Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Elk Hunt '09

This past Friday we headed up to go elk hunting with my parents. I love being back in Utah and around the awesome fall colors. I also was really looking forward to being able to hunt for more than one day before flying back home like the previous 5 years.
We got a beautiful campsite in some pines and aspens and the kids were in heaven. We had several mule deer that kept wandering through our camp.

That night we built a fire and let the kids roast marshmallows and make smores. Again, heaven for the kids.

The chocolate all over Tuckers face says it all. Cole was such a happy little baby all bundled up in grandmas arms.

These next two were actually taken before the evening fire, so, sorry they are out of order. Anyway, Friday evening my dad, Tucker and I went back up to where we were going to hunt to scout it out a little bit more. The views were gorgeous and really made me grateful for living in such a beautiful state.

When we got there and got out of the truck, we told Tucker he had to whisper so we didn't scare off the animals. He was hilarious because he began whispering and continued whispering even once we got back to camp.

The next morning we got up and went out to our site. To make a long story short, on opening morning my dad essentially shot and killed a spike after a group of road-hunting red necks were firing at us trying to hit an elk that ran between us and them. They made it over to the elk first and were claiming it as their own. My dad and I decided it wasn't worth the fight and to let the morons keep it. After that, the rest of the day was very slow and quiet.
We headed back down to Midway to go to the priesthood session at conference. My cousin Jaron met up with us there. He and my parents went back up that night while Lisa and I stayed home with the kids.
Lisa and I headed back up on Sunday afternoon to continue the hunt. Jaron and I went out that evening and hiked through some amazing country, but didn't see any elk. We did hear a bull bugling, but a huge snow storm rolled in and caused all the animals to hunker down. As we hiked back to Jarons truck the snow was flying horizontally and it was a white out.
The next morning we got up, it was FREEZING! The storm had left a few inches of snow on the ground and we mentally prepared ourselves for the cold.
As the sun was coming up, we heard several bugles. What a sound that is by the way. For anyone who has never heard a bull elk bugle in the wild, you need to experience it at least once in your life.
We had a hillside full of elk and we ended up killing a spike.

You'll notice in this photo that the spike is still in velvet. I thought it odd that he hadn't shed the velvet this late in the year, but I guess it's common for spikes.

We gutted him out, quartered him, and the began the arduous task of packing him out from the bottom of that canyon back up to where we could bring the four wheeler. I quickly realized how out of shape I was as I huffed and puffed up that steep hillside. Jaron was a beast and actually did most of the hauling as I couldn't keep up with his speed.
Here is a photo of me hauling the spikes hind quarters. The hardest part though was the rib cage. At least I got covered in blood from that and looked very hard core afterward.

Once we had hauled all the meat up and taken it up to the truck with the 4 wheeler, my dad drove me and Jaron up an dout. For any of you who have seen the movie Red Dawn, the saying, "Wolverines!" was going through my head at this moment.

Back at camp Tucker was so excited that we got an elk. When we went to take this picture, he wasn't so excited about touching it, thus the grimmace on his face. He did tell me though that he thought the elk was too big, and that he wanted a smaller elk.

It was a fun trip this year and I really enjoyed being up there with Lisa and the kids, my parents, and Jaron. Oh yeah, and the colors weren't quite as vibrant as in years past, but it was still a beautiful weekend.


Russell said...

Awsome hunt Cody. People who think the hunt is all about killing something are oh so wrong. Although that is awsome too!!

Kevin said...

Nice pics man... I'm glad you guys were able to get one this year. The elk had been no shows for you guys the last few years! Were you guys south of Strawberry? It totally looks like the area I go snowmobiling in during the winter!

Carson Calderwood said...

Awesome bro! Wish I would have been there. Dad is still the great old hunter man!

Leah and Mike said...

Looks like you had a blast, as always! Love the orange :) P.S. Your giraffe cake turned out great - good job!!

The Strong Family said...

mike is super jealous!

Tiffany said...

wow! That's a big elk. Nice job.