Well let’s get into it!
Two weeks ago I headed to the limited entry area I’m expecting to draw for Mule deer this fall to do some land scouting, I took my rhino over and buzzed up and down the mountain. Finally found an area that had looked promising on my topo map, so I grabbed my Badlands Ox and headed in! I had weighed my self down heavy to try to get in shape for this fall, before leaving the house It weighed in at around 55 lbs. The area looked good on a map but man did it look great in person! Sage brush rolling into cedars, rocky cliffs, aspens, scrub oak and mixed pines as three canyons connect into one! I hiked around the rims looking down into the pockets, sadly I had woke up late and my hiking was slow due to the weight. The area seemed empty of deer or movement, but not of sign. Trails so wide and worn that four-wheelers could ride them through the saddles along the ridges gave me hope! I had weighed myself down with a trail cam and some deer attractant, I couldn’t help myself, the area looked great and the weight on my back made up my mind to start losing weight! I set up my cam on one of the heavy trails and spread out attractant all over. If everything to this point didn’t make me feel good I found a great mule deer shed laying in the bottoms!
Sadly this is the only picture I took, someone was easily too excited to focus!
I headed out that afternoon and stopped at my home. Only to get a call from my step-dad saying him and his friend Paul, a guy we hunt with yearly, were staying at the cabin that night. So I headed the opposite direction I had come from and went to another mountain! I spent the afternoon at the cabin talking with dad and paul and watching movies. The next morning I decided to go check an area dad and paul had seen a large moose in during the winter. I’m usually not much for shed hunting but I couldn’t resist, I wanted the exercise! Plus a moose shed would be a bonus! So off I went, I hiked a few miles up the ridge and the steep face looking for any shed…..
Now a steep ledge, two days worth of hiking and a heavy pack make for some slippery moments, and here is where moral of the story/tip comes in! While hiking I began to slip, the rocks under me decided to give way where there were no trees or brush to save me. Instantly I went into theme song mode, I knew I could stop myself from sliding down the mountain to the bottom!!! So what better song to sing than Journey’s Don’t stop believing! Well I didn’t end up at the base of the mountain but I did end up on my back sprawled out breathing heavy and cursing, all thoughts of singing long gone by now. Moral of the story?? If you start to fall, try a different song!
Shortly after recovering from my little accident I decided to head back to the rhino, with both my back side and pride bruised nothing sounded better. Of course not wanting to cover ground I’d already walked I dropped onto the other side and started on my way back. Well one pain my shadow another but nothing beats an adrenaline rush!!! Just as I crested into a bowl I looked down onto the largest elk shed I had ever seen! The base was too large to reach around and if the two points weren’t broken it would have been a giant!!! Now I’d all but forgotten about my spill and spent another hour looking for a match, I never did find another shed but between my two sheds in two days, and 8 or so miles, I was more than happy!
Good luck to you all!
Next Time I’ll sing Bang Your Head by Quiet Riot……