Erik writes, "This year I decided that if trying to draw a Limited Entry Tag was going to be this difficult after seven years; why not take up Archery and push my patience even more while learning a new skill that would actually increase my future odds. I shot my first arrow in June and found out quickly that what they say is true, "Archery is not just a hobby; it's an OBSESSION!!"
I am completely self taught with the internet, magazines; the awesome crew at Sportsman's Warehouse and most of all my father; who's time tested knowledge, patience and encouragement proved to be invaluable even though primarily over the phone. I practiced apporximately 3 times a week or more in rain, wind and shine as time allowed and though patience sometimes got the best of me. I never gave up. Although an extremely steep learning curve was in order. I was determined to be better than average and be ready by the August 18th opener.
On opening day near Salina-Utah; after six plus miles of hiking through humbling landscape up to approximately 10,500 feet and scarcely seeing any sign, my father spotted the fine buck. Being the Sportsman that he is and taking many fine animals himself with a bow throughout the years, he gave me the first shot. I wasn't exactly sure how nice he was due to it being the last available shooting light and the buck being below the ledge we were on, but my dad assured me that he was a fine 1st buck to take with a bow. I have never doubted his words and without looking at the buck's rack for fear of Buck Fever, I aimed true at the bucks vitals. He bucked (no pun intended) into the air and took off on a dead (pun intended) sprint. After searching for two hours in the dark we had to give way to the night and search in the morning. The night brought excitement and uneasiness just waiting for the sun to light the sky so we could begin our search. The morning tracking from dusk slowly reveled traces of the buck's wareabouts with my father and I looking like CSI Detectives analyzing every speck of ruffled dirt and bent twig sometimes only reveling a tiny pin-drop of blood. 150 yards later and in a path unexpected, we found the buck lying amongst the Majestic Quaking Aspens where he took his final nap."
Great story and Buck Erik!