Our latest short elk hunting film follows Ben as he chases rutting bulls in southern Utah. It’s short, but action packed and we really hope you like it! Please leave us a comment with our thoughts! Read More
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I’m excited to spread the word on our latest sponsor – Golden Valley Natural Meat Snacks. These guys have been in the jerky business for a long time and we’re excited to team up with them and provide their products to our contest winners. Check them out at: www.GoldenValleyNatural.com
You’ve probably heard about our contest that is going on this year – I’ve posted the final rules under the contests section of the site. We’re ending the contest on January 15th – so those of you who are taking photos at the end of the year still have time to get them in. The winners will be picked by Feb. 1, 2012. Thanks to NPTaxidermy.com the grand prize winner will receive taxidery services for a free shoulder mount. These guys do a good job on their mounts and I have used them personally. 3 others will be chosen as honorable mentions and recieve a bag of Golden Valley Natural beef jerky and a huntaddicts.com window decal. So get your photos sent in – the only rule is they need to be taken in the 2011 calendar year!
Speaking of winners – this photo comes in as our weekly fix winner. Seth took this unique buck on the Vernon unit in Utah with his smokepole!
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I’ve been getting a bunch of great pictures from this hunting season and will be choosing a bunch of winners over the next few months. To those of you who have taken some great photos this season — send me some more pictures! Not only can you have braggin rights for being featured on the coolest hunting website, but you can also win a window decal.
So without further rambling…here it is:
John took this awesome buck in Utah with his recurve! What an accomplishment! Congrats to John! Your decal will be in your mailbox shortly.
In other news, HUNTING SEASON IS STILL HERE! So get out there and tag something!
Best of luck to all of you from HuntAddicts.com — The DIY Hunter’s Homepage!
First off, thanks for subscribing to our email list, it’s growing daily! For those of you who haven’t subscribed, go to any page on the Hunt Addicts website (except the forum) and enter your email address in the orange bar below the logo. It’s free, confidential, and every update I post will be sent right to you!
Secondly, I’ll apologize. I’ve been too focused on other parts of the site and haven’t put up any good photos lately. We’ve got a new “Weekly Fix” up this week from the General Season in Northern Utah. Dan killed his first buck after trying for a few years, and his patience paid off. He knocked down this 199″ monster on arguably the toughest deer unit in Utah.
Happy Hunting, the season will be here before we know it!
With state draws coming to a close across the west (I know we’ve got a couple more to go) it’s very common to hear friends, coworkers, and even strangers shout with joy, or moan and complain about their personal draw results. Many of us have been in both of those situations, if you haven’t — either you don’t apply for Limited or Controlled Hunts, or you are full of crap.
Take this year for example — I pulled a Elk tag Read More
All that anticipation for about 3 hours of hunting. I’m not complaining, but sometimes it is funny how things work out. This year’s general muzzleloader hunt in Utah was short, but very cool.
Hunting rarely turns out as expected…
After planning this hunt with my brother and long time hunting partner, Ben, I expected to spend opening day hunting alone, that evening he would come down after work and hunt with me the rest of the week. I enjoy hunting with Ben because he hunts hard, and his hunting style is very similar to mine. So I was glad when he said he got the opener off and would meet me at camp the night before the season opened after dark.
Ben had been watching a great buck early in the season in a particular area, and I hoped to locate this deer (along with a few of his big buddies) the night before the season started so we could position ourselves accordingly before light the following morning. We knew, that along with the light, there would be other hunters – as can be expected on a general OTC hunt, especially in Utah.
This area isn’t a long hike from the road, it is rather steep however, and I barely made the top before dark. I spend about 15 minutes as the light was fading searching for any sign of the big buck. Nothing. I returned to camp, set up the tent in the dark (which was more difficult than it should have been with this particular tent), and waited to Ben’s arrival. He showed up as I was hammering the final tent stakes in with a big rock, trying not to injure a finger or toe. We talked about what I had seen that evening, which didn’t take very long, had some dinner, and hit the hay–in anticipation of what we might find the next morning.
4:30 came pretty early that morning. We wanted to be in position before anyone else so we made our way up the mountain plenty early. We set up on a ridge between two basins, each glassing one. As it was just getting light enough to see, I spotted a buck in the bottom the basin I was watching. I watched him for several minutes, waiting for the light to get a little brighter so I could judge him a little better. He looked like a heavy buck, but I couldn’t put him past his ears. I would expect that he was a 18-22 inch buck, I never did get points counted, as it was too dark and he fed into the timber. I continued to glass, checking in every now and then with Ben. He was not seeing any deer, just the lights from flashlights and headlamps of hunters moving around and across the basin he was watching.
I had a hunter move in from below, check the wind and move on. I’m pretty sure he never saw me, as he was quite intent on sneaking, even though I was only about 20 yards away. I watched a group of does and a small velvet covered spike feed out into the bottom of the basin. I set up the spotter to try and put some big antlers on one of those deer. They suddenly spooked, I turned around to see another hunter just above and behind me. I waved and walked up to talk to him. He told me there were at least 4 hunters on the top of the basin, I had seen one below and Ben had seen a lot of guys moving in from the other basin.
Ben and I decided to move. With all the surrounding pressure, we figured some deer would eventually get bumped. So we elected to move down the ridge, and work through the bottom of the basin I had been watching, up through the timber where I had seen the buck go at first light, and hopefully we could jump some bucks, have some pushed to us, or find some up and feeding in one of the secluded meadows, hidden from the view of hunters on the high ridges.
Let me go backwards just a little bit now. At least 2 of the hunters on the ridge, we had expected to be there. A good friend of mine had told me about this area several years ago, and his sister was planning on hunting the top of the basin. This played into our original plan, as I didn’t want to disrupt her hunt and was hoping she might knock a buck down first thing that morning.
Now back to the story…as we reached the bottom of the basin, we heard several shots above us near the top of the basin. We stalled, watching and listening for spooked deer to flash through the trees ahead of us…Nothing. We moved silently, listening, through a few open meadows in the bottom of the basin. We heard another shot above us (this totals 3 shots). But still no animals were spooked our way.
We continued moving forward, when suddenly I heard something ahead, and saw the flash of antlers come from around a tree about 30 yards ahead of me. The big buck was startled and hit the brakes when he saw us, turning and crossing to my left as he dodged a large deadfall. I was fumbling with the hammer on my muzzleloader as I raised the gun to my shoulder. The deer was picking up speed, I remembered thinking, “don’t hit him too far back.” My iron sights caught up with him and I swung to the front of his shoulder and let one fly. It rocked him hard, he turned towards me and stumbled back. He was dead within 10 steps. I had hit him perfectly through the front shoulder.
Ben had been a few steps behind me watching the excitement. “More bucks!” he yelled, and took off on a “Lance Merrell Run” towards them. They were moving to our right about 80 yards from me. After his heroic sprint, the deer passed Ben at fewer than 20 yards, all broadside and moving past in single file…3 point, 3 point, 2 point. He let them run and the forest quieted down again.
I walked up to the downed deer.
I would not have thought that I would have killed my biggest buck to date with a Muzzleloader on Utah’s General hunt. The buck is 27.5 inches wide and gross scores just shy of 184 inches.
This year has been a hectic one. I have only donned the camo twice and both times were for evening jaunts with a good friend looking for a poor little buck in Northern Utah. No bucks were seen on either of these occasions. Typically by this time of year I have put in 8-10 days of hard hunting with my bow chasing bucks or bulls, or whatever.
But I am looking forward to next week – Utah’s General Muzzleloader season. The only hunt I have planned for this fall is the Utah general deer hunt. I plan on spending the better part of next week chasing bucks in the Southeast region. This will be my third year hunting this particular area as part of the dedicated hunter program and have harvested one deer…and missed one. The first deer was taken 2 years ago. I hadn’t taken a mule deer buck in several years, and was getting a little bit frustrated finding anything worth shooting in the Cache Valley area. While on a scouting trip for a friend’s elk hunt, I managed to run into about 6 bucks in a high mountain meadow. While none of these bucks were monsters, one was a pretty 27 inch four point, who stood facing me at 60 yards while a few of his comrades busted me from fewer than ten. That winter I changed my region and spent the next year bow hunting every weekend, and finally filled my tag on the third day of the muzzleloader season with a pretty little basket racked buck. Having not taken a buck in several years, I had been holding out for a 4 point, and when the opportunity presented itself, I took it. The next morning I lent my gun to my brother and he managed to take a big three point, his biggest buck to date.
Last year was much like the previous. The bow hunt was full of close calls and near misses. I never launched an arrow, but came very close nearly every day. The muzzleloader hunt rolled around, and I did not find a buck that I wanted to fill my tag with. A good friend of mine was hunting with me and we tried our best to get him his first buck. After a few exciting stalks, we were outsmarted and the deer got away, as did we, with not much more than a few stories to show for it. Ben (brother) had better luck. He jumped a 24 inch 4 point from its bed and somehow stuck an arrow through his lungs before he got away. The buck died within 100 yards of his big three point from the year before. Now they hang together on his wall, perhaps they “hung” together the previous year while still alive.
The rifle hunt got a little bit interesting. I missed a good buck opening morning. I’m not sure how, it happened really fast, and I think I must have shot over him as the shot angle was steeper than I thought. Another good friend, who had never killed a buck either, was along with me and we did manage to harvest a young 3×4. He was all grins as he missed the buck once, but we found him bedded a few minutes later, where he made up for past mistakes and put a good shot as the buck stood to run. A first buck is always a good buck!
I came home after that hunt, a little bit disappointed that I had missed a good buck, but in a way excited for the upcoming years, as I could still harvest bucks the next 2 years.
So it brings us to this year. My wife and I were blessed to welcome our first little hunting buddy into the world in early August. He has kept us both very busy and I have not had the time to get away to hunt yet. So I’m looking foward to next week, hoping I can make good on two years worth of anticipation and take a good buck. I’m not expecting to harvest a monster, although I’ve heard rumors of a few good bucks running around. I would be tickled to take a nice deer, somewhere in the 150-160 class. I think it’s very doable and will report back in a little over a week.
Until then, happy hunting to all you Hunt Addicts. I hope you have a safe and successful season.
BTW, here is a picture that Steve sent me from Wyoming. He’s had a successful season. I’ll post up the story when I get back. In the meantime…keep those pictures coming guys!