Archive for the Ungulates Category

Archery Recurve-The primitive challenge

Posted in Bear, Big Game, caribou, North America on March 26, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

Many sportsmen who are involved in hunting have a favorite weapon.  Some are long range hunters who choose to challenge themselves by finding the perfect long range opportunity.  Other hunters relish the old smoke pole.  Famous hunter Jim Shockey was the first to harvest record book quality animals of the 27 North American big game species using a muzzleloader.  I personally, have hunted with a firearm (an ancient Winchester Model 70), muzzleloader, and compound bow.  One group who prides themselves in the ultimate handicap when it comes to weaponry are recurve archery hunters.

Most recurve hunters will tell you that their weapon has about a 20 yard effective range.  Compare that to a 40-60 yard effective range with a compound bow, and you can see the challenge.  Add the primitive and instinctive draw motion and colorful wood construction of many recurve bows, and you do feel a certain primitive connection with ancient hunter gatherers.

This old tom was dropped by a persistent recurve enthusiast.

While I was researching this post, I came across one amazing archery site

These guys hunt giant bears using recurve bows.

This 950 pound grizzly was shot as it charged.  The old boar scored into the Boone and Crocket records books.  Congratulations to hunter Pat Lefemine.

This giant brown bear was harvested by hunter Tom Huebner in Alaska at less than 10 yards.  What an amazing challenge on one truly dangerous animal.

I loved this quote from the site, “I shared this hunt with my uncle, an Alaska resident, stalking this dry, 8’4″ sow (the only lone bear we observed in 14 days) while she hunted red salmon on a lake shore. Shot her three times from 25 to 35 yards and she feel in sight. It was all over in a matter of 20 seconds. All arrows hanging by the fletching on the far right side, grouped tight through the lungs.”

A Moose named Malcom

Posted in Big Game, Friends and Family, Moose, North America on March 20, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

My in-laws recently sold their cabin.  We have many wonderful family memories from the cabin including, of course, wildlife.  The canyon that held the cabin was full of Shiras Moose.  One of North America’s great ungulates, Shiras Moose are the smallest of all Moose species.  As you will see in the photo, there is nothing small about these creatures

This giant bull was nicknamed, Malcom.  We enjoyed watching this old boy most of the summer and into the fall.

This old boy often hung out in the front of the cabin, as demonstrated by this great photo.

My wife is watching Malcom from the front porch.  What a beautiful photo of a moose in velvet.

Forgive the fuzzy photo.  But this cow and calf could often be seen in the same area as Malcom.  We like to think this calf was sired by ol’ Malcom.

Moose born on the lawn

Posted in Big Game, Moose, North America on March 11, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

This one had to be a shocker.  This is what the email says about the photos:

In my 33 years in Minnesota, I have never seen a newborn baby
moose. This one was not even a half mile from our house. The mother
picked a small, quiet neighborhood, and had her baby in a front yard
just off of US 53, at 5:30 am.

Joe and I were out bike riding when we came upon the pair. The lady across the street from this house told us she saw it being born. We saw them at 5:30 PM. So the little one was 12 hours old. What an awesome place we live in to see such a sight.

Giant Archery Billies

Posted in Big Game, guides and outfitters, Mountain Goats, North America, Ungulates, World's Best on March 8, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

British Columbia is not only known for it’s giant mountain goats, it is also known for breathtaking scenery.  Check out these two photos from stick and string outfitters

Located in Western British Columbia, not only do these old males boast giant horns, they also have beautiful wooly coats that makes these animals so famous.

Below is a map of the hunting area.  I loved this quote from the website:

“B.C.’s Northcoast bordering Alaska is noted for having the highest population of mountain goat in north America. Our Exclusive 10,000 sq. mile guide area is located in the heart of mountain goat heaven. Towering peaks, mountains, ice fields provide some the best habitat for these magnificent animals. The high mountain goat population in our area allows for an extended season. Goats maybe hunted right up until the end of February.”

Sign me up for an early season archery hunt!  Contact Matt at Stick and String Outfitters.

Matt Burrows
Stick & String Outfitters, LLC
P.O. Box 441
Pine, CO 80470

303.524.2461; email:

Shiras Moose Generations

Posted in Big Game, Moose, North America, Ungulates on March 1, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

This morning as my family was getting ready for work and school, my 12 year-old called the family to the kitchen window.  Across the ravine, 3 shiras moose were hanging out on the hillside.  I grabbed my camera, ran across the ravine and got a few photos.  Enjoy!

After watching the animals for about 10-15 minutes, this is my best guess.  One is an old female.  The second is last year’s calf and is a male.  You can just see his horn buds in couple of the close-ups.  The third is also a male and probably her calf from two years ago.   Check out the frost on the female’s back-pretty cool.

Calf on its way to its Mother

Calf greeted by Mother

Older brother makes his way to the others (above).  Younger brother sticks his tounge out at older brother (below).

Here are few interesting facts about Shiras Moose in Utah.

(1) Shiras moose are the smallest of the moose species.  Populations exist in Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Washington and Oregon.

(2) Experts believe that in the modern era, Shiras Moose are not indigenous to Utah.  In 1957, the first Shiras moose count found 57 total animals.

(2) The population high for Shiras moose has been reached in the last 10 years, with a record number of 4,000 Shiras moose in the state of Utah.  This number appears to represent more moose than can be supported in many areas of Northern Utah.  Harvest quotas have been increased to maintain the current and more sustainable level of 3200 shiras moose.

Interesting Excerpt from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources:

Moose are well established in the northern half of Utah with the majority of the moose existing on 9 management units (Table 4). The current statewide population in Utah is estimated at 3200 animals. The general trend of the moose herd has been upward since the late 1950’s, with an average annual growth rate of 1.12 from 1957 to 1991. From 1992-1996, moose populations declined likely due to above average mortality during winter 1992–1993 and moose populations exceeding carrying capacity on some management units. During the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, moose population again grew and reached a record population size of nearly 4000 moose in 2005. Since 2005, the moose population has been intentionally reduced due to habitat degradation concerns.

Trip to the Backcountry

Posted in Deer, Friends and Family, North America, Ungulates on February 20, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

My backcountry bowhunting trip is without a doubt, the trip I look forward to the most every year.

I go solo.  5-7 days with a pack on my back.  The area I hunt is a 4 hour trip one way and 4500 vertical feet of up and down.  Sleeping in a bivy on a narrow game trail keeps it light.  I simply can’t find another way to do it.  There are some great animals, but it is harsh terrain.  Two years ago I almost killed the mule deer buck of a lifetime. 

I spotted this monster buck down in a deep basin. 3 hours later I was guessing a bit, but thought I was within 40 yards of his hiding place.  I popped over the narrow ridge between myself and where he had been all morning.  I looked down the ridge to where I thought he was holed up.  Perfectly upwind, the greuling stalk had gone exactly as planned.  But he wasn’t there.  Had he found a secondary escape route?  I had the rest of the basin to my open view and I was sure that he and his 4 buddies had not left their spot.  That was when I heard the snort-wheeze.

I was within 40 yards of the big buck, but while I was circling to the other side of the basin behind the bucks, I had gotten a bit disoriented.  I had come in 40 yards below and downwind of the 5 bucks (all 4 points or larger.)  They were in the process of blowing out of the country.  I was able to snap a few photos at about 150-200 yards.  That was the last I saw of those bucks all week.

Later that week I was able to get my arrow into something much larger.  But that is a story for another day.

Steven Tisdale defeats Zorro

Posted in Big Game, North America, Pronhorn, Trophies with tags on February 11, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

I am totally amped up about an August 2010 pronghorn hunt with my 13 year-old Nate.  In that vein, today’s trophy post is of none other than the legendary Zorro.  Thanks to Steven Tisdale for use of the amazing photo of one amazing pronghorn.

Harvested in 2009, this proghorn boasts 17 inch long horns.  Steven had noticed this large buck months earlier, but was unable to connect.  The following year, he was finally able to close the deal after a first blown stalk.  Read the entire story in field and stream (its worth a read)

Tree Killed Elk-a different way to harvest a trophy

Posted in Big Game, Elk, North America, Other cool stuff on February 10, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

Windfall timber has always fascinated me.  A few years ago, I killed an elk on a solo archery hunt.  On my last haul of meat, it got dark and I lost the faint trail through an old stand of timber.  I wasn’t far from my vehicle, but I somehow wandered into a tangle of windfall that I estimated to be a quarter of a mile long.  After a long day of hauling an elk out alone, climbing over windfall every third step just about took the last of my strength.  I must have hit the ground no less than 30 times.  Try getting back to your feet with 60 lbs of meat strapped to your back when you were as tired as I was.  Needless to say, I was cursing my bad luck.  As I was stumbling and falling over downed trees I got to thinking, “Why don’t these things kill stuff.”  I mean, when was the last time you heard of a camper or hiker luckily avoiding a falling tree.  Is that because most trees come down in the winter?  Do people just not spend sufficient time in old growth stands of forest?  Not a big mystery I guess you could say…I was just wonderin’.

Then I was forwarded these photos.  No explanation in the email.  No explanation needed I guess.

The Mailman delivers on huge muley

Posted in Big Game, Deer, North America on February 8, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

Karl Malone aka “The Mailman” is one of the hunting’s great advocates.  Not only has he spent countless hours promoting use based wildlife conservation, he has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to rebuild habitat throughout the country.  Truly one of the good guys. I thought the photo of his recent harvest well worth a post.  Photo quality isn’t the best, but no mistaking the quality of this great Utah buck.

We did a post a few months ago on a monstrous Utah bighorn Karl harvested.  Click here for the link

Stevens Buck-Whitetail for the ages

Posted in Big Game, Deer, North America on February 4, 2010 by thegreatwhitehunter

This giant Ohio buck will be a new state record for muzzleloader.  Not only is it a state record, it reportedly has the longest main beams of any buck ever harvested.  Congratulations to Brian Stevens of Clayton Ohio on the harvest of this majestic animal.  Scoring a whopping 250 1/8 gross inches, the statistics on this buck really are nothing compared to the character of the antlers.  Clearly an old boy who had been allowed to reach his prime and beyond.  To learn more about the buck visit Brian’s website

Thanks to Brian for use of the photos!