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Hi guys,
I was up in the hills about 20 miles from my house this afternoon hiking with my wife. We were hiking along a trail where the brush was mashed down, and we kind of thought it was from horses since we had seen some folks riding in the area.
Pretty soon we started hearing animals moving and cow elk talking! I didn't have a cow call with me so I did the best I could by squeaking with my lips. They began to talk back to me for a little while, then I made a terrible sound while trying to lip-squeak and they stopped chirping for a while. We could still hear them in the trees and the wind was right so we kneeled and crawled a little closer. The trees were so thick I only got a couple glimpses of legs moving, even though they were only about thirty yards off. We could smell them too, like a barnyard cow. Eventually they started chirping to one another again and we backed out and left them in peace. We had to be somewhere else so it was time to leave anyway.
All-in-all a very exciting time! And typical of North Idaho - lots of elk and brush so thick you can't see them! It got me all fired up for hunting season! ID
 

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That story reminds me of my wife and I backpacking along the Buffalo National River in northern Arkansas.
I like to point out animal sign to her. I noticed a buck rub off the side of the trail and pointed it out to her.
Saw another.
Another.
And one coming up right on the trail.
As we approached the last one I became more and more impressed with the size of the buck that had made the rub. That is, until we got to it and I realized that the top scratches on the 8" tree were higher than I could reach and that's about 8 feet.
My wife said. "A buck made that?"
I replied. "If I wasn't in Arkansas I'd swear that was an elk rub."
I found out the next day that we were in the vicinity of the release point for the Leatherwood Wilderness Area Elk Herd. A herd that has since been opened for VERY limited hunting.
Two weeks later we saw a bull from the highway in the same area that is larger both in antler mass and body size than anything I have ever seen on TV or in magazines. (I have never had the priviledge of hunting them). When he raised his head the antlers seemed to almost touch his rump. What a magnificient animal!!!
We have seen as many as 24 at a time along the river between Boxley and Ponca Arkansas.
 

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Days of hunting are getting closer - what are your plans for this Fall? I'm going to guide some moose hunters in October, and I'm really looking forward to the pre-season scouting for that. I usually get serious around the 15th of Sept. The third week of November I'll be in the same area of Northern Maine hunting for a big buck with the 45-70 guide gun I aquired last December and have slowly been modifying w/ FP sight, fiber optic front sight, WW trigger, WW ejector, DRC lever, and Pacmayr Decelerator pad. Can't Wait
 

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I drew a cow tag for a small unit in Central Oregon this year with two buddies. They will be packin .30/06. I will alternate between 45/70 and .300 WinMag. The area alternates between brushy and mile long panoramic views. I have never killed an elk so wish this meat hunter some luck. The unit is small and sandwiched between National Forest land and private land. Last time I scouted it, I didn't see any elk. On the way back out the same road we drove in though, we found elk tracks in our own tire tracks! So that was encouraging.

It's going to depend on weather and hunting pressure on the Nat. Forest side of the fence. I hope it forces some elk down to us.

45/70 is loaded with Marshalls LFNGC 405 grain and .300WM is loaded with Nosler 180grain Partition.
 

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Last evening my elder son ask where we are going to hunt deer, and I had to respond that I didn't know. So he suggested that I go scout. I invited my wife for a ride today through the Red Desert area to scout some new territory, as the area we hunted last year became a draw area.

Hotrod, Just where in Central Oregon are you hunting? I grew up in John Day and Prineville, then worked in Redmond for about 9 years. I used to hunt the Ochoco's and East into the Blues. My dad was the Forest Service supervisor on both the Ochoco NF and the Malheur. Good country!

dclark
 

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The time is upon us here in the North.

I have been quite busy tying up loose ends for my little remodel business, and getting house ready for winter.

My hunting buddy flies in from Florida on Monday evening and we are heading north of the Brooks Range for a week and a half of Caribou hunting with the longbows. This year we are equiped with a small floatilla of rafts and have a float trip planned.

I get two weeks at home then before the fall moose season begins and I have to do my duty for DenaliHunts...sigh...September in a tent and clients that want em close enough to wipe a booger on.

I thought I was getting sick but it is just my neck swelling from the rut.

Ugggh, ugggggghhhh...

Scotty
 

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Okay Coldfingers, rub it in. I'm taking off for the field during mid week - for WORK!!! Another month on the backside of nowhere (might as well be the NW corner of the Brooks). If the contract is amended as anticipated, I doubt I will get home till around the first of October. The first sheep season I've missed in years. Moose season doesn't look good either. Maybe I'll get a November deer hunt in the PWS.

To all, good luck. May the meat pole sag under the weight.
 

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Did any of you moose hunters ever see the tv show about the woman artist from Quebec whose passion is moose? It's better than any video I've ever seen. She really comes up with some subtle and unconventional ways to call in bulls, and her methods really work on a bull that won't fall for the same old - same old. It was on the Discovery channel or one of those educational (don't let my kids hear me using that word) cable networks about 5 -6 years ago. "Oh - Waa" "Oh - Waa"
 

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Central Oregon

dclark,

I mostly hunt the Grizzly Unit or the Ochoco Unit. This year the only tag my party drew was for Crooked River Northslope. It's a cow tag. Having never killed an elk before, I hope to put some meat in the freezer for a change. Elk populations seem to be as good or better than deer these days. Problem is the majority of the herds are on private lands, whether it's deer or elk.

So I don't hunt until Thanksgiving this year. I may break down and buy a bow tag for deer which would be late August into September. But I haven't had time to shoot the bow much so I don't think I will. I may just go out with my neighbor who has been shooting. :rolleyes:

I live in Prineville. My hunting is usually on a short budget. Last year I made an elk hunt in the Tolgate area east of Milton-Freewater. Blew a seal out of my motorhome transmission and $700 later was able to drive it home. We had to rent a tent trailer for the hunt, since the m/h spent the weekend in the shop in Pendleton. So much for traveling to a hunt. I've also hunted a little bit in the Fort Rock area. When I was a kid I mostly hunted the Columbia Basin, Fossil, and Heppner units, since I grew up in Condon.

John :)
 

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Hotrod,

I know the places well. Good luck in the hunt. That travel is expensive when things break.

It used to be that the Grey Butte country had a lot of broken timber(juniper)/sage country that grew big bucks. Most of that is USFS/Grasslands and open to hunting. I obviously don't know the pressure. I remember missing a nice buck out there by holding over him at about 75 yards with a .30-06 and shooting right where I was holding as he ran in front of me. Try hunting some of those edges where it changes from timber to sage with 2 - 4 people. Some in the timber, some out.

Glad to hear from that country.

Dave
 
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