It was a bit late of a start for us. When we pulled up to the first parking lot we could already make out some orange pushing up towards the ridge (near 1). We were dropped off and on hour way. I am guessing it was about 7:15 – 7:30 AM. While it would have been better to be in place at this time, we were still there in plenty of time.
After we set out on foot, the third party headed to the North parking lot of the south end. The idea was to push any Elk we saw towards the middle.
My ascent up I kept to the edge of the park, which was fenced, with no gates, which I was hoping was the case as I reached the top (Hotel 6). Lawrence pushed up the center towards a pretty sweet little intersection, where Elk would commonly pass through and would provide a great view and shot up to 150 yards to all sides. Like I mentioned there were hunters already up on the ridge, which led to 9 Bull passing no more than 50-75 yards from Lawrence (Point 2).
While he still positioned at 2, I was working my way up the ridge. I was met by several tracks of Hare and Coyote, as well as 1 HUGE Hare that jumped out about 5 feet from my path. As I neared the treeline (near point 2), I watched 7 Elk (1 Massive Bull, accompanied by 2 others, as well as 3 cow and 1 calf). As I reached the ridge they had already shot down below to the private ranches. I spent about 30 minutes watching as they would walk behind several mounds to the West, never heading back up to the ridge.
15 minutes after Lawrence arrived at the Intersection (point 3), we exchanged data. We sat for some time waiting for our 3rd party to arrive. As it crossed past noontime, I headed back up to the ridge and walked North hoping to run into them. The other hunter party of 4 just passed, yet they were no where in site. I spent some time scanning the horizon to see another lone bull head down towards the Ranches.
After several minutes of some terribly robotic like conversation on the radio I headed back to point 3. We kicked back in the sun. Lawrence went to take a shit as I noticed 2 Elk cautiously working their way through the woods towards point 4. Just as the Elk (now presenting their racks) broke the tree line, Lawrence was drawing them into his sights. 6 points, standing as tall as a tall man, both elk just gradually walked across the opening, knowing very well that it was Cow season. Lawrence completely had the shot, had it been Bull season!
Great weekend out, hoping for one more before the season ends.