It was my pleasure to hunt this December at Philmont which is just north of Cimarron New Mexico. I took this 7 X 8 bull Elk on December 11, 2018 while hunting with JB Hodgdon of Hodgdon Powder Company, my host. I was using a pre-64 Winchester 70 30-06 with a Leupold Scope that Simmons had installed. The shot was at 296 yards on a 30 degree down slope. It was my first Elk hunt and it was quite thrilling to be apart of the operation. The shot was just the beginning of the adventure.
After the guide, Chuck Enloe, and me climbed down the 300 yards over rocks and fallen trees to reach the big bull, the gutting commenced. Chuck then climbed back to the rim of the canyon and called for the horses. About 2 1/2 hours latter the 2 pack horses arrived with 2 wranglers. We had already started the process of fild dressing the bull into 4 quarters, the neck and the head with a cape.
Packing the big bull out on horseback after dark is something I will never forget. I felt akin to the men and women who had done this exact same thing back in 1870 or before (although my ammo and scope were quite superior).
How does one describe the primal feeling after the hunt of accomplishing something necessary? I can’t really. I can only say that at that moment I felt that I could indeed venture to into nature and provide for my basic survival – the need to eat.
Thanks JB. It was a blast.