Wow! Our five-day hunt has gone by so fast, today is the last day of first rifle season.
My friend Jim got his elk at 8 a.m. on opening day. He always knew his spot would pay off. Jim, his brother Lee, and I made short work quartering his 4x4 elk and returned to hunting.
We spotted a large 6x6 later that day. Lee and I separated to get ahead of him. We got out in front of him, set up, waited, then walked back to camp in the dark knowing the elk went another direction. He still roams the hills as far as Lee and I know.
I have hunted this area for about seven years and know the elk will sometimes follow the lay of the land if they are undisturbed. I found such a place today, on the last day of the season, and set up. I'm down to the last hour of daylight and nothing is moving yet.
Out of the corner of my eye, I catch movement. A bull elk coming from the opposite direction. I move slightly to position for a shot and see that he is not alone. Two 5x5s, twins, about 210". I take the 250-yard shot. One is down. I shoot a Remington 30.06 model 721, 200 grain ammunition. Dad bought this rifle, brand new in 1956, for $60. Good enough.
As I walk the three miles back to camp I'm cold, hungry, tired, it's dark and I am excited. It’s been the Best Hunt Ever, and it was all on public land.
Lee Humbert pictured in background. Photo by Jim Humbert.