Motorized Pack Wheel - Hauling Trail Cameras and Mineral Blocks

Pack Wheel 29er with Electric Motor

Here's my XL 29er Pack Wheel with e-bike motor installed. With the e-bike kit installed it increased the weight by 8-9 pounds. These 250W motors aren't light. I wonder how much the 500W motors weigh.

 

Motorized Hiking Cart

Nearing the top of the area with my motorized Pack Wheel game cart.

 

Digging out elk wallow

My cousin Chase hard at work digging out the wallow I like to watch with a trail camera. It's amazing how digging out this little water hole really attracts the critters to come and drink out of it. Chase was a great help on this trip and does a darn good job running the video camera as you can see in the video below.

 

Browning Strike Force BTC-5HD trail camera

Here's a new Strike Force BTC-5HD trail camera. Even though the packaging states that it will only use up to a 32 gig SD card I am using a 64 gig card in this camera. The video files on this camera are really good quality but very large in disk size. This camera takes AVI video like previous Browning trail cameras while the new Recon Force BTC-7FHD camera takes even higher quality videos and stores them in a MP4 format that takes up less space on the disk. Recon Force BTC-7FHD cameras can only take up to 32 gig SD cards.

 

250w motor on a Pack Wheel hiking cart with disc brake

Here's a view of the 250W motor with a six bolt disc brake attachment on the Pack Wheel.

 

Checking the settings on a Recon Force BTC-7FHD

Say cheese. Chase and I got a "selfie" taken while setting up this Recon Force BTC-7FHD trail camera.

 

Wow what a wet spring we have had this year! I have been itching to get back out in the mountains for some time now. KB and I were able to put out a couple trail cameras in March when we went coyote hunting since then it have been raining like crazy. When it rains the mountain turns into a greasy mess.

So the first week of June it had cleared out enough to dry out the roads to make it up the mountain. I had a ton of gear that I wanted to haul into the area I like to archery elk hunt. I had a couple of new Recon Force BTC-7FHD, a new Strike Force BTC- 5HD and several other Browning trail cameras I wanted to set out to watch the area. I also have been making a bunch of my 12v AA NiMh DIY rechargeable battery packs to use with the cameras to help save on the alkaline batteries I have been purchasing to feed the cameras.

Here's some of the items I needed to haul into the area: I took four metal Browning Tree Mounts, a collapsible shovel, video camera, saw, eight trail cameras, 132 AA batteries, and 90 pounds of minerals to help supplement the elk's diet... ok, the minerals are to hopefully help keep the elk in the area come archery season.

So needless to say I had a crap pile of gear and I didn't want to spend all day making trips up the mountain to get all the stuff in that I needed. In the past to haul in tree stands and ground blinds I have used my 29er or 26 inch Pack Wheels to haul them in. This time I had considerably more weight in gear to take in. The Pack Wheel has been great going up the steep game trails with the gear in the past but this time I had a lot more to get in.

To get it all in one trip I wanted to try running a motor on the Pack Wheel. I picked up a 29er kit e-bike kit to see how it would work. I went with the smallest battery version available because it was the lightest. I figured that I shouldn't need a huge heavy battery because I was still be pushing and would use the motor to give me a boost on the really steep game trails. I will admit I was a little curious to see what power this motor would have with the really large 29er wheel. Simple logic made sense that the smaller the wheel the lower the gear ratio and torque/power.

The e-bike kit installed rather easily and quickly on the Pack Wheel. I did have to file out the sides of the axle slots just a smidgen to get the axle to fit down into place. I also had to use a washer shim included with the quick releases to get the disc to align with the rotor slot. The cables are way too long for the small Pack Wheel so I wound the cable around in a loop and velcro tied it to the handle and the battery pack fit nicely on the back of the handle.

On the really steep inclines the motor would get bogged down if I wasn't pushing myself but as long as I was pushing at the same time it worked really well at helping move the heavy load up the mountain. I did find that with this large 29er wheel the motor wanted to travel a little faster than I wanted to hike. All-in-all the motor helped tremendously and saved me hours of time in either taking multiple trips.

The wheel rolled completely smooth with no noise or resistance when I wasn't using the motor, just smooth free wheeling You can ever so slightly feel some resistance and hear a light noise when the wheel rolls backwards. When using the motor it creates a faint amount of noise.

I'm now going to try this motor on a 20 and or 24 inch wheel. I'm confident the smaller wheel will provide more torque and power so that the motor doesn't get bogged down as much when I slow down. The smaller wheel will also slow down the pace of my hiking so that I don't feel like I am "running" up the mountain. I'll start working on trying a smaller wheel for next time out.

Having this e-bike motor kit setup on the Pack Wheel added an additional 8-9 pounds of weight, almost doubling the overall weight. I do think given the right situation the motor will come in vary handy. Situations like this one where I have a bunch of gear I need to haul up the mountain on steep trails and I am in an area that a motor would not be restricted. Most of the time I'll still be using the Pack Wheel without a motor to do my backpacking and hunting trips but the motor does make for a nice additional option if I need it.

The two Browning trail cameras I had out since March captured a ton of mule deer and various other critters. They actually got a few coyotes on them which has KB all worked up since he helped me setup those two cameras when we were up in there coyote hunting in March. Too funny.

Crossing the creek on a log with a Pack Wheel

Ruff Grouse

On the way back off the mountain crossing a creek with my Pack Wheel. Even on this narrow log the Pack Wheel provided a great extra point of contact to keep my balance by riding the brake.

 

Here's a Ruff Grouse that was in the area.

 

Alps Crossfire X Day Pack

Yellow Wildflower

My forvorite daypack a Alps Crossfire X. This pack is really comfortable.

 

Lots of these yellow wildflowers were all over the place on this trip out.

 

 

 

Stolen Browning Trail Cameras - DIYHNTR03 and DIYHNTR21

Stolen Browning Trail Camera DIYHNTER03

Here's a sample photo from my Recon Force BTC-2XR camera named DIYHNTR03

 

Stolen Browning Trail Camera DIYHNTER21

Here's a sample photo from my Strike Force BTC-5 camera named DIYHNTR21.

Well I knew it was bound to happen sometime. Today when I went to pull two trail cameras from some sage mule deer wintering area the two cameras were gone. I had the two cameras watching two directions off the same dead juniper tree in Morgan, Utah. Whomever took the cameras got a sweet Strike Force, BTC-5 and a Recon Force, BTC-2XR camera. They also took the Browning Tree Mount metal bracket and a Browning external battery pack.

The property they were on was on the north side of the valley butting up to Kippen property. The cameras were on my families property placed 50 yards or so from the Kippen fence. There has been an ATV traveling the fence line on the Kippen property.

The cameras were named DIYHNTR03 and DIYHNTR21 and have this in the lower portion of the images they take. I had DIYHNTR03 written on the one BTC-2XR camera but I believe the DIYHNTR21 camera did not have anything written on it.

I was hoping to catch some nice mule deer bucks on these cameras wintering this past winter but nothing exciting was on the cameras on January 31st the last time I checked them. My cousin said they were still on the tree recently when he was up on the hill. I'm guessing someone was out looking for shed antlers noticed they were on camera and decided to keep the evidence of their tromping through the property.

I have some creative ideas on how I could make them trackable if stolen in the future. Hmm....

Full HD Trail Camera - Browning's New Recon Force (BTC-7FHD)

Browning Recon Force BTC-7FHD Trail Camera Mounting plate

The Browning Recon Force BTC-7FHD trail camera has a solid metal mounting plate on the back. Good luck ripping this camera off the tree Mr. Black Bear.

 

Browning Recon Force BTC-7FHD Trail Camera Door Latch


The door and latch system to access the control panel and SDHC memory card on the BTC-7FHD trail camera.

 

Browning Recon Force BTC-7FHD Trail Camera with 12V NiMh battery pack

A rechargeable NiMh 12 Volt external battery pack attached to the external 12v power port on the Browning Recon Force trail camera.

 

In February of 2015 I was able to get my first Recon Force (BTC-7FHD) trail camera, the newest trail camera from Browning. After a couple weeks of testing the camera I am just amazed with the video quality this camera produces.

The camera takes full HD 1920x1080 video. The quality of the audio is also top notch. The video is saved in H264 MP4 format on a SDHC card.

I have just really been blown away by the videos this camera produces. I thought the HD videos the older Browning Trail cameras produce where awesome, now they just don't quite compare.

The camera uses the single buckle latch on the lower half of the camera. Browning used this latch on the sub micro Strike Force trail camera last year. I like this system over the double snapping buckles from the older Recon Force cameras.

I have noticed that the camera does an awesome job with getting triggered by even small critters like robins and cats and raccoons that are 20 yards away from the camera.

Another feature I really like is that the plastic mounting brackets have been replaced with a solid steel plate that covers much of the back of the camera. This will greatly help the camera from being broken off a tree by a bear or an operator trying to wedge a shim in between the camera and the tree while the camera is cinched on tight. Not that that hasn't ever happened to me. ;)

One thing that I have found with this camera is that it does chew through batteries a little faster than the past models. Taking video uses a lot more battery than just taking images. More battery consumption was expected given that it writes more to the SDHC card and captures so much more detail.  To help with making sure the camera has plenty of juice between checking it I have made a 12 volt NiMh rechargeable battery pack.

I also found that set to capture 30 second video clips the camera took 386 videos before the 32 GB SDHC SD card filled up. Many of the videos it captured were 10 second LED infrared lighted ten second videos at night of raccoons. The ten second black and white videos don't take as much space on the SD card. A little math on the file size on the 100,000 KB file size of a 30 second clip gives me 320 videos to fill a 32 GB card.

I picked up some 64 GB cards to try but the camera shows an error. Darn it! There have been many times that my favorite springs to watch for elk have filled up my 32 GB SD cards with the smaller HD videos from my old cameras in less that two weeks. It sure would be nice to be able to use 64 or 128 GB cards. Looks like I'll have to check this camera a little more frequently. I guess the camera isn't quite perfect but it's getting close.

Included on this post are some sample videos from the first few weeks of using the camera. Wow! Just awesome quality for a trail camera.

Thanks to this camera I will now be trying to upgrade my cameras to the new Recon Force Full HD cameras. I may also try the new Strike Force BTC- 5HD camera as it also has better video... although probably now quite as good as this Recon Force.

DIY 12V NiMh Rechargeable Trail Camera Battery Pack

12v AA battery setup for trail cameras

Some of the supplies to start using NiMh AA rechargeable batteries with my Browning trail cameras.

 

Berger bullet case for 12v battery pack


A Berger VLD bullet box works great for making a case to enclose the ten NiMh AA 12V battery pack.

 

Berger bullet case painted for 12v aa battery pack

MY DIY rechargeable 12 Volt external battery pack ready for use. I placed the batteries inside of a plastic baggie and then use the foam that comes with the bullets to pad the extra space inside of the box.

 

Black Decker For Tool Box


The Berger bullet boxes work good but I have since found that Black & Decker ForTools boxes work even better. These boxes have a metal clip on the back that makes it a breeze to just clip the battery pack to the strap that is holding the trail camera.

 

Trail Camera Battery boxes for 12v NiMh batteries

A few Black & Decker ForTools cases painted up green. The cases are ready to put in my Alps Crossfire X Pack to take to the woods to put on my trail cameras.

 

Browning trail camera with DIY 12v AA battery pack

I just drill a hole on the rim of the door closure for the cord to thread out, a little spray paint and the Black & Decker ForTools boxes work great for holding the 12v NiMh battery pack.

For the past couple years I have been keeping six or more trail cameras out year round. I love watching the critters the cameras are able to catch in images and video.

Recently I picked up a new Browning Recon Force (BTC-7FHD) that takes full HD video and a 2015 version of the Strike Force camera I really like. In the first couple of days of testing the cameras I realized that the batteries were getting drained a little faster than my older Browning trail cameras. It's makes sense that recording larger files of higher quality video would drain the batteries a little quicker.

Combine the fact that I have been feeding multiple cameras hundreds of batteries through the years and the higher battery consuming newer models, I setout to find a solution that would not only provide rechargeable batteries but also provide greater longevity of the batteries before they stopped operating the camera in the field.

I have found that when you have cattle coming into the same spring that the elk and deer love, several hundred videos can easily be recorded in a week. With 32 GB SDHD cards I can get hundreds of videos but sometimes the alkaline AA batteries in the camera get drained out before the SD card is full.

The Browning trail cameras themselves are designed to run with 1.5 Volt AA batteries. The problem with just putting rechargeable NiMh batteries into the camera is that NiMh batteries are only 1.2 Volts. With an eight battery trail camera and this would create only 9.6 Volts instead of 12 Volts. I have heard of people running their cameras with only 9.6 volts put this makes me a little weary that it wouldn't have the juice to operate the LED flash at night and just not perform very well.

A nice feature to all Browning trail cameras is the ability to plug in an external 12V power source. I have used the Browning external battery packs that run on eight 1.5V AA batteries to make 12 Volts of juice. With this in mind the gears have been a churning in my head. What if I had a external battery pack that had ten 1.2V NIMH batteries for a 12V total pack? Hmm...

Here's what I came up with: Because each battery pack will have ten batteries I found a charger that holds ten batteries so I can recharge the AA batteries in groups of ten to match the battery packs. I purchased some "2.1 x 5.5mm DC Power Pigtail Male" plugs, and tracked down some hard to find battery cases that hold ten AA batteries.

For protective case to place the battery packs inside I am trying out reusing empty Berger bullet cases. I just drilled a hole for the power cord to go through and two holes in the back/bottom of the case to thread parachute cord through to use to attach the pack to a tree.

I used some sand paper to roughen the outside surface of the plastic bullet box and then spray painted the box earthy green. Because the box isn't water tight I am placing the battery pack inside of a zip lock bag then placing this inside of the bullet box. I also use the cut foam that comes in the bullet box to cushion the bullets to fill in and cushion the battery pack.

I have been testing this DIY 12V rechargeable battery pack and to looks like it is going to work great. I'm thinking this will eventually really save me in the battery expenses and I believe these packs should really out perform using alkaline batteries as there will be two additional batteries with the NiMh AAs and NIMH batteries maintain a very strong voltage over the life of the charge. On the other hand alkaline batteries start loosing voltage the minute you start using them. I am also thinking this battery pack will work really well in cold temperatures.

One downside to NiMh batteries is that I have heard somewhere that they loose their charge in hot temperatures, I think above 90 degrees or so. I will have to see if I can find more info on this.

I think I am really going to like this NiMh battery system! Now I just need some more Berger Bullet cases to make several more battery packs... I might have to find some other cases to use until I burn through some more Berger bullets.

Since I first tried the Berger Bullet cases I have found a better case to use for the battery packs. The cases are Black & Decker ForTools cases that are designed to clip to your belt and hold screws and other small parts and tools. I found some of these cases at Ace Hardware. With a little paint and a hole drilled through the edge of where the door closes these cases work great.

Here's some of the first video I have got from the new full HD Browning Recon Force BTC-7FHD trail camera. This camera takes a little more juice to operate and my DIY battery packs should work great at making sure the camera has plenty of power before I return to check it again.

Extreme Cow Elk Hunt - Hunting with a Model 1885 High Wall 300 Win Mag

Dallen cow elk hunting with Pack Wheel game cart

Dallen hiking with an Alps Commander frame pack carrying a 26XL Pack Wheel. All ready to haul an elk off the mountain.

 

270 WSM Winchester Model 1885 cow elk hunting

Someone looks a little tired. Maybe you should stop being a teenager who thinks he doesn't need to go to bed at night and get to bed before midnight Mr. Dallen. ;)

Dallen was also carrying a Model 1885, my 270 WSM setup with 150 Gr Berger VLDs.

 

Model 1885 300 Win Mag Cow elk hunting

My 300 Win Mag Model 1885 High Wall with Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50.

 

Browning Neoprene Rifle Jacket in Snow


Browning's Neoprene Rifle Jacket protecting my Model 1885. This rifle jacket is awesome for keeping snow and other debris out of the barrel and off the scope lenses. I love being able to just lay my rifle down on most anything and it doesn't get scratched.

Goofy antler bull elk

Too bad this wasn't a cow. Dallen could have easily taken this goofy antlered bull had it been a cow.

 

Alaska Guide Creations Bino Pack Model 1885 300 Win Mag hunting cow elk

Trying out a Alaska Guide Creations bino pack for the first time that a good friend of mine sent me a for Christmas this year. It's a nice bino pack. The pack just lacked a pouch to fit my large range finder. I sewed a fleece pouch that hangs on the side of the bino pack to hold my large Bushnell Elite 1500 range finder.

 

Model 1885 300 Win Mag shooting from Cliff

This is where I shot the cow elk from with my 300 Win Mag Model 1885.

 

300 Win Mag empty shell on cliff

The empty 300 Win Mag case from the first 645 yard shot across the canyon.

 

Dead cow elk across canyon

One cow down and the two others didn't move. I wanted to shoot the cow on the right but she was blocked by way to many limbs.

 

Cow elk bedded

As it would be I was able to get within 200 yards of the cow and calf in a spot where I could have taken a shot. If I knew I could have made it this close without them taking off and known that I could have seen them I would have opted to move in closer.

 

Hiking with 26 XL Pack Wheel

To hike back off the mountain we assemble our Pack Wheel carts and put all of our gear except our rifles on the Pack Wheel to wheel back off the mountain.

 

26 XL Pack Wheel with Cow Elk

26 inch wheel X-Large handle Pack Wheel with my cow elk in January of 2015.
 

Pack Wheel Panniers on Cow Elk

Getting ready to start boning out the elk. All of the meat will go in these two rolled up canvas Pack Wheel panniers.

 

Frosted Beard elk hunting

I think it was a little cold this morning. My short beard was fully frosted like a flocked Christmas tree.

 

This year Dallen and I each drew late season cow elk tags. For this hunt I was looking forward to trying out a new load in a new rifle. Most especially in a "Big Bore" cartridge for me, a 300 Win Mag. I have always been a fan of low recoiling smaller bored calibers. Back in the day my first high powered rifle was chambered in 25-06 Rem. I have since really taken a liking to the 243 WSSM and the 270 WSM cartridges.

My new 1885 in 300 Win Mag delivered in December and I have worked as fast as I could to get it scoped with 20 MOA of scope adjustment built into the bases and rings. When I saw that Winchester was doing a small run of 300 Win Mags in the Model 1885 I jumped on the opportunity to get one. I really like 1885 rifles and this rifle would jump me into the 30 caliber bullets for the first time.

The past couple of years I have been really taking a liking to the technical aspects of stretching the distance of my shooting. I have been shooting at Spirit Ridge rifle golf range at steel targets out to 1200 yards with my 243 WSSM and 270 WSM rifles and have really enjoyed it.

Until the last four or so years I have always liked a cartridge and bullet that provided a long max point blank range. In other words I like a really fast flat shooting bullet where I could sight it in 2.5 inches high at 100 yards and be near dead on at 300 yards. This being accomplished with traditional duplex rifle scopes. Setup this way I could hold dead on a 7 inch target and hit it from zero to around 350 yards. I also didn't have to worry about having a range finder. I could judge that the distance was within 350 yards and just pull up and shoot.

I have of lately been changing my philosophy on my bullet choice and scopes. On most of my rifles I have been getting adjustable target turret style of scopes. I have been switching to heavier, high ballistic coefficient bullets and using Strelok Pro ballistic calculator on my phone to calculate the shot. I now no longer worry about the bullet drop or velocity that much. I work to get an accurate load and then let Strelok Pro tell me what to dial for the shot.

With all this said about higher BC bullets and target turrets I was ready to jump into the 30 caliber realm with my own flare... a Model 1885. Model 1885s aren't your typical long range rifle that long range shooter shoot today. Bolt actions rule in this category however I find some features of the 1885 more to my personal liking.

A couple for trips to the range and the reloading bench and I was able to get a 208 Gr Hornady A-Max shooting sub MOA within a couple weeks in December. Not shooting as perfectly as I would like but good enough to take to the field after a cow elk.

Selfie cow elk hunting
Here's a selfie of us at three plus miles up the mountain.

Dallen and my first trip out was on January 1st. And what a cold morning it was. It was well below zero and the moisture from my breath was freezing on my beard making it look like a flocked Christmas Tree. It was cold. We were prepared with our Browning technical clothing. What a change from the cotton denim jeans of my youth. I like having the better clothing choices we now have.

I knew it was going to be tough to find some elk. The day before we went to glass the ridges way up the canyon from the road with my spotting scope and we were not able to find any sign of elk in the traditional areas they like to winter in along the ridge lines.

We had several vehicles of hiking hunters and some horse hunters in the area when we went in early in the morning on the 1st. With the lack of elk there was also going to be a lot of pressure from hunters. All of the hiking hunters usually only hike in a mile or two and the horse hunters will ride all the way to the back of the property at about 4 miles in. We came each carrying a Pack Wheel collapsed on our packs prepared to haul two elk out from as far in as we decided to hike.

We decided to head to one of my favorite locations about three miles in to watch a finger canyon the elk like to cross. As we approached this canyon we spotted a young bull with a goofy left antler but no cows. Once to the area I wanted to be in we setup and glassed around the main canyon and only could spot other hunters. After glassing for a while Dallen spotted two cows and a bull moving across the canyon above us over a 1000 yards away.

We took off trying to catch up to the two cows but they were headed out of dodge and we never caught up with them. I'm guessing most likely moving out because of other hunters bumping them. So much for our first trip out. We weren't the only ones that didn't get an elk. Other than us practicing on some rocks this was the only shooting we heard in the area all day.

I was able to dial up a 612 yard shot with the assistance of Strelok Pro and my Galaxy S4 phone and drill a rock. It's nice to verify a load will shoot where you are expecting it to.

It was nice on the way out to assemble the Pack Wheel carts and strap all of our gear on them for the 3 1/2 mile hike out. It would have been better to have two cow elk on the carts but maybe next time. The downhill is always the hardest on my knees and I enjoy having a solid disc brake to help hold back the stress on my knees while hiking downhill.

Two days later Dallen and I were out again trying another area. We hiked all around in the area finding no sign at all of any elk other than a really smart lone calf that somehow gave us the slip. With pickens slim this year I was going to have Dallen take the calf if it hadn't of slipped out of the draw without us seeing it.

A week later I was back out looking for elk. This Saturday I was going solo. Dallen had a long week of Basketball games and late night homework so I let him sleep in. A right handed player that loves to go left, at 6'4" and 240 lbs he's got some moves. I just love his footwork. Here's a spin move from a few weeks back.

This time out there were five large horse trailers and nine vehicles in the parking lot. There was going to be a lot of people in the canyon.

On the way in I was passed by a group of horse hunters. I knew that I would hike well past where the hikers would go, especially because it had warmed up during the past week and all the southern facing draws were bare of snow. Hiking hunters usually have sleds and sleds don't work so well on bare ground.

As I made the turn off from the main trail I could see fresh horse tracks going on the trail in front of me. Dang it! It wasn't long before I spotted four cows feeding on a point above me... but how long would they stay there? Do the horse hunters see them? Well it didn't take long before I saw the elk pick their heads up and trot over the ridge. A few minutes later I watched the horses go over the ridge possibly after the elk if they even saw them. Oh well.

Even with the horses pushing the elk out of the area I decided to hang out in the area to see what would happen. I hiked up to a really good vantage point and spent a few hours glassing around the canyon. I did hear two shots in the very top of the main canyon but didn't see any elk.

As it got noon I decided to head back off the mountain. I hiked back around from looking in one draw to the draw I hiked up and there they were, three elk across the canyon at 650 yards. Two were bedded in the maples and one was standing a little ways off. The two bedded was clearly a cow and a calf and the lone elk looked larger than the calf. It looked like a yearling cow from my best judgment.

I studied the location and my options. The large cow was bedded in to heavy of cover to thread a bullet into. The "yearling" eventually bedded out mostly in the open. There was a limb or two blocking it but not a lot. If I tried to get closer they would easily see me coming. If I moved from my current position the heavy trees would block my sight of the elk... based on this and the lack of seeing any elk I decided to take the shot from where I was at 645 yards.

I took my time and setup my rifle to shoot from a cliff. Strelok Pro gave me 12 MOA to dial my Vortex Viper PST scope and I sent a 208 A-Max across the canyon... Whop! Unfortunately the shot hit a little further back than it should have.... did I can't the rifle? Did it deflect off a branch? Who knows. I quickly resolved the situation by sending a perfect follow-up heart shot. Whop! Boy these bullets make a loud whop on impact. No questioning if you hit the critter with these bullets.

With the elk down I worked my way around the canyon in full view of the cow and calf still bedded right where they were. As it would be I was able to get within 200 yards of the cow and calf in a spot where I could have taken a shot. If I knew I could have made it this close without them taking off and known that I could have seen them I would have opted to move in closer. Oh well. I got the elk any way.

A few pics and a boned out elk and off the mountain I zipped with all my gear and the boned out elk on my 26 XL Pack Wheel. I would say that I was just about four miles in. The elk was on the shady side of the canyon in almost 2 feet of snow. It took me an hour to slowly work my way through the heavy deep snow for 400 yards or so. The next 3 1/2 miles only took me 1:15 as I was on bare ground and packed snow on the trail so I was crusing along.

The next couple of weeks Dallen and I never made it back out after his cow. Believe it or not Dallen isn't quite as gung-ho to work so hard to get an antlerless elk. Not quite sure why getting up extra early, hiking in four miles spending all day hunting until after dark to not see a cow elk wouldn't be the most fun way to spend your Saturday?!? I'm going to have to set him straight. ;) I know he'd of been a lot more motivated to do an extreme bull elk hunt but not for a cow elk.

I seems that some years I really have to work to get a cow and this is the furthest I have ever had to go to get a cow. Almost feels like extreme cow elk hunting. Really glad I have a Pack Wheel so that I can get in where the elk are then get them back off the mountain by myself.

Re-Tweeking the 208 A-Max 300 Win Mag Load
After this hunt I went back to the reloading bench and tweeked the 208 A-Max load. I am a lot more confident in the load. It is more accurate and faster than the load I used on this hunt. You can check out the load on my 300 Win Mag hand load page.

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