Sunday, October 3, 2010

Big Bull


I filled my elk tag this year. You might remember from a post a while about me drawing out for the BIG BULL ELK tag in the wasatch region and I had only been putting in for a few years.  Since working full time and taking care of a little one isn't enough work, I decided to add a little more. Brian and his Dad were so jealous since they have been waiting 13 and 14 years for their tags, respectively. They were willing to do anything to help me get one. Brian has been so excited since we found out :) They bought trail cameras to get pictures of the elk in the area. They hiked to certain spots (a hunter never reveals his/her secrets), set them up, went back a week or two later to retrieve the pictures, and then placed them in other spots. They also went spotting every weekend leading up to the hunt. Yes I know, my husband did most of the work for me, but who was going to take care of the little girl if I went?! I have only spent two nights apart from her since she was born.  Both times had to do with the hunt, and it ripped my heart out both times.
Our family friends, the Taylor's, also had a tag in their family. Abbie got a tag this year and she had only been trying to get one for two years. So it was us twenty something blonde girls up on the mountain for the big hunt, but we had lots of helpers!!

Here's the story...
We hiked in before the sun came up and found our spot on the mountain. I was on one side of the mountain and Abbie was on the other. There was just three of us walking together Brian, his brother, Russ, and me. We went into a group of trees only to find out that this is not where we wanted to be, so we turned and went back out the way we came. When we got out of the trees, we heard an elk bugle very close to us, just a short distance down the hill. Russ spotted some more elk about 300 yards away. So we sat down and hid near the edge of the trees. The elk that were just down the hill from us headed up toward the rest of the herd because one of the cow elk spotted us 25 yards away. When the rest of the elk reached the herd, we saw three big bulls. At one point all three of them were in my scope at the same time. Brian was right next to me looking through his spotting scope to tell me which one to shot at. I was aiming for the biggest one in the heard. The elk were running and my first two shots missed. Then they stopped and I shot a third time from roughly 300 yards away. This time I hit him!! He took only a few steps before he fell down. This all happened about 7:30 in the morning. Russ filmed the whole thing for us.

When we got up to him, we realized that I had shot him right the through the vital (lung and heart) area. It the most humane way to kill them. They die quickly and do not have to suffer. All of the target shooting paid off!

This was the big group of us from left to right: Joel, Nick Zarbock, Brian Cole, Abbie, Russ, me and Brian.

The quickest way off the mountain was just to quarter it and take it down in pieces to the lake.
Brian took the hardest part. Doesn't he look like a mountain man? I think this picture is so funny, he looks like he is "one" with the elk.

We each took trips across the lake in the Taylor's boat. Brian's dad did the driving.

It took us about 5 hours to get back to the Taylor's cabin after I shot the elk. They are not small animals! I carried about 50 pounds of meat in my backpack alone. We dropped off 275 pounds of meat at the butcher and we figure entire elk weighed roughly 800 pounds!!

Our trophies!! They may not break any records but they are very nice six points!

And we had to get one of the family. It is so funny....after this hunt so many people have asked me if I will let Brooklyn hunt when she gets older, and my response is "of course." We will let her do anything that interests her!!

I am so glad that the hunt is done. We got both bulls within the first few days of the hunt and it was so nice to not have to stress about getting one at the end of the week. It is a good thing I did this at this point in my life since I don't think I will ever have another opportunity. Life gets a little crazier with a kid. I have killed a dear and elk and am satisfied with that!! Plus, our freezer is full for years to come!!


  1. Way to go Britnie! That Elk is huge! Now the question is are you going to mount it on your wall?? It's pretty impressive!

  2. Yeah Britnie!! Very impressive :) Your elk is enormous. And yes, I want to know too.... are you going to mount it??

  3. Yes we are going to mount it, but we are not putting it in our house. It won't fit anywhere!! The plan is to find a temporary home for it until its permanent home is built (Brian's parents cabin).


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