Well my third season Colorado trip was a blast. The first couple of days were sunny & hot, and the orange army was in full force. We were hunting the lower elevation of the unit and the only we only seen a few small bucks & no elk. I had a cow elk tag & a buck tag. My goal was either a 200" buck, a 30" wide buck, or a fat forky on the last day standing next to the road. The cow elk tag was just for meat for the freezer. On Tuesday a snow storm rolled in, and dropped 18 inches of snow on top of the unit, and that's where we were going to hunt next.
I had broke the unit into 4 squares, and wanted to try each area out. After the snow fell the elements were harsh and cold. Late Tuesday afternoon the snow stopped and all the animals came out to feed. I spotted a heard of cow elk feeding on the sidfe of a ridge a mile and a half away. I startede stalking the elk and saw 2 nice 150" class elks and several smaller bucks with doe's, passing them up on the way to the cow elk. I closed the distance to 225 yds. and gave one of the cow elk a sleeping pill. We packed her out and hung her in a tree on top of the mountain overnight. The temps were running Lows 2-10 deg. and Highs 24-28 degs. Perfect for hanging meat.
From Tuesday thru Friday I must have seen over 100 different bucks, all up high on top of the unit, 10 were in the 150 class range, 4 were in the 160 to 170 class range, 2 that were 180+, and 1 30" 3x4 buck. I thought I was crazy after I let the 30" 3x4 walk, but I had my heart set on a typical 30" 4x4 buck. Later Friday afternoon right after I seen the big 3x4 we drove up top of a knob with heavy brush and parked to have a soda and beef jerky. My buddy was telling me that I might regret passing up that big 30" 3x4. Then all of a sudden a rabbit comes out of the brush screaming and rolling around in the snow, I jumped off my quad and ran over to the rabbit and there was a small white ferit (?), biting the rabbit in the throat. It let the rabbit go when it saw me and ran in the bushes. The rabbit followede me back to the quad and then ran up a trail. We were laughing out loud about the ferit (?). The the ferit comes back out and starts tracking the rabbits foot marks in the snow, so I grabbed my camara and took its picture. I imagine he had rabbit for dinner that night. LOL!
Right after the ferit / rabbit adventure, I looked over my shoulder and there was a spike and another deer with its rump facing towards me standing in the brush at 155 yds. I couldn't believe that they were there with all that noice going on. I glassed the deer with a$$ for awhile and then it turned its head ever so slightly, SOB! It was a nice 4x4, we watched it over 30 minutes, and he would barely move his head. My buddy asked if I wanted hime to walk over to it and flush him out for a shot. I agreed and he walked over to the brush and through a snow ball at the buck. The buck jumped out directly behind my friend and ran off, I had no shot, I didn't want to shoo 2 ft. over my buddy's head. Well, I thought there goes my 30" 4x4. So we drove the quad around the mountain and up into the draw I thought he ran towards. There were several deer in there, we had never been in this draw before. I drove to the end of the bowl and BAM, there he was running up the wall of the mountain quartering away from me uphill. I got my gun and ranged him at 271 yds., held tight, pulled the trigger and the buck turned from quartering away to straight away from me and smack! I hit him on his left side of a$$. I tracked him until almost dark and gave up.
Saturday morning I checked all my honey holes that were holding deer as I made my way back from the seen from Friday. I don't know who had the sorer a$$, the buck or me. LOL! Now I'm back in the draw looking to cut a track on that buck. I cruised to the end of the draw and seen 6 doe's in front of me and 2 doe's 100 yds down from my left. I drove my quad over towards the 2 doe's and guess whos got his nose in someones rearend? I jumped off my quad and unfastened my gun case, racked in a shell, ranged him at 150 yds, running away from me. I ran just up the hill for a shot with a clear shooting lane. kneeled down, steadied the rifle, and pulled the trigger, POW! Gave hime a sleeping pill, the buck piled up and slid down the hill in the snow all way to the quad trail, SWEET! I walked over to him, checked his left rump and sure enough he had a chunk missing from it, from my shot the day before. We took some pictures and loaded him up on my quad. Now I was all smiles, I had both my tags filled!!!