The most intense, rip-roaringest hunt ever! Even though the moon was almost full and daytime temps were in the 80s, we were chasing bugling bulls all week. In fact, EVERY DAY I experienced more run-and-gun action than in all seven of my previous elk hunts COMBINED! I almost needed a defibrillator to control my thumping heart.
The guides (all very experienced bowhunters who’d have been hunting had they drawn a tag) were great, the other hunters were fun to have in camp, and I learned a lot. It was like attending an "Elk University."
For those of you on the “meat list,” sorry to let you down, but I didn’t want to stop the fun by tagging out too soon. I passed on a young 6x6 (approx. 300”, which is still plenty big, and I got the whole thing on video) opening morning at 40 yards broadside, then later a raghorn at 20 yards, a spike at 10 yards, and then muffed an opportunity at another 6x6 on literally the final hour (#%^@!! branch was blocking the vitals!). On several occasions I had opportunities at larger bulls, but Murphy interfered like only Murphy can. Once a 350# black bear walked right into the middle of the action just as several bulls were closing in. Another 340” bull was saved by brush blocking his vitals.
It might take a while to draw another coveted AZ elk tag, but you can be sure I’ll be applying every year until I can go back. Will probably write a more detailed version when time permits; let me know if you’d like a copy. - Bruce
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Waxing moon and daytime temps in the 80s, which was unusual. Even so, the bugling action was fantastic, so I can only imagine how it would've been had the weather been normal.