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Taylor Puts Meat in the Freezer....Again.

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Short and sweet trip report.


Taylor drew a 7W cow tag this year. 14 years old, and has back-to-back-to-back elk tags. 2 Bull tags in 2014, 2015, and a cow tag in 2016. She was excited for the hunt, since she hoped it would be a bit easier than her bull hunts. Yes and no.


We left on Thursday after school. Got up to the cabin by 4:30, dropped the trailer and headed to scout the unit for an hour and a half.......0 elk seen, about 100 camps and 200 trucks driving around.


Friday morning, 4:00AM Wake up, get ready, hit the truck by 5:00AM. Legal shooting light by 6:03AM. Saw 3 cows at 5:58AM on our way to the first glassing spot....that walked off before we could get out of the truck to get set up. Glassed for a couple hours, change spots, glass some more. Hike a few miles. Glass some more. Try new spots, glass, hike, glass, hike, glass. We tried high, we tried low. Didn't see another elk all day. We hadn't heard a peep from any bulls either. Frustrating. Tons, and I mean TONS of road hunters. Only glassed up a few guys out hiking the hills. We heard a total of 1 shot all day. Taylor even drove for about an hour.




We did see a huge jackrabbit, that I thought was a coyote when it took off at first.






Drove into Williams to fuel up, and talked to a fellow hunter at the gas station. Talked a bit about the hunting, and told him Taylor had the tag. He was hunting with his 2 grandkids. He gave me some pointers on how his hunt was going, and no specifics, but where to look for elk. He had seen 65 elk, and his grandkids had gotten 4 shots, but missed all 4. I told him I just needed to get a look at a cow, and Taylor will do her job. He left me with his cell # and said if we didn't have anything on the ground by Sunday, to call him and he would tell me exactly where to try. Great guy, Terry. And a huge key to our success.


Saturday morning, 4:00AM. Wake up, hit the truck by 4:45AM. Get to our new spot (where Taylor killed her 2014 bull) by 5:30AM. Get out of the truck, and wait for about 10 minutes, listening. Nothing, no bugles. Cow call a few times, and hear a very distant bugle, way up the mountain. Jump in the truck and drive about a mile around the mountain.

Get out at 5:45AM, and wait, listening. Nothing. Hit the cow call a few times, and hear a bugle up the mountain about half mile away or so....hard to tell exactly. Grab the stuff and take off after the bull. I kept cow calling as we were pursuing, and soon had 3 different bulls bugling back at us. We picked the biggest sounding bull in hopes he still had cows with him.

6:35AM, sunrise, we catch a glimpse of a couple satellite bulls through the trees about 75 yards up from us. Wind in our face. Bull still bugling above the satellite bulls. We skirt the satellite bulls, and keep moving up.

7:05AM, we finally see the herd bull and his "harem". A single cow, about 150 yards ahead and uphill from us. No shot, too thick, but we are on the elk!


Set up in hopes of a shot




Bull and a cow in this photo...




7:15AM They kept feeding uphill and away from us to the left. We had to move and gain a little ground on them if we wanted a shot. So we advanced, slowly, keeping the elk in sight. The cow wandered off to the left, and we lost sight of her. But knew the bull would stay close, kept after him. We had to move when he had his head down or behind trees, and got within 100 yards of him. That is when we got busted by the cow.....


7:25AM As we are slowly moving, I see the cow behind a bush, looking over it right at us as we come to a stop. Slowly, I unshoulder the rifle, and drop the bipod legs. Taylor goes to her knees, and I get the gun set down. The curious cow, walks quickly towards us! Gets to within 75 yards, directly behind a big pine tree, and facing us, and is playing peek-a-bow around both sides of the tree with us. Taylor is uncomfortable, so goes to sit instead of kneel. A single trig snaps as she does so, and the cow gets nervous real quick. I told Taylor, get ready, she is going to bolt. If she stops for a good shot, put one in her.


7:27AM The cow bolts to our right.....about 10 yards in the open, perfectly broadside. Taylor is behind the rifle, watching her through the scope....with the safety on! I reach over, flick off the safety, and tell her to squeeze slowly. BOOM!!! Cow takes off like shot from a cannon, I watch her disappear into a canyon, noting trees and landmarks are she passes them. The bull walks towards us wondering where his last piece of tail for the year just ran off to.


Right after the shot




7:30AM Bull wanders off, Taylor is antsy, wanting to go find her cow.


7:35AM I tell Taylor to stay put, mark the shooting spot on my GPS, and go to where the cow was standing. Ground tore up from the hooves, but no hair or blood. Easy to see where she ran though.


So I follow the tracks, and get to the "V" tree that she passed. First drop of blood, about 1/8". Blood means something to follow. Good sign.




I call Taylor over, and we start the tracking job. Next blood I find is on both sides of the trail. Very good sign. Entrance and exit holes are both bleeding. Blood trail gets very good after about 30 yards from where the cow was hit.




7:50AM About 75 yards from the shot, the cow is in the bottom of the canyon.








Big cow.




Exit hole from a 7mm 180 Berger Hybrid






Got her all quartered up, gutless method, neck roasts, back straps, tenderloins, and ready to pack out by 9:00


Getting ready to start the pack out




1.44 miles from the truck, and about 280# of meat and bones. 2 trips each. Got her all out by 1:00PM. We were whooped. Taylor helped a ton, and packed out both front quarters and the tenderloins.


Sunday, my other daughter and son-in-law came up and we did a bit of squirrel hunting.






This was my shot of the year. With the new .22, 75 yards, off hand, in a tree, one shot, neck shot.




The dogs were very curious of the smell on my pants when I got home.




Dogs waiting on the leg bones to cool




Got her all cut up and packaged yesterday. This weekend will be grinding the burger and making sausage.


Mmmmm....back straps.




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Congrats to you guys on getting it done! Awesome pics!

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Sweet rifle as well!

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Congrats that's awesome that will be good eating there

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Way to go Lance!


Man, she is a stone cold killer!!! It has been fun watching her turn into such a slayer!

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