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No Off-season: 2021 Hunting Adventures

IdahoNick

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I thought I’d do a year in review for 2021 as it was a good year of hunting for my family and friends. I doubt I’ll ever have another like it. Maybe it'll be interesting.

It involves ten species over five states, but mountain goat and moose are included, so I stuck it here.

I'll go month by month.

If you see a photo and recognize a spot or unit or hunt or whatever, pretty please don't be "that guy" and post anything.

My oldest daughter turned ten on Dec 31, 2020 and was legal for big game. We began getting after it for her on Jan 1, 2021 with a six mile hike in good snow that yielded no cat tracks. And so began a pretty epic season. Screenshot_20220506-124536-244~2.png
 

IdahoNick

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January – My daughter (H) and I spent time hiking for lion tracks and were eventually assisted by two of my buddies in finding a nice lion which she took with a .300 Blk. My buddies (C and G) hoisted the cat for the photo, put it in my daughter’s arms and then they stepped away while I snapped a pic. My hound, Spike had been injured pretty badly in December 2020 (which is the subject of another thread) and this was his first catch since that incident. Screenshot_20220506-124508-863~2.png Screenshot_20220506-225030-681.png
 
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IdahoNick

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February – My buddy, C and I had a few more runs on some lions with our hounds. I was working a new puppy, Jackal, who did very well. We let her take her own lion track for one of them, and she roasted it and treed on her own. She is a granddaughter of one of my dogs, Drama, and has some major juice, just like momma and grandma. She is a Ferrari with no governor...and no brakes, and is an absolute PITA at home. She had a lot of promise at this point, but needs a lot of work. Screenshot_20220506-225159-202.png DSC07552~2.JPG
 
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IdahoNick

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March – C and I treed a couple lions, but I'll focus on a blooper highlight when Jackal snuck off the trail on me while we were hiking for tracks and trashed on a deer. Went something like this…

Me: *looking around* “Hey, you seen Jackal?”
C: *looking around* “No man, not sure where she went.”
Jackal *350 yards away* “awwwwlllll!!!!”
C: *pointing up to ridge 350 yards away* “she’s chasing that deer.”
Me: *fishing in my pack for my GPS to shock her while looking up on hill* “Those two deer hauling a$$ right next to one another?”
C: “Naw man, that’s one deer and Jackal, she is about to catch it.”
Me: “sh**!” *pulling out e-collar receiver and slamming the shock button*
Jackal: *receives 10,795 volts from her shock collar* “AWWLLLLL!!!!” *leaves deer after almost grabbing it and heads back with head down and won’t make eye contact with me when she arrives*
Me to Jackal: *imitating Michael Scott from The Office* “why are you the way that you are?”

I also made a trip to Africa for a dangerous game hunt that had been severely delayed due to COVID. The trip was originally supposed to have been July 2020 and with my wife, but with the risk of being quarantined overseas, we didn’t think it was prudent to both go with four kids at home in March 2021. IMG-20211219-WA0002~2.jpg Screenshot_20220506-231455-882.png
 
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IdahoNick

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April- I killed two turkeys and helped some friends and family on birds. I like spring turkey hunting. I grew up in Midwest, so turkey hunting is in my blood. I also like that they are easy to pack off the mountain... huge bonus. I used to bear hunt quite a bit in the spring with my hounds, but as more and more babies fell out of my wife, I had to slow down on the bear hunting side of things. It is time consuming with baiting and travel.

I also sat my daughter, H down and showed her my self-made hunt application spreadsheet. I’m a super nerd about this, but it is one way to keep track of deadlines, points and states. I explained how some of the different draw systems work and so forth. H looked over the sheet.

She asked me, “which one do you want to draw the most?”

“Easy,” I say. “I want you to draw that bull moose tag.” Screenshot_20220506-124429-919.png
 

IdahoNick

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May – I helped C and his dad get turkeys, and my wife missed a jake on our annual turkey outing. My wife likes hunting, and has gotten some neat stuff (draw bison, moose, lion, bear, deer, etc) but likely wouldn’t keep going if a lion ate me tomorrow. She will go out with me if we can find a sitter for the kids, or if we take all of them.

A lot of draw results came out in May. My 10-year-old, H, pulled bull moose! 30 seconds after that sank in, I got a screenshot of the results page from C: “Holy sh** I drew mountain goat!” A couple weeks passed and I pulled a Nevada bull elk tag.

I had checked the results late the night they came out. I started screaming and jumping up and down in bed. My wife said something like, “I’m glad you drew, but I don’t like it when you use the f-word so many times.” Haha. It felt great, but I also felt a weight on my shoulders knowing the mental expense of working to fill and help fill three once-in-a-lifetime tags. It is a good weight, but I know how rare these opportunities are, so I want us all to have good hunts.
Screenshot_20220506-124415-800.png
 

IdahoNick

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June - I took a road trip with C, C’s bro, and G to hunt javelina. This was a first for me. Good times. They stink, but are fun to hunt. Screenshot_20220506-124324-012.png
Screenshot_20220506-124308-116.png

We also began scouting for my C’s goat tag. On the first trip, in an effort to really get remote and in an area we thought others won't go, we took a boat five miles, and then hiked another ten and camped a couple nights. We saw two goats. He had somehow picked a unit with all white rocks and low goat densities. Spotting them was really tough, even through Swaros on a tripod. On my CO hunt, as well as a hunt with another buddy in 2020 in ID, we were elbow deep in goats in most drainages. We knew this would be a challenge, but we had a lot of time to scout and a long season to hunt so we were confident we could find a big billy. Screenshot_20220506-124220-104.png Screenshot_20220506-124236-113.png

I spent time with H practicing. She is a petite kid. I opted to have her use my Bergara 6.5cm. The 6.5 caliber is popular moose medicine in Scandinavia. Admittedly, I still wouldn't call it an ideal moose round, but I figured if I went much bigger she'd develop a flinch. The rifle is heavy, and with a suppressor it doesn't kick much.
Screenshot_20220507-080443-935.png IMG_20210807_093927935_HDR~3.jpg
 
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IdahoNick

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Never understood blacked out faces, especially for adults and double especially on forums like this where nobody would be able to discern any personal info about them anyway so the potential harm of a photo is nil.


Nice stories tho so thanks. Carry on.
I pm'd you
 

IdahoNick

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July – C and I continued scouting for goats on each side of a mid-July hunt on the islands where we killed some axis deer and sheep.
Screenshot_20220507-083531-913.png
On that hunt, we saw some old friends and hunted hard. When the kill tally went north of double digits and we had plenty of meat for us and our local friends, we went fishing. We each brought back about 80-100 pounds of boned, trimmed meat.

As always, the TSA people made us show them all the frozen meat. I assume it must look somehow suspicious in the x-ray machine as we carried on most of it, frozen and carefully packed in our backpack carry-ons and an additional carry on “personal item” to maximize space. I’ve never had a carry-on weighed and have done a fair bit of traveling, so I often put a bunch of meat in carry-ons. Screenshot_20220506-124201-430~2.png
IMG_20210803_203145_093~2.jpg

The TSA guy just dumped our bags out and C’s Swaro’s bounced off of the inspection table and absolutely hammered the ground. C was thrilled about this. Soon the TSA guy realized there were zero bombs in all of our meat, so we reorganized and repacked our bags and headed to our gate.


We kept after the goats, backpacking in to different drainages. Sometimes he would go solo, other times I'd be able to join. Screenshot_20220507-083610-852.png
 
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mevertsen

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January – My daughter (H) and I spent time hiking for lion tracks and were eventually assisted by two of my buddies in finding a nice lion which she took with a .300 Blk. My buddies (C and G) hoisted the cat for the photo, put it in my daughter’s arms and then they stepped away while I snapped a pic. My hound, Spike had been injured pretty badly in December 2020 (which is the subject of another thread) and this was his first catch since that incident. View attachment 221743 View attachment 221765
What bullet in the BLK? My daughter killed her first with a 300 BLK and a 130 grain Speer flat point.
 

OntarioHunter

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How did the Africa hunt go? Last year I bagged fourteen species counting birds (fifteen counting accidental merganser). Never thought about counting it up. You certainly had a busy year. How did you manage to get a year off work?

Some folks could be subject to harassment at work if the put up photos on the net of themselves with dead animals. Not a smart thing to do if one is off work due to workman's comp claim (been known to happen!). And kids can easily get harassed if some other bully sees their pic up with dead critters. Teens are always looking for some way to make drama. However, I wouldn't think Idaho would be a place where any of these concerns would be much of an issue. But I haven't lived there for almost forty years and I'm sure it's changed.
 
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IdahoNick

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Joined
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
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How did the Africa hunt go? Last year I bagged fourteen species counting birds (fifteen counting accidental merganser). Never thought about counting it up. You certainly had a busy year. How did you manage to get a year off work?

Some folks could be subject to harassment at work if the put up photos on the net of themselves with dead animals. Not a smart thing to do if one is off work due to workman's comp claim (been known to happen!). And kids can easily get harassed if some other bully sees their pic up with dead critters. Teens are always looking for some way to make drama. However, I wouldn't think Idaho would be a place where any of these concerns would be much of an issue. But I haven't lived there for almost forty years and I'm sure it's changed.
I get 13 weeks off. Wasn't a problem.

I wasn't illegally milking a wc claim.

Africa was good. Was a big 5 hunt so I don't post about those. Too hot-botton.
 
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IdahoNick

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735
What bullet in the BLK? My daughter killed her first with a 300 BLK and a 130 grain Speer flat point.
Awesome! Great lion round imho.

I used a 125 sig sauer match bullet going supersonic. I think 300blk is a sweet round for lions in trees. Not enough people practice with a pistol to be effective, and I have had a .22 caliber high powered bullet turn into a snafu. She could shoulder it, and I like the big hole without the possibility of the other side getting destroyed from a bullet going really fast.
 

mevertsen

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Awesome! Great lion round imho.

I used a 125 sig sauer match bullet going supersonic. I think 300blk is a sweet round for lions in trees. Not enough people practice with a pistol to be effective, and I have had a .22 caliber high powered bullet turn into a snafu. She could shoulder it, and I like the big hole without the possibility of the other side getting destroyed from a bullet going really fast.
Ditto my thought process.
 
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