RJ and his bull.

On the hunt

Big Sky resident shares his elk hunting experience

My first bull ever! This bull elk was harvested on public lands with the help of a few good friends. As the memories of this hunt have danced in my mind more than I would like to admit, it was a “textbook” hunt. All variables fell into place. We made the right decisions at the right times. We called him to 10 yards, and I took him with my bow. He died ethically in under five minutes.

I have chased “ghosts of the forest,” as the Native Americans referred to them, for six years. I have harvested two cow elk in those six years, but could never close the deal on a bull. I will tell you I have made more than my fair share of mistakes in the field. From those mistakes I learned and became a better hunter. That’s why hunting is so unique. You must study these majestic creatures in order to be successful time after time. 

This season was a roller coaster, as I was within a few hundred yards of countless bulls only to have one or more variables not go as planned. We finally made it happen! Thanks to all those I’ve hunted with and learned from! I cannot be more excited to have harvested this animal! He will be some good eating, and he will be hung on my wall with honor so I can share the tales of the hunt for years to come. 



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Lone Peak Lookout

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