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2016 Northern Utah Adventures

 
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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Jul-11-16, 
04:02 PM (MST)
"2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

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I'm a little bit late getting started with my 2016 adventure posts but I guess it's better late than never. This will be my first time posting to this forum but I thought it would be fun to track my adventures and give updates to other hunters each week.

This year the only tag I drew was the general season muzzleloader tag in one of the northern Utah units. I will also purchase an over the counter archery spike/cow elk tag to fill my freezer and keep my bow skills honed in. I am excited for the muzzleloader hunt again this year though because we had a blast doing the same hunt last year and my hunting buddy was able to lay the smack-down on a stud 190 (non typical) buck we watched for 8 weeks (I'll post a photo of the back and the end of this post). The buck is super deceiving because he isn't very wide but when you put the tape to him, he has so much length and mass all the way up that he scores super well, especially when you add in his inline and two cheaters off of his right side G2 and G3.

I've had a slow start to this year for scouting because I have had a broken foot for the last several months so I have been in a walking boot. I actually broke my foot last fall during the hunting season and didn't know it. It is just a stress fracture on my 5th metatarsal bone so I didn't know I actually broke it until I went to the doctor in March...and here I am still in a walking boot. I go back to the doctor this week to find out how it is healing and what the next step will be. It has been super frustrating because it has put a huge damper on my scouting season! I am about 6 weeks behind on getting my trail cameras set and one or two overnight scouting trips short of where I usually am. I did finally decide to brave the horse ride last week and get a trail cam put up none-the-less....that's probably part of the reason my foot is taking so long to heal. I also went on another horse ride this past weekend and was able to glass up 4 bucks, one being a decent 25-26" typical four point, but I wasn't able to get any pictures because the angle of the sun made the pictures nearly impossible to see.

The other thing I am really excited for this is my father-in-law's Henry Mountain rifle deer tag he drew with just ONE point! I don't know how he can be so lucky to draw that tag with one point but I don't know if I am more excited or him. I can't seem to get him to pin down a scouting trip date but I am chomping at the bit to get down there and get to know the area while the bucks are in their summer patterns!

I'll keep my adventures updated each week as I scout more and more and hopefully find another couple toad bucks to add to the hit list this year.

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  Table of Contents  

 Subject   Author   Message Date   ID 
 RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Jul-13-16   1 
 RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Jul-18-16   2 
 RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Jul-26-16   3 
  RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Jul-27-16   4 
   RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Aug-01-16   5 
    RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Aug-08-16   6 
     RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Aug-15-16   7 
      RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Aug-23-16   8 
       RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Aug-29-16   9 
        RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Sep-12-16   10 
         RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Sep-26-16   11 
          RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Oct-03-16   12 
           RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Oct-04-16   13 
            RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Oct-17-16   14 
             RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Oct-31-16   15 
              RE: 2016 North...  NorthernUta...      Nov-10-16   16 

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Jul-13-16, 
07:53 AM (MST)
1. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

As I mentioned in my last post, I have had a broken foot this year so it has made it tough to get out and scout. I find out this afternoon though if I get to get my walking boot off or what the next step to healing is. Keeping my fingers crossed!

I've teamed up with one of my cousins this year though and he has been willing to help me out and show me some of the areas he's been hunting for a few years that has been turning up some toad bucks. Last year he killed a 34 inch wide typical 4x4 during the rifle hunt. The year prior he killed a toad 4x4 with a couple extras in the velvet and in 2013 killed a good 4x4 during the muzzy hunt. Needless to say, I am stoked to get out with him to start finding deer! He has been out a few times already and found a few good bucks. Here is a sneak peak into a couple of them. The dropper buck is definitely on the hit list this year. Who doesn't love a good dropper buck?! Photo credit goes to my cousin.



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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Jul-18-16, 
08:47 AM (MST)
2. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Well I made it back into the doctor last week and the good news is my bone is no longer broken and I can finally start easing myself back into walking in normal shoes. I have to wear my walking boot for 1/2 days for the next week or so as my foot builds it strength back up but I am excited to finally be on the upside of the mend! I was able to get out horse riding again this weekend and was able to check a trail cam my old man threw up a couple weeks ago. Nothing super great on it yet but it's in a spot that the deer and elk typically don't move into until about mid-august so I'm not too worried about it yet. I did get a quick picture of a pretty awesome view though (with my dad and his new horse in it). Next weekend we are planning a packing trip on the horses to scout for deer in the high country. I'm excited to finally be able to make the trip and look forward to turning up some big bucks. It was this exact weekend last year when we found the 190 buck my buddy smoked in the pictures above.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Jul-26-16, 
04:00 PM (MST)
3. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Finally made an overnight scouting trip into the high country in northern Utah. My foot that has been broken held up well and I think I am finally to a point of being able to do some hiking to get into all the bowls I want to look into and find a few big ones. We saw 18 different bucks on this scouting trip, most of which were younger bucks, quite a few of them 4-points. Of the 18 there were 3 that really caught my eye and two of them I couldn't even get film or pictures of because the sun and heat made it to blurry through the spotting scope. We found a cool bachelor herd of young bucks that you will see in the video. Some of the bucks with another year or two of growing could turn into some stud bucks. It was a fun trip regardless and I can't wait to get back out again.

www.youtube.com/embed/8v_lF-62UTs

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Jul-27-16, 
10:17 AM (MST)
4. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Sorry folks, I embedded my last video incorrectly so you had to click the link. Here it is so you can just click the actual video right here on the forum. I'm heading out tonight for an evening scouting trip with high hopes of a new area I'm heading into. We'll see what I find.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Aug-01-16, 
10:42 AM (MST)
5. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Well as I mentioned in my last post I made it out to some new country with my cousin. It was definitely way different than what I am used to hunting but it has been producing big bucks year after year and it produced again this time around. It is so much different because I have been hunting the high country since I was 10 and this area is more easily accessible by 4-wheeler or side-by-sides. I definitely prefer hunting the high country off of horses and on foot but you can't knock an area that produces big bucks. The picture below is a little blurry cuz it was taken right at last light but you can still see the buck on the left is definitely a shooter. He was about 27-28" wide but I love how deep his forks are and his main frame is just gorgeous.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Aug-08-16, 
09:34 AM (MST)
6. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Made it out for a quick scouting trip on Saturday morning into the high country. This trip was mainly to check trail cams but loaded the horses up at 4:30 AM and made it on top in time to find 13 bucks. 4 or 5 repeats, but the rest were new bucks and 4 or 5 of them were good bucks. My uncles claims to have found a 28-30 inch buck with some extras but nobody else saw him before he crested over the ridge so hopefully we can turn him up again. Our trail cam pics produced some decent bucks, one that I really like! He isn't a monster but he's just a pretty 4-point. A little weak on his back left side but he will be on my radar during the muzzy hunt. There is another buck I have dubbed as Jr. because he is a spitting image of my buddies 190 buck from last year. He has the same inline on the same side, same frame shape, same cheaters coming off of his right G2 and G3 (even though they are only about an inch long...if that) and is truly just an exact replica of the 190 buck. It's fun to see good genes being carried on! In the pictures below, the 4 picture comparison shows this year's young buck on the left and the 190 buck on the right.





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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Aug-15-16, 
04:55 PM (MST)
7. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Had another successful scouting trip last week. Found a few bucks, two really good ones. I was only able to get a short video of one of the bucks and it is poor video quality at that because it was right at dark and about 800 yards away so it made it awfully difficult to get a good video with just my phone. Here is the video anyway because you can still see how great of a buck he is! Not biggest monster on the mountain, but a great buck nonetheless.

I also snapped a really neat picture of the sunset! There's just something about a sunset from the mountain top that doesn't compare..

This weekend is the opener for Utah archery hunts. Good luck to everyone! I have the OTC Spike/Cow Elk archery tag so I will be out and about trying to fill my freezer with that tag. Got my Bowtech Prodigy all dialed in with Slick Trick broadheads so I hope to have the chance to fling a stick at something.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Aug-23-16, 
04:39 PM (MST)
8. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Unfortunately this week I don't have anything too exciting to post about. We headed out this past weekend for the opener of the spike/cow OTC elk tag but didn't have much luck. We saw a few elk and my buddy missed a 2xSpike at 47 yards Saturday night but other than that, nothing too exciting happened. I'm excited for this coming weekend though! We are heading back into the high country to kill two birds with one stone...We are going to scout for deer while also hunting elk (yes there is a decent elk herd in the high country). Hopefully I will get some more exciting photos and video this coming weekend! We are packing in on the horses Friday morning and coming out Sunday morning, so a fairly quick trip, but hopefully we can make something happen!

A large part of me wants to stick an elk just to prove my uncles wrong! My uncles are pretty "old-school" type hunters and we've hunted this area for the last 20+ years and they are convinced you can't kill anything up there under 300 yards away because of the county that it is. We already proved them wrong last year when my buddy smoked that 190 buck with his muzzy at 126 yards, so I am hoping to kill an elk under 70 yards to prove them wrong again. Should be fun!

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Aug-29-16, 
02:14 PM (MST)
9. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Made it out for another hunting/scouting trip this past weekend. We headed out Friday morning so we were able to hunt Friday afternoon/evening, all day Saturday, and Sunday morning. We didn't have much luck on the elk side of things. Friday night we were only able to find two small 5 points hanging out together. Saturday was a real slow day and then my two uncles finally spotted the herd we were looking for but they were a good couple miles away and in a place that would have not been worth it at this stage of the hunt for a spike or cow, so we let them be.

As far as deer goes though, we had a really fun weekend! We saw about 18 different bucks and my brother in law was able to make a couple really good stalks on a few of them. Friday night he got to within 30 yards of a group of 7 bucks, one of them being a stud typical 4x4, but they were just on the opposite side of a group of pines that he couldn't see through so they eventually winded him and he never saw them leave.

Sunday morning we found a really cool buck that I will show you below that we had been looking for all weekend. He's not a monster but he has a cool hook cheater on his right frame and a way cool split cheater on his left side. I actually had to go wake my brother in law up out of his tent Sunday morning to tell him I found the buck! haha! He didn't believe me at first but hopped right out of bed and made a good stock on him. We had him bedded two different times that morning but the problem was he had 4 other bucks with him and the wind was swirling in the bottom of the basin he was in so they slowly just kept working their way up the canyon and he was never able to draw back on him.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Sep-12-16, 
10:44 AM (MST)
10. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Unfortunately I don't have a whole lot to update right now. My general spike/cow elk tag ended Friday and I am coming away empty handed. It was a weird year for me elk hunting! I spent 9 different days hunting trying to fill my freezer and I just could not locate the elk this year! In those nine days of hunting, I only saw about 5 elk, two of which were 5 point bulls that I couldn't shoot on my unit. I hunted 6 different locations and just couldn't ever make it happen. I've never struggled so much to find an elk to kill so I was left baffled this year at the elk herd. I am already looking forward to next year though because I figured out there is a unit to the south of the unit I typically hunt that is an any bull unit and the travel time is almost identical to where I have been hunting for cows and spikes this year. It will be my first year hunting big bulls with a bow so I am super excited about it!

In the meantime, I am looking forward to Utah muzzleloader season coming up on September 28th. I typically spend 95% of my time scouting for deer anyway so I can't wait for that hunt! There are 3 bucks I've located this year that are on my hit list so I am hoping to get it done on one of them. I need to get out a few more times to get my muzzleloader dialed in. This weekend we are making a trip up to the highcountry to check trail cameras again so hopefully I will have some better pictures to post next week.

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Sep-26-16, 
10:03 AM (MST)
11. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Its been about two weeks since I last updated my thread here. Not much has gone on in those two weeks. Checked one of my trail cameras one weekend, which had plenty of pictures on it but nothing too big. I also got my muzzleloader dialed in so I am ready to rock and roll for the Utah muzzleloader hunt that starts on Wednesday this week. I am stoked for the hunt! We have 2-3 bucks picked out as our target bucks so hopefully we'll get a chance at some of them. It snowed up in the mountains during the past storm system we had roll through here so the hunting conditions should be prime! We will be packing up the horses tomorrow morning and heading in 4-5 miles and staying until Saturday afternoon. Hopefully my next post will be some kill photos. Good luck everybody!

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Oct-03-16, 
11:40 AM (MST)
12. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

I was able to get it done on the Utah general muzzleloader hunt! We had such a fun hunt and made tons of memories! We had a little bit of everything weather wise; rain, hail, heat, cold, wind, and up to 8 inches of snow of the ground in some places.

The story behind this buck is a fun one! We first found him on July 23rd on an overnight scouting trip and at that time he really didn't look like much, he had cheaters but they were only about an inch or two long and his back forks were just barely splitting, in fact he wasn't even on my radar until the next time we found him. We got trail cam pictures of him about 3 weeks later and he had grown his split cheater and hook cheater so we dubbed him as "Captain Hook". We then found him a few more times during the archery hunt and again the night before the opener of the muzzleloader hunt. He had stayed in the same basin for those 8 weeks and I killed him about 500 yards from the first spot I glassed him up on July 23rd.

I found him first thing opening morning and quickly made a plan to make a stock. I dropped off a steep side hill from our glassing knob and began my stock just after 7:00 AM. With my dad on point watching the bucks and guiding me I made it to 304 yards and had him in my sights but I was still breathing hard from hiking and didn't feel comfortable shooting that far anyway. So I closed the distance to 207 and every time I had him in my sights he would move behind a tree or start sparring with another buck so I couldn't get a shot. He was just slowly feeding across a side hill and had no idea I as there so I dropped my pack and sneaked in closer to 178 yards. I thought for sure I was going to get a shot at this distance but he just never presented a clear shot. Eventually he and another buck worked their way into some pines in the bottom of a basin and I couldn't see them anymore so I backed out and got my pack and then started a new stock. I had a good idea of where they were going to go so I checked the wind and it was blowing straight at my back, crap! So I made a big loop around and got on top of them and could hear them sparring in the bottom again. I finally found them and the two bucks were running around like a couple little kids, kicking and jumping and sparring, so I could never get a shot again and at this point I was only 75 yards above them. Finally, they calmed down and were just milling around in the trees. After about an hour of playing cat and mouse I spotted him moving through the trees into an opening so I moved again and positioned myself to where I could see an opening I thought he would move into. I ranged it and with the steep angle it was only 55 yards away! He took a couple steps into the opening and I made a perfect shot and he dropped in his tracks! What an epic stock and hunt! From start to finish of the stock it was 2 hours.

What a rush and feeling of pride and accomplishment I felt! He isn't the biggest buck out there, but I loved his character and love the history behind him. Since we were staying up there for 4 more days to try and fill 2 more tags, we had camp meat and cooked up the tenderloins and backstraps for 3 different meals. They were BY FAR the best deer meat I have ever eaten and made the hunt that much better! A special thanks to my dad for helping me get to the bucks and for teaching me how to hunt and enjoy the outdoors. Also a special thanks to my friends Hudson and Chet who helped cut up the deer and eat it and for making the trip one with tons of laughs and good memories, you guys are great hunting buddies! And lastly, thanks to my two uncles who came up at the end of our hunt to help us pack my deer and some of our gear out.

My little boy was pretty enthralled with the buck when I took him home and I can't wait until he is old enough to start hunting with me as well!








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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Oct-04-16, 
04:18 AM (MST)
13. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Here is a little short video of the journey to kill "Captain Hook"

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Oct-17-16, 
03:42 AM (MST)
14. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Big weekend coming up this weekend! I don't have a tag in my pocket but my father-in-law has a Henry Mountains rifle tag. He has been down scouting a few times but I haven't been able to make it down with him yet so I am stoked to go check out the area finally! I'll be down there from Friday-Tuesday with him so hopefully he can seal the deal on a monster buck before I have to head back for work. I'll update next week with some photos and video. Best of luck to all the Utah rifle hunters this coming weekend!

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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Oct-31-16, 
04:13 PM (MST)
15. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Well my father-in-law was able to get it done on the Henry Mountains while I was up there with him. I was only going to be there from Friday-Tuesday and he sealed the deal on a great buck on Tuesday morning. We initially found this buck on the night of the opener and spent the next two and half days hunting him hard and putting three different stocks on him before finally getting it done. It is some awesome country down there and we had a riot! Looked over A LOT of deer, A TON of 20-25 inch four points and ultimately got it done from 275 yards on this beautiful 32 inch 5X5. Check out the video for more details on the story.




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NorthernUtahGreyGhost
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Nov-10-16, 
03:37 PM (MST)
16. "RE: 2016 Northern Utah Adventures"

Here is a little throwback video from 2 or 3 years ago of a young 4-point having a standoff with a coyote in the high country. About a minute into the video the stand off will end....who wins? It was my first video using a phone skope so cut me some slack on the quality.

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