Well after such an amazing start to the elk season, we had pretty high expectations for the next two hunts. Coming in on week two were a group of long time HPO hunters from West Virginia. Darwin, Danny, Garth, and Matthew. Also joining the hunt was repeat hunter Kyle from Texas. Everybody had elk tags in their pockets and Garth and Matthew also had deer tags that would be good for two days. Early into the hunt, the weather moved in and it got nasty! Lots of wind, snow and rain! On the first full day Kyle and I made a move on a big group of elk that was spotted the day before. We covered a bunch of ground and were able to get right into the middle of em. We walked right into a spike bull, a couple cows, and a very nice 6 point bull. Unfortunately we didn’t get set up in time and the big bull slipped into the timber before we could get a shot. A few days later we got into a group of 20+ elk with multiple bulls including one giant! This was one of the biggest bulls we’d seen all fall. He had a huge herd of cows and young bulls with him that made it very difficult to get a clear shot. We moved our position 3 or four times trying to get the right angle but just couldn’t get the right shot opportunity. A very nice 5 point stepped out in the clear at one point, but after seeing the giant, Kyle decided to pass. We spent the next couple days trying to get back onto that bull and the big herd of cows, but couldn’t find them again.
Early on in the hunt Rod and Garth were able to put the sneak on a nice four point buck not far from camp. They got within range and Garth made a great shot, killing his second mule deer buck with Hoback Peak Outfitters. A day later, Matthew got the ambition to walk from camp and hunt on his own while Rod and Garth hunted elk. As he was still hunting his way through the country, a nice buck fed out into the open and Matthew let him have it! This was Matthew’s first mule deer buck and was very happy. While packing out Matthew’s deer, the boys ran into a big Wyoming coyote, and Garth decided to let his rifle bark, and made a nice shot killing the coyote.
The elk hunting got very tough the rest of the week for everyone in camp, with nasty weather, full moon, and other unforeseeable variables, we came up with plenty of excuses for not killing elk. We still had a good time and everyone will be back to give it another go in the future.
The next week brought another repeat group of hunters from Virginia, Matt and Leon. These guys have been hunting with us for close to 15 years and have been very successful. On day two of the hunt Rod and Matt got into a small group of elk in the sagebrush country over an hour from camp. As the group of elk fed up the sagebrush ridge, Matt and Rod got into position to get a shot at the lone bull in the group. Matt got set up and made a fantastic shot on a nice 5 point bull at 250+ yards! Unfortunately Matt and Leon had a family emergency back home and had to leave the hunt after only two days and head back east. They are already planning their hunt for 2014 to give it another shot.