Good arrival and learning point. The same rings true for me when teaching. It's great you can pole holes in paper but let's shoot on the move and under time. Totally changes the game for most people. Thanks for the tips!
Well I started out my rifle season hunting elk, and man was it a fun hunt... I was fortunate enough to have one of my best friends come with me and help me out on this hunt. Day one, I could have filled the tag the first 30 minutes of the hunt, but where is the fun in that... We saw one bull hit the dirt and they were right in the path of where we were going, so we went down and helped them get a few pics and were back on our way, and no joke, We were in the elk all day, it was a non stop bugle serenade and the fighting bulls were unreal, lots of antlers breaking real fast, the Rut was full throttle! We ended up passing on several good bulls the first day, and found one great bull that we just couldnt get to because he was on a landlocked piece of blm and he could care less about cows, cow calls, bugles, or fighting bulls, he was content being a loner, and smart on his part. As the sun was moving farther west to end our first day I passed on a few more decent bulls as we headed back to camp to make a plan for the morning. Day 2, we ended up getting a late start we accidentally set our alarm for p.m., Instead of a.m. so we were pushing an hour late, & we wanted to be at the top of a Hill at daybreak instead we ended up only getting to the bottom by daybreak. The action was a little slower starting out this morning there had been a landowner that drove through the BLM to get to their property & that had seemed to push some of the elk out of the area, also more & more hunters were closing in on the area I was hunting, pushing the elk around, but hey... thats public land for ya. We were headed up to the top of the Hill as we hear a shot coming from where we were headed & it was a definite hit, made me wonder if it was the bigger bull we saw the day before, or just another good bull. We pushed on, and as we reached the top we saw elk, not as many as there was the day prior, most had already gone down into the bottom to water and up the other side on to the private but there were still a few so we set up and broke down what was there not seeing any shooters. After an hour The landowner came back out pushing more elk into the private, and had a nice bull. We decided to move forward going farther back, we put over 7 miles on our boots, not seeing or hearing another elk, we decided to stop for a break & make a new plan, We ended up deciding to head back where we saw elk before. After the noon mark each hour seemed to go by quicker, But also with each passing hour getting closer to the evening the elk started to move more, we saw a couple more bulls and got back to where we saw the majority of the elk, & started calling, We called in a few nice bulls real close, But not the one I wanted yet. As the Sun was getting ready to set we saw a bull coming out of the private that I liked, he had good mass and good bottoms, I decided if we could get him close enough I would take him. We called at him but he was just a little too far to care about the calls so we decided to get a little closer to see if we can coax him in. We did just that got in position and started calling, only a smaller bull decided he was gonna come in first. But the bigger bull was coming! After the smaller bull came in and decided we werent as cute as he thought we sounded, then my bull came in, I looked at him and liked his mass and the way his 3rds laid out, and decided id take him, my buddy tony called him in for me to 80 yards and the 6.5 did the rest, took him at last light, we headed down to take a look at him, got some pictured and started the process of getting the meat taken care of, we quartered him out and bagged up the rest hung the quarters up to cool and took what meat out and that was the end to my hunt and the begining of a tough packout, but at least it was all broke down for the next morning.
I started using trail cameras in 2018. Originally it's was out of curiosity and just for fun. I really got hooked on them when I started getting great elk pictures. Now I run several cameras all year. I get pictures of coyotes, foxes, deer, elk and antelope. I bought my first 4 cameras used from a store in town. Then I bought several Stealth Cam units. The images got significantly better. I got drawn for elk in SD Black Hills in 2019 and added two Moultrie cellular cameras. That was a game changer. They allow me to view the images without having to walk through the area that I placed them in. Excellent images from the Moultrie cameras. They helped me determine where to hunt and helped me tag my elk on the second morning of the season.
I've recently started putting cameras on my trap line, it adds some fun to the day when I get to see what is traveling a trail or looking at a bait pile. It also helps understand the animals in the area better and their reaction to changes I make. I am returning one that for some reason doesn't take pics once it leaves my house and have had good luck with the stealth cam so far.