I have rifle hunted my entire life. About a year and a half ago, I decided to get into archery. I loved the idea of the challenge, and let’s face it, there’s nothing better than big bucks in the velvet! I was super excited when I drew an archery tag for the unit right in my backyard. My family has hunted this unit since my Grandfather was a boy, and knew the unit well. It has a reputation as an incredibly difficult bow unit, due to its open and very “cliffy” nature. I knew we would have to get after it, and we sure got after it!
We hiked in the day before the hunt and spent all day glassing. We saw some decent shooter bucks, and planned to make a play on a couple of them the next day. Easier said than done! For the first few days of the hunt, we were outsmarted again, and again. My wife and I had just had a newborn baby (huge shoutout to her for letting me go) and I knew I only had until Wednesday to get back to work and school. Finally, after hunting hard, I got my chance on Monday night. A big 27″ wide 4 point wandered into range at 40 yards. 40 yards should be a simple shot, but the buck fever was real! I missed at 40 yards, and got another shot at 60 yards and missed that one as well. It quickly got dark, and we hiked back to camp. I was so bummed! I didn’t think I would get another shot, and I knew I was running out of time.
The next day, we hit it hard again. It had been a very stormy night, and we hadn’t gotten much sleep. To be honest, we were absolutely exhausted that day! I didn’t want to hike, I didn’t want to be in the heat, but I wanted another chance, and that desire drove me forward. Luckily, the next night, I got another shot. It wasn’t at the big 4 point, but a really pretty tall 3 point with good forks and great mass wandered in at the same distance, 40 yards. I MISSED AGAIN! Luckily, the buck spooked to 60 yards and looked at me. I drew back again, but didn’t have a shot. I held at full draw for what felt like an eternity, and he finally turned broadside. I let one fly at 60 yards, and heard the thump- I had connected, and I knew I hit him well. The buck ended up running about 800 yards, and we were able to recover him quickly. It was an amazing experience, and I couldn’t have done it without my Dad and my little brother. We worked hard, and hiked hard. I wore Skre Hardscrabble pants, and the Skre Wasatch Crew top. I was so impressed!!! They were so comfortable, and the pattern blended in perfectly to keep me hidden. They kept me cool when it was hot, and warm when it was cold. I’m a huge fan of Skre and will be a lifelong buyer. Thanks Skre!