Pictures from the '06 Archery Elk Season

Jim's collection of news letters about this season for his "Do it Yourself Elk Hunting" book.

Elk Fever Partner for Sale Shot Placement

My side of the story......

     This was one for the record books for me.  The first day out I shot a nice little 3x2 buck deer.  I was sneaking through some real thick timber next to a meadow and saw him walking towards me.  I picked my spot in the timber and waited.  He grazed his way towards me.  i drew my bow and as he stepped into the break in the timber I made a meh sound to stop him.  He froze and looked at me at 25 yards and the arrow was already on the way.  He ran about 40 yards and piled up.  My first archery deer!

     The 2nd day up I spent the morning packing my deer out after hunting my way in.

     The 3rd day Jim headed into town to meet up with his wife and drop off his boy so he could get back to school.  I'd been looking over the maps and wanted to checkout a real nice shelf.  I showed it to Jim on the map and he told me that when he'd hunted the area 20 years ago he'd always wanted to get a look at it, he'd just never walked in that far.

     When I got into that shelf I knew I was into something.  I was seeing sign and it just "felt" like elk were close.  I spent most of the day sneaking as slowly and quietly as possible but still trying to get a good look at the area.  Then the smell of elk hit me like a brick - they were close.

     I backed up and found a couple good shooting lanes got an arrow knocked and cow called - nothing.  Next I let out a couple little quiet grunts with my throat and he instantly started to scream at me - not really a bugle but a scream.  He was close and I could hear him coming.  He ran up the trail towards me and stopped at about 10 yards behind a big spruce.  I couldn't see any part of him.  He stood there for a couple minutes and started to walk out, but then I couldn't draw with him that close and his eyes coming out from the tree first.....

     I wanted until his head went behind the next tree and grunted to try and stop him but he kept walking.  I drew my bow knowing this was all about to come to a end very rapidly.  He knew something was up and started walking away downhill angling away from me.  I picked the only spot I could get an arrow through and when I saw his shoulder I let the arrow fly.

     I saw the arrow pass go in through his flank and my heart sank.....  He bucked and ran off down the hill.  Here I was over 4 miles from camp, in an area I'd never hunted, wasn't really sure where I was, my hunting partner was in town floating around a hot spring with his wife, and I'd just stuck an arrow in a 6x5 bull elk.  Shees the things I get myself into.

     He was about 30 yards away and at a extreme quartering away angle.  The arrow passed through his right flank and broad head was sticking out 4" just in front of his left shoulder.  I hit the liver, the lungs and the heart as perfectly in the middle as if I'd just stabbed the heart with an arrow.  He'd only gone 50 yards downhill so finding him was no problem but it was starting to get dark and I had a LOT of work to do.

     Before I left I had him quartered, in my big Alaskan game bags and hidden up under a big tree.  I took the heart and liver back with me that night, now if I could just find my way back to the camp.....

I got back to camp at about 11:00 and was beat, and very excited, and a little lonely......  Jim still wasn't back yet.  I took my topo map and wrote on the back...... "The good news is I have a dead 6x5 elk on the mountain.  The bad news is... -over-"  On the front of the map I'd circled where the elk lay.  It was about 4 miles from camp and about 2k feet up.  It was at the far side of the shelf Jim and I'd talked about.  Next I put my spare pack frame on the step of his trailer so he'd have to move it to get in, I'm not known for my subtlety.....

Well Jim rolled in at around 1:00 AM and was both happy for me and unhappy about where.....  We left with pack frames at 7:00 that next morning and had to make 2 trips.  We finished at 21:00 that night after dark and were beat!  That's 16 miles and 2 trips up 2k feet and back down with 100lb packs.  I felt like the meat on the bottom of my feet had been squished off......

The next day we relaxed and had a few beers, but that's another story......  I was done.  I'd filled both my archery tags in 3 days in an area I'd never been before.  Guess where we're going next year......  ;-)

Archery 07