Colorado Elk Recap

Show Notes

On this episode of The Nomadic Outdoorsman Dan and his brother Josh go over their crazy week chasing bears and bulls in the Colorado Rockies.

Dan was joined by his brother Josh and cameraman Nick on his annual trip to Colorado. Josh and Nick were first timers to western big game hunting and Dan set out with a goal of helping Josh fill his first ever elk tag. Dan and Josh sit down to discuss the series of events that unfolded on their short week in the mountains. From rolling four-wheelers to close calls and successful opportunities, this episode is full of highs and lows from their recent hunt.

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Show Transcript

All right, guys, it's November. So if you're listening to this, hopefully it's because you're on your way out to the deer stand or on your way out to a new hunt somewhere. But this episode is awesome. Me and my brother, Josh, are going to sit down and chat all about elk camp. We haven't done a recap episode yet, but we just got done not that long ago.

And. Unfortunately, I haven't done much hunting since I've been traveling. I've been down in Florida. I'm about to head to Wisconsin, but I do have a few days of solid hunting coming up. So fingers crossed my luck changes this year, but as far as Colorado hunt goes. This episode is a full recap of all the events that took place when my brother and I went out to Colorado To my elk camp that I've been going to for years It's not my elk camp because I know my buddy Sean's gonna be listening to this Shane's gonna listen to this and they're gonna be Like this isn't his elk camp What I mean by that is the main elk camp that I go [00:01:00] to out in Colorado, my brother joined me for his very first elk hunt this year.

And just wait until you hear the story. So let's jump in.

Like he was doing things that were just bad ass. That was one of the coolest moments of my life. I was really scared, but knowing that Dan had the gun, I did have the rifle, like we would be okay. All

right, guys, welcome to today's show. Now on the show. My brother and I are on a zoom call. We're going to be chatting all about the elk hunt because it was pretty gnarly. I mean, I know this was your first elk hunt. We gave our predictions. We talked about a lot of that stuff, but this is a full recap elk elk camps been done for like a week.

Now I had to be back, head to Florida. Rifle season started here in Missouri, but I was in Florida and so I haven't been able [00:02:00] to rifle hunt at all. I've got two days before heading up to Wisconsin. I mean, it's just been a wild three weeks or so, but thanks for hopping on dude. Yeah, absolutely. What, uh, initial thoughts looking back without giving too much away right out of the gate.

It was, uh, it was absolutely incredible. It was everything. And more than I thought it would be, it was exhausting. Um, but so enjoyable, so much fun. What, what did you think? Maybe we'll start with the four wheeling because I drove out to Denver and picked up your four wheeler, like on the way. Picked that thing up, loaded it on the trailer, Nick and I made it out to Elk Camp.

We slept on like next to the truck the first night, cause I was like, man, we could stop and pass out for a couple hours somewhere, but I kind of want to just drive straight through. And so we did [00:03:00] pulled in, parked on this like little dirt lot and just crashed, set up cots and sleeping bags. And that was it.

Luckily, I mean, you know how cold it was out there at night. Luckily, the night that we got there was like 60 degrees, so it wasn't that bad, but got a couple of hours and then kicked off the hunt. But four wheeling dude, I told you it was going to be like 45 minutes to an hour and a half, just one way to get to our spot every day.

What do you think about that? Gosh, it was. It was a lot, yeah, a lot longer than I expected, a lot sketchier than I expected in some parts. And with not knowing that we'd have two people on one four wheeler for a lot of the time, I wasn't expecting that. And that just, I mean, as you saw that knocked everybody out pretty quick, dude, riding those four wheelers is no joke.

The first year that I went out there, [00:04:00] I borrowed one of, I think Shane's four wheelers and it was a two wheel, two wheel drive. 350 with no power steering and you and Nick kept complaining. And I'm like, guys, what are you like? Quit being babies. We're just driving to the spot. It's not a big deal. And you guys are like, Oh, my elbows hurt.

My wrists hurt. My legs and my hips hurt. Oh, everything hurts. And I'm like, this is the easy part of the hunt. And then I think it was towards the end of the week, Nick's like, dude, just humor me for a second and hop on this four wheeler. And I'm like, fine, whatever. Within the first hundred yards, I'm like, dude, this thing sucks.

Yeah. Yeah. Just the, yeah. Not having the power steering was a game changer. When I wrote yours that one day I was like, oh dude, I could cruise these trails and no problem at all. But then I. Yeah. Yeah. I'm just like, Oh no. Trying to stay on, stay on the tracks and not fall into a big rut. And [00:05:00] yeah, dude, you guys, was it on it with that?

I mean, it was, it was just as bad for the person riding behind. Yeah. Were, was it when we went scouting? I think we went scouting. Before season started, because we got up there like two days early, Nick and I pulled in the morning of the second, like the two days before season started, we pulled in that morning and I think it was the day before season, we went way up to the far end of where we typically hunt.

And was that the day that you guys rolled the four wheeler? Yeah. So the day, no, so it wasn't that day. Yeah. It was the day before opener. Um, cause the day before that I was driving and we went to a different section and then Nick was saying how his hip was hurting and he couldn't ride on the back and I was like, okay, you [00:06:00] can drive my four wheeler.

I'll sit on the back. And the first time he drives it, we're going down and I'm just relaxing, not paying much attention. And also we just, yeah. Tip right over and I still don't even know how it happened because it wasn't even one of the sketchy spots We just right on over There's just so many steep hills in so many exposed rocks that like especially at night You don't always see him and I was I had made it down this steep spot It wasn't like the worst by any means of the trails that we go on but it's not a fun spot, especially at night And I kept looking back, like the whole time I'd be driving, just ripping around on the trails, look back, make sure your lights are still coming.

And Hugh and Nick kept pulling up and Nick would be like, dude, just chill out a second, man. Like you don't have to go so fast. And I'm like, I'm not even going that fast. Meanwhile, come to find out you don't have power steering on your four wheeler. And yeah, I, it took [00:07:00] everything in me to keep up with him when he rode mine and I was, he was going slow and it was just like, just to keep it on the trail, hitting those rocks, those ruts.

It just wanted to throw you every time. And so I was like driving down this. Steep spot. And I look back and you guys are still on top waiting me for waiting for me to get to the bottom. I get to the bottom, start cruising. And I look back and I just see, instead of side by side headlights, I see like stacked on top of one of the other headlights and I'm like, Oh crap.

I ripped my four wheeler around and came back. And at that point you were walking towards me, like, go ahead, head down, head down. And so then I had to back down that steep section and. Your four wheeler, I mean, luckily it like killed it, like the kill switch or whatever, once it tipped over, it just shut off and I don't know if it just didn't get any gas or what, but luckily we got it started right away because we still had 20, [00:08:00] 25 minutes from that spot to ride back to camp at least.

Yeah, that was, that was ridiculous. Another guy from camp, he said he almost rolled his four wheeler and then I rolled mine, not rolled it, but I tipped mine over. And that was just a really dumb thing. It wasn't even like a nasty spot. These guys were coming down in their trucks and Shane had pulled off to the side and the side by side, you guys were all in the side by side and you guys pulled off to the side.

And I just backed down the Hill a little bit. And I started to back up the embankment, but it was way steeper than I was expecting. And I just like slowly started tipping and I tried to push my four wheeler, but I just jumped off of it and it tipped over, busted my shooting sticks, uh, messed up a couple other things, but luckily nothing too bad.

So no, no actual damage to the four wheeler, luckily. Yeah [00:09:00] to anyone's four wheeler. Yeah, everybody's four wheeler made it out in one piece. So that's good I did find out I've got a I've got a recall on my four wheeler for like the a arm in the back And so I've got to take that in tomorrow have them look at it Make sure it's good, but then also my four wheeler started knocking at the end of camp.

You remember that? It was just making that loud knocking sound and I don't know what it was, but I've got to take that in Hopefully it's nothing major. I'm at 13 months On of owning it and it's only a 12 month warranty on it. So, yeah, that kind of sucks, but let's, uh, let's get into the hunt. So before, before season started, we scouted, we didn't see a ton, but we saw elk.

I mean, the first, the first couple of spots that we went or the same spot, we went a couple of times, we just could not seem to find an elk to save our lives. And then finally we went to kind of [00:10:00] the, the golden spot, I mean, where we always kill elk. And that was on the trip when you guys tipped on the way back and right away we got up there and there was elk right in front of us.

I mean, what was it? Three elk that went over the hill or yeah, three or four of them ran up over the hill and then we immediately started glassing cause we got up there pretty late. We didn't have much daylight left, maybe like 25, 30 minutes to glass. Yeah, those three elk and then we saw that one smaller bull.

Yeah. Still. And then that really big bobcat we saw. Yeah. So we saw, we saw the three elk go up and over, like probably 250 yards from us. Not far at all. They were all cows. Saw that Bobcat, saw the bull at like probably 1500 yards, maybe up to a mile. I mean, it was a long way off. And then we also saw those, uh, four cows [00:11:00] down the bottom.

Yeah. So, I mean, we, we got on elk before season, but then after that, man, it was just dead. Like so dead. Well, I mean, opening day we had, and I didn't look, but I'd say at least 30 mile an hour winds and then the snow came in and we couldn't even, there were plenty of times I I'm guessing I couldn't see two or 300 yards in front of me and trying to glass in that with the wind blowing in your face.

It was just, it was, there was nothing moving. I don't even know if anybody in our entire group saw anything that day. Yeah, it was, that was really slow. We, we had the fog that rolled in that knocked out a ton of, you know, glassing opportunity. It was like hit and miss, it would be absolutely nothing. And so like we just stopped and cooked Mountain House meals because we were like, dude, we can't see anything, hopefully it'll pass.

And then right when we went to head [00:12:00] back to camp, it cleared up for like three or four minutes and we could maybe see 500 yards. And then it went back to being white out again. I guess Nick did find, Nick did find those sheds. He did. Yeah, that's right. That's Glassinger, one of them. And he had never found an elk shed before.

And I was like, I'm not hiking down there. And he's like, can I do it? And sure enough, hikes right down the... Just to get the shed. Yep. He bombed down the mountain. And the thing is, dude, there's sheds everywhere out there. I mean, I've glossed so many up in the past. I've picked them up on pack outs and just like day hunting where you're just walking.

And there's one sitting right in front of you. It's so, it's so long after. They drop that most of them are white on one side and then Brown on the other, or they might be totally chalk white if they're from years past, but that was pretty sweet that he found a couple sheds. Yeah, absolutely. But yeah, we, that day was slow.

Was it day two of the [00:13:00] hunt that, Oh no. So before that we, we started seeing bear tracks. Like we saw bear tracks, what, three days in a row. We saw the bear tracks the day we scouted. Yeah, that's right. And we thought they were wolf tracks as well. I mean, if not the biggest coyote I would have ever seen in my life.

Yeah. Those are some big tracks, but all those bear, the bear tracks. And then those other tracks, um, and then I don't think opening day we saw any bear cause I don't think we, we didn't make it to that spot where we scouted opening day, just because, uh, all the snow coming in, we tried a new spot. That was probably a good hour ride on the four wheeler, um, from the original spot we hunted in the morning.

Cause it looked clear down there. And sure enough, as soon as we get there, the snow started dumping in and we couldn't do anything really. Yeah, we found those bear [00:14:00] tracks and then before, before the hunt started the night before opener, everybody was hanging out in the wall tent and we, we all decided like, Hey, who's putting all in, or who's putting in for, for the biggest bull contest.

And so all the people, you know, that were in, put in their a hundred bucks. And, uh, that same day, some guys from Nebraska and one guy from Colorado got in and they just left camp right away. They, they basically dropped all of their gear, set up their, like, their big stuff, whether it's their camper, their trailer, whatever, wall tent, and then they took off and they went in and spike camped.

So I think actually, wasn't it day one that Tubby's son shot his elk? I think that was the first day. He shot that one. Um, yeah, cause it was the day before I shot mine, which would have [00:15:00] been day two. Yeah. Yeah. So he, they get out there and we find out, Hey, there's. They got a bull on the ground and we're like, sweet dude, that's awesome.

And, uh, we're like, okay, how big was it? You know, like we want to know as far as the big bull contest goes, they're like, it's a four by four or a four by five. We don't know for sure. They just basically called and said, Hey, we got one down. And then, uh, we're like, oh, okay. So first bulls off the table. And Sean was like, no dude, they didn't put in for the contest.

And we're like, oh, shoot, only seven people that did, you know, I think five people went to spy camp and only one put in. So they went back in there and they got a bull first day they hung, they hung the meat up in a tree and continued to hunt. Cause I mean, the rest of the week we had cold weather, like it was really cold a few of [00:16:00] the nights that they were out there, but then we went out day two and that's when the magic happened for you.

Yup. Yeah. Yeah, day two that morning. I don't even, I don't even know what time it was, you know, once we were headed out there or head out there early, it was dark when we first set out and I don't know, maybe I'd say maybe like 15 degrees. I don't know how cold it was. It was cool. It was, it was pretty. Um, I'd say yeah, anywhere from five to 15 degrees and.

We were going, like, like you said, probably an hour and a half four wheeler ride. I think one of the farthest spots I've ridden to are out there. Um, and we were probably maybe an hour in on our, on our drive on the four. I didn't sure enough. We see those bear tracks again and fresh snow overnight. [00:17:00] It was moving overnight or early that morning and spotted those bear tracks.

And. A few of us had bear tags, so we pulled over and glass for those. And yeah, I mean, it's still unbelievable to me even thinking about how it all came down. You might remember it better than I do. Cause I was just in shock when it all happened. Well, dude, when you get, when you get on elk or bear, anything you have a tag for, it's just like tunnel vision.

All of a sudden it's like, shoot, it's go time. I got to get the rifle out. I got to be ready and everyone's like looking at these bear tracks. And I mean, they were playing his day, like in the fresh snow, it snowed the night before these were potentially within hours of us showing up, if not minutes of us showing up this stride on the bear, you could tell it wasn't running.

So I don't think we like came up and it got spooked and went across the two track, but we started looking and Sean was trying to get us to drop in after it. And I'm like, [00:18:00] man, he looked at me and he goes. Would you rather kill a bear or an elk? And I go, dude, I don't know. I was like, that's 50 50. I've never shot either.

I was like, I've always wanted to shoot both. I was like, I have no idea. And he goes, well, if you want a bear, go after this sucker, follow its tracks. And you and I were talking, um, And I'm just like, dude, like, do we go after it? Like I didn't, cause my experience I've never hunted either. I didn't know what to do, you know?

And so I kind of up to you and Deshaun, I'm just like, you guys tell me what's going on here. Cause I don't know what to do. I want to kill something. I just don't know which one I'd rather kill. Yeah, dude. When, when he said that, I mean, one thing that he's told me and he tells everybody out there is you can't hunt an animal from the same hillside.

It's just too thick. And you got to experience that with a scrub Oak. When you're in it, you can't [00:19:00] see, you just really can't. So you have to be across the valley. And so it really shocked me when he said, Hey, just follow these tracks and, and try to follow, like, follow it until you find it. And I'm thinking the whole time, like, dude, that's not going to work.

We'll never see it. I just don't think it's going to work. And so I said, no, I was like, no, I don't think we should. Well, it was right around that time that I was like, dude, now this isn't the way to hunt this bear. Someone was like, dude, we got elk, we got elk. And we've all been standing there by the side by side and the four wheelers looking at these tracks, glassing down in the Valley below us.

And on the other Valley, on the opposite side of the road from where that bear went. There's three cows standing there and nobody with us. I don't think anybody with us had a cow cow tag, but typically if there's cows, there's a bull around somewhere and it might not be a huge bull. It might not be the big herd, but usually like [00:20:00] there's one bedded down 75 to 150 yards away and you look long enough and you might see it.

So anyways, we all look at the cows. We all pull out our binos, the spotting scope. We're all checking them out. No bulls. So then we start going back to debating what to do about this bear and. It was what like 10 minutes and all of a sudden someone's like bull bull bull All right. How many of you guys hate dealing with tangled up rope trying to untie it?

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And the best way to do that is to head over to euro optic. com and enter code nomadic tenant checkout for 10 percent off your order. And now let's get back to today's show presented by Vortex. Yeah, it was Sean. Cause Sean, we were talking about still maybe going after that bear. I think most people were blasting the bear and moving to different vantage points, trying to see where it was, if we could find it.

And I think Sean just, cause he was, he was glassing for the bear too. And I think he just randomly turned around and was like, I'm going to take another look at these elk. And sure enough, I'm partially down the mountain, not far, maybe 30, 40 yards on the, on the hillside or the mountain side. And I hear that and I hear everybody just get your rifle.[00:23:00]

I was frantically trying to get you like, dude, it is go time right now. You better do this because those elk were so high up on that finger that, you know, I mean, like they go 10 more yards and they're gone, like they're over the edge and you'll never see them again. There's no vantage point. Even if we drove back up the road, went all the way around, I don't think we would have been able to see them.

And at the very most, we would have seen them, but they would have been out of range. And so I was like, Josh, right now, go, go, go, go, go. And you're just like, uh, what? And I'm like, get the freaking rifle and get over here. There's a bowl. And at that point, we didn't know if it was a legal one yet, but we wanted to be ready in case it was.

So we're all looking through the binos. And I mean, we all had good binos. I think basically everybody except one dude was running vortex binos. These elk were around 590, 600 away from us at that point. And we're [00:24:00] all looking through, but that scrub oak behind, you can't see the, you can't see the antlers very well.

So it was like, well, everyone's like, Josh, is it a shooter? And I'm like, I can't count. I, I, I can't see it well enough. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, we could clearly see it, but all of that scrub oak made it really hard to see how many, how many points it had or how long its brow tines were. And so then I was like, dude, I'm getting the spotter out.

I grabbed the spotter and I had just bought right before the trip. It actually came in the day before I went out there. I bought that Olin, uh, magnetic phone scope adapter. And so I clipped that thing in and I think it was Addie and her boyfriend were hanging out looking through that. I was looking through my binos trying to get tripods set up for you to shoot off of and.

They're like, it's a legal bull. It's a legal bull. So now I'm like, Oh dude, it's for sure. Go time. So you, [00:25:00] this is when I watched Josh do his wiggle dance. Explain this part to start from my perspective and then you can, so everybody is on their by nose. I'm on the rifle. I had found the bull at this point and I'd been on it for a while.

Again, didn't know if it was a shooter. I look over and there's five, five or six of you guys all with binos on it. I wait to hear it's a definite shooter for sure. And I hear everybody go. Take it, take it. It's broadside it's in the open, take it. And I'm sitting there and I'm not saying anything and everyone's looking through the binos, no one's looking at me and I'm first off, we just finished, like I said, an hour four wheeler drive, so I'm not saying it was just the cold cause I know it wasn't, but my nerves never got buck fever in my life and the [00:26:00] buck fever I got plus how cold I was not having my hands in gloves cause I'm holding the rifle.

I'm just shaking. I mean, shaking uncontrollably and I know I'm not shot. So I'm not taking it. My safety is still on. I'm just watching this bowl at this point while everybody else is watching it. And all I keep hearing is take it, take it, take it before it goes. And all of a sudden I just hear Dan go, Oh dude, he's not shooting.

He's shaking like a leaf and everyone just in there shaking. That's when I go, dude, take the rifle. I have to warm my hands up. I have to call my nerves. Just take the rifle from me and that's when you did. And yeah, I got under the exhaust and, uh, it was a, it was a mess at that point. Dude, I was like, he is not going to get, he's not going to shoot this elk.

Like he can't right now. And I remember that moment, man. Well, I think I, I said, go ahead and shoot. We're on him. We're on him. And then I looked over at [00:27:00] you and I could see you on the rifle. And at first glance, I was like, dude, he's on it. He's going to shoot. And then I saw the barrel of the rifle, just doing these like zigzags and S's and circles, and I'm like, Oh dude, there's no way he's stable enough right now.

Well, and this bull, I mean, it was at 619 yards and I'm thinking, you know, unless I'm completely steady, I'm not trying to go out there and wound an animal and not find it or have to. aisles, you know, so I'm sitting there and I'm in my mind, I'm just, I'm not shooting cause I can't control myself right now.

I was so nervous. I was freezing cold, all of it combined. And then finally, yeah, you, you were able to grab the rifle from me. You were watching it. I was warming up and honestly, I was just praying. I was just like, Lord, calm my nerves. Warm my hands, allow me to make a clean shot. And I think, I think it was Sean walked up to me and he looks at me and he [00:28:00] goes, don't wound this bill.

Don't wound this bull. He's like, if you make a shot, make a good shot. And I'm thinking, dude, I can't eat. My hands are shake. I don't even know if I'm going to hit it at this point. I'm going to shoot a tree behind it, you know? Um, and so I was able to actually call my nerves enough and, and relax enough.

And I remember telling myself, I go, once you get on it, don't hesitate. You know, once you're steady and on it, you, you shoot it. Cause if I sat there and watched it, same thing would happen. I'd start shaking, wouldn't get the shot. And luckily it just, it stayed on the hillside. I, when I went and got that rifle, I put it on the tripod and like, I could stay on it.

There was a second there where I'm like, he's not going to be able to shoot this bull. I'm just going to shoot it. And I think you even told me after the fact in your mind, you were going, [00:29:00] dude, if somebody else can make this shot, go for it. Because it I was 30 seconds away. I no joke as I was sitting there praying, warming my hands up and trying to get my nerves under control.

My entire thought process was they all have a license to kill this bull. If they're able to take the shot, let somebody kill this. So it doesn't get away. Let somebody harvest and not let it get away. And it was pretty much at that moment when I was thinking that, where I was like, my nerves came over me, I calmed way down, felt warm enough, and I was just like, okay, you've got this.

Like, this is your one chance. If you want to take this thing, you gotta take it now. Well, and we got the, we got the second tripod set up under the stock, and I was like, alright, this is better. It's not great. But we just had to find a more permanent rest. And after the fact, after your shot. I can't remember.

I think it was Addie's boyfriend. Who is like, dude, we should have just [00:30:00] gone back up the two track, like 20 yards. And he could have laid prone and shot that thing. And we all walked over and saw it. And I was like, dude, you got to be kidding me. We had a wide open spot. There was also a really solid fence post over there, but you did make a great shot.

So walk, walk us through. Once you actually got back on the bull after you warmed up, after your nerves had calmed down, cause. When your nerves were at their peak, dude, you weren't shaking. You were wobbling. Like I looked, your knees were probably like two inch sway in your knees. I mean, they were all over the place.

I believe it. And it was, it was, and I think this, so this happened before that, I think. And I think we skipped this part a little bit, which I thank you for this. And I don't know who told me this. It was either you or Sean, but Sean spotted that elk and at about 600 yards. And he, one of you guys told me, he looked over and he goes, how far can your [00:31:00] brother make clean shot?

And he, and you, I think your response was as far as he needs to, how far is it? And so, so that happened and then the wobbling and then, yeah, once I got my nerves under control. My breathing, I was warmed up. I had my hands under the exhaust. I come back over, Dan's holding the rifle and I'm like, all right, I'm ready.

Like this is, this is the spot and I get on it and I'm right on it and I'm calm and steady. It's not swaying an inch, you know, and I'm, I'm confident I can make a clean shot. And I let it rip. Well, as any hunter knows, a lot of times when you shoot, especially when you're excited, when you're cold, when you're nervous, everything, you don't get your eye right back in the scope and are watching.

So I shoot and I make the mistake of pulling my head up to look instead of staring through the scope. [00:32:00] And I go to put my head back down through the scope. And I just hear everyone go crazy. You dropped it. You folded it. It's done. And I'm just no way. And I get on the scope and I look and I see it kind of has its head up a little bit, but it's down.

And I just, I don't even know if I lost it first or if everybody just ran up to me, just congratulating me. You know, I think one or two people stayed on it. I think you stayed on, on the spot or scope for a minute. And. Addie's boyfriend, I think, was also staying on it, watching it, and, yeah, and once we confirmed it was down, it was just, it was insane, we, we celebrated, everybody was so, so great, I mean, I was still a nervous wreck, I'm just like, wait, is it, what actually happened, like, this thing's dead, like, we got it, for sure, and everybody's like, yeah, it's down, it's not moving at all, it's not moving at all, and I think it was Sean, he, he was the one person that just like, [00:33:00] You never know it might get back up and I'm just like, but is it getting back up?

Like what's what's happening right now? No, we, we watched it just drop and you made a perfect shot on it. I mean, we don't do the high shoulder shots. We, we go for vitals like every time we shoot an elk, we're going for vitals. Um, and. They might run farther, but, uh, I bought a 300 PRC last year and last year I think that that gun, either the initial or at least the finishing touch shot on five different bulls.

I think it, I think it was responsible for the first shot on three bulls. And then two of the bulls, the first shot was with a different rifle. And it, like the bull either ran and fell and wasn't fully dead or something like that. And so then they were like, Hey, can I use your rifle? And then we just shot the follow up shot with that.

And so I'm like, dude, this thing's [00:34:00] got a ton of knockdown power. And when you shot, I saw the impact and I was like, dude, he didn't even hit spine, but he dropped it. And I think based off of quartering it out. Like skinning it out, pulling the back straps. There was nothing wrong with the spine at all. What happened is you double lunged it, but you got high enough on the double lungs that I think just the impact of the bullet hitting the ribs, the whole chest cavity, I think it took out its spine.

Like, I think the shock of it, like dropped it like a boxer would drop. If you hit it in the back, hit them in the back of the head, you know, and. And so you double lunged him for sure. Didn't ruin any meat whatsoever. And I think by the time that he would have regained composure and been able to get back up, he was already expired because it was a perfect double lung shot.

Yeah. Yeah. And even in the video, you can see it lift its head once, [00:35:00] go down a little bit, then lift its head again. And you can see it kind of trying to get up and then you just see it drop and it was. Yeah. that. I mean, I agree with that. I think, you know, if it would have stayed on its feet, it probably would have ran a bit.

It still would have died. We would have got the elk, but since where I hit it, it was able to drop it. And then with going through double lung, it didn't have the gas to get back up. Yeah. I mean, I think the whole video I mean, it was like 15 minutes of video from the time I hit record. And I bet you that bull was standing.

We, we were within range of that bull for probably 25 to 30 minutes. And, you know, some of the word, I'm just thankful that it's stuck around long enough to give you a shot like that, or like to allow you to calm down, get warmed up and make the shot. But you dropped her right there and back to back to how thick these [00:36:00] hillsides are from, from across.

I mean, you could see it where that bull was standing. Luckily, he stopped in a spot that had an opening to his vitals. Somebody did mention like right in front of the bull was some scrub oak. Just a little bit and they're like, I was going to shoot. I asked, but that was when I was shaking. I was like, there's, there's a little bit of rush in front of it.

Am I good? You know, I just wanted to make sure. Cause I've never, I'll kind of, that was the furthest shot I've made and killed an animal, not including harder practice is different, but as far as killing an animal, um, but I was still confident in it once I quit, quit shaking. But yeah, I was worried. I mean, I've never, I've always whitetailed hunt with you and, you know, where we hunt, you know, it's not, we don't have that kind of, um, rush around where it's like, we grew up shooting iron site 20 gauge and 12 [00:37:00] gauge.

Like we didn't have long shots. We had Not necessarily wide open shots, but like 70 yards is really all we, I think I've killed one deer in those woods in Wisconsin that was over a hundred yards. Everything else was typically like 40 to 50. I think my longest aside from one shot over a hundred was like 73 yards.

Yup. And last year was my longest. And I think that was probably about 300, but I wasn't in the woods. I was hunting the fields that day. So I was able to. I'll make that shot and be able to see the, see the deer, but, but you, so you, you made that shot and looking back at the video, there was some brush. You had mentioned it to me like, Hey, is it going to punch through that?

And you, you place it in kind of an opening your shot in an opening where you didn't even go through any brush. But if you had tried to go for a heart shot, you would have definitely [00:38:00] clipped a couple things, but you placed it high enough on the lungs. To where it just, I mean, it cleared all the brush and that 300 with it only being a foot in front of the animal, like I wasn't worried about it anyways, but I was like, dude, if, if he does clip a little bit of it, he's still going to smoke vitals like this guns on, we cited it in the day before season or two days before season, whatever that was, got some rounds through it, made sure the zero is good at 200 yards.

And yeah, dude, you just smoked that thing and you didn't do that first. You didn't say a word. It was everybody else was celebrating first. Everyone's like, dude, I dropped it. You dropped it. And you're just standing there like holding the gun. You look like you just saw a ghost. Yeah. Oh man. But that was, that was pretty wild.

So then, uh, some of our crew was like, Hey, why don't you guys go get started quartering it? And we're going to go and hunt [00:39:00] farther down the road and just let us know, like, give us a call when it's quartered and we'll come help you pack it out. Well, where we were, we had to drive way up the road to the top of this point and then walk this finger Ridge down to the elk.

And so I was like, totally fine. You guys, you guys go hunt. Well, then we get down to the elk and we don't have cell service. And so I was like, crap, we're not even going to be able to tell them when we're done. Well, I was going to call my wife at the top and everybody goes, Oh, y'all have cell service there.

Just call her when you get to it, FaceTimer. And I get down there, nothing. And I'm just like, dang it. I really want to show her this, you know? Um, but we were able to make it down and I think it was, it was either you or Nick. I think it was you, but we're hiking down looking for tracks cause. those cows took off up over the ridge when I took that shot.

I think a couple of them went over before I even took the shot. Um, so we're looking for tracks while hiking [00:40:00] down and we're going through some pretty thick stuff and I hadn't seen any tracks at this point or anything. I think you and Nick were probably maybe 15, 20 yards ahead of me spaced out a little bit looking around.

And I just hear one of you guys go, Hey josh, why don't you take this way? And I'm just like, No way they see it. I was like which way and they point and I just hiked through and sure enough came up It was completely dead didn't have to take a second shot on it. Nothing and just laying there and I mean Incredible moment dude when we got down there.

I was like, where the heck is it? Like we knew we knew where this bull was But again, when you're on the same hillside, you can't see through it. And so we were dropping down like a couple different fingers with knobs on the end of them and, or that same ridgeline, it just had a couple of steep spots. And so we'd get out and I'd be like, all right, I'm going to glass and see if I can see this [00:41:00] thing.

Dude, we could not see that thing at all. I didn't see that bull until we were probably five yards from it. And you were following us. Cause I was like, all right, it's down on this face more. It's not all the way up on the ridge. And I was like, I, I was walking and I look over and I just see brown and I knew what it was, but I didn't get a good look at it.

And that's when I was like, dude, don't drop down by us. Like stay a little more towards the top and I turn and I start going back up because it was so thick to get to it from where I was. And I walk three or four feet, can't even see it anymore. And I'm like, dude, what the heck? I mean, it was really, really difficult to see, but you got, you got over there.

First time quartering an elk out. I mean, what was that like? Oh, an experience for sure. You showed me most of it and did a lot of it for me. Um, I was more [00:42:00] just cutting skin back and, and figuring it out. I had no idea that those shoulders. Don't have bones connecting. It's just tissue again. Where's our saw at what, you know, and no, we're just using that one little have long and just going through it.

And I mean, you're able to do the whole thing with it, which I mean, surprised the heck out of me. I had no idea. It takes a lot longer than you think. Cause my thought never doing it. I'm like, Oh, it's somewhat like a whitetail, you know, but all the white. We can feel, dress them, rag them up, hang them up, do what we have to do.

That was just a totally different experience. And the size of that, the body on that bowl. I mean, we were taking off giant quarters that I just couldn't even believe. I mean, those, even those backstraps, when I held it up, I'm just like, holy crap. Like this is insane. [00:43:00] Dude, they go on for days, man. I mean, it's like, there's a lot of meat on those animals, but that bull.

For being a five by five and not taking anything away from the rack, but for being a younger bull, one of the biggest bodies I've ever seen on an elk. I mean, like it was giant. And I think part of that is because I know Colorado had a really rough winter last year. But what that means is the next spring is going to have a ton of vegetation.

Like if it's super wet, when the snow melts, that's just going to be more moisture. For stuff to grow and the, the rain living out here in Colorado, we had the most rain I've seen in the four or five years I've been out here for springtime. I mean, it rained all the time and everything was growing and growing early and growing flush, you know?

Yeah. And so, yeah, I think not only that, all the animals, they had plenty to [00:44:00] eat. Yeah, I mean, he was, he was a huge bull, we got him quartered out, got a bunch of content, which we've got an episode coming out, a YouTube episode coming out, Nick's going to keep working on it. I think this weekend he's going to hit it hard and try to get all of that put together for a full episode.

But we, we got it all quartered out. Addie and her boyfriend came down the mountain, helped us pack it out. And so we split all the meat up. You took the head. And we started hiking up Addie and her boyfriend loaded up a quarter right away. And we still had to finish getting all of our gear packed back up, get the, get the quarters on our backs, get the head on your shoulders.

And they took off up the mountain. Well, then me, you and Nick, we finished getting our packs loaded and we start heading up and that's when you realize exactly what packing out an elk is like. Well, and the thing about that is it wasn't even the weight of it because I had the head, [00:45:00] but I live in Colorado and so, um, sorry, I got a call coming in.

Oh, you're good. Nah, I'm living in Colorado. I'm used to the elevation. My wife and I, we do a lot of hunting or a lot of hiking and snowboarding and stuff. Not a big deal. I didn't account for the brush we had to go through. I mean, you. I mean, and it was every five feet, I'm stuck on something carrying those antlers out.

And it was like every 10 feet, I'd have to take a break. There's multiple times I took my pack off and just sat down in the snow and I just granted the dumb part of me. I didn't eat anything all day because we were, we were on our way out there when I shot it and it was in the morning and by the time we were hiking out with it, it was 2 p.

m. or so, you know, 1, 1 p. m. Maybe, um, after quartering and everything. And so I [00:46:00] was just exhausted, had no food in my system, had some water and maybe a couple. I think I pulled out like a nutty bar and ate it or something, um, partway up, but going through that brush was like something I've never done. It felt like I was hiking with people grabbing my shoulders, just pulling me backwards, hiking up a mountain.

Yeah, dude, the weight, the weight sitting high up like that is always more challenging. I mean, most of most of the meat packs or game packs. You know, the, the weight is down basically right behind your lower back. It's tight to your body, but the head is always a chore, especially when you have to walk through thick stuff like that.

I mean, there are spots without antlers, it's tough to get through. And like just having a rifle, but yeah, you had to take a couple of breaks. I told you, dude, just take your time. We had a couple of snacks on the way up on a couple of those breaks. And then we made it up to the top and everybody was super pumped.

I [00:47:00] mean, they were, they were losing their minds, but we get to the top and you're like, dude, I got to head back to camp. I got to eat something. And I told Nick, I'm like, man, I'd like to go out. And Dan was out there too. And he's like, dude, you mind if I tag along? So. We all are getting loaded up on the four wheelers, packing our gear, again, getting our bag strapped down.

And that's when I realized my mag for my rifle's gone. Yup. And, I mean, we just walked through snow, through some of the thickest brush, and what had happened, I think, is that one of those scrub oak branches caught my mag release as I was packing out. Yup. And dumped my mag, and I, I never even went back to look for it.

I was like, dude, this is... A needle in a haystack, we'd have better luck finding a needle in a haystack, especially with the snow. I mean, it just, it fell and went right under that snow. You would, it would have been so hard to find. Yeah. So that's out there somewhere. Unfortunately, I still haven't got a replacement.

[00:48:00] I've got to get one, but we get back to the four wheeler. You went back with most of the group. Uh, Nick and I and Dan, we went out to another spot. Glass didn't really see much. They'll all week long. My whole plan all week long was to bomb in. I wanted to dive in, go deep, find an elk and kill one. And unfortunately all week long, I didn't, I never did that once because of the hunts, because of other people killing stuff.

And then finally the final date, the final day gets there. Oh, so. We, we go out the next morning and we go to the spot that we were going to head to and you didn't, you weren't with that day. You were running, you were running errands because somebody's tire. Yeah. Somebody's tire came off. There was two flat tires.

So a couple of us, um, and since I already harvested my elk, um, [00:49:00] I think Sean was going to volunteer to go do it. And I was like, dude, you don't have to go do that. Go, go fill your tag. You know, I was like, I, I could go out and help people glass, but let me go to town. Let me do all this stuff. So yeah, we went to town and ended up getting the tires fixed for the ATV and the quad.

But yeah, okay. Yeah, so you went and did that and then me and a bunch of other people went to like our golden spot where we always see elk and we get up there and we park, we start looking around. I pull my rifle out of my hard case on the, on the four wheeler. But I didn't load around yet. And again, I don't have my mag, so it's not even a quick process to load around.

And so we get up on top and we're glassing way out, like 700 yards and farther out. And so the whole time I'm thinking, okay, if we see one, I'm going to have time to load up and, you know, depending on [00:50:00] where we're at, I don't, most of the time, I don't keep one in the chamber anyways, because it's, I've never been in a situation where it's like.

I have to pull my rifle up, flip the safety off and shoot. And so, I typically don't have one in the chamber. We're all looking way out with our binos and Dan walks up behind us and he's like, Oh, there's one. And we're like, Oh, you got an elk? He's like, Dude, it's right below you. And we look down and here's this legal bull at 300 yards right underneath us.

And so now I'm scrambling to just single load around in my rifle and by the time I get it loaded and get it on the shooting sticks, this bull had already gone around the point and we never saw it again, but they were watching it the whole time as I'm trying to load my rifle. And. Sean was like, he was a giant dude.

He was a huge six point side on one side, busted off on the other. He, he was busted off [00:51:00] above his second on the other, but I'm like, dude, I would have definitely taken a shot. And so that one got away. Um, after that, it was basically, it came down to the final day and I was. I was like, all right, guys, I'm going in today.

We had a group of, let's see, it was me, me, Nick, Sean fish in Trinidad. The five of us were going to go in. We had this solid game plan. Shane was going to stay up on top and glass. We were going to push in down a mountain through a Valley up and over another mountain and meet on the backside. Of that next mountain and we're on our way out there.

I'm super pumped. I'm finally dropping in. Like I've said all week long that I'm going to do. And it was at that point that we're, we get to the same spot where you shot from. What do we see in the dirt? Fresh [00:52:00] bear tracks like that morning, fresh, and they're just in the dirt on the two track. We start, we start glassing immediately, don't see this bear anywhere.

And so we're like, all right, you know what? We're going to drive around the Valley and glass back down. So like basically right at the same spot or close to the same spot where it dropped into that Valley, the fresh snow tracks did it dropped in there again. And so we scoot around the Valley and we probably only looked for a couple of minutes and Sean's like, I got him.

Yeah. And I'm like. All right, well, now we're going to try to shoot this bear. It's super early in the day. I mean, it was like, not even nine o'clock at this point. And I'm like, all right, we're on this bear. We've got two guys with tags. I knew that you were coming up with some of the other guys. And I was like, we're going to end up having three guys with tags up here.

For, for this bear, I didn't have a bear [00:53:00] tag. I always get a bear tag. And for whatever reason this year, I did not get one. Well, we watched this bear and everyone's like, dude, we're going to drop in on them. We're going to drop in on them. I'm like, dude, why? Like, okay. You could probably get down there pretty quickly and get a shot at them at like three, 400 yards.

But once they all dropped in, you hadn't gotten up there yet. And I'm like. Okay. If somebody was up here with a bear tag, they could shoot this bear with my rifle right now. And I'm like, Oh, well, you know, I've got my phone set up on my scope, getting a ton of video following this bear and we're watching it.

We're watching, uh, fish and Sean dropped down in on it. We're watching Trinidad go another way on it. And this bear just is working its way across the hills. And all of a sudden it just beds down and [00:54:00] basically disappears. And we're like, what the heck? Like what the heck, of course, it's going to do that and I'm like, all right, we're just going to keep watching.

It's going to get, it's going to get up. We could see Sean and fish and they already had the rifle up on the tripod. And so I'm like, they know, they see it. They know where it's bedded down. Trinidad was down a different finger. We had no idea what was going on with him. And everybody's down, I think Sean and fish were within three 50 of it.

Trinidad is probably around four 50 of it. Maybe, maybe less than that. And we're just watching and for an hour goes by and I'm like, okay, oh, he's getting up and he would get up, stretch and lay back down. And I'm like, dang it. We could tell from where we were that they couldn't actually see the bear. They just know where it was bedded.

And so like, they can't see it [00:55:00] when it gets up like that, but all around it, it had somewhat of an opening to where it's like, okay, if it actually gets up and moves, they're going to be able to shoot it. And an hour goes by two, three, four, five, six hours go by. By that point, you guys had already gotten up there.

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Okay. There's the bear moved to this spot. Well, when you're going down through that brush, you can't see a thing. And we made it maybe 50 yards. And the one guy dropping in with me was like. This is sketchy, dude. I hear things. I hear something moving and I'm like, I don't really hear anything moving. And they're like, yeah, I'm turning around.

I'm not doing this. And so I'm just by myself blindly walking down this mountainside. And I know get to this opening. If I head East, I'm going to run into this bear at some point. Yeah. I'm going to shoot it when it gets up. And so that's what I did. And so I'm like, so I'm like, at this point, we've got three guys on three different sides of this bear.

This bear is not getting away and we're just watching. There's nothing we can do. None of us have tags at this point. The other group that was at spike camp, they had made it out and [00:59:00] came and joined us on the trail. And so we're all, I mean, we've got six different guys with eyes on this bear. And I'm like watching it.

I didn't turn my phone off. I was, I was like, normally I call my wife a couple of times. If I'm in service throughout the day, didn't call her at all because I was using my phone in my case, nobody had the same phone as me. So I couldn't even swap it out. So I'm like, dude, I'm down to 20 percent battery.

I'm down to 10 percent battery. This is going to die soon. Like I'm going to lose this in the spotting scope, which was by far the best view of it. I mean, my spotter goes up to 60 power. And so I'm like. Nobody else, everyone else has 10 by binoculars, you know? And so I'm like, we got to maintain visual of this bear so that we know, we know what happens, or if it moves up the Ridge, we can send a guy around and tell you guys what's going on, you know?

And. I'm watching the bear and now I can see you and you're almost on top of [01:00:00] it. And like, I mean, within 70 yards of this bear, but you're on the wrong side of a finger. And I'm like, there's no way he can see it from there. Did you ever hear me yell? No, no, I heard that you did yell that everybody told me that.

I never heard a thing. I was just I was walking as slow as I could. I'm down there by myself. And I mean, that was a big bear, one of the biggest I've seen. It was huge. And I'm just walking as slow as I can. And I know it's somewhere in front of me, but like you said, when you're watching from one side, you can see it.

You get down there. You have no idea where this thing is. You're going to be yards from it and have no clue. And so I was just walking nice and slow. I had my tripod in one hand rifle on my shoulder on the other, or on my other shoulder. And I'm just walking as slow as I can. And I came up over that [01:01:00] finger and I'm looking, I kind of stopped for a second, start looking.

And I don't know how far it was from me. I'd say 30, 40 yards, maybe. Well, dude, before, before that happened, I saw you on the wrong side of the finger. And so I go, dude, should I just yell to him? And everyone's like, I mean, it's not going to hurt at this point. We need this bear to either, he needs to get up on it and get a shot or he needs to bump it up.

So somebody else can get a shot. And this bear, it was crazy, man. And when you first crested the top to start dropping down, Boom, that bear's head picked up and he's staring straight at you. And I don't think he could see you, but I think he could hear you. And the wind, I don't know how it was on your side of the valley on our side.

I was like, dude, this wind's got to be blowing straight to the bear from Josh, but it's the mountains. There's no telling what it's doing a thousand yards away. And so you're going down that, that finger. And then you kind of [01:02:00] went to the left a little bit, I think just to get a better path down the mountain.

Yeah. And that's when I yelled where I could actually move through to get into the open. Cause I, we're. I mean, from your guys's standpoint, everybody was like, dude, it didn't look that thick. It was way thicker than what we hiked Elkin or out of like, there was times when I was hiking back up that after this, where I literally had to get down on my hands and knees and crawl under stuff.

Cause I wasn't breaking through it. I mean, it was the thing, dude, it, it was, I mean, it was gnarly, it was painful to sit back and watch and know there's nothing we can do about it. And So anyways, I yelled and it was actually right after I yelled that you were in the clearing and I just, I whistled as loud as I could.

And then I yelled and said, go to your right. And I kid you not, I thought you heard me like even up until this conversation, I thought you heard me because you like turned and went over that knob. And [01:03:00] that's when you basically walked right up on the bear. Yeah, which is crazy because yeah, I didn't hear a thing that you said.

I just, I kind of knew where I was, knew the area of the bear, but I needed to get to that opening. And so I went, yeah, down to the left, like you said, and then I got to that opening and I was like, all right, now I got to head east. And so I started heading east, but I didn't know, you know, when you're looking from one area, it doesn't matter what, when you're on the same hillside, it's, yeah.

I didn't know if it was two knobs away from me, three knobs away from me. If it was right on that knob, I had no clue. So I just started walking and sure enough, I came over that first knob and I'm moving slow and I'm watching. And apparently the bear had already stood up before I got over. I never saw anything.

I get up there and I'm moving slow, just looking. And I just see right in front of me, you know, 30, 40 yards in front of me, this giant bear takeoff running. [01:04:00] And I, I mean, especially for that size, that thing moves so stinking quick. I tried to put my tripod down, grab the rifle by the time I could even do that.

It was over the knob. Couldn't see it. And that's when. It ran down and Sean and them were up on the other hillside to the north and they, and from my understanding, I thought they were waiting for it to move, but I don't know what they were doing. I thought they were close enough that they could see it once it got up and started moving and I'm like, okay, somebody's going to shoot this thing once it starts running.

Well, it's running, nobody's shooting. And I'm just like, Oh crap. Like what, I don't know what's happening at this point. And so I'm trying to find this bear cause it went over the knob and then it ran up to Sean and them and I could have swore it made it within 40 yards headed straight at them. And I was like, Oh, they're going to drop this thing.

And I'm not going to, at that point I could have taken a [01:05:00] shot. It wasn't very far and it was, it was moving pretty quick, but it was moving up hills. So slower, but it's 40 yards from two other hunters. I'm not taking that shot. You know, I'm like, they're going to. Down on it and drop this thing. Well, talking to them after they never even saw it.

I guess one of them thought they heard it running through fish. Fish said he watched it run across, had no shot. They, they, I think they saw movement at one point. And from our point of view, it stood up. So right as you get there, my phone died. So like, I never got video of the bear getting up and running.

And it got up, it moved like five feet, and then it just went on a dead sprint and it went up and over the knob. We could still see it. It sprints over, gets to a wash and drops straight down in the valley. And now we don't see it at all. But at that [01:06:00] point, I think we heard a shot and we were like, dude, that was only one shot.

Like awesome. Well, fish, apparently, I don't know the sequence of events that happened, who was doing what, but they said they heard it coming straight at them. He's like, dude, I was getting ready. I thought it was going to run us over. Like we could hear it busting through the brush coming directly to us and it dropped down in the valley again.

And I don't know how many shots rang out. I don't know who shot, how many times people shot, but we never did see that bear again from the top. It was all down right in the middle of all of you guys. Yeah. Yeah. And I don't know how many. Yeah. Again, I don't know. That's either. I shot twice. I know that. But I had a rifle I'd never shot before.

Um, cause you had your 300 back. Um, and then, so I'm using somebody else's rifle and this, I mean, [01:07:00] Oh, cause you went up above, but you, yeah, I had both my rifles with me and you were using, I think when you got above it, I think at that point you probably realized like, I don't have Dan's rifle. And so you use Beck's rifle.

Yeah, Beck's. So, you used his rifle, and again, I don't know how many shots, long, long story short, several shots rang out, uh, I find out later that Trinidad had multiple opportunities to kill this bear, but, well, but the thing is, nobody knew, because you got up there late. Yeah, Sean and Fish, they didn't know you were there.

Trinidad didn't know you were there. And so he saw you dropping down. Trinidad, Sean and them know me, so I think they were watching me walk down and knew, Okay, this guy's with us. [01:08:00] I find out the other guy I'd never met before, he'd just got in that day. And I met him that night and he's like, dude, I had no clue who you were.

I just thought you were another hunter and I was wondering, why are you walking down this mountainside while we're staring at this bear? Yeah, he had no idea I was even with you guys. Yeah, so he wasn't going to shoot because he was like, oh, this, uh, he told, I think he was talking to somebody else and I overheard.

He was like, dude, I saw this guy walking down. I didn't know who he was, didn't think he was with our group. And obviously he was going after this bear. And so I wasn't just going to shoot it out from under him. And it turns out he had multiple times where he could have shot the bear. And that brings me to another point from the other side, the guys with you that stayed up on the top, they could see Trinidad and apparently he walked down, got to a spot where he thought he was going to get a shot, set his pack and his rifle down.

And then it was like, Oh, it looks a little bit [01:09:00] better down there. And so he walked to see what the vantage point was. And then he forgot where his rifle and his pack were. And so they said he was just zig zagging looking for his gear. And that's why we tell everybody, do not drop your, like, do not. If you're moving anywhere, if you're moving 15 feet, bring your stuff.

Because otherwise you're going to move 15 feet, want to move another 15, move another 15. And before you know it, you're out of sight. And if you don't have fresh tracks or fresh snow to follow your tracks back. There's no telling if you're going to find your stuff again. Well, and I noticed that too, even when I was hiking down, cause I was looking at everybody, cause I could see you guys way up on top.

I could see Sean and them, and then I could see him. And I'm, I was just like, why is this guy moving around so much? Like, let's be trying to get a good shot at this thing before he takes it. And that was what was going through my mind. Yeah. But to come to find out he had lost his rifle and his back and he was just back and forth, [01:10:00] up and down the mountain over and over again.

Jeez. So that was, I mean, I think that took up six hours of my day on the final day of the hunt. And because we were me, you and Nick were leaving the next morning, a bunch of the other people were hanging out and hunting still. And I was like, man, like I really wanted to drop in by the time everything was said and done, no bear on the ground.

I was like, dude, I'm going like, we're going to go hunt. And so Nick and I went. And we dropped down this finger glassing across the side. We didn't have enough time to actually bomb in, but we went farther down than we had yet. And we glassed up two bowls. Both of them were legal, but tiny, like super tiny.

And they were at 1300 yards. And I wasn't about to take a third, like, I just don't, I trust myself [01:11:00] shooting and I've shot 1100 yards with that rifle, but I was like, listen, if these bulls drop down this mountain, the way that we saw one do a couple of days before I would shoot one at like seven, 800, maybe even eight 50, but I'm not taking a shot at 1300.

So we sat and sat and sat hoping they would come down and they actually went up and over the opposite direction. And so that ended my hunt, man. That was it. We ended up, so you got yours, Tubby's son got his, Tubby got one, and then Justin went out and got one, and the three bulls that that group shot, they shot back where I kept saying, I'm gonna bomb in, I'm gonna bomb in, I'm gonna bomb in, and everyone's like, dude, don't drop in, if you're not seeing elk, don't drop in, and I'm like, dude, that's...

If you're not seeing Hulk, you got to do something, you know, like I'm not a road hunter. I don't just hang out on two tracks. In fact, Sean even told you he's never killed one like that from the two track. [01:12:00] And all the elk that we've killed out there, none of them have been right there. First year. And I got a knob named after me.

Dude, shut up, man. I've killed three bulls out there and they still won't let me name anything after myself. Uh, so. So out of, out of the four bowl shot, you were the only one that put in for the bowl contest. So you ended up with first, biggest and smallest. Oh, so I don't know about that now. So Dave ended up shooting a mealie.

That doesn't matter. It's not part of the bowl contest. The only other, the only time that you can get, uh, get money that's not for a bowl. Is if you shoot first, it's just first tag field. It's not first bull it's first tag field. Yeah. I didn't know how that worked, but yeah. So I talked to Sean the other day.

Um, cause I was thinking about going to, to Denver for [01:13:00] Thanksgiving, but I'm going to end up staying here. But, uh, yeah, Dave ended up filling his Muley tag. I think two days after we left, which brings me back to, I saw the biggest Muley. I mean, you were there that I've ever seen, but didn't have a tag for it.

Yeah, nobody was up there when you saw that, when you saw that mule deer, I mean, we would give reports to everybody back at camp. If people were hanging out at camp or like, we'd all converge back at camp every day and just say, Hey guys, this is what we saw. This is where you should go. If you've got this tag, whatever.

But I don't know what the total count on elk was. I don't, I haven't really talked to anybody after we left, but I know that as an entire camp, we saw less. Elk this year in the five days that we hunted, then I normally do in one day. And so it was just dead and the guys are talking, I mean, I don't know what the plan is yet.

If, [01:14:00] if they're going to move camps next year, if they're going to change seasons, I don't think it was a winter kill issue. I really don't because we didn't find any dead animals, you know, I feel like we would have.

Yeah, I think it was just too warm and they hadn't pushed down into our area yet, but whatever the case is, it was a, it was a slow year. I'm really happy that in the first five days that I was there, that we ended up killing four bulls like that's super awesome. I'm super pumped that you got that, that bull, it would have been icing on the cake to get a bear also, but yeah, my year has just been, uh, Been pretty slow, but I'm about to head out tomorrow morning.

I've got two days of rifle season here in Missouri before heading up to Wisconsin. For those that listened to the Wisconsin archery hunt, I shot that buck. Didn't recover him. Um, I've got word that that buck is [01:15:00] alive still on its feet. And, but it looks like he's got a busted leg. So I'm going up there Friday for Saturday's opener.

And I'm going to, if you're listening to this podcast, the day that it comes out, which is Thursday, Thursday, the 16th, I'm going up to Wisconsin on the fifth, on the 17th, the hunt starts on the 18th, and I'm going to go back to that Island and hopefully close that chapter. Um, and if not, I'll go back to our normal property.

I'm going to hunt there Saturday, Sunday. Just camp out probably in my truck or next to my truck. And, uh, we'll see what happens, but I've had a lot of deer on camera. Of course, when we were in Colorado, I had giant, an absolute giant buck, bigger than any buck I've had that frequently on camera. I had never seen him before.

And of course the day that the day that we leave for elk camp, [01:16:00] he shows up on trail camera at night. The 27th of October, he shows up during the day, the 31st of October, he shows up during the day, the 1st of November, he shows up during the day and I haven't seen him since on camera, but I've had other shooter bucks throughout that throughout the past week, week and a half, actually two weeks show up during daylight, and then we were on our way back from Florida this morning.

And we had a layover in Houston. And when I landed there, I saw that one of my shooters had been right in front of my stand or right in front of one of my setups. This morning. So I'm going to go to that set up in the morning. In fact, Josh, why don't you tell us a funny joke or something? I'm going to look and see if I've got any other action going on on my trail cameras right now.

Why did the kid fall off of his bike? This is the dumbest, but it's funny because his dad threw a refrigerator at him, [01:17:00] but I'm so I've got a couple of small bucks working around, um, after dark. I've got a giant bobcat on my 25 acres, actually. Really? Yeah. Look at this thing. He's, he's come in a couple times.

Normally I see him on my other property, on my other hunting property. I don't know if you can see that very well. Oh yeah, I can see him. That's just his tail end walking away from the camera. He's come through. Uh, I think actually tomorrow Bobcat opens up here. So that'd be kind of a... A cool deal, but I'm going to try to get out and shoot a buck tomorrow with my rifle.

And if not thursday friday, we head up to wisconsin Then i've got the wisconsin hunt and then archery when I get back. So who knows what's gonna happen, man It's been a weird year for the rut. It's been just kind of really [01:18:00] different timing than what i'm used to normally like this past week like the The third through the 12th seems to be the hot time here in Missouri.

And I saw a lot of daylight activity before that in Wisconsin. We saw a rutting activity on October 11th, uh, ninth, 10th and 11th. Mom's got mom's getting a bunch of stuff. Yeah. Just the other, you know, sick last week. She, she got them fighting on her camera and I mean, they're moving pretty good right now.

And I think you guys have a good, I'm not coming up. This year, um, for rifle, just can't get the time off work, but you guys don't have many people out there hunting. If you guys do it right, I mean, you guys can cover that woods and not have too much pressure on them, you know, just to know, I think, I think it's going to be a good year.

[01:19:00] Um, something happened. I still don't know if somebody stole my trail cameras, both of them quit working on the same day. Um, like I just quit getting any information from them. I can't reset them. I can't do anything. So I don't know if somebody stole them. I mean, it's private ground, but there are other bow hunters.

That I know that hunt out there, but they just haven't been doing anything. I've had no communication with my cameras, but leading up to that, I did get a couple good bucks on it. Mom's had a bunch of good bucks out there, serious rutting activity. I've got other buddies in Wisconsin who've been shooting big bucks that have been chasing.

So it's going to be, it's going to be a fun couple of weeks coming up and we'll see what happens. But. I'm going to let you go. I'm going to finish knocking out the last touches on this podcast and then. Get ready for a hunt in the morning. Yeah. Good luck and good luck up there. I tell everybody, I said, Hey, make sure you show Jeff that elk.

Yeah, I will. [01:20:00] I'll show him that elk and, uh, congrats dude. Super awesome hunting with you. You gotta, you gotta just practice pushing through, through some scrub oak for next year. He's I'm going to put on a 50 pound rucksack and just. Have 50 people stand in front of me and not move and try to run through them.

Dude. And so, and you're selling your 28 Nosler, right? You're going to get that same setup that I have. I plan on selling it. Just I've got to do some research on what it's worth and what somebody wants to pay. And then I'm going to put the, the wings towards the same setup. Yeah. I'll probably keep my scope.

I'll buy a new scope, um, and put that on it, but not, but you're going to put your bowl contest winnings towards it. You're going to sell the 28 Nosler. If anybody's listening to this and is interested in buying a really, really sweet rifle, it is a 28 Nosler. It's a Hell's Canyon [01:21:00] long range, uh, Hell's Canyon speed by Browning, 28 Nosler, super sweet rifle.

I absolutely love it. I did tell you, if you ever sell it, you have to sell it back to me. But if you're going to upgrade to the 300 PRC setup, you don't have to sell it back to me. You can sell it to somebody else and put the money towards it. So, um, I'm happy with my 300 PRC, although that rifle is pretty sick.

Um, yeah, if anybody's interested, hit me up on social media. Let me know. Only 60 rounds through it still. I mean, a great gun chamber as well. I mean, it's shoots dead on. I was shooting it at 600 yards. Um, this is probably like four or five months ago, but 600 yards still shoots dead on. So nice. Yeah. Well, sweet dude.

Um, bummer. You're not coming up to Wisconsin, but again, congrats. It's been a year for you. First ever. Yes it has. Dude, you got to keep the Matthews street going. [01:22:00] There hasn't been a Matthews in that camp without killing a bull, except for you this year. No, I'm sorry. Every year that a Matthews has been in that camp, a Matthews has killed a bull.

You can't give me too much crap, dude. You got two more years in a row that you got to make it happen before you can, and you got to get a meal tag and fill that up for me. No, congrats. I'm going to let you go. Um, I thought I was going to do some other stuff, but Sam just came in with her syringe and, uh, she's got to take another shot for surrogacy.

So I've got to go help her with that quick and then get this podcast ready. So everybody can listen to it in two days. All right. We'll see you. All right. Adios.