Yeti

2020 Idaho and New Mexico elk A year of success and first

jharcourt8

Active member
Joined
Jul 6, 2019
Messages
43
Location
California
2 seasons in and feel like an elk hunter! It all started about January of 2019 I got the ELK itch. I've hunted big game like deer and bear in my home state of California since I was around 8 years. Also being an avid duck hunter I never had the desire to to head out of state and hunt this badass species. Something about all the videos I started watching from Born and Raised outdoors, randy Newberg and lots of old will primos films I had to buy an archery tag and try it. I spent my life savings are the best lightweight gear, not really but probably seriously haha. 2019 I felt ended being a success trip, although I came home with empty coolers I learned alot in the elk woods. 2019 didn't play out like all the videos though. No bugging bulls huffing and puffing running into range. No opportunities for a shot. I saw bulls probably 9 out of the 12 days but they just didn't seem very rutty. I don't know I was a rookie out of stater. I did meet some awesome guys from Utah(hunting in idaho). Curt and bransen awesome guys! They gave alot of helpful tips staying in touch still today.
Fall of 19 and spring of 20 was all practice calling, scouting and putting in the draws. Of course my wife would draw a late season New mexico tag. No draws for me. So otc idaho I went.
september 2020 Idaho I felt I went backwards everything I thought I learned , practiced, scouted, areas I thought I knew flopped. Then day 9 came. Day 9 I became an elk hunter. I had a beautiful 5 point fire back across a burn from me on ridge over maybe a half mile. I buggle. He chuckles. I buggle. He chuckles. I spot him he beds down rakes a tree. Stands up. Chuckles. Lays back down. Pretty weird I thought. Then I bugle he stands up and starts running like a race horse towards me on a burn so I can see him perfectly I have never in any of the videos I've seen, seen anything like it. He gets down in the draw I can hear rocks and oh my he is coming. I draw my bow. I see his rack through the brush he gets to 40 yds and stops. Wind is perfect. He never gave me a shot. Dam. Depressing but the coolest thing I have ever been apart of. I was so excited to tell my hunting partner. It was so cool it might have well been a kill. Adrenaline like no other. On way back to camp I bugled with no response. Suddenly I look over and spot 2 cows ranged standing at 51 yds. Had to do it. I did it I smoked her. One of the most nerve racking blood trails I've ever followed. She went 400 yds come to find out I hit diaphragm and liver but I became an elk hunter. I never planned on taking a cow but you would have thought I shot a 300" bull very excited to shoot my first elk.

November 2020 New mexico
My wife has never been elk hunting and finally shot her first buck in fall 2019. We drive to New mexico and spot bulls on the first scout day. Day 2 the Friday before season we spot the same bulls and decide thats where we need to be on opening day. We get there early in a great vantage point. We don't see any elk all day. Day 2 of the 5 day season. We decide to stay in that area and again fail to see an elk so we decide to try somewhere new. Having never hunted the unit in new mexico we had no idea where to hunt. We drove around let me tell ya beautiful ccountry. No elk but lots of deer hunters had seen em. Just by chance , fate , gods grace we see 5 guys on the side of the road. I pull up and ask them if they just shot or about to shoot one and they explain how they were tagged out and just looking for fun in an area they usually see elk and deer. After a short conversation they ask who had the tag. The wife I replied and without hesitation they offered to take us to a spot they had seen a bull the day before. With little hesitation we took them up on there offer. No names exchanged yet. It wasn't five minutes down the road and we had a bull spotted feeding with 10 or so cows about a mile off the road. Well to make it short we snuck in and she smoked her first elk. A beautiful bull. I. So jealous but proud. These 5 guys though let me tell you without hesitation put there frame packs on hiked in there. Helped me quarter and all strapped meat on their packs. Like wow is this a dream. One trip 7 guys and the bulls out of the woods. Jared, Issac, Miguel, Jeremy, and Luke I can not thank you enough. You guys are a blessing. truly what a fellow hunter should be. Awesome stuff right there. 2020 I'd say successful 2 for 2 on elk tags can't wait what year 3 brings 123_1.jpeg Screenshot_20201110-114415_Messages.jpg imagejpeg_1.jpg Screenshot_20201116-183911_Gallery.jpg Screenshot_20201116-183937_Gallery.jpg Screenshot_20201116-183956_Gallery.jpg Screenshot_20201116-183946_Gallery.jpg Screenshot_20201116-183952_Gallery.jpg
 

F250

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 9, 2011
Messages
807
Location
Vermont
Congratulations on both hunts ! Don't feel bad ... the largest set of antlers on the wall in our house belong to my wife 🤷‍♂️. Great to read about hunters helping hunters !!
 

QELKhunter

Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2020
Messages
6
A NM bull is one of my dream hunts. Hopefully if everything works out and I get lucky enough to draw a tag next year that dream will come true. Idaho and Montana are on the last as well.
I love hearing or reading success stories like this as it always builds the motivation and desire up for future hunts.
 

Gr8bawana

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 14, 2013
Messages
4,117
Location
Nevada
Congrats to your wife! It's also great to hear about fellow hunters jumping in to give a helping hand, or backs. ;)
 

Kysteve

New member
Joined
Dec 10, 2020
Messages
22
Awesome read! Congrats to you and the wife. My wife got drew for an archery tag in 2019. We spent 12 days on two different trips chasing elk. We had a great time but let me tell you we were both so tired and sore after each trip! We saw 4 bulls, one of which we had a bugle contest with, but couldn’t get any closer than 80 yards for a shot. We learned a lot and are hoping to get lucky in the NM draw in 21.
 

old school

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2019
Messages
42
In a year filled with turmoil and division, what a contrast your story is to that. Glad to see some fellow hunters lend you a great big helping hand. Congrats to you and your wife - and to the guys who helped you out. Awesome!
 
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