2016 Utah Rifle Deer Season — Landen's First Buck

 

Way to shoot Landen!!! Awesome #firstbuck !

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Love these boys!

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Midday snack time.

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Some of the bucks we saw today. Nothing we could really go after.

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Big D watching a canyon for muleys.

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Four point down!

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Two days after coming off the mountain from elk hunting with the boys we were headed back out. This time for mule deer. Opening morning we decided to drive up in the dark and do a day hike down one of my favorite canyons. As it was just getting light, we set out down the canyon. Within minutes we found a bunch of deer and a couple bucks but they were right on the corner of a CWMU so I had to tell the boys to just ignore the deer and lets get down around the corner to see what else we could find. As we were passing by these deer we walked right up on a couple of other hunters setup watching the deer. I tried some small talk with them and they didn't say a word back. Awkward silence.. Ok then. Guess they weren't too happy we were parading past them. I didn't want to hang around so we headed past them and down the canyon.

Surprisingly once we got further down into the canyon we found other hunters had hiked way down into the middle of the canyon in the dark. So much for seeing any deer in that big canyon, with them already in there. We watched the canyon for a few hours and only found one deer. Usually there are a bunch of deer in that canyon but you can't go down into the middle of it in the dark, you just scare everything out while you can't see it. Oh well, the joys of public land hunting in Northern Utah. There are a lot of people crammed into very little public land options. We did find a few more deer way out in the distance but all on the private CWMU. 

Around mid day after watching the guys in the bottom of the canyon hike all around down in there and not kick up a single deer we headed back out. 

With the young boys in school on Monday we decided to make wait till Thursday night and pack into some other public land to hunt through Saturday night. 

Thursday night we loaded up our Pack Wheels and headed up the mountain. We glassed for deer along the way in the sage brush draws but just like the weekend before we could only find deer on the other side of the fences. Public land traffic bumps the deer to where they aren't messed with. That is does.

After dark we made it in a couple miles to where I wanted to make camp we setup our Browning four man Greystone tent for the night.

The next morning we were up early and out glassing for deer. It was nice to actually find more deer than hunters and we were finding plenty of deer. After a while we setup on a point to glass in a spot where the deer were funneling through. By mid morning we had spotted right at sixty two does but no bucks. Dallen decided to walk around the corner a little to be able to look down a canyon better. It was just then that he startled Landen, KB and myself by firing his rifle across the canyon. It didn't sound like he connected on whatever he was shooting at. Dallen was just 30 yards or so from us and I was able to find were he was shooting. It looked like a decent buck and I ranged it at 330 yards and yelled over to him the range while also working with Landen to setup for a shot. Now with the reange Dallen's second shot made a solid hit but it appeared to be a gut shot as the deer was now very sick looking and not wanting to move.

While the buck was still standing Landen was able to get a shot off and I could hear it hit. I later found that Landen hit it in the front leg just below the shoulder. Then Dallen sent another 200 Gr ELD-X through the heart follwed by a fifty yard death run down the hill.

Dallen ended up hitting the buck twice a little far back and his final shot through the boiler room. We teased him about getting excited and not using his range finder before flinging lead. We nicknamed this buck "First Try" with a rough, deep Batman voice. Dallen had a range finder and a diagram of yardages for his Nikon BDC reticle laminated to the side of his rifle scope. He just needed to take a few seconds to get the range. Buck fever will get you excited and excited he sure got. Dallen now had a critter taken with his new X-Bolt 300 WSM. He was really itching to shoot something with it this year.

The buck turned out to be a nice little 4x5. Landen was happy for Dallen but at the same time a little sad he hadn't got a buck or elk yet. Understandable, very understandable.

We boned out the deer and Dallen hauled it on a Pack Wheel back to camp. At camp we refuel for the evening hunt and Dallen headed off the mountain with his buck as it started to rain. 

KB, Landen and myself did setup that evening and glassed that evening spotting a bunch more does. Where are all the bucks? 

Back in the tent that night the little boys and I chowed down on Chicken and Dumpling Mountain House dinners. It was raining quite heavy on the tent and in the dark and rain Dallen made it back to camp and crawled into the tent with us. 

Dallen was a trooper hauling his deer a couple miles off the mountain by himself back to the Montero. He then drove home 20 miles, came back and hiked a couple miles back up the mountain in heavy rain in the dark back up to help his little brother get a buck. It was around 10pm with me and the two young boys snug in our sleeping bags listening to the rain when Dallen made it back. I was a very impressed, proud father that Dallen came back to help his little brother with it being so wet and dark. Thank you Dallen.

The next morning we were up extra early because it was Saturday and we knew we would have a lot more orange on the mountain and that we did. We initially setup where Dallen took his buck but after a half hour we spotted a small buck way across the canyon and we decided to take off after him.

As we crossed the canyon and popped up over a rise where we could see the deer passing from across the canyon. As we did a 18 inch variety of buck came around and stopped broadside just over 200 yards away. I'm not sure what happened. We had Landen on the shooting sticks, it all looked good but we were rushing to help him get positioned and ready. Whatever the case he missed and the buck moved into some brush. As we were waiting for the buck to clear the brush two hunters walked around the bend right in between us and where we were shooting. Ahh! We had to get up and chase after the buck. The two hunter hadn't seen nor knew we were there but after they saw us they changed course and we were able to chase after the buck without having to worry about them chasing it also.

As we crested some brush the buck got out at around 150 yards away. I tried to get Landen on the buck but he just couldn't find it in the scope. Things that come with experience. One of the reasons I like to take the kids prairie dog hunting to learn to shoot under a little pressure.

So off to the races we went again trying to make it to the next draw on this side of the canyon in hopes that we could see the buck in that draw. Nope, too late so on to the next. We were getting a workout. In the next draw we could see the group of deer a thousand or so yards ahead of us. We slowed it down and started crossing through the bottom of the draw when a couple deer jumped up out of the tall sage brush above us. I glassed them up and the last one was a spike. Landen said he wanted to get him so we setup on the sticks again. The buck was broadside right at 200 yards and miss. Landen put another shell in and as the buck paused now going straight away he quickly fired and bam, down goes the buck. What a shot. Not the most optimal angle but it proved to be very effective. I like how Landen loaded and took the shot all on his own. But we have since talked about waiting for a better broadside shot in the future.

Just after he dropped the little buck a larger two point came around the hill just above the downed buck. Then just after we walked up to the buck I four point comes around and stops in the spot where Landen had shot from. Oh well, Landen and Dad were excited for the buck he was able to harvest. As it turned out the buck had some little forks. We kidded about using the antlers as utensils like a spork and the name of "Sporky" was giving to Landen's first buck.

In the chase for the buck Dallen had been kind enough to push the empty Pack Wheel and help KB along.

After we had the deer boned out and loaded on the Pack Wheel, Landen and KB took turns hauling it a good two miles back to camp. It was a small buck and the meat only weighed 40 pounds and then the head was at least five pounds, but even at 45+ pounds my 12 year old and 10 year old were able to easily haul a whole deer with my extra-large Pack Wheel. That was pretty cool having such young kids be able to easily haul a deer. 

Back at camp we broke down the tent and loaded everything up on our Pack Wheels for the trip off the mountain. The Gear Panniers easily stacked right on top of the Meat Panniers that were holding Landen's deer meat. This made it very easy to haul everything out that night in the dark.

As I look back at this hunt it will be one that was really special to me. Having all three boys with me, both of them getting bucks, Landen getting his first deer, sleeping in the tent in the rain. The whole experience was just awesome. 

I can't wait to take the boys out again next year after deer. They have been talking a lot about packing in the extra couple miles next year to be in a better position to get larger bucks. I can't wait. 

 

 

 

 

 

#comeoutheavy in ease, with a smile on your face, thanks to the Pack Wheel.

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Landen notching his first tag last month. What a wonderful memory being there with Landen, KB and Dallen.

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#muleymonday with a #packout in a rain storm.

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A look across the canyon at #deercamp for @diyhntr and his three boys last week.

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2016 Utah Rifle Elk Season — Landen's First Big Game Hunt

Coming just off my exciting muzzleloader mule deer hunt I was looking forward at taking Landen on his first big game hunt.

Landen will be starting his hunting career out with my Browning A-Bolt Stainless Hunter in 243 WWSM. In this rifle I have 80 Gr Tipped Triple Shock bullet going 3,550 FPS. These bullets are awesome on deer and elk out to around 300 yards. This bullet going this fast just crushes through bone and penetrates like no other.

Dallen was itching to shoot something with his new X-Bolt Gray Laminate Long Range Hunter in 300 WSM. He just purchased it... well I purchased it for him for helping me with building Pack Wheels. In the two or so weeks we had this rifle before the season we tried some HSM 185 GR Bergers that just shot horrible groups. I ordered some 200 Gr Hornady ELD-X bullets and loaded them up and Holy Cow. My first three completely different powder charges all shot right at 1/2 inch or better. (check out the groups shown below) Holy Cow!!! I have never seen anything shoot this good with the very first loads I ever tried. Holy Cow!!! Did I say that already? Anyhow Dallen was liking his new rifle and so was Dad. 

The night before the opener all of us boys headed up the mountain and setup my Browning Greystone four man tent to spend the night. That night we discussed the nice six point bull that we captured a bunch of images and video of on my Browning trail cameras, he was our #1. We also discussed a goofy little 7x4 bull as the bull the boys hoped to find as their number two bull on the hit list.

Early the next morning we were up and hiking up the mountain. Dallen being a veteran hunter with a view season under his belt chose to hunt by himself for the morning looking out over a oak brush filled canyon.

KB, Landen and I headed up to where several of my trail cameras are located to hunt for the morning. Things were really quite all morning until just after 10 when we had a calf, cow and bull come over a ridge and into the canyon we were watching. They were only around 200 yards away however they where in some quaking aspens and not clearly visible to take a clear shot. They appeared to be headed towards a clearing that Landen was setup on shooting sticks all ready to take the bull. Then something happened and the bull made a cough like sound and they all turned around and headed right back where they came from. What the heck just happened? They couldn't smell us... then a couple minutes after they left I found the answer — a black bear. Stinking bears! Right where we had just watched the elk I watched a black bear follow the path the elk had taken over the ridge and out of the canyon.

Dallen didn't see anything that morning so he came up to hang out with us for the afternoon and evening. Unfortunately we didn't find any elk that evening. Before we left we pulled the SD cards from my cameras to see what had been in the area. 

That next week Dallen went up on the mountain by himself and hunted for a couple days. I was proud of him going on his first hunt by himself and sleeping in a tent all by himself. Dallen returned form the mountain with stories of an elk sneaking in silently and spooking. And stories of a bull that answered his cow call just before dark. He was pretty excited but again no elk again.

The following weekend the four of us boys were out again looking for some elk. The little boys were troopers hiking up and down the mountain. We learned on this trip that a little five point was out in the open the day before Dallen went hunting during the week. If Dallen had been there the day before he could have easily seen this bull with several cows. This is also the bull that evaded Landen on the opener thanks to the help of the black bear.

The last couple days of the hunt the boys had school off so I took off work and headed back up with them in hopes of finding a bull especially for Landen. This trip we decided to hunt and area that gets more hunting pressure but also has a lot more elk. I tend to shy away from this location just to stay away from other hunters. 

The first night we hiked way over and down into the canyon. I packed a Pack Wheel along just in case so we would be all ready to haul an elk out of the canyon should we get one. That evening we did see a cow elk way out across the canyon on a CWMU. We setup in more of a thick bow hunting area and called hoping to get a bull to sneak in. At one point we were pretty sure a bull came in behind us as it sounded like antlers hitting the maple trees but we never saw what it was. I also called in a hunter right to where we wanted the elk to show up but again no elk.

On the last day we did a lot more hiking around exploring but just weren't in the right place at the right time. We later found out that a five point was shot in the spot we had been the night before. 

Sorry your Dad failed you on getting an elk your first year Landen. I still had a lot of fun spending time with all three of my boys on the mountain. I wish I had more time to spend with them doing things like this.

Just one day to rest and the opener of deer season. I'll get you on a buck Landen, don't worry, we'll find you a buck.

2016 Utah Muzzleloader Deer Season — Bucks Galore

 

This blows me away! I am amazed at how #accurate my Accura V2 @cvamuzzleloaders is with AeroLite 300 Gr #powerbeltbullets. These three shots were shot at 100 yards, in breezy conditions and 88 degrees. I shot from sand bags and fired each shot within a couple minutes of one another with a spit patch ran down the barrel between each shot. I also just switched to a BlackHorn loose powder breech plug. #triple7 primer, 120 gr Triple7 FFG loose powder, #velocity 1785, 1803 & 1809 fps. @vortexoptics 4-16x50 Viper HS LR scope, @evolutiongunworks Rail, @burriscompany Signature Zee rings. #cvamuzzleloader #vortexoptics #hunting #evolutiongunworks #elkhunting #muzzyscope #huntutah #utahhunting #getoutside #getoutdoors #deerhunting #outdoors #outdoorlife @muzzleloaders #muzzleloader #muzzleloading #bullets

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This year I have muzzleloader deer and elk tags like last year. I was hopeful to get a muley on the ground and end my mule deer dry spell dating back to 2011.

This year Utah opened up muzzleloaders to have variable power optics. While this is nice option to have, I really would have preferred that a 1x restriction would have stayed in place. Not that I don't like the variable power, just that I know more people will be out hunting with muzzleloaders, something I'm sure the DWR knew would happen, taking a little pressure off the rifle season.

This year I had Dallen come with me on my pack trip in the high country. With heavy amounts of early snow in the high country we had to start hiking a mile further because of impassable snow drifts in the road. With this extra mile and the deep snow to hike through we decided to hunt our way across the mountain for four days instead of just hiking the full six miles in and only hunting in that area.

The night before the opener Dallen and I seen a few deer, a small four and three point were out feeding not far from where we camped. We went to sleep dreaming of big bucks come morning. 

Opening morning we woke and hiked out to a point to glass a basin for deer. We found around ten bucks with a couple four point bucks in the 22 inch wide size. We decided they weren't what I was looking for and picked up camp and Pack Wheeled in another mile to check out some other canyons for the afternoon and evening.

That afternoon we watched a bunch more deer including a beautiful four point buck that tempted me really hard to go after. He again was right around 22 inches wide but had larger very even forks with a very symmetrical frame. We decided to save him for a possible rifle season trip with Dallen and Landen my 12 year old who will be hunting for the first time later in October.

That evening we had a whopper of a lightning storm move in on us. It was pretty intense but just before the storm started dumping on us, the sun was setting with light coming in under the dark storm clouds. It made for some amazing photos that I quickly took of Dallen with his Pack Wheel just before we scrambled to get a tarp out to wrap around us and ride out the lightning storm.

The next morning we hiked up and down some canyons looking for a good buck. All we found were does, so midday we broke camp and started headed further down the trail with our Pack Wheels.

As we were hiking down the trail we crested a ridge line and busted a mature 3x4 buck in a area I never see deer at before. I dropped my Pack Wheel and took off to try and circle the canyon and get a shot at this nice buck. When I got to within about 150 yards of where I last saw the buck I started slipping my way down through jack pines and snow covered ground. As I was slipping, literally slipping in the snow trying to be as quiet as possible I heard something go out the other side where I couldn't see. I figured it was him but I kept sneaking in to see what I might find. As I got to the spot I found two small bucks both young 3x4's. I was able to sneak to within 40 or so yards of them and get some fun photos but they weren't nearly large enough for me to want to shoot.

That evening we finished packing in the full six miles... make that seven miles this year thanks to the snow. 

The next morning we climbed into and glassed a couple basins finding lots of bucks across one canyon all safely located on a CWMU. After glassing this basin for an hour or so I looked down to our side of the canyon and there was a 4 point right below us that must have been bedded and decided to stand up. He wasn't the largest four point. Probably in the 22 inch wide range but he was in a very easy spot to get him boned out and up to a ridge line where we could wheel him off the mountain with my Pack Wheel. With all this in mind Dallen ranged him at 166 yards and a 31 degree downhill cross hill shot. I plugged in the information into Strelok Pro and sent a bullet right over his back. What the heck was that?!? 166 yards was a chip shot with my sub MOA shooting 300 Gr Aerolite bullets, CVA Accura V2 with Vortex 4-16x50 HS LR scope. What just happened?!? I could hit milk jugs out to 310 yards just fine while practicing.

One thing I didn't factor is the lift I would get from the fairly strong wind that was blowing into the steep sidehill. I have learned that shooting across a slope that has a wind blowing against it deflects some of the wind upward creating lift. I had held a little for the crosswind but not thought of any lift at the time of the shot. This alone would account for maybe a couple inches at this range. Second, I obviously may have just pulled the shot, but the shot didn't feel like I pulled it??? And Third, something I have been reading and studying about. If you want to shoot long range with a muzzleloader you need to load it just before you take the shot. Having a load in the barrel over night and various temperature changes must create moisture and something that greatly effects the accuracy. I have read where it is best to discharge your muzzleloader every evening and load a fresh load in the morning. I talked with a guy on the mountain that talked about only loading the muzzleloader after spotting the deer.  More on this third item in a minute.

Oh, one of the things I found from going out and shooting the 300 Gr Aerolite bullets is that the published BC of .222 for this bullet is not what I was getting with respect to actual bullet drops. My calculation from using Strelok Pro was that the BC was somewhere around .195 for this bullet. I later received an email confirming this from PowerBelt Bullets that the .222 published was incorrect and that their data had the BC at .197. Not the greatest BC for this bullet but the accuracy is amazing!

After missing the shot we hiked down to verify that I hadn't just sent the bullet right through him when Dallen spotted the bullet hit the cliffs behind him. Sure enough a clean miss right over his back. I have spent a lot of time running this miss through my head... I wasn't too upset about not getting this buck as he wasn't a huge buck but missing has been driving me crazy. Anyhow back to the hunt.

After missing I wanted to head down into some untouched canyons. We spent most of the day going into some awesome canyons. We found another four point and another 3x4. The four point wasn't wide but had decent mass and forks however he was right on the private property line according to my maps in Back Country Navigator Pro and the KML I downloaded from the DWR of the CWMU boundaries. So I let the buck walk just to be safe.

When we were down in these canyons we bumped a doe that climbed up a few yards and stopped right out in the open a little over 100 yards from us. The strangest thing I have ever seen with a deer's behavior during a hunting season then happened. The doe was right in the path of where we needed to go, to climb out of the canyon, so we just kept hiking towards her and she never moved, in fact she started chewing her cud and browsing on some of the vegetation by her. It was really steep where we were at as we slowly hiked past her. She was probably only 40 yards away as we hiked past her. It was like she was a pet deer in a national park or something. Kind of strange experience for me on this mountain.

Latter that evening we glassed a bunch more bucks with one in particular that I wanted to shoot. The group of bucks was feeding out of the CWMU and onto the public ground at the last light of the day. I felt that it best to wake up extra early the next morning and slip into the area and cut off the route back to the CWMU hoping they would be there the next morning.

Well it sounded like a good plan but the deer had all disappeared except one small buck come morning. It appeared that they moved back into the CWMU long before daylight and were already bedded at daylight. Curses!!!

This was my last day to hunt and hike off the mountain. We stopped and hiked through some nasty thick small quaking aspens trying to check out some different canyons on the way off the mountain but never found a deer.

So yet another year that I come up short getting a mule deer. There's always next year I guess. I've been saying that for a few years now. 

So back to accuracy issues with a load that sits in your muzzleloader for an extended period of time. After the hunt I went shooting some reloads in some rifles and I also needed to empty my muzzleloader. I setup the chronograph and fired the load that had been sitting in my muzzleloader for several days. That shot missed the bullseye by near four inches to the right. I loaded up the muzzleloader and fired again. This fresh load only missed a perfect center shot by only 1/2 inch. The velocities (which I wrote down and can't find now) were both around 20 fps of one another so that wsn't a problem. So what caused the inaccuracy of the sitting charge?

At a minimum I will be discharging my muzzleloader at each day's end on future hunts. If I can get a quick system to load my muzzleloader I may hunt with an unloaded gun in the future. I also wonder if I ran a spit batch down the bore on top of a sitting charge just before taking a shot would bring the accuracy back to where it should be. It's kind of hard to do a lot of field testing on this. Load a gun leave it outside for a few days the shoot it and then repeat... This could take forever to get good data on what is going on.

Next up Landen's first elk hunt

Digging Out The Marshy Spring — Summer Trail Camera Action

 

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Trail cameras are the best! I love capturing the activity of the critters on the mountain. Especially in full HD video with my Browning Recon Force trail cameras. As you can see in the videos on this page I have captured some pretty fun stuff so far this year.

After seeing the 7x8 bull on my trail cam last year I have been hopeful some other "larger" bulls would be on my cameras this summer. So far I have only been getting two spikes and a variety of two year old bulls. I usually get a couple three year old bulls but none so far this year. Well if I did have a large bull on camera do you think I would be showing anyone until after I knew he was dead? ;)

For years I have been slowing digging out a marshy spring area trying to make it into a small pond for the critters to play in. I regularly pack in a shovel to dig from the safety of the solid ground around the muddy, marshy spring. In July I packed in waders for the first time so that I could really get into the mud and water and dig it out. I spent 3 hours in the nasty mud digging it out. I should have brought gloves as my right hand received a nasty blister. What a workout. I still would like to dig it out some more on one side but it will have to wait for another trip.

I have also been hauling in 50 pound mineral and salt blocks with my Pack Wheel to help encourage the critter to hang around to get their picture taken.

On this page are some of my favorite trail cam action from this summer. At the bottom of this page is a YouTube playlist with most of the video action I have posted. 

The elk and moose have really been enjoying the new pond. Seeing the spike I call Thumper (a small spike with a notch in his right ear) splashing around in the pond is so awesome. Excited to see more of this in the future.

To stay up-to-date with my trail cam and blog action follow me on Instagram.

 

Browning Trail Camera with rechargeable batteries

I have gone through many alkaline batteries in trail cams from using them in video mode. To help save on batteries I made some homemade 12v 10 pack Ni-MH external battery packs but found that the bears and elk liked to rip them off the trees and chew the cords in half. This year I have been just using rechargeable batteries inside the trail cameras and they work fairly well. Because they don't start out at 12v with only eight batteries in them I like to replace the batteries every trip up the mountain to maintain enough power to run the cameras. The only downside I have found to using the NiMH rechargeable batteries in the camera is that the night video doesn't have quite as good of distance for critters that are further away from the camera.


Browning Trail Camera with rechargeable batteries

With fully charged Ni-MH rechargeable batteries the screen on my Browning trail cams will show around 53-60%.

 


 

 

 

 

Checking Trail Cameras In June - More Pack Wheel Fat Tire Testing

Selfie of Kb and The DIY Hunter, hiking in with a Pack Wheel and a Mineral block

My youngest hunting bud KB along for the hike and helping me by taking photos and video.  


Hiking Uphill with Pack Wheel

Climbing a steeper grade with a 50 lb mineral block and around 70+ pounds of gear.


hiking in with a Pack Wheel and a Mineral block.

Hiking past a Browning Strike Force Trail camera.


Big Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The big Black Bear that I get on occasion on my trail cameras. Notice his size compared to me in the photo just above this photo. 

Exactly one month ago I checked my cameras that I had left out for the winter and took in more. I also was testing a fatter tire system on the Pack Wheel. On this trip up the mountain I wanted to test the fatty tire a little more.

KB was my helper for this trip on the mountain. He was excited to be out on the mountain with dad. We also had to take his Micro Midas BL-22 just in case we came across a coyote. He wants to shoot one really bad. It's pretty cute. He has visions of getting rich off the $50 bounty the state of Utah has on them to help with the deer herd. I like his inthusasium. He has over the years realized that getting a coyote isn't as easy as it looks on the hunting videos.

On this trip in a picked up a little larger mineral block that weighs in at 50 lbs. I used the Pack Wheel to haul in this block another trail camera, 80 AA rechargeable batteries, 3 liters of Powerade, a gallon zip lock baggie full of granular B&J mineral lick, and a shovel. I didn't weigh it but I can safely say it was over 70 pounds of added weight to the Pack Wheel.

Like I have said in the past I have clearly found that minerals don't bring in the critters. They just help me get photos of the critters that are already there. I was very surprised thinking that I might have more elk and larger deer show up. This just hasn't been the case. I have yet to even get a four point buck on camera at the location I like to put out the mineral, and that's in over three years of putting the mineral out and having cameras watching it. I also still get very few elk at all on the two cameras I have by the mineral drop area. Now if an elk or deer is at the mineral drop location they will stick around for a bit to get a lick of the mineral but by far minerals are no magic attractant.

A secondary reason for hauling in the mineral blocks is that it provides me a great way to test the Pack Wheel during the summer and provide Pack Wheel upper body exercise. There is no way I would be hauling in 50 lb blocks of mineral on my back without the Pack Wheel as it easily as it greatly helps. 

Like last time out I am testing a few new things with the Pack Wheel, primarily the fatter wheel and tire. While I have found that a fatter tire and wheel to be considerably more expensive to build I haven't found it to be earth shatteringly better than the fat 2.35 wide tires currently offered on the 26/29er builds. Don't get me wrong, the fatter tire is nice and works well. I just wouldn't run out and upgrade my current wheel to this one on my Pack Wheel. If I was shopping for a Pack Wheel I think the fatter tire option is something to consider.

It was nice having KB along with me on this trip. I like spending one on one time with my kids. KB was great at taking photos and video of me testing the Pack Wheel on the trip in. He was a trooper and we both got in some great exercise not returning home until around 11pm. Oops, momma wasn't too happy as KB had camp Kiesel to go to early in the morning the next day.

On the way in we notice a lot of bear sign. My second camera had been turned upside down and had chew marks in it. A bear had messed with it just hours after I put it out a full month ago. no images from that camera.

At my third camera there was mud wiped across the camera. Yep, the footage shows another bear. And at this camera I also got a couple good photos of the large Black Bear I have seen before up there on my trail cameras.

Approaching the fourth camera along my route an ant bed had recently been ripped up with a log being pulled out of the ground. this was  just to the side of the camera. You can see a little of the bear's back in the video that was captured of the bear raiding the ant mound.

I like getting the bears on camera I just wish they would leave my cameras alone. I'm pretty sure their noses are able to track down the cameras so easily.

Follow me on my new Instagram and Facebook accounts to keep up with what I am currently up to.

Bull Elk Browning Trail Camera Photo

Two young bull elk that have stopped by the mineral block a couple times in the pat month. The only elk to come into the minerals.


Moose Selfie Browning Trail Camera Photo

A bull moose getting a selfie on a Browning Strike Force trail camera.


Bull Elk Browning Trail Camera Photo

One of the young bulls that is frequenting the area.


Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The smaller of the two bears that are in the area. This bear is the one that has been getting my cameras. Including this camera just after this photo was taken.


Black Bear Browning Trail Camera Photo

The big Black Bear. This guy is a pig.

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