When I originally picked up bowhunting it was all about taking an elk with a bow, but after 5 years and many close calls I have yet to seal the deal on an elk. When the 2007 season rolled around I was just recovering from my archery related injury and had only been shooting my bow for about a month or so. I was so looking forward to elk season, but was really excited that antelope season in Wyoming was to start first. I was going to use this as another warm up for elk, plus I could take the time in the field to practice some more shooting. With some really heavy rain storms leading up to our season opener hunting the water holes were going to be out of the question, so we took to spot and stalk or spook. Stalking up on an antelope has got to be one the hardest things I have done in my hunting career. We blew many a stalk, but learned a lot from them but could not seal the deal.
The following weekend it was a lot warmer and up where we hunt it dries up real quick and by the time we got there it looked like it had not rained in months, hot and dry, perfect for the water hole hunting. I spent the first morning sitting in the blind on a real nice water hole that we have seen a lot of antelope come to, but after 8 hours in the blind I could not take it any more and out of the ordinary it started to cool off like it was going to rain and the wind picked up, so I packed up the blind and headed back to camp. After a sleepless night due to wind about to blow the trailer over, the next morning came all too quick.
Next my buddy and I choose to sit in the same blind on another water hole as to help pass the time with at least some one to talk too, we were in the blind around 5 am. We were determined to sit there all day or kill a goat whichever came first. Most of the day we could see antelope coming from the hill in front of us and then they would come to a fence and then follow it away from us, go to a ravine, drop into it and then re-appear and then head back to the hill. Well at 3 pm my buddy had had enough and he was going to go see where they were going. Took him about an hour to get there and not long after that he had goats coming his way. Once he got there we found a natural spring, which has turned out to be a great spot as we still hunt there. He actually missed a doe a little after he got there. At about 5pm I just happen to look out the back door and here come three does right to the water. I made preparation to get ready to hopefully get a shot. I let them come all the way to the water, which took them a bit as they seemed very nervous, but eventually they came right to it for a drink of water. I ranged them at 40 yards and we had a pretty good crosswind at the time, but I figured is was now or never, and as the biggest doe took a drink I let the arrow fly, but I forgot to compensate for the crosswind. the shot hit a little back, but as she ran away I knew she would not go far. She went about 50 yards and expired in 15 minutes. The rage 3 blade had done its job and I felt that the curse of the shattered arrow in the hand had been broken, but the elk 3 weeks later did not get that memo. Even though my first bow kill was an antelope and not an elk, it goes down as one of the best hunting memories in my career. If you ever get a chance to chase antelope which I strongly suggest, give it a try you will love it... especially with a bow.