Well I officially suck at keeping up to date with this HAC. Maybe next year. Between all the scouting and hunting, I just kept putting it off. Here is my update for the past 6 months:
I drew a general season UT archery deer tag with my father-in-law (FIL), a late season UT cow tag, an elk B license for MT, and 2 doe/fawn permits for Wyoming.
I spent a good deal of time scouting for my archery deer and located a few studs.
Unfortunately, when the hunt came around I wasn't the only one who had found the deer. My FIL and I backpacked into an area where I thought we would have good luck. The night before the opener, another individual blew right by our camp and headed straight for the bowl we were going to hunt. Then about an hour before first light the skyline was like a mardi gras parade up the ridge. Very disappointing. Only had one forkie at 60 yards opening morning, but watched a herd across the canyon and made a plan to go after them the next day. Spent the next 3 weekends up in the area going after a heavy 5x6 but couldn't make it happen.
I did get a delicious grouse though!
Up next was my second trip to MT to hunt elk. Last year I was a mule for my FIL, this year I got a cow tag. The bulls were heavy in the rut and my opportunity came when a harem got pushed out into a clearing and I set up in front of a dead tree. The elk came streaming by me and I ranged them at 35 yards. Punched my tag with a bad shot on my part. Had a quartering away, downhill shot and I caught the back end of her shoulder blade. Watched my arrow go in about 4" and hit the center of the scapula. Arrow fell out after 2 steps. I was devastated. I never wish that feeling of working so hard only to come up short when the chips are down.
FIL got a cow and a whitetail for the freezer. Disappointing to come home without a bull for the second year in a row.
I found quite a few sheds while searching for my cow...
Since MT I've been hunting an extended archery area. Located some bucks and I've got close just couldn't finish the stalk. A dandy 3x3:
and a small framed 4x4 with a kicker on each side:
Hoping to run into one of them tomorrow morning.
This past weekend was my first antelope hunt. This was also my wifes first big game hunt. Last fall while I was spending time at the range, she tagged along with a rifle her late grandfather had given her right before he passed. While shooting it she said she had a vision of her taking an animal with it. The cartridge is a 22-250, so I set off to try to find a hunt for us. With some help from a few MM members (THANK YOU JEFF!!!!), we drew tags in WY. I found a legal round that shot well out of that rifle and it was game on.
We blew a couple stalks at first but finally closed to within 150 yards. The does did not cooperate as they fed directly away from us out to 230. She dropped her first doe after connecting with it twice. To be by her side as the wave of emotion struck her was amazing. Words cannot express the gratitude I have for Jeff and his willingness to help us out in our quest.
I was able to tag 2 does that evening. The next morning she was back at it and made a single shot kill this time:
Can't wait to process all 4 antelopes!
Hopefully it doesn't take me another month to share!!!