without. The 1st 3 spooked due to the unstable winds of the afternoon, but the 4th came right in. The wind held and the shot presented itself. Kevin drew back and delivered a Montec right through the bull at 20 yards. After a couple of cow calls, the bull paused at 40 yards and tipped over. Kevin had his very 1st bull elk!! What a rush! Here are a few pic's of his great archery bull!

Kevin and my Sister

Cory, Me, and Kevin

Congrats Kevin! Great job! Now the work begins!!!

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Silentstalker
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Sep-19-10, 
10:15 AM (MST)
26. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

As most of you know, elk seem to die in the worst spots! Once a bull hits the ground we take a few photo's and get right to work! Luckily we had a bunch of family that was there to help!

Here are a few of the pic's of the pack out!

The crew: Me, Cory, Kevin, Dad, and Bryon.

Now that Kevin's bull was down and packed out, our attention turned back to deer. Dad still had his Book Cliffs tag and we had several general archery deer tags too.

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Silentstalker
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Sep-21-10, 
06:27 PM (MST)
27. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Dad's hunt was back on now that Kevin had killed his bull. So, He packed up and headed out to the Book Cliffs one last time. Knowing it was the last few days Dad said he wanted to look 1 last time for Mr. Big and if he could not find him, he would go find "one of those big 2 points and remove him from the herd."

Well, Mr. Big must have relocated because He could not turn him up. So after a very fun and rewarding hunt and with only 2 days left in the season, Dad closed out his hunt with this great 4x2. The recovery was after dark so the time for great photo's had passed so a couple quick pic's were snapped and the deer was taken care of.

Dad with his buck.

During Dad's hunt, Cory, Dustin and I had stayed locally to hunt deer. Here are a few pic's.

Dustin and I enjoying an evening blind together.

All we had this night were does come in.

The next day we moved camp to a different area. The move proved positive as we immediately started seeing more deer.

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Silentstalker
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Sep-21-10, 
06:27 PM (MST)
28. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

The next day Cory and I set out to find a decent buck. We returned to a few of our old haunts only to find small spikes and 2 points! Looking for better, we pressed on. That evening we set up on 2 old waterholes we have done well with in the past. I had a decent 2 point come in along with 3 does through out the evening. Cory had a very still night until right at dusk, this nice 3 point decided to stop by for a drink. It was his last.

Cory with his buck.

We spent the rest of the night dragging out, skinning and prepping the meat for processing. Early the next morning we both set out for home. It was time to spend some quality time with the family before work resumed in a few days. The Wasatch Extended was calling my name and we still had several LE Muzzy elk tags and Dustin's deer tag to fill.

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Sep-22-10, 
03:45 PM (MST)
29. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Well,

I finally got some video posted up for you guy's. This footage was shot by my Brother Cory while he and my Sister sat one of our favorite elk spots. This was on Labor Day weekend. We have been trying to get it on Hunt clips unsuccessfully. We finally had a friend of my Sisters post it on You Tube.

If you have never seen a bull on a waterhole during Sept. you will enjoy this footage. Even though this is a small bull, it gives you a taste of what a mature bull will do. Hope you enjoy, Thanks Cory for capturing this on film!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xeBEabBJfqQ

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Silentstalker
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Sep-22-10, 
08:29 PM (MST)
30. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Being a stick flipper my whole life I have not done a ton of shooting with a rifle. Today I went and sighted in my Son's .243 and muzzle loader. He was in school so I sighted it in with plans to go shooting several times over the next few weeks.

Here are the results of my shooting.

.50 Muzzy 338 Powerbelts 100 grains powder. Iron sights are not my forte. It took me a bunch of rounds to get it dialed in. Last shot is the one dead center right above the bulls eye.

.243 win. 95 Nosler partition last 3 shots right above the bull.

22.250 50 vmax last 3 shot right above the bull (getting ready for Coyotes!)


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Silentstalker
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Oct-22-10, 
11:20 AM (MST)
31. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Well,

It has been a while since I posted on here. Thought it was about time for an update. After getting the muzzle loader sighted in and ready, I took Dustin up for a couple days. We did not find any good bucks to go after but did help out on a couple of LE elk hunts while we were there. My good friend Roger had a tag, 2 of our friends wives had tags and they all had deer tags.

The 2 wives put down bulls right off the bat. Both bulls were around 320 in score. Roger was hunting for a couple of dandy bulls we knew about in the area. With the warm weather and quiet rut, it was no easy task! After a couple of days he ended up calling in and shooting this great bull! The photos are a little grainy as they are cell phone pics.

Another pic ready for the pack out.

Dustin out for an afternoon glassing session we came across numerous rubs.

With the rifle hunt approaching we have plans to get out and hit it hard for a few days. Not the opener but soon there after. Hopefully this trip will be the one for him! Good luck to each of you on your hunts!

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Silentstalker
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Oct-25-10, 
10:12 PM (MST)
32. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Just got my elk head back today. Added him to my collection of European mounts! Turned out great.

Interesting thing about him though. He has a skull fracture off his left side around his antler. I am guessing it is from fighting. It was overgrown and covered with scar tissue so it had to be from last year?? Anyways, thought you all might like to see a few pics of it.


Fighting over cows must put an incredible amount of pressure on their skulls. Amazing animals!!

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Oct-30-10, 
10:02 PM (MST)
33. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Well,

It finally happened! My Son shot his deer! After a close call Thursday morning, Dustin and my Dad headed up Friday evening for an over niter. Shortly before dark they had a close call with a 2 point buck. Dustin chose to pass the shot as the buck was not standing still long enough.

This morning it all came together when they glassed up a small group of deer. They spotted a spike and a 2x3. Both yearling bucks but clearly Dustin wanted the 2x3! After a steady aim he fired freehand from a kneeling position and nailed him at 80 yards! The buck acted like he was hit and disappeared over the crest of the hill. After a very short trail they found him piled up! The .243 hand loaded with 95 grain Nosler Partitions had completely destroyed everything in its path as it passed through the near side ribs and the off side shoulder. I was quite impressed. Here are a few pics of my proud Son with his first big game animal! I am not too crazy about the hat but could not be prouder of my Son!! He was very patient while Dad hunted and had a great attitude whether we saw bucks or not on his hunts! He is a great young man!

This is Truly the Trophy of 2010 for our family!!!



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Silentstalker
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Jan-01-11, 
02:46 PM (MST)
34. "RE: Book Cliffs Double Team (Archery Elk)"

Happy New Year all!

My Son and I applied for our Turkey permits recently and it seems the year has come and gone. To me there are only 2 seasons in the year. Hunting season and getting ready for hunting season.

The last few months have seen me extremely busy with work and family matters. I have not been out and even missed the great Wasatch front late hunt for the 1st time ever.

I hope each of you are blessed this year in life, Family, and tags! To each of you in the Hunting Adventure Challenge, I have really enjoyed reading your stories and living the hunt with each of you! In my book you all won! Congrats on a very fine season and hope to follow your adventures next year!

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