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Joshua States

Photos from an Elk hunt

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So I went elk hunting in support of a friend of mine who had a bull tag in the coveted 6A hunt unit here in AZ, I posted a few shots from the field using my phone here: https://www.bladesmithsforum.com/index.php?/topic/36064-greetings-from-the-wilderness/  I couldn't believe that I had the connectivity, but it did use a heck of a lot of my cell phone battery!

Here are a few more shots of the last week.

The juniper trees in AZ come in 3 varieties, one of which is called Alligator Bark Juniper because of the bark's texture. In this particular area, the Alligator Bark trees grow very large in comparison to other areas. I came upon this particularly large tree and had to take a few photos. It is about 3 feet in diameter at the base. This is uncommon, but not what really amazed me. The size of the bark scales was incredible. These lumps are almost as big as my hands.

Juniper 1 (opt).png

Juniper bark (opt).png

This tree was burned out on the backside, but still very much alive.

Juniper 2 (opt).png

One of the varieties of juniper produces berries. These trees were in full production this time of year.

Juniper berries (opt).png

While I was out scouting for Carl, I found this natural watering hole.

Natural tank (opt).png

We came back to it later the next day and there was a whitetail deer (called coues deer in AZ) getting a drink. She jumped up the bank and stood on the opposite side watching us, trying to determine if we were a threat or not. These are very wary animals. She couldn't really decide and disappeared around the back of the tank only to reappear behind us. She stood there, totally motionless for about 15 minutes, standing in the shade and shadows of a small pine. She was better at being motionless than we were, and when Carl finally moved just a little bit, she took off like a gunshot.

Whitetail 1 (opt).png

Whitetail 2 (opt).png

The highlight for me was when I was out scouting a dry watercourse. The area was covered with elk sign and game trails. I saw these two cow elk through the trees about 50 or 60 yards away.

I decided to wait and see if there was a bull following them. Suddenly, I hear this elk bugle from behind me. I turn around and here he comes from behind a juniper about 80 yards out. I fumbled for my phone and set the camera. He walks right to me and never even knew I was there. He just had his head down and walked along, grazing as he went, letting out the occasional half-bugle/squeal. In the last photo, he is only about 13 yards away.

Close encounter 1 (opt).png

Close encounter 2 (opt).png

Close encounter 3 (opt).png

Close encounter 4 (opt).png

I should not forget the sunset. There were some wonderful sunsets this week. Here's one.

Sunset (opt).png

Edited by Joshua States
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To wrap this up, I had to leave last Sunday and Carl stayed up north to finish the hunt, which ended Thursday (9/27) at sundown. I was at work Thursday and at about 5:15 PM I get a text from Carl that read: "Bull down at 45 yards. My phone is at 10%. Not sure how long it will last"  Now, I work in downtown Phoenix and it takes me about an hour and a half to get home. Another 2 hours to get to where Carl was. Luckily, I had already scheduled Friday off. So, off I go. Unfortunately, he was hunting a tank I had never been to and it was around 9 PM when I finally found his quad parked at a trailhead. It was a long night and a half day later when we got done. Here is the photo before the real work began.

4939.jpeg

Shot at 20 yards, dropped dead 25 yards later. Doesn't get much better than that. Especially with a bow and arrow.

 

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Niiiiiiiice!  What a beautiful elk, and that rack is great!

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I have wanted to Elk hunt all my life and it was never in the cards. Now I am getting too old, and busted up to be able to hike that kind of county anymore! They say that there is a herd of Elk beginning to show in the NW corner of Nebraska, where I am originally from! They tried to re-introduce them years ago and the poachers shot them off! Love the pictures though! But who knows they tried several times to introduce turkeys when I was a youngin and the same thing happened with damn poachers. Who knows about the elk, Nebraska is now lousy with turkeys they say!!

My wife will sit and let me tell her old hunting stories when I know she could care less but, she acts like she is listening. Sometimes she really is. When I told her about walking up within about 8' of a whitetail  deer fawn. I stood and watched for several minutes. It could smell me but wasn't sure what to make of me. I had surprised the doe and she ran up the trail ahead of me. Finally I stomped my foot at the very late in the season fawn and told it you better get smarter or someone is gonna have your for lunch.

The wife looks at me and says I can see you love nature by the way you told that story so how can you eat deer. Well I laughed they are right good next to a few taters and some sweet corn for supper! Then I told her I feel I am a true sportsman. I won't make a shot I am not sure about, and you still better to know how to track as you might have the worst case scenario happen! You don't waste the game and never take more than you need. Yep I love nature. Been through a corner of Arizona years ago but it was at night and never stopped. Pretty country from the pictures you have been posting!

The bark on that tree reminds me somewhat of an old cotton wood tree but, even it is not nearly that knarly! Really enjoyed the pictures and sorry for the ramblings of an old coot! 

Edited by C Craft

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Wow Awsome pics great animal too.

Goose season starts here in 2 days so I will be out and about.

Lovely area you have to hunt.

P.s I like the ramblings CC

Edited by Rob Toneguzzo

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