Arizona, 2008, Guided
The year 2008 will certainly be one to remember for me; the excitement of a trip to Patagonia for red stag, some fly-fishing, and the announcement of my youngest daughter’s engagement. The icing on the cake came in May when I found that I had drawn a November elk tag for a premier unit in Arizona. I was later advised that I had also drawn an antelope tag for New Mexico in August. I guess when it rains, it pours! One of these tags had to go and it was not a hard decision: The antelope!
This would be the hunt of a lifetime for me, so I decided to enlist the help of an outfitter. As soon as the airplane wheels touched the tarmac in Phoenix, I felt the familiar anticipation of another hunt and welcomed the adrenaline rush wholeheartedly. My arrival date was also the first hunt day, and one lucky hunter already had a very good bull on the ground.
My first day, I was teamed with another hunter, Tom, and our guide, Eric. We were up and going at 4 a.m., taking a deep breath before heading into the brisk predawn air.
Dawn found us on the top of a ridge with the very distinctive smell of elk in the air. Soon after daybreak a pair of 5x5 bulls were sighted, but then were quickly lost in the thick brush. We walked to the next ridgeline, but could not see any other elk or locate the two that we had originally seen.
We shifted locations, this time to a small hill, and split up in order to cover a bigger view. About 5 p.m., in a long meadow 1.5 miles off, my heart started thumping as I spotted three bulls and two cows coming out of the tree line. One of the three bulls looked to be a shooter, so I trotted over to my guide’s location for his spotting scope.
For a full account of Roger's adventure, turn to page 20 in the April/May issue of Eastmans' Hunting Journal.