9.27.2015

Elk Meat in the bag

So, I shot an Elk!

It was a pretty good moment. I meant to write this post last weekend, as it happened last weekend and I want to keep this story rife with detail. It's been a long time since I used this blog to reflect on much and I may get going again. who knows.

So, my friend took my to his secret spot. It's up high, we hiked slowly to get to where we camped. We saw two whitetail bucks on the way up. It's a good spot. We also saw elk when we arrived where we were going to camp, two above us and one below. We were on the edge of an avalanche chute/draw/ valley. It was beautiful and steep. But we were able to camp on an old road at the edge. We didn't make a fire, so as not to spook the animals that were all around us. I had brought the wrong sleeping bag, so I froze all night. It reminded me of the time I slept in -10 weather with some buddies, I was so cold that night, I made hot water with a tiny bit of whisky and earl grey tea. Every time I woke from being cold, I had a little of that to warm me up and I could sleep again. That was the coldest night ever. But this was not as bad, but still cold. Anyway, I was delighted to get up in the darkness and get dressed and start climbing the steep hillside to get to where we were going to glass from. We had plans to get there and eat breakfast and watch for animals. Before we got to the rock, which was maybe .5 km from where we camped, we saw a young bull, not big enough to shoot. We then crept up a small draw inside the chute until we made our way to the large rock we would sit on and glass from. I started to use my new binoculars, looking down the draw, I watched a black bear mom and two cubs play around and eat mountain ash berries and then I looked up the chute to see a bull elk standing there. I hadn't yet had water or food, we were about to settle in and eat breakfast after our brief hike. I saw the elk and whispered to my friend who had been concentrating on getting his own breakfast, he hadn't even seen the elk. I looked at it and instantly knew it was too small as well, looked briefly through my binoculars, and then grabbed my phone to take a picture. Then he whispers loudly 'it's legal, get ready for a shot' and my heart instantly is racing. I was in disbelief. I scrambled to get my pack set up so I had a rest for my rifle, hoping that the bright blue of the backpack and the noise of it moving around wouldn't spook the elk. so as I get set up, it starts to walk toward us along the ridge, closing the gap from maybe 150 to 100 yards. I'm not totally sure. It faced me head on for a while and then sort of was quartering towards me, where I could aim right at it's heart/lung area. I breathed slowly and pulled the trigger. It dropped instantly, rolled a bit and was down. I was in disbelief. how did that just happen? first thing in the morning! not even 7:30 and I have shot my first elk ever.
We then proceed to leisurely take 12 hours to get it down the mountain in various pieces and to the butcher shop. Of course my friend gets to take half the meat, but he only takes a smaller portion, as he has already shot an elk. So I have waiting for me at the butcher shop, well over 100lbs of elk meat. Lots of work, but very exciting. Most of all, I am touched by the generosity of my new friend who shared his spot with me. Don't ask where it is though, I'll say it's in the mountains.

2 comments:

Victoria said...

whoa. I am jealous. but still freaked out at the idea. I believe in this kind of hunting.. this kind of meat eating. but still. whoa. and congratulations!

Mr. P said...

someone still reads my blog!