I Shoot Mathews

Solo Wilderness Elk Hunt Image
Location: Colorado WildernessAlbum: Elk, Caribou, Moose & BearAnimal Harvested or Shoot Type: Elk

Solo Wilderness Elk Hunt

August 28, 2005 by Phillip Gaines

On the last day of my wilderness hunt I had decided to just hunt along the trail back to my truck. Well when I woke up that morning, just before the sun broke the horizon, I needed to get some water for the hike out. So along with my filtration pump and water bottle I grabbed a call, binos, and my bow (just in case). When I reached a small pond just behind my camp, the first thing I did was glass the ridge above timberline, and right away I saw about ten elk. I decided to get closer and see if there were any bulls in the bunch. When I reached the base of the ridge there was a small grassy finger that ran up the side of the ridge, and a nice 5 pt, well he was just barely a 6 was feeding at the top of that finger. He hung out up there as the cows passed above him heading into the thick timber followed by a nicer 6×6. I was cow calling periodically the whole time, trying to pull either one of the two bulls down to me, and the more I called the more the bigger bull bugled at me. When that bigger bull entered the grassy finger the other bull was in, he was walking in with a very dominate posture, legs stiff, chest out, and head held high. He fed around the other bull, keeping him from the other cows. They first began to just tickle horns, which made the cow excited, which made the bulls get a little fired up and start fighting harder and harder. When I notice what effect the cows calling had on the bulls, I began to hyper up my calling., and that really got them going. After about fifteen minutes of fighting, the bulls started working away from the other cows and in my direction. When they got to within a hundred yards, the bigger bull started running towards me, he stopped at two huge pine trees twenty yards away, broke every dead branch off of the trees and made the ground look like someone came in with a roto tiller. I never had a shot at the bull because there was a small pine tree right in front of me, the whole time this bull was tearing into the tree, the other bull was doing the same up the mountain. The bull paused, gave out a quick bugle, and ran in my direction, I drew back and followed the bull. He stopped broadside at less than five yards when he saw me, I dont remember releasing or aiming but the arrow drilled him right behind the shoulder. After I hit him I called up everybody and there mother to get some help, luckily I managed to keep some good friends, who I now am in dept to more than you will ever know. It took me about six hours by myself to take some pictures, de bone him, and get him ready for the pack out before my buddies showed up. After some high fives and hand shakes they hit me with some choice words for killing a bull 6 miles into the wilderness. Mathews, thanks for making such great bows, I am proud to say that I took this respectable bull with my “Mathews Switchback.”

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