We arrived at camp exhausted from our travels; however after a home cooked meal and a short debrief of what our guide had been scouting, I was eager for morning to arrive. Being so far in the bush it gave us the chance to really take our time without interference. It was text book rut going on, the bulls were bugling early in the morning and evening. It was so thrilling being able to call these monster animals into archery range; although I was hunting with my new 300 win.mag, observing them that close is always exhilarating. I think Elk are one of my favorite animals to hunt for that reason, they're so communicative, which gives you the opportunity to really feel like you're part of their world. It is so important to me to focus my mind when I'm outdoors, it helps me gain an appreciation and respect for this sport I love.
It was the evening of day three when we heard the sound we had been waiting for, a gorgeous bull was bugling and we were able to call him into range; however, we were losing daylight and thought we were going to miss our chance at a shot. His curiosity caused him to circle us for a while, which made it hard to get into position. Finally he stopped long enough to give me a beautiful front, shoulder shot and he dropped right there, a beautiful 7x7 bull. I had just gotten my new, custom made Horizon Firearm and I could not have been more pleased with the unbelievable precision and accuracy it performed with. In true British Columbia form, my excitement didn't stop there! We had entered this hunt with 2 Elk tags, which we filled (although my dad's wasn't as big as mine, I was still proud of him ;), and a Mountain grizzly tag. Time was running out and I really didn't think we would be lucky enough to encounter one. It was the second to last night of our hunt and our guide asked if we wanted to go have some fun with the wolves. We went to where we'd been hearing them howl and got set up. Our camera man had just turned on the camera when my guide tensely whispered in my ear, "Get your gun ready! There is a monster grizzly heading right towards us." We were in complete shock! At first I thought it was a wild horse, it was that big! Because we were only planning on hunting wolves I was the only one who had a gun, there was no back up plan or gun! As soon as I got him in my scope I took the shot, after two shots I laid him right down, I put a 3rd one in just to be safe! I was shaking uncontrollably and for a full 30 seconds we all just sat there in complete disbelief. I just took down a world class Mountain grizzly, top 50 harvested in North America all within the span of 10 minutes! This is one of the reasons I love this sport so much; you never know what's going to come out of the woods and present you with an opportunity of a lifetime. Having my dad right by my side, sharing this experience, is something I'll never forget. I can't encourage parents enough to engage their children in the outdoors, you never know when you'll have the chance to create a memory of a lifetime with them! Good luck to all the hunters out there and be safe!
Check out some of the gear we relied on during the hunt: