Dad’s Late Season Bull!!!

BLooDTRaCKeR

Very Active Member
Messages
1,634
This hunt will go down in our family history books as the most memorable and amazing hunt ever! At the age of 73, dad pulled a LE tag. He got the call from the dwr about three weeks after he lost out on his general season opportunity to hunt due to the Covid craze that forced permit sales to the “online only” phase. Dad waited in the virtual line all day and went to purchase tag with roughly 600 permits remaining and the broken system kicked him into 300,000 person waiting line with no way to reverse anything!
Dad was devastated to say the least. But the call came and sent dad into a high like I’ve never seen! He started exercising and ended up dropping 25 lbs by the time his hunt rolled around.

We scouted the week before his hunt with little success finding a bull that he liked.

I knew a certain area that held big bulls and was trying to avoid it because of the long hike and remoteness of the area. I just felt that taking dad in that far with his bad heart and knees would force his hunt to end prematurely.

I wanted this hunt to be special to him....One that he could hang his 61 year hunting career on. But as we all know, you cannot have what you wish for in the hunting world because of the many variables that define the term “hunting.”

We learned that a storm was coming. This news was a mental battle for me as the timing was mid afternoon on opening day. Again, I was hesitant to take dad up into the remote area but when we learned the storm was delayed by a few hours, we decided to go for it with the plan that if we did not see anything by noon, we would get off that mountain before the storm hit and made conditions unsafe for dad to hike in.

Opening Day:

The crew consisted of my buddy Casey, my younger brother (who has never been hunting), dad, and myself. The four of us got up at 4:20am and headed out. We hiked a couple miles up the remote canyon, going slow to ensure dad’s knees and heart held up.

Once we hit the fork, Casey and my brother broke off and went up high to the ridge to get to a vantage point where they could glass a couple areas. I stayed down low with dad and we waited for any word that the bulls were in the area. About 8:30am I get a call from Casey saying that a big bull stepped out at 350 yards!

I looked at dad and said, “We need to hurry!” So as fast as dad could move, we hoofed it up the mountain. Casey saw us coming up and ran down to take dad’s pack to make things easier for him.

We got to the top and look over the other side and this is what we see....

1138A223-5C89-48D1-ACD8-1E05E6D60DD8.jpeg

Dad gets set up for the shot. He’s shooting his trusty 300 Win Mag that he purchased before I was born. The bull is ranged at 385 yards. Dad waits for his opportunity....3 minutes (or an eternity) goes by and the bull finally turns enough for a shot. Dad sends one at the elk but misses to the right. Dad corrects and sends another bullet. This time the bullet hits perfectly and the bull tips over dead in its tracks!
B32FF9E2-6582-4D8E-85E4-6063C6792B9D.png

Dads reaction when he first laid eyes on it up close.
DB513C6A-34D2-44E9-843C-10AE0E1E0A7A.jpeg

left to right: Me, younger brother, dad
AF6A99B1-CDD8-47F4-AE72-DB98B56E77CA.jpeg

Dad (happiest guy on the planet) with his biggest bull to date! This old bull is missing a front tooth, his teeth are all ground down, and his hoofs are dished out. Not sure that this bull would make it through another season. We’re all curious to find out how old this bull is.
The pack out was brutal as usual. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Packing out meat is the ultimate respect for an animal!
E91647BF-02A9-4B18-B518-8D3B76DA2124.jpeg

back at home, we butchered it in the garage and relived every minute of the hunt.
2567E83E-7A40-4229-BB68-8DA19A9E279F.jpeg

B8BD0683-8535-47D8-976E-8DFAA37EF524.jpeg

Dad is amazing! He has lived the life that all fathers should.....never selfish of his time or talents....always willing to help anyone with anything....never let his family down, and has always been there for mom and the three of us kids. I cannot think of a more deserving person to experience this hunt and take such a majestic trophy.....especially as the crowning event of his hunting career. This hunt was everything we could have asked for and so much more. Special thanks to Casey and my brother for selflessly giving so much of their time and energy to help dad to have the best hunt of his hunting career! I also wanted to thank all those on this site who were willing to help out if needed. You all know who you are....Thank You!

866EDFDB-164B-4388-864D-6CB81DB2CA1F.jpeg
 

DeerHunter53

Very Active Member
Messages
1,722
This hunt will go down in our family history books as the most memorable and amazing hunt ever! At the age of 73, dad pulled a LE tag. He got the call from the dwr about three weeks after he lost out on his general season opportunity to hunt due to the Covid craze that forced permit sales to the “online only” phase. Dad waited in the virtual line all day and went to purchase tag with roughly 600 permits remaining and the broken system kicked him into 300,000 person waiting line with no way to reverse anything!
Dad was devastated to say the least. But the call came and sent dad into a high like I’ve never seen! He started exercising and ended up dropping 25 lbs by the time his hunt rolled around.

We scouted the week before his hunt with little success finding a bull that he liked.

I knew a certain area that held big bulls and was trying to avoid it because of the long hike and remoteness of the area. I just felt that taking dad in that far with his bad heart and knees would force his hunt to end prematurely.

I wanted this hunt to be special to him....One that he could hang his 61 year hunting career on. But as we all know, you cannot have what you wish for in the hunting world because of the many variables that define the term “hunting.”

We learned that a storm was coming. This news was a mental battle for me as the timing was mid afternoon on opening day. Again, I was hesitant to take dad up into the remote area but when we learned the storm was delayed by a few hours, we decided to go for it with the plan that if we did not see anything by noon, we would get off that mountain before the storm hit and made conditions unsafe for dad to hike in.

Opening Day:

The crew consisted of my buddy Casey, my younger brother (who has never been hunting), dad, and myself. The four of us got up at 4:20am and headed out. We hiked a couple miles up the remote canyon, going slow to ensure dad’s knees and heart held up.

Once we hit the fork, Casey and my brother broke off and went up high to the ridge to get to a vantage point where they could glass a couple areas. I stayed down low with dad and we waited for any word that the bulls were in the area. About 8:30am I get a call from Casey saying that a big bull stepped out at 350 yards!

I looked at dad and said, “We need to hurry!” So as fast as dad could move, we hoofed it up the mountain. Casey saw us coming up and ran down to take dad’s pack to make things easier for him.

We got to the top and look over the other side and this is what we see....

View attachment 17096
Dad gets set up for the shot. He’s shooting his trusty 300 Win Mag that he purchased before I was born. The bull is ranged at 385 yards. Dad waits for his opportunity....3 minutes (or an eternity) goes by and the bull finally turns enough for a shot. Dad sends one at the elk but misses to the right. Dad corrects and sends another bullet. This time the bullet hits perfectly and the bull tips over dead in its tracks!View attachment 17097
Dads reaction when he first laid eyes on it up close.
View attachment 17099
left to right: Me, younger brother, dad
View attachment 17101
Dad (happiest guy on the planet) with his biggest bull to date! This old bull is missing a front tooth, his teeth are all ground down, and his hoofs are dished out. Not sure that this bull would make it through another season. We’re all curious to find out how old this bull is.
The pack out was brutal as usual. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Packing out meat is the ultimate respect for an animal!
View attachment 17102
back at home, we butchered it in the garage and relived every minute of the hunt.View attachment 17103
View attachment 17104
Dad is amazing! He has lived the life that all fathers should.....never selfish of his time or talents....always willing to help anyone with anything....never let his family down, and has always been there for mom and the three of us kids. I cannot think of a more deserving person to experience this hunt and take such a majestic trophy.....especially as the crowning event of his hunting career. This hunt was everything we could have asked for and so much more. Special thanks to Casey and my brother for selflessly giving so much of their time and energy to help dad to have the best hunt of his hunting career! I also wanted to thank all those on this site who were willing to help out if needed. You all know who you are....Thank You!

View attachment 17100
Wow tracker way to go what a bull for your dad. You are the man taking your Dad up there you and your friend helping him out. Great story but it didn't last very long LOL.
Way to get er done if I ever draw in that state I am going to call YOU!!!! LOL Congrats
 

DeerHunter53

Very Active Member
Messages
1,722
This hunt will go down in our family history books as the most memorable and amazing hunt ever! At the age of 73, dad pulled a LE tag. He got the call from the dwr about three weeks after he lost out on his general season opportunity to hunt due to the Covid craze that forced permit sales to the “online only” phase. Dad waited in the virtual line all day and went to purchase tag with roughly 600 permits remaining and the broken system kicked him into 300,000 person waiting line with no way to reverse anything!
Dad was devastated to say the least. But the call came and sent dad into a high like I’ve never seen! He started exercising and ended up dropping 25 lbs by the time his hunt rolled around.

We scouted the week before his hunt with little success finding a bull that he liked.

I knew a certain area that held big bulls and was trying to avoid it because of the long hike and remoteness of the area. I just felt that taking dad in that far with his bad heart and knees would force his hunt to end prematurely.

I wanted this hunt to be special to him....One that he could hang his 61 year hunting career on. But as we all know, you cannot have what you wish for in the hunting world because of the many variables that define the term “hunting.”

We learned that a storm was coming. This news was a mental battle for me as the timing was mid afternoon on opening day. Again, I was hesitant to take dad up into the remote area but when we learned the storm was delayed by a few hours, we decided to go for it with the plan that if we did not see anything by noon, we would get off that mountain before the storm hit and made conditions unsafe for dad to hike in.

Opening Day:

The crew consisted of my buddy Casey, my younger brother (who has never been hunting), dad, and myself. The four of us got up at 4:20am and headed out. We hiked a couple miles up the remote canyon, going slow to ensure dad’s knees and heart held up.

Once we hit the fork, Casey and my brother broke off and went up high to the ridge to get to a vantage point where they could glass a couple areas. I stayed down low with dad and we waited for any word that the bulls were in the area. About 8:30am I get a call from Casey saying that a big bull stepped out at 350 yards!

I looked at dad and said, “We need to hurry!” So as fast as dad could move, we hoofed it up the mountain. Casey saw us coming up and ran down to take dad’s pack to make things easier for him.

We got to the top and look over the other side and this is what we see....

View attachment 17096
Dad gets set up for the shot. He’s shooting his trusty 300 Win Mag that he purchased before I was born. The bull is ranged at 385 yards. Dad waits for his opportunity....3 minutes (or an eternity) goes by and the bull finally turns enough for a shot. Dad sends one at the elk but misses to the right. Dad corrects and sends another bullet. This time the bullet hits perfectly and the bull tips over dead in its tracks!View attachment 17097
Dads reaction when he first laid eyes on it up close.
View attachment 17099
left to right: Me, younger brother, dad
View attachment 17101
Dad (happiest guy on the planet) with his biggest bull to date! This old bull is missing a front tooth, his teeth are all ground down, and his hoofs are dished out. Not sure that this bull would make it through another season. We’re all curious to find out how old this bull is.
The pack out was brutal as usual. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Packing out meat is the ultimate respect for an animal!
View attachment 17102
back at home, we butchered it in the garage and relived every minute of the hunt.View attachment 17103
View attachment 17104
Dad is amazing! He has lived the life that all fathers should.....never selfish of his time or talents....always willing to help anyone with anything....never let his family down, and has always been there for mom and the three of us kids. I cannot think of a more deserving person to experience this hunt and take such a majestic trophy.....especially as the crowning event of his hunting career. This hunt was everything we could have asked for and so much more. Special thanks to Casey and my brother for selflessly giving so much of their time and energy to help dad to have the best hunt of his hunting career! I also wanted to thank all those on this site who were willing to help out if needed. You all know who you are....Thank You!

View attachment 17100
My cousin has the late Wasatch and is up there now, I hope she gets a big one like this.
 

SlowElk

Active Member
Messages
290
That's the way to hunt with a "posse", close friends and family, and keeping the group small. Memories for a lifetime, and I hope the nonhunter becomes a hunter.
 

BLooDTRaCKeR

Very Active Member
Messages
1,634
That's the way to hunt with a "posse", close friends and family, and keeping the group small. Memories for a lifetime, and I hope the nonhunter becomes a hunter.
Well, the non-hunter younger brother has always been the recipient of the pictures from our years of success. He later told me on this trip that this was the hardest thing he has ever done! He gained a new appreciation for what we do every year by living the blood, sweat, and tears put into "obtaining the goal."

I told him that he needs to start putting in for a big bull hunt. He replied, "Although enjoyable, I do not have the same level of passion for this sport to hunt like you do. Therefore, I will respectfully decline. However, I do have a greater appreciation and understanding for what you do and I will never look at hunting the same way again!"

I told him that I respect that decision but also realize this was only a couple hours of hunting. Not 7-9 days of typical grinding to the point that you are mentally and physically exhausted. We do it because of the passion within. We do it because for whatever reason, it is in our blood.

Dad helped me find this passion and fed my passion throughout my childhood by taking me every chance that he could. This hunt was the least that I could do to repay him.

Until I am burried in a pine box, I'll continue to look forward to the next brutal attack on the body, mind, and spirt...that we call hunting. The healing always subsides and is temporary as is the limited time to hunt. So cherish every minute that you have to spend time with loved ones doing something that you appreciate. You never know when it will be your last big adventure!
 

bonepicker

Very Active Member
Messages
1,123
Congratulations bloodtracker! Great story, between this thread and your earlier thread, this might be my favorite success story from this year! I was hoping you guys would get something but that guy is a beast! Well done to all of you!
 

elkchaserreturns

Active Member
Messages
245
Hello Bloodtracker,
Congrats to your dad, you, and your brother. I'm sure your dad is very proud of his sons and well he should be. Your story here is probably one of the most heartwarming I have read here on MM, and I have been here for a loooooong time!
You have described better than most why it is that we hunt.
Thank you.

Elkchaser
 

BacDoc

Active Member
Messages
138
Congratulations on your success. You can feel the love and respect you have for your father in your story. I wish I could express my thoughts and feelings as well. My father past away 2 years ago this month at age 90. My fondest memories of him are the times spent with him on hunts. I was fortunate to help him kill his last bull on his 70th birthday, and his last buck when he was 80. Fortunately I have memories of many years hunting with him. They are some of my greatest treasures. My family probably gets tired of the stories. I’ve reached the stage of life where each hunt may be the last. I’m fortunate to have family that helps make them special. Thank you for expressing so well what many of us feel.
 

DeerHunter53

Very Active Member
Messages
1,722
Well, the non-hunter younger brother has always been the recipient of the pictures from our years of success. He later told me on this trip that this was the hardest thing he has ever done! He gained a new appreciation for what we do every year by living the blood, sweat, and tears put into "obtaining the goal."

I told him that he needs to start putting in for a big bull hunt. He replied, "Although enjoyable, I do not have the same level of passion for this sport to hunt like you do. Therefore, I will respectfully decline. However, I do have a greater appreciation and understanding for what you do and I will never look at hunting the same way again!"

I told him that I respect that decision but also realize this was only a couple hours of hunting. Not 7-9 days of typical grinding to the point that you are mentally and physically exhausted. We do it because of the passion within. We do it because for whatever reason, it is in our blood.

Dad helped me find this passion and fed my passion throughout my childhood by taking me every chance that he could. This hunt was the least that I could do to repay him.

Until I am burried in a pine box, I'll continue to look forward to the next brutal attack on the body, mind, and spirt...that we call hunting. The healing always subsides and is temporary as is the limited time to hunt. So cherish every minute that you have to spend time with loved ones doing something that you appreciate. You never know when it will be your last big adventure!
Looks like that degree paid off..... You are a good son...
 

Wiszard

Long Time Member
Messages
8,784
I'll bet your Dad is on cloud 9. Congrats to him. That is an exceptional bull. I didn't read what state this was? Willing to share the state?
 

littlebighorn

Long Time Member
Messages
4,147
I love the fact that my son keeps pushing me, because the fire is still there, but the physical ability is waining!
Well done TRaCKeR! I'm sure your Dad feels the same way.
 

heyoldguy

Member
Messages
74
Just curious if any of you have seen anything like this.....

View attachment 17987

View attachment 17988
I can't believe it has taken me months to get around to reading such a great story.

I'm 73 myself and I've not seen elk hooves worn like that but I do know what it feels like.

A few years back my son and I were on a three day antler hunting trip. On the second day my feet began to feel quite sore and when we got back to the tents I pulled my boots and socks off. As I did, some of the skin came off the bottoms of my feet with the socks. It was probably 4 miles back to the truck the next morning.

As a father and son we still remember and laugh about the old guy hobbling out that morning. Together we've never had a bad time in the mountains.

Sounds like you know how great those times are also.
 

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