/  Mountain Hunting Articles, Editorials and Stories
  • As Featured in Winter 2016 Issue of Western Hunter Magazine A lot of us spend our

  • In this episode of the Hunt The High Country Podcast, we sit down with Braxton

  • I just released a new mule deer film called Connected. This was filmed during the

  • Our new Mule Deer video: Connected, will be released later this month. This film will

  • Sitka Traverse Zip-T The Traverse Zip T is “an abrasion-resistant outer layer for mild days and

  • Hunting High Country Mule Deer: Step 2 - "Identifying Patterns" - This is part 2

  • Big Game Hunting TO THE MAX - Do you want a longer hunting season, or

  • Equipment failure during a hunt can end the hunt, especially when one  your essential tools

  • Hunting and camping is a lot different than just camping for camping's sake. When you

  • Trail Cameras can be amazing tools, but using trail cameras effectively for mule deer can

  • This is part 1 of a 3 article series on how to find big mule deer bucks

  • We know that water becomes extremely precious when you have to hike to get it,

  • Sitka Kelvin Lite Hoody - The new Kelvin Lite Hoody is a newly designed offering from

  • Preseason Scouting for Mule Deer -- Is it worth it? Pre-season scouting seems to be

  • I cut my teeth hunting Wyoming mule deer and elk as a teenager -- hunting

  • Athlon Ares 15-45x60mm ED Spotting Scope Review - Exceptional Performance at an even better price! We're

  • Trekker Outdoor Gear – TREKKER Gaiter Review Trekker Outdoor Gear was founded in 2017 by avid

  • “Get your rifle and shoot that buck,” was all I heard as I scrambled to

  • Mule Deer Winter Kill States: What should we expect? Many of us who live, or hunt

  • In this episode of the Hunt The High Country Podcast, we sit down with Robby Denning

  • In this episode of the Hunt The High Country Podcast, we sit down with Mike

  • Brad Carter breaks down different types of tents and some things you should consider when

  • Tipi's are an awesome backcountry shelter options because they're lightweight, have a ton of head

  • In this episode the Hunt the High Country Podcast, we talk with Edward Gramza, the

  • In this podcast episode we sat down with Justin Finch and talked about his 2016

  • In this episode of the Hunt the High Country podcast, we sit down with Randy Johnson,

  • On this episode of the “Hunt the High Country” podcast, we sit down with Kyle Paxman

  • On this episode of the "Hunt the High Country" podcast, we sit down with Zach

  • By Caid Evans Colorado. In terms of big game management, Colorado has it figured out. I

  • Brad Carter goes over his personal camera selection, and some great cameras on the market

  • The Perfect Satellite Communication Device for the High Country Hunter Last winter, my wife and I

  • Hopefully you've had a chance to watch the first video of our Idaho Invasion deer

  • If you've followed Altitude Outdoors for very long, especially on social media you may be

  • We're excited to announce our new Youtube channel where we will bring you some of

  • After losing his father in the spring of the year, Kyle Paxman scores big on

  • Sitka Gear has long offered technical clothing and concealment patterns that lead the industry. Their

  • Hunters can be some of the hardest people to shop for, because many of us

  • Anyone that has spent more than a few days in the high country has been

  • Austin Cowan had a season to remember after she shot her first mule deer buck

  • We're excited to announce our new YouTube channel that will allow us to produce and

  • By  Keith Kline The morning of Oct. 9th 2016 found me and my hunting partner, Jake,

  • What motivates you to get fit for the hunt? Clay Allen Jr. goes over some

  • Billy makes the jump into top end hunting clothing with 5 pieces from Sitka Gear:

  • Are you looking for lightweight optics for your backcountry adventures? Check out our latest gear

  • When we looked into brands of tents to carry in our online store. Hilleberg was

  • The 7 Year Wait - Big Utah Mule Deer - by Austin Cowan The morning of

  • The new Trinovid 10x42 binocular offered by Leica comes in at a price point ($999)

  • In regards to my gear list, 2016 has brought some significant changes. I have upgraded

  • While I love to digiscope wildlife all year long, I find my digiscoping setup to

  • You'll probably hear me say this a lot - the lighter you can be when

  • Does big game management ever necessitate complete population removal? Wild Sheep are amazing and unique

  • By Dennis Donati When it comes to choices for archery equipment, there have never been so

  • Learning a new area always has its challenges; but with today’s draw system in place,

  • Hey guys, we're excited to be involved with this project with Grayback Productions. This short

  • "Precious Resources" not only shows video of some giant public land mule deer bucks, but

  • Our "Hunt the High Country" podcast is dedicated to the backcountry and high country hunters.

  • As soon as you hold the EXO Mountain Gear pack, you know it was conceived by

  • By Randy Johnson Sea to Summit’s Comfort Light Insulated sleeping pad is in my opinion one

  • At first glance, the Slumberjack Rail Hauler pack looks a throwback to external aluminum frames

  • I wouldn't say that my hunting methods have changed very much over the past 5

  • My 2015 Wyoming mule deer season started similar to many prior years. A significant portion

  • Basic Description: Therm-a-Rest’s ultralight three season inflatable sleeping pad that replaced the original NeoAir sleeping pad.

  • The Big Decision

    At 46 years old and having been bow hunting since age 16 in my home state of Washington, I always have loved the high country and chasing animals up there with my bow. I have always read the stories and looked at the pictures of the lucky hunters who pursued the big early season bucks in the Colorado high country as I'm sure many of you have. I always chose the early deer and elk season in my home state during that time of year and let Colorado be a dream.
  • David Long puts the Stone Glacier Sky Archer 6200 through the ringer during his high

  • I recently returned home from a 5 day archery elk hunt in Colorado. While I never put my tag on an elk, I did get to try out a lot of new gear. Several items performed extremely well; therefore, I wanted to do a quick blog post on these items offering my thoughts in case anyone is in the process of trying to decide whether to purchase these items or not.

  • KUIU’s vision is to create the finest, high quality, lightweight mountain hunting clothing on the

  • Each year we plan, prepare, scout, train, spend our money, leave our families, and head

  • Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

  •   Zamberlan’s new 980 Outfitter GTX RR is the most advanced backcountry hunting boot to date!

  • "How big is that buck?" I asked as I squinted my eyes and leaned forward

  • Clay Allen's footage once again finds us staring at some GIANT mule deer. These incredible

  • In Part 1 I discussed various biological and environmental perspectives relative to High Desert Mule deer.

  •   PART I – BIOLOGICAL/ENVIRONMENT PERSPECTIVES I honestly believe that most Mountain Hunters consider taking a Boone

  • Maven Optics - Product Review by Clay Allen Maven – (mā-ven) 1. A trusted expert 2.

  • I truly enjoy building my own arrows. It makes for a very enjoyable afternoon sitting

  • What in the heck am I thinking? I must be crazy! Those were the exact thoughts that crossed my mind as I watched the trophy antelope put a half mile of sagebrush covered desert between him and I in a matter of seconds. Unfortunately, after several days of spot and stalk hunting, the sight of antelope disappearing over the ridge in a cloud of dust was becoming an all too familiar sight. This spot and stalk antelope gig was evidently going to be a little tougher than I had originally thought!

  • My clothing system for scouting in July and August is relatively straight forward and doesn’t change too much. During this time of year, temperatures typically dip down into the high 30’s or low 40’s at night, but daytime temps are relatively warm and you typically see a high near 70 degrees. Because of this, I know I don’t need to pack too many extra layers knowing that I won’t see any extreme weather conditions. With that being said, I always check the forecast before heading out and make necessary changes if needed, but normally an afternoon thunder shower is usually about the worst I will see this time of year.

  • BRIEF HISTORY The Pope and Young Club is one of North America’s leading bowhunting and wildlife conservation organizations. Founded in 1961 as a non-profit, scientific organization whose objectives included bettering the image of bowhunting, the Club has grown to be the standard-bearer for the principles of fair chase, ethics and sportsmanship in bowhunting. Named in honor of pioneer bowhunters Dr. Saxton Pope and Arthur Young, whose exploits during the early part of the 20th Century drew national attention to this “forgotten” and challenging form of hunting, the Club encourages responsible bowhunting by promoting quality hunting, sound conservation practices, high standards of conduct and fostering dedication to the protection of bowhunting’s future.

  • Proper care and storage will ensure maximum years of use and optimum performance of your

  • Unless you have spent any time in northern Scandinavia, you are probably not familiar with

  • Stuff sacks. Honestly, not many of us give them much thought. When we purchase sleeping bags, pads, etc we simply use the standard stuff sacks that come with the items. When you purchase an item such as a tent, you are talking numerous stuff sacks for the tent, poles and stakes. In addition, if you use additional stuff sacks for storage like I do, we can be talking between 6-8 stuff sacks in our pack at any given time.

  • Between overhauling my backcountry gear list and writing the new book, I haven’t had a whole lot of spare time lately……but by no means am I complaining. I enjoy doing both. Whenever I need a break from the book, I have been evaluating my existing gear for both weight and functionality. I have made a commitment to drop all unnecessary weight from my pack; therefore, I am researching the lightest, most functional gear on the planet. I’m calling it my “Quest for the Best.” Let’s be honest, when it comes to our backpack hunting equipment, we all want to shave ounces on gear in order to reduce the overall weight of our pack. We don’t necessarily want to sacrifice functionality or comfort in doing so, but we definitely want to cut weight where we can.

  • *5 Stars out of *5 Basic Description: An extremely small, lightweight, durable LED headlamp with 3 different

  • Throughout the years, I have literally read every mule deer study or report I could get my hands on. Anytime I find a resource where I can increase my knowledge of mule deer behavior I take full advantage of the opportunity. With that being said, I wanted to share a great resource with you that you may or may not know about. It is the Wyoming Migration Initiative’s website located at www.migrationinitiative.org. The mission statement of the organization reads:

  • Mentally drained and physically exhausted, I just sat there in disbelief. To say I was bummed would be a gross understatement! The swing of emotions in such a short span of time was simply unbelievable. Only moments earlier, Nate Simmons had the camera rolling and I had a huge rush of adrenaline as I was about to come to full draw on the unsuspecting buck that was 37 yards directly below me. But instead of exchanging high-fives in celebration of our great accomplishment, we both found ourselves sitting there, not even saying a single word to each other, as we watched the buck scoot across the basin in what looked like some sort of an attempt to break a land speed record. Seconds later, the only remaining sign of the buck were the small clouds of dust he left behind in his wake; just another typical day of hunting high country mulies.

  • It had been several years since I had been out on the winter range in Wyoming photographing bucks......needless to say, I was super excited. Besides, what better way to spend Thanksgiving and Black Friday than on the winter range. No shopping, no lines....just lots of big 'ol bucks and family. Doesn't get any better than that!

  • I felt a sense of relief as I peeked over the edge of the rim rock cliff and saw the lone buck was still lying comfortably in his bed. The buck was perched on a long, narrow bench at 12,000’ where he was very contently overlooking the large alpine basin below him. His velvet covered antlers protruded well above the stunted willows as he laid there next to a lone rock on this cold and wet September day. Thankfully, the rain and snow mix that had been falling all morning, had kept the buck bedded during our entire 3 hour stalk.

  • SNAAAP! The first thing that went through my mind was my rifle stock had just snapped in half! Thankfully, after I slowly rolled over, spit the dirt out of my mouth, and cleared my eyes, a quick visual inspection revealed that my rifle was still in one piece. The large crack that I had just heard was in fact a downed dead tree that I had just body slammed on my way to the ground after my boot became wedged under a dead branch that was hidden underneath the tall overgrowth vegetation. With over 100 lbs of meat on my back, I simply laid there, trying to figure out how I was going to get back on my feet.

  • Each year my family and I plan at least one out of state hunt. We

  • Basic Description: New, with some incredible added features is KUIU’s ICON PRO 7200 pack system. After

  • By Randy Johnson KUIU has developed a new lightweight, easily pitched tent to save the mountain

  • Nowadays, it is no secret that every serious backcountry hunter’s clothing should be based on

  • To start off with, I was very skeptical of doing this review. Over the last

  • BASIC DESCRIPTION: HILLEBERG, THE TENTMAKER continues its long standing tradition of designing incredibly strong, comfortable tents. The SOULO is an extremely roomy, one-man, 5 season tent that is practically “bomb proof.” A dome style, free-standing tent, the SOULO is simple and quick to pitch with the outer shell attached to the inner tent so your rainfly goes up first. This tent exhibits outstanding internal space for one person as well as comfortable headroom. If you are truly looking for a one man tent that is capable of standing up to the fury of the fiercest of Mother Nature’s storms, then look no further than the SOULO. Very seldom do I give tents a *5 Star rating but I did this one!

  • Basic Description of Item:Aspect Solar Duo Flex Solar Panel and Battery Pack Review Aspect Solar Panel, for back packing, hiking, camping and boating. Get a charge during the day, and then charge your device at night. Great for 72 hour kit, backpacking kit, or home emergency kit.

  • It was a beautiful morning, September, 15th 1952.  The temperature was 39 degrees at 6:00 am. My grandpa, Albert D. Bazzanella was getting things ready to head to the south country on a typical deer hunt.  The "South Country" where my grandfather was planning to hunt, is about a 2 hour drive from his home town of Rock Springs, Wyoming.  He would drive to Baggs Wyoming where he would then head south for about another hour.  This country, at that time, was prime deer country!  Back then, anyone above 11 years of age, could purchase any of the big game animal tag and hunt them anywhere in the state of Wyoming.  This area was my grandpa’s favorite area.  I remember as a very young boy going hunting in this same area with my grandpa and my dad, years later, and passing up 26 and 28 inch bucks because it was too early in the day for them to kill anything...grandpa would say, "The day will be ruined!"  Anyway, back on track...my grandpa was putting his Winchester model 94, 30-30 lever action rifle into the Jeep and realized that he didn't have any shells for it.  By this time, it's around 7:00 am.  Mike's Sporting Goods was the only sporting goods store in Rock Springs and it didn't open until 8:00 am.  That didn't bother grandpa, because he knew that he would have no problem harvesting a buck deer anytime throughout the day.

  • Equipment choice, Arrows and Broadheads: Last month I discussed the topic of choosing the right bow for you. The next step in the core element of equipment choice is arrows and broadheads. There are so many things to consider when choosing arrows and broadheads that I will again just cover the very basics to help you get started. As you research each topic more thoroughly, you will gain a better understanding of how and why to choose the various combinations of arrows and broadheads.

  • To start off I would like to say I have been using Blacks Creek Packs

  • I don’t recommend going into a hunting unit blind, but that’s exactly what I did two years ago in Colorado. An old friend of mine and I had decided to put in for a 2nd choice area that neither of us had ever hunted. Our summer’s got very busy, schedules changed, and we didn’t have a chance to make it down to put our boots on the ground and see the actual lay of the land. But we have Google Earth right???

  •   Hello, my name is Sadie Jo Accashian and I’m not the average girl. Most girls like to go shopping at the mall or love the color pink; they would rather go to the movies then to anything out in the woods. I’m not one of those girls. I was raised into the life of hounds and traditional archery. I’ve been shooting a bow close to 15 years now and I’ve never owned a different breed of dogs besides a hound.

  • BASIC DESCRIPTION:

    KUIU’S Super Down sleeping bag line is a major game changer for mountain hunters or outdoor enthusiasts of any kind! Water resistant, these Super Down sleeping bags are the most technically advanced on the outdoor market today! Each sleeping bag in KUIU’s Super Down line is certified by the International Down and Feather Testing Laboratory (IDFL) for a Fill Power of 865, 95/5 down-to-feather ratio, and an EN Lower Limit Rating of 0º, 15º, or 30º. “High tech” is the best description I can use for KUIU’s new sleeping bags as their “ultralight bedrolls” have taken backpacking to another level.  Utilizing superior ingredients manufactured by Toray, who has established the standard in the textile industry for unrivalled technology developments, KUIU has designed a sleeping bag conceived specifically with the hunter in mind. Available in 0º, 15º and 30º temperature ratings the Super Down bags are offered in regular and long sizes.
  • Choosing from today’s lineup of technical clothing can be overwhelming (and expensive). I grew up hunting in a cotton shirt, a pair of pants, and a jacket if it was cold. I always wore the same boots, same underwear, and the same frameless backpack. It was my hunting clothes; I considered them lucky – although I wore the same thing on both my “lucky” and “unlucky” hunts. I didn’t know the difference between different materials, or the advantages of them.

  • The 90% Jacket and Pant have been a part of the Sitka lineup as a mainstay for several years. It’s has always been an incredible piece of gear and a go to for many western hunters. However, due to Sitka’s nature of improvement and innovation, they've re-imagined the 90% series for 2014!

  • Wildlife management is one of the more complicated concepts to wrap my head around. I am constantly searching through various sources of information in hopes of better understanding the intricacies so I can feel like more of an educated user of this incredible resource. My desire is to also learn how to contribute more helpful in-field information to local Wyoming Game and Fish personnel when they seek public comment.

  • Basic Description: New, the 2014 KUIU ULTRALIGHT Pack system is the lightest in the industry! KUIU continues its cutting edge technology in the world of Mountain Hunting. The ULTRA pack system was designed to be extremely simple yet innovative with its modular pack concept that incorporates an advanced Patent Pending Carbon Fiber frame, suspension and bag that focuses on minimizing weight without diminishing performance or functionality. All of the materials in the ULTRA Pack System are the finest in the world and combined make an unprecedented list of “the right stuff.” The brilliant foundation for this pack system is an 11 oz., California-made Carbon Fiber frame that is stronger, lighter, and narrower without compromising the performance or quality of the pack itself. 

  • Friday afternoon we loaded up the family car and headed south to start the season.

  • Basic Description: KUIU recently added Toray’s new Dermizax®NX membrane to their Award Winning Chugach NX Rain Jacket and Pant. This latest innovation now makes this rain gear TWICE as breathable with 200% all direction stretch. The KUIU Chugach NX jacket and pants represent everything that Mountain Hunter’s dream of in rain gear. Lightweight, packable, breathable, waterproof, extremely durable and now with considerable more stretch. KUIU has worked to combine all the attributes that we demand from quality raingear. This product is incredible.

  • February 14, 2014 Moab, Utah 8:00 am Start I felt really good going into this 34

  • Have you ever spotted a bull elk and called to him just to see him lift his head up and walk away? It has happened to all of us. I have a theory for why this happens and a tactic that might better the odds of a bull sticking around. It was September 22, 2011 on public land and I was hunting with my good friend and long time hunting buddy Shaun Sturlaugson. We had over-the-counter tags in our pockets and the week had been uneventful as the temperatures were in the 70’s. Shaun and I had been hitting the mountains hard as the days were winding down on our eight day elk hunt. The elk we were pursuing lived close to a main road and were very wise to modern hunting tactics.

  • Going into the 2013 mule deer hunting season, I had set some personal goals for myself. These goals were important to me and I made it imperative that these goals be met. At the top of the list were two goals: My number one goal was to pay tribute to my late grandmother Lena Bernal and my late grandfather Don Eastman. My idea of honoring them was by killing a big high country mule deer. And by doing this, I would reach my number two goal. My number 2 goal was to redeem myself from the previous season.

  • The “Buck Haven” during the summer scouting trip What doesn’t kill you will make you want to do it again right? Going into the application period for Nevada in 2005, I envisioned a semi-comfortable horseback hunt deep in the pristine wilderness with one of my good buddies. That vision was snuffed out as the drawing results arrived and he didn’t draw and I did. So much for the ponies I had planned on carrying me and all my stuff.

  • Equipment Choice: The first core element in becoming a woman archer I am going to discuss is equipment choice. This is a subject that cannot be addressed appropriately in one article. Therefore I am going to break this element into three separate topics. First will be bows, the second will be arrows and broadheads, and this third is, accessories such as sights, rests, releases, etc.. Each of these topics can be discussed in much greater detail than I have gone into, but for the sake of helping the beginning archer I will cover just the basics.

  • It was nearly 12:00 am as we had just finished topping off the coolers and loading the remainder of our gear. I gave my wife and kid’s a hug goodbye and my brother and I headed for the truck.  As my house became a distant blur in the rear view mirror, we were officially on our way to that long sought after place we like to call hunting camp. Wide awake, full of energy and with only a couple hour drive between us and the great mountains we love to roam, we could not wait to see what this journey had in store for us. After waiting what seemed like a lifetime, my brother had finally regained his Wyoming residency and we were pumped and ready to go.

  • This past year I was able to test out the Kuiu Tiburon pant in the field, on what would be my most demanding early archery season ever. I wore these pants for 23 days straight in Oregon and Washington. From the opening day of my Oregon antelope hunt in the desert and temperatures in the 90-100 degree range, to chasing elk and mule deer in another unit I drew my out of state tags for in Oregon and climate ranging from more hot weather to cold winds and driving rains.

  • We recently had the opportunity to sit down with Jason Hairston and Patrick Mayer of KUIU for a Q&A session on their new Superdown Sleeping Bags. We truly believe KUIU has hit a homerun with this new product addition.....after reading the article, we think you will agree.

  • It is very common to hear grumblings and restlessness from avid big game hunters during the winter months. The countdown to fall never quite goes fast enough. Many will utilize the off season to evaluate their supplies, purchase new gear, practice shooting skills, and hit the gym for physical preparation. Those activities alone might be enough to pull through the snowy months that keep us in a constant state of anticipation. For others, like me, it is necessary to continue hitting the outdoors to fill the time with activities only the snow-filled months can offer. There are many popular hunting opportunities during winter that provide not only time in the sun for much needed vitamin D, but also the time with nature that we all crave. Aside from the more obvious winter interests like coyote, rabbit, and mountain lion hunting, I also intensely enjoy bobcat trapping. The art of learning a bobcat’s territory and habits intrigues me almost as much as the craft of the trap set up.

  • Usually, when bowhunters dream of early season archery hunting in remote, above-timberline basins, most immediately envision the mule deer high on their summer range of the Rocky Mountain West. While I’ve often viewed this same mental portrait over the years, I’ve also discovered a different species of deer that reside in similar terrain type features that also offer the bowhunter a true wilderness adventure. While not as large as the mule deer, this species’ ability to adapt and survive in these remote areas of the far West is truly remarkable and will definitely challenge the sanity of any bowhunter who pursues them.

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  • I picked up the water bottles and left the fragile security of our camp, to retrieve some much needed fresh water. I followed the winding path down through the alders to the small stream which emptied into the secluded ocean bay. The air was crisp and cold, and you could smell the heavy fragrance of the bear tracked beach below.  I waded into the small stream, which spilled off  the mountain. As I bent down to fill the water bottles, the hair on the back of my neck stood on end.  I suddenly felt clammy.  I was on full alert.  I could feel the presence of something watching me in the darkness. Was it just my imagination?  Then I realized I had left my gun over on a boulder thirty feet away. 

  • Its late august and the hot Texas sun has once again pushed me westward to the Colorado high country in search of my most respected quarry...a mature rocky mountain mule deer. High country archery mule deer hunting has got to have the largest learning curve of any of the deer species. I have personally never hunted such a wary animal. They truly are perfectly suited to their environment making them the most perfect prey animal and offering a very challenging hunt.  In four years I have managed to harvest just one buck in 2007 with a muzzleloader on opening day that scored about 185. Although a good buck, I was disappointed that I hadn’t been able to take him with my bow. This made my archery quest burn that much deeper. I was now fully committed to Archery Mule Deer; none of this lowland stuff.....IT WAS HIGH OR DIE. The next few years brought many more lessons and a lack of success, but were a blast none the less.

  • You never know unless you try. That’s a motto I have definitely learned to live by. It’s actually how I ended up in my first MMA (mixed martial arts) cage fight a couple years ago. I figured I didn’t know if I enjoyed getting punched in the face unless I actually got punched in the face. The same has gone for my hunting. I started out just going along with people hunting when I was young, doing things like baiting barrels for bears and spotting deer. Then when I became old enough, I started rifle hunting. I enjoyed it, I liked spending time with my family and being outdoors. I had always loved the outdoors, some of my fondest memories were fishing and camping with my family. Then it happened. I was handed a bow and was taught about bow hunting. Suddenly my heart was full, I had found my passion!

  • I will be the first to admit I was skeptical I would find anything new at our local sportsman show this year that I didn’t have, or really needed. I couldn’t have been more wrong! I would like to share with all of you an amazing product I found made by a company called Intovate.com. They make a product called the Ultra Slim 5000 mAh Power Bank and it’s a rechargeable battery pack that will recharge your smart phone, iPad, iPod, digital camera or any other device you can recharge with a USB or Micro USB port. They say you can get up to three charges to your phone off of one single charge to the Power Bank.

  • It was not long ago that a woman could walk into a sporting goods store and be unable to find a single item specifically designed for women hunters.  Women have hunted for years, but until recently there were not enough women to warrant creating women specific hunting gear.  Fast forward to today and woman are now the fastest growing demographic of all hunters.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 11 percent of the nation’s 13.7 million hunters are women.  Women hunters have astoundingly grown approximately 25 percent just since 2006.

  • outdoorsman2The Facts: The Outdoorsmans, one of the premier optics and Western gear manufacturers in the west has once again came up with a very innovative idea, a quality tripod bag designed primarily to protect your expensive tripod and backpack pockets from the abusive wear and tear that hard core Mountain Hunters dish out. This functional, important piece of gear should become a mainstay for active backpack hunters everywhere.

  • Snow up to my waist, freezing temperatures, a frost bit nose, and a grin from ear to ear. That was me for three weeks straight, after being invited to come film a mountain lion hunt for my good friend Brad with our friend and outfitter Dirk Jenkins with Great Plains Outfitters. I had called Dirk a few days before Brad’s hunt was to start and begged for him to come let me ride along and get a feel for everything before I started filming. Little did I know, his yes was going to change my life. I immediately started packing everything but the kitchen sink for the trip and after filling the entire back seat of my truck up with gear, I was headed over to the other side of the mountain to Ten Sleep, Wyoming. A town that will always be ranked up in there in my book.

  • I love and hate the end of January; OK, hate may be a strong word: I dislike. The reason for that is I turn another year older, which after you reach twenty five is a little annoying that they go by so fast. I love this time of year because every year the end of January is our local sportsman show here, and I take myself to it as a birthday gift each year. Most years it is just to look around for new products that have come out, or to check on previous ones on my wish list. Not until this year have I found products that I had never seen or heard of before and I was blown away by them. This is one of those products!

  • There comes a time when you look in the mirror and realize that what you’ve

  • I want to share the most effective way to achieve better Cardio Endurance to tackle

  • So a few weeks back I did a piece on things to think about and some resources to help make a decision about going on Mountain Goat Hunt. Now I want to talk a bit about what to do once you have made the decision to go on a Mountain Goat hunt.

  • When it comes to performance hunting gear, Sitka Gear is at the top of the food chain. New to their cold weather system for 2014 is the Blizzard Series Parka and Bibs. This series offers a very innovative system for the coldest of conditions that guarantees to keep you warm and dry.

  • As the sun came up over the red hills silhouetted in the horizon we strained to see the deer leaving the field and headed to the canyons for the day.   What a beautiful sunrise with the red rocks of Southern Utah, the pinks and blues of the sunrise, the reflection of it all on the river below us.  Slowly we watch a couple does and a small buck appear between the trees and sniff heading towards the bend in the river, not long after 3 nice bucks and more does appear.  They are too far away for taking a shot and not really in a good place to sneak up on them either.

  • Winning the Extreme Huntress contest was one of my most amazing experiences.  The grand prize was a hunt to British Columbia for Mountain Goat and Elk to be filmed on Eye Of The Hunter TV.  I had never been to BC before so I was anxiously counting the days from the moment I won.  I began preparing myself physically from the moment I learned I won so I would be ready for the rugged terrain of mountain goat country. Mountain goats typically live high in the ledges to protect themselves from predators.  I had to pinch myself when the time finally arrived to leave on the hunt.

  • It was just a few moments away from darkness and I had been stalking a high country mulie for almost two hours.   I couldn’t let this opportunity get away.  I knew I had to act quickly or my chance would be gone forever.   I was so lost in the moment that I didn’t even take the time to absorb how beautiful this old buck was.   I knew he was a four point.  I knew he had great brow tines.  I knew he was in velvet.  But what I didn’t know, was the caliber of deer I was standing 40 yards from.

  • Have you ever noticed that we, as men who consider ourselves to be Mountain Hunters, may at times have the misconception that the hunting world revolves around our “Alpha Male” egos? This of course isn’t always the case but the casual observer may interpret our actions much differently. Such observations can be linked directly to culture, the perceptions and traditional expectations of the male and female roles/behavior that were founded and entrenched in centuries long ago, now but whispers of time that have slipped behind us as grains of sand through our hands.

  • We've all had those tweaks and niggles or maybe even a full blown injury. At the end of last season I started to have some twinges of pain in my foot and knee and my overall running seemed to plateau. So I consulted a running specific physical therapist to help out. I didn't necessarily think I had a major injury, but I wanted to prevent one from happening. I want my body to be able to handle the high mileage and not crumble 5 years from now. And I also wanted to do something to take my running to the next level, to be able to run stronger.

  • “There He is, you ready to shoot?” Travis asked. “Yes,” I responded as I leveled off the crosshairs of my .300 Weatherby Mag just under the top of the big bucks’ shoulder. The rifle cracked and he jumped hard, bounding fast into the trees in front of him. “ You missed! Why did you rush the shot?!” Travis responded to the failed shot. “I didn’t, I was leveled off and steady on the top of his shoulder.” I responded.

  • GETTING STARTED- How to start a strength and endurance program. So you are planning a long

  • Often times when you hear people talk about completing long trail runs such as marathons

  • BASIC DESCRIPTION: Black Diamonds Ultra Mountain Carbon trekking pole is the perfect 4-season package. Lightweight, carbon fiber construction that utilizes innovative speed cone technology allows for deployment within seconds even. The Z-Pole’s compactability allows you to fit your trekking poles easily into your pack. The combined strength and lightweight technology will allow you to use these poles for packing heavy loads, touring in the backcountry or getting in some Powder!

  • Overall Rating: *5 out of 5 STARS Basic Description: The Outdoorsman’s Compact Medium Lightweight Tripod is the newest of their original long, medium and short line of tripods. Famous for their engineering, this model of the Outdoorsman Tripod provides every unique benefit of the Medium Tall and Short Tripods, but at a fraction of the weight! This is the perfect tripod for the mountain backpack hunter where weight and space are at a premium!

  • HOW TO STAY HYDRATED: The most important thing we can tell you about is how to

  • Nutrition is the backbone of any successful fitness program. It makes up approximately 70% of

  • This is the final part of a three part article series (To read part 1 click here, to read part 2 click here) DAY 6 It was about 1:30 am, and it didn’t take long for us to find a less than ideal place we could sit. Each of us nestled into a spot and put every single layer of clothing on that we had carried with us It got cold fast. When we were hiking around, the cold was manageable, but as soon as we stopped, already wet with sweat, it didn’t take long for our core body temperature to drop. I tried to get some sleep. But I could not stop shivering. At about 3:00 in the morning it started to rain. I was getting so disappointed. I was freezing cold, extremely tired from all the treacherous hiking we had done that day, and now the rain was about to wash away the blood trail.

  • David, Wendi, Dalton, and Carson Pond 2013 Oregon A familiar story to new and old hunters alike, those long evenings at the kitchen table before the application deadlines planning the next seasons hunts. The question for most people , do I have enough points to hunt where I want to, and who do I want to partner up with. For me that's easy, my family are my favorite hunting partners and we've paid our dues at the kitchen table.

  • Seems like a simple thing to do, right, or is it? We have all heard

  • BASIC DESCRIPTION: SEA TO SUMMIT’S Traverse XtII ULTRA-DRYDOWN -11C/12F sleeping bag is one of the best on the market. Featuring its relaxed mummy style design the Traverse XtII offers a plethora of extremely innovative characteristics that add to the overall comfort and quality that mountaineers, hunters and outdoor enthusiasts demand!

  • Basic Description of item: KESTREL’S "Ultralighter" model knife is as light and as sharp as you can get in a fixed blade while still offering a full grip. This knife is a Mountain Hunter’s dream as you don’t have to worry about breaking and replacing blades which is common with the scalpel type knives on the market today. Weighing in at a mere 11.6 grams for the Titanium version Kestrel’s Ultralighter will go unnoticed in your pack until you need it. Coupled with the Ultralight velcro sheath the total weight comes to 16.8 grams. That’s only around 1/2 oz for knife and sheath. Simple to maintain and sharpen the "Ultralighter" is destined to become a mandatory item of gear on your backpacking list.

  • We Met Face to Face; My Archery Dall Ram Part 2 (To read part 1 click here) DAY 4 The next day we awoke to more rain. We waited for it to clear up a little before we headed out after sheep. At this point we weren’t sure what to do. We had one guy in a floatplane camping right in the canyon with the sheep. Plus we had another guy that just shot a sheep out of that canyon. We glassed all morning, in the canyon where we were camped, but never saw a sheep. We knew there were still sheep in the other canyon, so we decided to head back over. When we passed the floatplane camp, we noticed the hunter was gone. We continued up canyon until we found a great vantage point where we could spot. We not only found that the sheep were still there, but there were five enormous rams. The problem was, the rams had wisely moved high into the sheer cliffs where no one could get to them.

  • Sleep wasn't going to come easy knowing the buck of a lifetime wasn't coming home with me. The buck I placed all my bets and scouting efforts that season was taken by a friend. All of my hunting plans changed for the rest of the month, what would I do with the rest of my deer season?

  • I expect to do this as a three part series, it was inspired by a blog post I recently did over at Outdoors International. Working as a hunting/adventure consultant I speak to a lot of hunters. More specifically I speak to a lot of hunters who say they want to go on a mountain goat hunt. For those of you who have hunted Mountain Goats, you know the challenges, physical, mental, weather and don’t forget the goats. But for those who have yet to experience the rigors of mountain hunting, I have found that many are enthralled by the picturesque ideal of hunting mountain goats as compared to the grueling reality of what it really takes to hunt goats. The reality is that Mountain Hunting is flat out tough! Even “easy” goat hunts are extremely tough when compared to the hunting that most of us have generally available to us.

  • Rating: 5 Stars  Basic Description of item: Zamberlan’s KUIU PAMIR GTX RR BOOT boot is designed for Mountain Hunters who will be spending time in high altitude terrain and are involved in technical mountain hunting. This boot is also outstanding for use in extremely steep, rough terrain or while packing heavy loads. The solid, heavy-duty mid-sole shank provides your feet with better support while reducing foot soreness. A high-end boot designed to provide outstanding traction and durability the Zamberlan KUIU Pamir has been “lasted” for a precise fit and constructed to provide maximum sensitivity and great performance. A double-tongue allows the user to customize the fit to their foot: push the tongue down and let the velcro and lace system provide a secure lower-volume fit; pull the tongue up and give yourself a higher volume fit. The insulation in the Pamir has been removed to make the boot not only lighter but to make it more breathable. Even then, the Pamir provides reasonable warmth in cold temperatures. It should be noted that the Zamberlan KUIU Pamir is not made for every hunting situation or hunter. However, if you plan on spending time hunting in steep technical terrain this should be your boot of choice for the Pamir provides you with the confidence to navigate through the roughest hunting terrain on the mountain!

  • Sometimes the pursuit of one animal can and does consume a hunter. The animal becomes ingrained in the imagination, even creating sleepless throughout the season. Moments in time, wondering where the animal is and most importantly, where he will be found on opening day. The year 2012 would introduce me to not just one of these animals but two. Two mule deer bucks that would be everything I was looking for in a buck. I won't make any apologies for it, when it comes to deer I am a trophy hunter. My standard for pulling the trigger is a big bodied, mature animal. I look for mass in the antlers, a white face, and in most cases a big frame.

  • Recently I have been working through a knee injury and running on the snow-packed/icy trails near my house has been a little scary to say the least. Even while trying to take it extremely slow and being extremely careful with each and every footfall, I have still slipped numerous times, but thankfully, I haven’t reinjured my knee. With those slips, it became very evident that if I was going to continue running the slick trails, I needed to find a solution to the loss of traction to prevent re-aggravating the injury.

  • I would like to share a story with all of you who may not know

  •  Donec eu libero Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas.

  • Strength Training is a key component to achieving your physical goal, along with the necessary

  • There has recently been an increased focus on the environmental impact of trail running and

  • The Christmas holiday time is usually such a welcome period to relax and take in

  • Everyone has their own personal reasons for wanting to stay fit. It can vary from wanting to lose weight, to toning muscles, to just being healthy. For me it is a two-fold reason. The first is simple...to hunt. I hunt year round and I know from personal experience that the hunt is much more enjoyable when I am in shape versus lagging behind and unable to catch my breath. Nearly all of my hunts entail hiking, backpacking, and some sort of physical activity that requires me to be physically fit. Therefore, it is necessary to integrate multiple forms of exercises to prepare for the hunt. My second reason for exercising, is because I just want to feel good. This is a pure reward for the hard work. Exercising releases endorphins that provide a healthy and natural way to just be happy, reduce stress, and enjoy life.

  • Let’s just cut to the chase.  I was sick and tired of my previous packs failing me, breaking down and not performing well.  It was time for a new pack.  Essentially, I ended up with the Mystery Ranch Crew Cab. Mystery Ranch is one of the premier pack companies in the world, and best of all, these packs are made in the USA out of Bozeman, MT.

  • In Part 1, we talked about making the needed sacrifices and commitments necessary to harvest bucks on a consistent basis. Now it is time to set your goals.

  • Although it has been three years since this hunt has taken place, I remember it as if it were just yesterday. I am sitting here now, admiring the beautiful mount of this gorgeous buck and reflecting back to the awesome journey that I was so fortunate to be a part of that rainy October day. A hunt filled with numerous ups and downs and twists and turns, yet by some last minute miracle turned out to be one of my greatest adventures to date, an unbelievable adventure that undoubtedly won't soon be forgotten.

  • Going into the 2013 season I was in need of a lighter pack so of course when Paradox contacted me to do a product review I jumped at the chance.  Upon receiving the pack I was shocked at just how light this pack was at just over four pounds it was a shocking 5 pounds lighter than my previous pack.

  • I bought my first pair of Kenetrek Mountain Extremes in 2009 about three weeks before the kickoff of scouting season.   The first time I put the boots on I knew they were in a class of their own.  Only wearing them a couple times before a nine day scouting trip left me with little worry as they were as solid and comfortable of a boot as I have ever worn.  The first day of the 9 day trip I walked about 6 miles with a 3000’ elevation climb.  When I made camp that night I had a hot spot on the bottom of each foot but no blister and the next morning my feet were as good as new.  By the end of the 09 trip I was sold on Kenetrek Mountain Extremes.  I have been used to buying a pair of boots every year as well and much to my surprise I seen a little bit of wear but the boots remained water proof and the tread held up great as well.

  • Earlier this summer, I made my first trek into the backcountry in search of mule deer. This was the first time I had ever set foot into this particular area, and although it was good looking country with a lot of potential, I only managed to turn up five bucks.

  • Early on in my hunting career, more often than not, the larger bucks always seemed to get away. However, with that being said, over the course of the past three decades I have learned a lot about this amazing animal while chasing them around in high country and I can proudly say, more often than not, I end up getting the buck I am after. This reversal took lots of research, many years of trial and error and fine–tuning of hunting methods.

  • Early on in my hunting career, more often than not, the larger bucks always seemed to get away. However, with that being said, over the course of the past three decades I have learned a lot about this amazing animal while chasing them around in high country and I can proudly say, more often than not, I end up getting the buck I am after. This reversal took lots of research, many years of trial and error and fine–tuning of hunting methods.

  • Finding great hunting clothing designed specifically for women is virtually impossible. That is why I am a die hard fan of Prois hunting apparel. I have taken my Prois clothing all over the world in practically every hunting condition and never yet been dissatisfied. In fact, I have been quite thankful I have clothes that can out perform the clothing the guys I hunt with are wearing.

  • I’M A MOUNTAIN HUNTER AND PROUD OF IT!

     

    by Randy Johnson

     

    “Why do certain groups and individuals in today’s social circles view Mountain Hunters and our efforts to pass on the tradition of hunting that was given to us from our ancestors as nothing but blood thirsty killers”? Why do they seek to deny the Mountain Hunter his/her liberty and freedom to legally pursue wild game, to challenge our spirit and fortitude against nature and the instincts of untamed big game animals? Why do they threaten, attack and harass some of our more successful mountain hunters who are in the public spotlight with vile, filthy emails and messages? What gives them the right to attack hunting and threaten our families with inconceivable, warped, and filthy bodily harm when we are only pursuing a very legal and proven means of wildlife conservation?
  •  

    The name Kofa NWR brings thoughts of yellow, curly horned glory to most southwest hunters’ minds. For nearly a century, hunters from all parts of this country and abroad would travel to this unforgiving region of Arizona to hunt the desert bighorn sheep that made this place so famous. Some of those hunters also discovered something else...and they kept it a secret for years.
  •   I gasped as the cold water splashed over my head and back. Momentarily I lost my breath as goose-bumps covered my skin. Bathing in this freezing cold mountain water was not fun at all, but it had to be done. Not wanting to think about how cold it was, I took a deep breath and quickly ducked the rest of my body under the water.  I washed as fast as I could but the icy sting from the small mountain stream was giving me a headache! Finally I jumped out of the water to dry off. Thank-goodness my daily high-mountain bath was over. Now I could get back to the very reason I was dipping myself into this freezing water in the first place: to bow-hunt high-mountain mule deer.

  • Hello everyone! I’ve been guiding desert sheep hunters for more years than any man or woman with all their mental facilities should admit but I can honestly say that I wouldn’t trade all the sweat, time, sacrifice, blood and tears for anything! I know that many of you “sheep hunting nuts” feel the very same way. In other words, we are obsessed, lifelong “Ovis canadenis” fanatics” who live for that adrenalin rush that surges through our veins when we spot a trophy ram! I know that when I personally receive a phone call from a man or woman who just drew their long awaited sheep tag I can hear the excitement in their voice and feel the raw emotion and anticipation they are trembling with that suddenly I’m bouncing around like a young kid on Christmas morning!

  • Four years ago I suffered an injury to my lower back. The diagnosis was: Ruptured Disk with Free Fragments. The Neurosurgeon suggested that my back packing days were over. I have been very fortunate to avoid surgery, and even luckier that I have been able to stay very active in the outdoors.

  • Basic Description:A 3+ season bag that is lightweight and utilizes Montbell’s patended Super Spiral Stretch System. This is the big reason why I liked this bag so much! The bag stretches with you and forms around your body better than any other bag I have tested. If you are someone who gets claustrophobic from traditional mummy bags than this bag is for you! It repels water just as well as any other bag I have tested, so in my case using it underneath the Kifaru Supertarp, I will have no issues with drips of water or anything getting my down wet.
  • Sweat dripped from my brow, stinging my eyes, as I followed my guide, Randy Johnson, upward through a series of steep sandstone ledges. For the past six days the oppressive desert heat and rugged terrain had kicked our butts and taken a toll on leg muscles that strained to push us onward.  I have been on some tough hunts in my life but this one was shaping up to be one of the roughest I have ever encountered. Stopping briefly for a quick breather, Randy whispered to stay quiet and nodded that the area we were approaching was a prime location for sheep to bed down in, protected from the blistering heat of the blazing afternoon sun.

  • I have to admit, I really don’t enjoy pumping water in the backcountry.  You wouldn’t know it by the amount of different water filters I own; in fact you would probably think the opposite after seeing my inventory.  I actually don’t know when I began to feel this way.  It just seems anymore, the thought of sitting next to a water source and physically pumping water into all my containers is a chore I despise.  So much so, I began to skimp on my water intake just so I didn’t have to pump more water.  For those of you that backpack, not drinking enough filtered water is never a good thing in the wilderness and drinking untreated water was not an option.  I tried purifying pills and drops but I could not get used to the after taste.  Since I couldn’t find a volunteer to trek up the mountain with me and be my full time “water boy” while I was out hunting, I knew I needed to figure out an easier way to keep an ample supply water in my camp without having the fear of running out.

  • The recoil from my 7mm sent a jolt through my body and my head bounced up just in time to see the flames fly from my barrel. Despite being precariously positioned high on a cliff-face, I frantically worked the action of my gun, loading another round into the chamber. In the dimming evening light, I squinted through my rifle scope and continued searching through the boulders that scattered the river-bottom below me, hoping to see the huge black bear once again. As the shadows faded into the blackness, I could only hope that my first shot had hit home.

  • Like most others who have drawn once-in-a-lifetime type tags, the notification of my Mountain Goat drawing success struck me as a surprise after many years applying.  This was it! --The final “difficult” species to draw in my Colorado Archery Big 8 quest. The dominant terrain feature within the unit is Mt. Antero, a peak reaching the heavens above 14,000 feet.   All my research, training, scouting, and preparation for the hunt were certainly worthwhile, but none of it prepared me for the mental and physical challenges I would find on the lofty granite peaks if the Colorado high country.  Mountain Goats are tough animals for good reason; they live in the most inhospitable places in North America.  The places they call home are like a nightmare for us two-legged, non-wild creatures.

  • Whitetail hunting usually doesn’t take place in what we like to term as the backcountry. It isn’t above 10,000’and usually not very many miles away from civilization at times. But hunting these critters is very addictive like any other style and type of hunting.

  • The last day of deer or elk season is usually a day that most hunters dread, often trying to squeeze in as much time afield before that final minute of legal shooting light fades away.  After all, the last day typically symbolizes the beginning of an impatient and difficult layoff that makes even the casual hunter long for hunting season to return.  I suppose a few embrace the last day, especially after a three to four month season that usually warrants some much needed rest and relaxation.  However for those of us who live, eat, and breathe bowhunting, I’ve learned the last day of the big game season can open up a totally new hunting opportunity.  With just a little bit of additional equipment, some scouting, and the ability to operate a call, you can extend your bow season throughout the spring and into the summer, creating a year round bowhunting adventure.

  • CRISPI SPIDER - HTG GTX  Boot Review www.ireviewgear.com Editor: Randy Johnson, HIGH DESERT WILD SHEEP GUIDES Rating: 5 Stars Basic Description of item: Outstanding, mid-height, insulated hunting, hiking, backpacking boot featuring innovative Crispi Technology. Designed for rugged hunting terrain, trekking, mountain hiking and all other outdoor activities.

  • To this day I’m amazed that our local town sheriff did not get a call about some “weirdo” at our little post office. After opening my mailbox I pulled out a little yellow card that read: “Montana Bighorn Sheep; Paradise Unit……. Successful.” The only words that could escape my slack-jawed, drooling mouth where,” Oh my God! Oh my God!” A complete stranger walked in the door. I looked wild eyed at her and proclaimed, “ I drew a Montana bighorn sheep tag!”  She lowered her chin towards the floor to cut off eye contact and veered around me. Then the other two people that I don’t know in our tiny town walked in, and I gave them the great news as well. I must have looked like a complete idiot! Next, the thought occurred to me that one of my cruel friends was pulling a prank. I scanned the parking lot for someone laughing holding his or her sides. No jokesters there.  And, that was the beginning of my Montana sheep hunt.

  • Generally when archery seasons begin out West, most mule deer will still be in the velvet stage of antler development.  When a bowhunter is lucky enough to take a trophy in velvet, oftentimes they want to preserve their trophy in its natural state.  For those who are backpacked deep into a remote wilderness, they are generally not able to get it frozen and or deliver it to a taxidermist in a timely manner.  As a result, the velvet slips and they no longer have the ability to mount it with the original velvet intact.  Knowing how to successfully preserve the velvet is crucial for back-country hunters who wish to prevent the velvet spoiling and “slipping”.  Untreated velvet, in room temperatures, begins to breakdown immediately and should be treated within 24 hours (depending on weather).  Here's what I've done over the years that's worked for me while either in the field or at trailhead.

  • Penetration is a crucial element to consider when choosing an arrow.  There are many theories out there concerning which arrow has the best penetration performance.  There are also many factors that contribute to the overall penetration of the arrow such as draw weight and length, arrow weight, broadhead type, kinetic energy (KE), and front of center (FOC).  While each of these factors are essential to consider and deserve discussion, in this article I am going to focus solely on diameter and type of arrow.

  • I cannot stop talking about the new Equalizer release.  I honestly believe this unique and innovative release will change the world of archery hunting especially for women and those with short draw lengths.  I was introduced to this release a year ago when I was preparing to hunt the big five in Africa.   To hunt dangerous game in Africa there are certain requirements for draw weight and kinetic energy in order to make an ethical and lethal shot.  For years I thought I would never have the opportunity to hunt dangerous game because I only have a 24 1/2 inch draw length.  In order to get the kinetic energy necessary to hunt dangerous game at a 24 1/2 inch draw length I would be required to pull over 100 lbs.

  • With over 16,000 archery tags issued in the state of Utah for mule deer each year, the odds of harvesting the largest buck in state were less than .000062 %; not exactly numbers worth betting on in Vegas. Then combine that with the odds of taking a muley with a bow that would go in Utah’s all-time top ten and the odds get even worse, at .00002%. Any way you do the math, you’d have to be one lucky guy to fill that tag. On August 19, 2007, because of the help of some great friends, I beat the odds and punched that winning lottery ticket with a buck we had named Superman.

  • On August 14th, 2012 I received a phone call that no person ever wants to get.  I learned that one of my very good friends, Darrell Bozarth had passed away at his home in Indiana. I hung up the phone and sat there with tears running down my face, in shock that a dear friend and hunting buddy was suddenly gone.

  • On August 14th, 2012 I received a phone call that no person ever wants to get.  I learned that one of my very good friends, Darrell Bozarth had passed away at his home in Indiana. I hung up the phone and sat there with tears running down my face, in shock that a dear friend and hunting buddy was suddenly gone.

  • As a woman hunter I have always struggled to find hunting clothes that will provide protection, functionality, and durability for all hunting conditions.  For years I have watched my husband and other men have access to top of the line gear such as Sitka and Russell Gear.  I was so frustrated with having to always buy men’s hunting clothes and paying extra to have it altered to fit me.  I was beyond excited the day Prois Hunting Apparel entered the hunting world.  It is about time that women have hunting gear that is comparable to men’s in every way!

  • With some of you prompting me I decided to buckle down and pound out a few of my "biased" thoughts on how to get physically prepared for your hunts next fall! Perhaps the most important reminder I can pass on to each one of you is that your training should begin now! Don't put your physical preparation off until summer because you may not get yourself ready if you do. There have been instances over the years where I have not only guided individuals who had been outstanding athletes but also some younger hunters in the prime of life who thought they could just throw a backpack over their shoulders without going through a regimen of rigorous physical training and "hit the mountain" running only to find out that "the mountain" won the battle and kicked their butts big time!
  • Conventional wisdom says that 10 percent of archery elk hunters kill elk 90 percent of the time.  With typical archery success rates below 20 percent annually, this leaves little room for the remaining 90 percent of bowhunters to find success.  What is the magic behind killing elk every year?  The primary variable of bowhunter success is number of shot opportunities per season.  Bowhunters who experience multiple opportunities each year, even passing shots on smaller bulls or cows, are the 10-percenters--lauded for their skills yet sometimes hated for their predictable success. Obviously, this debate becomes a matter of personal experience for each hunter, but I believe shot opportunities are ultimately determined by three primary factors.

  • The year was 1992 and as a fifteen year old I had beaten ridiculous odds and drawn a Monroe elk permit in my home state of Utah.  After several missed chances at what were considered very big bulls in those days we discovered a loose scope mount.  Once we had that rectified I killed the next bull I shot at, a 300” class 6x6. 

  • It’s no secret that the first decade of our new millennium, the period of 2000-2009 produced an incredible number of Boone & Crockett mule deer entries.  Living in Colorado for nearly 25 years I have personally seen big buck numbers go from almost non-existent in the early 90’s to what was generally observed as a healthy abundance in the 2000’s.  Colorado has always led the B&C records with total entries for mule deer. That fact is very common knowledge for serious mule deer hunters but for a few years in the mid part of the last decade, the number of entries to come from the state surprised even this group.  Boone & Crockett entries for mule deer during the last decade peaked in 2004 and that was mainly due to the huge numbers of bucks to come from Colorado.  Tag numbers increased and the winter of 2007/2008 had a serious impact on some of the state’s best mule deer herds and the outlook is now much different.

  • While hunting by yourself is not for everyone, it certainly isn’t something someone should shy away from strictly because of the “what if” factor.  Hunting solo requires most importantly a confidence in ones own ability to take care of themselves in extreme conditions.  It also requires a skill set of both mental and physical preparation and a selection of gear and accessories that could potentially make the difference between simply weathering harsh elements or succumbing to tragic circumstances.

  • As a career firefighter/paramedic for over 21 years I have had the distinct opportunity to learn lessons from others unfortunate circumstances.  It was during the first couple of years of my career as a firefighter, I went through paramedic school as part of my apprenticeship training.  Towards the end of the classroom portion of this grueling 9 months of paramedic school, we started the clinical phase of our EMS education.  This involved doing “ride-a-longs” with other fire departments and private ambulance companies.  What I soon found out is that I learned a great deal from these seasoned paramedics. The poise and ability of some of these street medics made a lasting impression on me but there were also some lessons learned of “what not to.”  I was educated as much from the impressive skills of some amazing medics as from the occasional mis-step.  It wasn’t so much the mistake that sticks with you, but your ability to learn and adapt and become better because of it.

  • DAY 1 There we were face to face, no more than four feet from each other, an enormous dall ram….and me.  It was just the two of us we as stared at each other motionless.  His eyes were wide and startled, mine were shocked and almost reverenced by this incredible experience.  He stood there only for a brief moment, but long enough to etch his presence in mind forever. 

  • How does one defend or even try and explain the need and desire to sheep hunt to someone else who doesn’t possess those same feelings?  It’s almost inexplicable to the non-sheep hunters of the world.  Even my close friends who are the most dedicated and driven mule deer hunters I know, seem to humor me with a polite smile when I talk about going back to Alaska to hunt Dall sheep.  My favorite quote is from one of the hardest core mule deer hunters I know and he asks me, “Why would you want to go all that ways to hunt a spike?”  My wife and daughters are unanimous in feeling that we would all be better off with a new horse trailer and a pick-up with more towing torque.

  • I couldn’t believe my eyes as I looked through my binoculars at the monster muley that was feeding on the opposite side of the basin. I couldn’t have scripted the opening morning glassing session any better had I tried. My hunting partner, Scott Mansor, and I both judged the huge buck’s typical frame right at the 190 B&C mark and with his long cheaters extending out from his G2’s on both sides, we figured his outside spread was pushing 35 inches wide. He also had a couple of other really small points and he was in full velvet. The buck was about two miles away on the opposite side of the extremely large basin we had been glassing and would require a very lengthy stalk.

  • I felt a sense of relief as I peeked over the edge of the rim rock cliff and saw the lone buck was still lying comfortably in his bed. The buck was perched on a long, narrow bench at 12,000’ where he was very contently overlooking the large alpine basin below him. His velvet covered antlers protruded well above the stunted willows as he laid there next to a lone rock on this cold and wet September day. Thankfully, the rain and snow mix that had been falling all morning, had kept the buck bedded during our entire 3 hour stalk.

  • While rangefinders are becoming more and more common, there are still a good number of hunters who venture afield without one in their pack. Although there was a day when my pack lacked a rangefinder as well, nowadays, it is an essential piece of equipment that I wouldn’t even consider traveling into the high country without. Over the past several years, I have come to rely on my rangefinder very heavily for multiple tasks while hunting, which is why it has earned it a permanent place in my hunting pack.

  • Living among the deer in the high country can be one of the most rewarding archery hunting experiences of your life. But in order to be successful at this type of hunting, there are certain camp placement rules you should follow when bivouacking in the backcountry. The next time you are considering where to place your camp, think of the word STEALTH! Stealth is the action of doing something slowly, quietly, and covertly, in order to avoid detection. It is also a great acronym for the seven camp rules that I live by when hunting high country bucks.

  • Stabilizers Have you ever heard someone state, “I don’t need a stabilizer on my bow”, or

  • Sunpak Quantaray QSX 2001 Tripod

    With all of the cool new gear available each year, it seems that the bulk of my backpacking equipment only remains in my pack for 2-3 years at best before it gets replaced with a newer and improved version. With that being said, I recently went through my gear list and noticed one piece of equipment in particular that has remained on my gear list longer than any other piece of equipment – my tripod.
  • *The pictures in this story are from back in the day of  35 mm film.  The quality of the pictures are not what it is now with digital. We watched the super cub fade away into the azure sky as we stood in the gravel bar with nothing but our backpacks and pure adrenalin, anticipating the adventure that was about to ensue. We were 50 miles from the nearest civilization.  We were surrounded only by steep shale cliffs and a roaring river that was too deep and swift to cross.  The violent river was blocking our path to where we had last seen a monster ram.  In order to get to our destination we would have to hike several miles up river to the headwaters of the glacier, find our way across the glacier, then hike all the way back down the canyon, just to get to the mountainside to begin our ascent to the monster ram.

  • Featured on Eye of the Hunter TV on NBC Sports

    Winning the Extreme Huntress contest was one of my most amazing experiences.  The grand prize was a hunt to British Columbia for Mountain Goat and Elk to be filmed on Eye Of The Hunter TV.  I had never been to BC before so I was anxiously counting the days from the moment I won.  I began preparing myself physically from the moment I learned I won so I would be ready for the rugged terrain of mountain goat country. Mountain goats typically live high in the ledges to protect themselves from predators.  I had to pinch myself when the time finally arrived to leave on the hunt.
  • I was all alone deep in the Bitterroot mountain range, I was too exhausted to care what may lurk outside my tent.  I was in an area so densely populated with black bear, that it was a two bear tag area.  It was the last week of the spring black bear hunt, and I was determined not to go home empty handed. I had already been there for a week with my husband and children.   But my husband had to return home to work, and I did not want to go.  I talked my resistant husband into leaving me there all alone for the week, without a truck, so I could give my full attention to getting my Idaho black bear.

  • “Are you crazy?”  That’s generally the response I received when I told friends and family that I was selling my Mathews compound and switching to a recurve bow.  Some of them told me not to do it because I needed more harvests under my belt with a compound.  A good friend also said, “Well Good!  That leaves more elk for me?”  And one of my cousins even had the audacity to blurt out “I guess you want to wound a lot of game don’t you.”

  • Enroll in the Elk Hunting University Is Colorado the last, best chance for the elk hunter with no license and no plans?  I think it is.  With 92 units available in Colorado for over-the-counter elk license purchases, there is an incredible selection of units with terrain and levels of remoteness to appeal to hunters of all levels.  Most elk taken in these OTC (over-the-counter) units are 2 year old raghorn bulls sporting small 4 and 5 point antlers.  That being said, Colorado is big enough and rough enough for elk to find places to avoid hunters for years on end. Some bulls have gotten big, with monster OTC bulls taken in recent years that rival those bulls of tightly managed units of Utah and Arizona.

  • At 11,800 feet there wasn’t a whole lot of air to gulp down. The only sign of trees were a couple thousand feet below us, with the exception of a few tree stumps from millions of years ago. Petrified tree parts littered the near vertical slopes around us and the stumps of an ancient forest still protruded from the earth here.

  • With only 2 years of applying for a limited entry elk tag in Wyoming as a non resident I was elated and ecstatic to see the words successful when I logged into the computer to check my draw status! My brother Justin lived close by and he would help me scout and hunt when the season arrived and I owe much of this hunt to him and his help. Thank you Justin!

  • It was just a few moments away from darkness and I had been stalking a high country mulie for almost two hours.   I couldn’t let this opportunity get away.  I knew I had to act quickly or my chance would be gone forever.   I was so lost in the moment that I didn’t even take the time to absorb how beautiful this old buck was.   I knew he was a four point.  I knew he had great brow tines.  I knew he was in velvet.  But what I didn’t know, was the caliber of deer I was standing 40 yards from.

  • What in the heck am I thinking? I must be crazy! Those were the exact thoughts that crossed my mind as I watched the trophy antelope put a half mile of sagebrush covered desert between him and I in a matter of seconds. Unfortunately, after several days of spot and stalk hunting, the sight of antelope disappearing over the ridge in a cloud of dust was becoming an all too familiar sight. This spot and stalk antelope gig was evidently going to be a little tougher than I had originally thought!

  • At one point in our life, just about all of us have played a game of darts. For being such a small projectile, darts have the ability to fly with great stability and accuracy. Why? It has to do with the dart’s front of center (FOC) which makes it heavier in the front, than it is in the rear. By having most of its weight in the front, the dart is able to recover almost immediately in flight and it also requires very minimal fletching on the rear to guide the projectile. This same weight forward principle applies when trying to get superior flight from an arrow in archery as well. Granted, a dart has much higher FOC than a properly designed arrow requires for stable and accurate flight, but the same concept applies.

  • This was no ordinary deer I was looking at through my spotting scope - he was huge! Normally, a buck that was missing his G3 tine on one side wouldn’t even get me excited, but the fact that this buck had that classic boxy rack, great mass and a 33” outside spread, more than made up for the missing G3.

  • It all started on Sept. 15, 2009 when my friend A.J. Angelovic and I were stalking a nice buck we had spotted in a deep alpine basin.  In route we were spotted by 4 or 5 bucks that were bedded at around 250 yards away.  We stopped and glassed each and every one of them and I remember taking a little longer looking at a young 3X4 that had a pretty good mass.  I remember saying he would be a pretty good buck in a few years, but it seemed like we said that about almost every buck we looked at.

  • The 2010 archery seasons started out like many others. Anticipation was running on high and my senses told me that it was going to be another great year! While putting final touches to my packing list and stuffing it all into my external frame pack I once again realized how nervous I get before going into the backcountry. I reminisce about the year prior and try to think about what I had learned and use that knowledge to improve the next year. With each passing year I learn more and better ways to hunt the backcountry.

  • Day was Friday; the date was the 28th of September, 2009 as I finished the final touches of packing my external frame packwith all the necessary gear and supplemental foods for the next 2 weeks of hunting in the high country. Anticipation was running on high as I stuffed everything I could into my pack. Just minutes after that I was trudging my way through the timber headed higher into the backcountry in search of a gagger buck.

  • I couldn’t help but reflect back on my successful archery hunt from a month earlier as I made my way through the predawn darkness. I still had to headlamp for another hour and a half before sunup, so I had plenty of time to keep playing the events of the hunt through my mind. Even though over a month had passed, I still couldn’t believe I was fortunate enough to have taken the archery buck of a lifetime with my bow. The buck gross scored 200 5/8 and was extremely massive.

  • The tall and massive buck fed in the avalanche chute at 600 yards. I wanted to close the distance, but in order to do so I would have to drop off the rugged ridge and circle around the huge basin and come in from below. After carefully slipping up through the bottom of the basin, I reached a spot where I could easily take him at 400 yards. It was opening day and I wanted to make it a little more fun, so I passed on the 400 yard shot and continued my stalk on the massive buck. I worked my way through the thick scrub pines and reached my desired location. Once I got to the little knob that would give me a 175 yard shot, all hell broke loose as gun shots broke the silence in the cold mountain air. My heart was broken!

  •   All children, except one, grow up. They soon know that they will grow up, and the way Wendy knew was this. One day when she was two years old she was playing in a garden, and she plucked another flower and ran with it to her mother. I suppose she must have looked rather delightful, for Mrs. Darling put her hand to her heart and cried, "Oh, why can't you remain like this for ever!" This was all that passed between them on the subject, but henceforth Wendy knew that she must grow up. You always know after you are two. Two is the beginning of the end.

  • “I never tried to prove nothing, just wanted to give a good show. My life

  • WordPress, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways (in 140 characters or

  • The WordPress Theme Review Team Website

  • Only one thing is impossible for God: To find any sense in any copyright law

  • Abbott: Strange as it may seem, they give ball players nowadays very peculiar names. Costello: Funny

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