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BASIC INFO
Posted On
07/06/2015
Location
Rifle Season
Hunt Type
Antelope Hunts
Email
mdklein850@gmail.com
STORY

I had been waiting for the opportunity to hunt a trophy buck antelope for as long as I can remember. Looking for a true adventure in a renowned Game Management Unit for producing bruiser antelope bucks, I booked a private land hunt with Joe and Rocky Mountain Ranches. Now only having one year of experience hunting antelope, Joe was an excellent resource even before the hunt began. His knowledge of the climate, weather, terrain, and animals were all paramount in simply preparing for the hunt, let alone hunting the animals. Joe was a true professional from the minute I arrived for our safety meeting and property tour. The maps that he provided of the property not only helped keep me acclimated as to where I was on the property but also to be able to see distinctions in the terrain such as small ravines and ridges that were hard to see with the naked eye but proved extremely beneficial in harvesting my trophy.
Within 10 minutes of arriving on the property I was seeing both mule deer and antelope. There were a couple doe antelope in the distance so I began making my way towards them slowly and glassing. While watching them a nice buck walked out of the ravine below them. Immediately the adrenaline was kicking in. The does spotted me as I tried to make my way towards the group of three as I did my best to hide behind sage brush and move towards them. They didn't hang around long before the group was gone. I knew I had to relax and use the terrain to my advantage after that quick learning lesson.
Within the next hour I was able to spot a larger group of antelope in the distance. It was the first weekend in October and there was a large buck with approximately 8-10 does. It was fun to watch them from a distance as he rounded everyone of the does up and made sure they were within his sight at all times. The rut was on. Joe's knowledge of the terrain became a great ally for me remembering that these antelope were near a windy ravine that would hide me as I stalked near them. As I started the stalk, I was able to put several ridges between the antelope and I until I was able to get in the ravine. The ravine was about 10-20 feet deep and narrow with a sandy bottom-great for sneaking in close and silently. I snuck up to the top of ravine when I thought I was near them and sure enough, the were bedded about 200 yards away. The bad part was that they were all facing me. Again their amazing eye sight thwarted my plans to put that trophy buck on my wall and dinner plate. So back to the truck I went for a snack and water break.
While glassing at the truck, I find yet another different big BIG buck with a group of over 20 does and fawns. This was the buck I was looking for. Again he was near another finger of the ravine that worked so well to put the stalk on the other group. I used it again was able to find them grazing their way towards a water hole. I didn't see the buck at first as the group was making their way around a hill. It was like a parade of antelope, one after the other coming around this corner but heading towards the property line. It was a sight that I will never forget. Finally, the buck came around but had edged off the property line. My heart was in my throat seeing him walk off well within the shooting range towards that waterhole off the property. The good news is that I finally had a successful stalk without spooking them. I decided to back out to look for another group and get another snack.
Several hours of glassing later, I spotted the giant group and big buck moving back onto the property to the same spot I had seen them originally. I went back to my trusty ravine and put the stalk on again. This time they were coming right at me. When I exited the ravine I could see does within 200 yards. I crawled on my hands and knees using the lip of a ridge and sage brush to help get me into a position where I could see the buck. He looked amazing. Tall, thick, and cutters reaching well above his ears, I knew he was what I was looking for and a true representation of what Colorado antelope hunting could produce. I was able to get him in the sights of my .30-06 at about 150 yards, give or take, and make the shot. The Hornady 165 grain SST did the job. This was my first true trophy animal that I have harvested and I couldn't be more proud. It was a great hunt that taught me some valuable lessons in patience and humility that I will take with me on my future hunts. I look forward to the next antelope hunt I can take on Rocky Mountain Ranches. Thanks Joe!

ADDITIONAL INFO

Plan ahead! Make sure you have hunting gear for multiple types of weather. While it's in the high desert, it's not always just dry. It can range from sunny and 70-80 degrees to below freezing in the morning. You may even encounter the chance CO snow storm during the first part of October as well. Use Joe as a resource, he has a lot of years of wisdom under his belt. He knows the ranches well and this can make the difference when putting together your stalks.

RECOMMENDATION

Excellent hunt! I truly got an adventure and a trophy animal out of it. Being able to hunt on private land in a GMU known for big bucks is well worth it. This GMU can take double digit years worth of preference points to be able to hunt public land. This isn't necessarily a slam dunk hunt either. These animals are still smart and wary which makes it all the more of an adventure and the trophy that much more sweet when you bag it. Highly recommend hunting antelope with Rocky Mountain Ranches.

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