First Elk 2021 NM


Well Known Rokslider
May 8, 2019
My 11yo son got lucky and drew a NM muzzy youth hunt the first year I put him.

I scouted M-T and never saw a bull on public, took him out Friday, and while I was watching a cow on one side of the road, he spotted the first bull on his side. It appeared to be making its way to bed, so we planned to position ourselves to intercept him on the opening Saturday morning.
Day 1 We got in position to intercept the bull we spotted the day before, but he was nowhere to be seen. We did however spot a herd of elk with several bulls a half-mile away. I ran back for the truck, while my son and wife b-lined it straight for the road for me to meet them. We got a little closer with the truck and then started to stalk towards the herd. We spotted a bull break away from the herd, presumably to bed, and then moved to intercept him. We got within 210 yards when we realized it was actually two bulls moving thru the cedars and one of them had busted us. We could have got a shot with a rifle but didn't want to push it with the muzzy. No more action that morning. That evening we spotted some cows high up on a steep mountain. We made an attempt to put a stalk on them, but couldn't close the distance before they fed over the mountain and we ran out of light.
Day 2 We spotted a bull similar to our scouting day Friday and moved to intercept him going to bed. While trying to close the distance, he appeared out of nowhere only 130yds in front of us. My son got a shot off, but the end result was only a few drops of blood. We ended up jumping the bull, but he ran off appearing healthy. We backed out for 4 or 5 hours and went back to grid the mountain the rest of the evening resulting in no other blood or sign.
Day 3 We spotted a bull about a half-mile from the road. He was by himself and like several of the bulls we had seen in the morning appeared to be on a steady pace headed to bed. This bull was headed towards a piece of private and we likely couldn't close the distance before he crossed. We parked and got a few hundred yards closer. I gave a few cow calls, he turned, looked at us, bugled, and started heading our direction. We gave a few calls periodically and he continued closing the distance, occasionally bugling and even jumping a fence on his path to us. As he closed the distance my wife dropped back 80 yards to call in case he hung up too far for a shot. He hung up about 150 yds out, she gave a couple of cow calls and he continued towards us. He worked into about 60 yards and as he cleared a cedar bush I stopped him with a cow call. It took many seconds before he was able to calm his nerves enough to get steady and pull the trigger, but he did it. The elk dropped immediately. I reloaded immediately and got him ready for a follow-up shot. He put a second in just in case because he looked like he was trying to get up, but both shots were perfect vitals.

It was a great time and even better since his brother, sister and grandparents were able to meet us in the field to get it cleaned up.

Shooting a TC Encore .50 cal
Western Edge Gear Pack


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