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Location: NE NV
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What's A Trophy?

How much importance does the size of the antlers or horns make in deciding to pull the trigger or are there other equally important criteria in evaluating a "trophy"?  Personally, successfully getting just as close as possible before shooting is as much a part of my decision to shoot as how big the antlers are, probably more so.  I have driven by animals that would have been easy to shoot from the truck/atv but didn't offer any challenge. A couple were shot days later after relocating & hours long stalks.

I'm not saying that I'd pass up a "Booner" next to the road over a three point up the canyon but it would be one of the many things I would be thinking about.  Some of the most important mounts I have on the wall & memories in my mind are not of the really bigs ones but of the hunt to get the shot; the belly crawling, the cactus to avoid, the wind to manage, the other eyes to avoid, the badger at eye level at 10 feet to back up from...all the little things that make up a trophy to me.

I guess the question is would you pass up the 4 point next to the jeep to get to the 3 point by that quakie patch way over there?  

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Location: Western Colorado
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The deffinition of trophy is

The deffinition of trophy is in the eye of the shooter.  What is a trophy for one hunter is not for the other.  I have seen kids with their first spike buck with smiles from ear to ear. I have also seen grown men that just hate it when that 4x4 buck deer didn't make the "book".  Perhaps now that I don't need the meat I usually hunt for that perfect buck deer.  The one that will make the book and leave all others far behind.  I have seen such deer and for me it just gets the juces flowing that much more to fine them again.  In the last 10 years I have shot 2 deer one was with an archery tag on the last day in the last hour of the season.  The other was last year when I wanted to put some choice meat into the freezer witch I did with a nice 24" 4x4 buck deer.  But the big thing is that I love seeing that 14 year old kid with his first deer.  It brings back memories of hunts past and of hunts to come. 

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Location: portland,oregon
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To me a "trophy" is anything

To me a "trophy" is anything I have worked my butt off to harvest. It doesnt have to be the biggest animal in the woods.

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Whatever I happen to harvest

Whatever I happen to harvest is my trophy.  Not very often do I have a buck or bull tag in my pocket.  I like to hunt the cows and does(antelope).  Cant eat the horns and I love the taste of the meat!

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agree

GooseHunter Jr wrote:

Whatever I happen to harvest is my trophy.  Not very often do I have a buck or bull tag in my pocket.  I like to hunt the cows and does(antelope).  Cant eat the horns and I love the taste of the meat!

I agree 100%

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Location: Upper Peninsula of Michigan
Joined: 01/13/2007
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What I have to work hardest

What I have to work hardest to harvest is my most valuable trophy - a small five point that was my first archery buck and a bear that was a longbow kill.

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Location: Martin County NC
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call me old school but...

I don't trophy hunt at all. I don't make a ton of money and don't have private land to call my own.I hunt only public lands and pulling the trigger for me means dinner on the table. I hunt for the enjoyment and feeling I get of acomplishment after a succesful hunt. Weather that be a little cotton tail in the winter time, or that 12 point buck of a lifetime that I have yet to come accros.

A trophy for me is an enjoyable and memorable experiance in the outdoors and being able to share that with friends and family.

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What is a trophy to me

Alpine_Archer wrote:

I don't trophy hunt at all. I don't make a ton of money and don't have private land to call my own.I hunt only public lands and pulling the trigger for me means dinner on the table. I hunt for the enjoyment and feeling I get of acomplishment after a succesful hunt. Weather that be a little cotton tail in the winter time, or that 12 point buck of a lifetime that I have yet to come accros.

A trophy for me is an enjoyable and memorable experiance in the outdoors and being able to share that with friends and family.

+1

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Anything harvested

Like most are saying, it's in the eye of the one that has the tag. I hunt for something nice that I can be proud of and more importantly the memories. I was told last year during my Elk hunt, not to over think the size, but if you see something that takes your breath away and makes you wet your pants, then it's worth shooting. It paid off for me.

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Location: Southcentral Alaska
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To me a trophy is a full

To me a trophy is a full cache, antler & horn is to hard to chew.

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Location: Pueblo Colorado
Joined: 12/18/2006
Posts: 1772
It's an individual thing

Like others have said it's based upon ones own experience, goals, and standards. As I've hunted more and gained more experience my standards have changed slighty. I won't lie and truthfully say If I ever have the opportunity to drop the hammer on a 320 or better bull elk or 30 inch or better muley buck it wouldn't make me thehappiest hunter on earth for that moment. But, I'll say this if it ever happens it's probably going to be public land where I've had to work my butt off both physically and mentally learning the land and how to hunt it. I wouldn't feel as proud paying 10,000 dollars to hunt a private managed ranch where a guide drove me to pasture and put me on a 350 bull or better and all I had to do was pull the trigger. Heck, I'm still at the point where if I see a legal 4x by bull he's going down if I can help it with no hesitation on my part and I'll by as satisified and proud as if he was a 400 class bull cause I worked for it.

If public land hunting elk you take the first opportunity you see or you'll likely be going home empty handed.

Regarding deer, Ive killed enough small to medium sized bucks I now do tend to hold off pulling the trigger on small legal bucks during the first part of the season. I now desire the challenge of holding out and hunting hard to take 26 inch or better mature buck. If it gets down to the last day or two of season I'll then take a smaller buck or go home empty handed. There's enough deer where I hunt chances are always good you can get on a young legal buck any day, hence my desire to hold out for something special now.

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