Mike Simon As Told By Scott Simon
Nevada, 2009, DIY, Public Land
My dad, Mike Simon, had a good muzzleloader tag for the 2009 season, so on August 9 we went out for a scouting expedition. As luck would have it, one of the first bucks we spotted was a whopper nontypical. We watched as he and a forked horn made their way into the thick pinion and juniper. We continued to watch the bucks until the night before the hunt opened.
On opening morning, a plan was made and my dad, Brian “Woody” Harwood, and I began our hike in the dark. After walking through several bugling bulls, we made our way to the ridge where the buck had been feeding to every time we had watched him.
On this morning, however, the buck changed his tactics and went a completely different direction. By the time the buck was spotted, he was above us and heading toward thick cover. All we could do was stand and watch. We returned that evening, but saw nothing and spent our time fighting the flies.
The next morning we carried out the same plan - up the same trail, around the bugling elk, and onto the ridge that the big buck was so accustomed to being on. As the sun rose, everything was visible but our trophy buck. We did see a big four-point and a big three-point, but not the buck we were hunting. I asked Dad if he wanted to take a crack at the big four-point, but he slung his rifle over his shoulder and said he was set on the big buck. We tipped our hats for the morning and calmly walked off the ridge and back toward our rendezvous point.
Some other friends had joined us for the hunt and to share company, and when we reached the pick-up spot, our friend Ross told us that he had seen the big buck just over the ridge to the south of us. We hunted for him that evening, but he eluded us once again.
For a full account of Mike's adventure, go to page 16 in the April/May 2010 issue of Eastmans' Hunting Journal.