Kevin Wilkey, aka Kdub here at MonsterMuleys.com writes, "I got lucky and drew out on a pretty good tag last year. Unfortunately, I was unable to go on the bowhunt (because of a darn elk tag), so I opted to go back on the rifle hunt. Something else that was unfortunate, my uncle passed away in the spring of '07. He was a serious gun collector and he willed me a brand new Sako 25-06. My brother, Andy, said the gun was around 35 years old. Thanks Uncle Clair... With a borrowed scope and some of Andy’s hand-loads we went hunting. (This is the only gun I own)
I couldn't get on the mountain until the last two weekends of the hunt. The first weekend I could hunt I missed a 30" willow antlered 4x4, out of his bed at 150 yards. So I went home a little disappointed because I thought I was a pretty good shot. I spent a little more time on the range and worked out some form flaws. Come to find out that shooting with my backpack on and butting it up against the backpack strap was causing my issues.
On the last weekend of the hunt I was still a little perturbed about missing the other buck. So, I had fingers crossed that there would be something better in store. This time I brought along friend Dan'l Anselmo. He had his camera and was going to get something on video for the DD Bowhunting team. (Hoping for an extra clip for the upcoming dvd)
After hours of searching through my ATS 80 my mind began to wonder about mundane things and suddenly Dan'l yelled out, "There's a good buck right below us!"
I instantly woke up from my daydream and spotted the buck feeding into the trees about 250 yards below us. The fresh snow gave me a good outline of his dark antlers and I instantly knew there was a reason I missed the buck I suddenly didn't care about anymore. I anchored the gun to my shoulder as I looked through the black dot in my scope that was nestled on the buck's sweet spot. I rested my finger on the trigger and just waited as I let my subconscious do the rest of the work. The shot broke almost instantly as I saw the buck hit the ground. He stood up a few seconds later and I let him have number two. He was down.
Darius Simons, Dan'l and myself waited for what I thought was an eternity. It reminded me of Christmas morning when my Dad would make us kids wait in the kitchen for more minutes than I ever care to remember.
Well, once we got up to the buck I suddenly realized what we had all accomplished. Darius thought he was a 20 wide 120" class, Dan'l got the best look at him, so he was keeping his mouth shut and I was only hoping for a good meat buck.
He is a 27-inch wide 8x7. (I count eyeguards because they're attached to the rack) 174" mainframe with 16 " of extras. Making him a solid 190". Beating my best archery buck by 10"
It was really cool to have a lot of my bros there to video the whole thing and pack out a lot of meat. Later that morning Andy put down a good buck too. Out of our whole party we were eight for nine on tags filled. What an unforgettable hunt!"