a post by Caleb
(our 15 yr old son)
Well, it has been a busy, hard, fun and rewarding week for me.
It all started Saturday morning - the elk opener. As some of you might know, I work for some hunting outfitters. We had three clients from California that came to bag a big one. Before the season opened, I went scouting almost every day. One evening, I called in a very good looking 5x6. He was a very unique bull and he had my name written all over him. Unfortunately, I knew he would have to survive the hunters from California who pay around four grand to come up here and hunt before I could try to harvest him. The morning of the opener, at first light, I spotted "my bull" chasing around a few cow elk. Even though I didn't want to - - but it was what I was getting paid to do, I called the guides and told them I had spotted a dandy bull elk. So, a guide and a hunter came over, but by the time they got to the area where I had spotted him, he had bedded down in some thick brush. So, that night, they went back to the same area where he had been that morning, but some how during the day, the bull must of moved cause I spotted him and another bull about a mile down from where he had been. I called Higgs (one of the guides) and told him that the bull was below them and I told them to hurry. They weren't fast enough and it got dark before they could get within shooting range. This happened for about three days until Higgs and his hunter were tired of chasing "my bull" around and ended up shooting a smaller but a very good looking bull across the canyon. The three hunters all got nice bulls and left Monday afternoon with smiles on their faces.
Now, "my bull" would have to get passed me before he could live through another hunting season.
I went out that night and glassed (used binoculars) all the places we had seen him. I didn't see a single elk so I decided to hike above where I thought "my bull" might be bedded down. I reached my destination and almost immediately I heard cow (female elk) chirps and this time of year all of the bulls have cows with them so I was pretty sure he was probably in the brush with the cows.
I did a couple cow chirps to call him out from hiding, but nothing seemed to be happening. Then I looked behind me and to the right about twenty yards, there was a bull looking right at me, but he spooked before I could get a shot off. I was extremely bummed to have lost that chance. I decided to try and stalk him and see if I could get close enough to shoot him. I got up and started walking when I spotted a bigger bull in the same place. I waited for him to graze out into the open, which he did, and then he smelled me or something and he threw his head up and perfectly broad side at twenty yards he stood there looking at me. He was the bull (my bull) I had been scouting for all those weeks and the bull the other three hunters weren't able to kill.
I didn't even take time to think... I quickly buried the butt of my 270 rifle into my shoulder and BANG!
One shot - one kill :)
I had killed the big one! It was very exciting. My first bull!