By: Bears Butt


I’ve been enjoying the Crawford mountain mule deer hunts for many years.  Before the DWR made them a draw only hunting area we enjoyed a few good years hunting in that area during the late muzzleloader hunts and got to know the country pretty well.  The bucks would either “Be There” or “Not”!  But no matter if they were there or not did not deter us from hunting the place.  I recall one of the last hunts we were there, Dry Dog and I had work obligations we had to attend to and so could not come to the camp until three days after the hunt had opened.  When we arrived with my camp trailer in tow, the guys who had been there hunting were very disappointed (not disappointed that me and Dog had shown up).  They had not seen even a track in the three days they had been hunting.  That is very disappointing to say the least.

They did not want us to unhook the trailer as they had already decided to move camp to somewhere else, perhaps across the valley and into the high country with pines and quakies.  Well, Dry Dog and I had been dreaming about hunting this area and so we were a bit taken back by their suggestion.   The two of us proposed an option and wanted to have a morning hunt just down the draw from our camp.  As I recall….”Let’s hunt till about 10 and if things are the same as you say they are we will come back and move camp”.  To say those guys had to give up a lot after not seeing anything for 3 days is really giving them credit.  Had I been one of them I would have insisted the two of us go on our jaunt and when we came back they would have camp ready to move.  But they didn’t, they went out for the morning hunt.

Dry Dog and I took a high road while the rest of them went on down the drainage to get into shooting positions.  Dog and I would push down to them and then we would drive back up to camp and pack up.

As Dry Dog and I were moving up the drainage to get into our positions for the push, I stopped about half way to the top.  He was to continue to the top and when the signal came we would make our move down the side of the ridge to the others.  As I stood there waiting in the early morning light of that day, I heard the noise of rocks rolling behind me.  As I turned around two giant bucks were coming down a slide out area on a dead run…straight at me!  Two of the biggest bucks I had seen in a long, long time!  The biggest of the two was either a very big heavy horned 4 X 4 or an equally large 5 point.  I can only guess and he was the one I wanted to shoot!  I was on it with my sights but it kept trees between himself and me, while the other one came on my side of the line of trees!  I remember thinking to myself…Heck, that’s a nice buck right there!  Go ahead and shoot it!….Which I did!  A very respectable 4X4 with long eye guards (long for mule deer anyway), heavy, wide and tall!  At the shot the bigger buck turned on the after-burners and made a trail straight to where Dry Dog was waiting!  After the buck disappeared over the ridge I heard Dry Dog shoot!  BAM!

I felt great to know that 5 minutes into this hunt I had one of the biggest bucks I had ever taken with a muzzleloader down on the ground and Dry Dog was probably proudly standing over an even bigger buck!  However, that was not the case!  He had heard me shoot and thought the worst…I had fallen and the gun went off by accident and so he was coming back toward where I was when the big buck showed up suddenly right in his face!  His shot was quick and off mark.  The big buck went on to live another day!  Dry Dog was eye popping by the time he got to me to see the big buck I was dressing out.

Well, long story short!  The bucks had moved into the Crawfords during the night.  Big bucks seemed to be in every draw and on every ridge!  Just like the saying goes…they are either here or they aren’t!  We ended up with 4 BIG 4X4 bucks and 2 2X2’s before that hunt was over.  AND to add to that, Fat Duck had to leave camp to go to Japan or somewhere and a big buck chased him out of the mountains right past our camp.  That gave the guys a fun time shooting at that big old bugger!  He too lived to see another day.

Ok, now to the point of this writing!  You thought the story was the point?  Not this time.  Just some fun times to share.  The point for this writing is where do the deer come from that winter in the Crawfords?


I have been told by some very reliable sources that most of the deer that spend their time in the Crawfords during the winter come from as far away as the Wind River Range near central Wyoming.  A long distance to travel, but not un-heard of for animals to migrate that far.  I recently discovered on line, where the fish and game of Wyoming have been conducting some extensive studies on animal migrations.  They have teamed up with local folks, oil interests, hunters, livestock people and more, collared a bunch of deer, antelope, elk and moose and followed their travels for several years.  Their study is far from over and what they are finding out is amazing.  Some of these animals, especially deer and antelope are moving extremely long distances between their summer and winter ranges!  BUT…closer to home…The Crawford Range, the migration map shows those animals come almost straight South down the border between Idaho and Wyoming and then into Utah.


(Deer are purple, Antelope are yellow)


That puts their summer ranges in and around the Star Valley area of the Bridger Teton National Forest of Wyoming and the Caribou National Forest in Idaho.



So, what’s the point in all of this?  I guess just to clarify what I’ve been telling everyone for years was not true!  I’ll admit I did not do any research on my own when told what I was told, I just took it as fact and ran with it.

Bears Butt

November 23, 2015

Leave A Comment, Written on November 23rd, 2015 , Hunting Stories
By: Bears Butt


I borrowed this picture from the internet…thanks to whoever took it!

Tomorrow Tracker and I are going to go off and do something a little different….we are going to go take pictures of rutting bucks!  Of course the place we are heading into is a deep dark secret but we will be staying in his cabin over night.  Once at the cabin we will be setting up our base camp at about 6500 feet and there should be some snow around from the recent storms that went through the area.  During our adventure we will try to reach the top of Monte Cristo mountain which sets at just over 10,000 feet.  I’m not so sure we will be able to make it that high, but that is the goal.

Our main purpose is to take pictures of the wildlife in and around that area.  The big muley bucks are now in full rut and they should be visible in almost every direction.

Tracker had heard about this several years ago and has yet to make the trip…this is the year.  One thing we have come to know is this:  If you want to do something, then do it!  Time waits for nobody and before you know it your time will be at an end and you will still be saying…I was always wanting to do that (whatever that is).

So, not knowing exactly how to pack, I’m probably over packed for cold.  Backpack full of water and goodies and of course some emergency stuff just in case.  Snow boots as well as regular hiking boots.  Insulated bib cover alls, the kind I use ice fishing.  Capote and warm gloves and lots of assorted other warm clothing.  I’m also packing my 17, just in case we see a coyote that needs to be dead.

Our food is limited to meat mostly as that is just what we do.  Salad and stuff like that is not something we think we need, at least not on this trip.  Steak, jerky, pepperoni, kippers, hot dogs…ya, that will do.

This will be a snap and chat excursion as opposed to a run and gun one.  And hopefully there will be lots of critters to take pictures of.  I’ll try and get a picture of the coyote just before it takes a dirt nap, but no guarantee.

More will come by the end of the weekend…until then!  Wish us luck!

Bears Butt

November 18, 2015


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It was Thursday morning and the sky was mostly cloudy, temps in town were in the mid 40’s and we knew it would be colder where we were heading.  But it was still a rather difficult task to decide what we needed to bring to keep warm.  Over dressing is not a good thing, but under dressing is even a bigger problem.  So, with the old saying “It’s better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it” went into effect.  And off we went!

Sunrise copy(discount the 5 white dots on the picture, that’s part of my camera)

Sunrise across the Cache valley was pretty interesting to me and so I had to take this moving picture of it.  We were in for an interesting weather day.

And even more interesting was the fact that Hyrum city had there Christmas lights up and burning as we went through town.  Hey guys, it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet!

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And on our way up Blacksmith Fork canyon the deer started to appear!

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We couldn’t stop to take pictures of all of them but there were plenty to keep our attention.  And when we arrived at the Hardware Ranch, the turkeys were ubiquitous [you-bick-quit-us] (seemingly everywhere at the same time).

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This was just a small band of turkeys off by themselves.  I thought it a great picture where they were all standing in a line along the ditch bank.  They best be hiding as Turkey Day is fast approaching!

And as our trip continued toward Tracker and Bone’s cabin, the deer continued to entertain us!

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Almost every hill had a deer or two on it…mostly does, but then there were the occasional small buck as well.

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The seven mile drive to the cabin took us about an hour because of all the stopping and looking at deer!  It was fun and a sure sign that our trip was not going to be a bust!

Arriving at the cabin, we had to “undo” things in order to make it ready for our overnight stay.  Bones is funny in how she places things in order that when she comes back to get ready for the summer, everything is in its place.  We messed things up really good for her this time!

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We were ready to head out about 11 a.m. with great prospects ahead!  I was really excited to think:  First:  I get to drive the Rhino!  Second:  We were going to drive up a road (trail) I have always wanted to go up and Third: The prospects of seeing some magnificent bucks was very real!

Well our trip began by heading up a very well used road through private property and on our way to Monte Cristo Peak from the west side of the mountain.  A beautiful piece of property with lots of very nice scenery.  Those who have ownership of the parcels are really lucky.  A gateway to some exceptional deer, elk and moose hunting country!

Well, here we are heading up a rocky stretch of the road and going slow so as not to miss the glint of an antler in the high sage.  I glanced to my left and saw a lone magpie fly off a branch on the hillside some 400 yards away.  I made a mental note of the bird but thought nothing more about it, when suddenly another magpie took flight and then I saw what I thought was the tip of an antler.  And then another.  I pulled over and glassed what turned out to be a dead bull elk.  We made the walk down the draw and up the other side to where the bull lay.

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A fine specimen of a mature bull elk.  5 points on one side and six on the other.

Of course the first thought that came to my mind was it was poached and left to rot.  On further examination, without too much disturbance of the area of course, I think it died of wounds from fighting with another bull elk.  Time and an examination by an officer of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources will determine the cause of death.  Of course anytime an outdoors person finds such a thing, they should contact the authorities and have it investigated, which I did on the site.  With only one bar on my cell phone service I called the poaching hotline (1-800-662-3337) and reported it.  I’m still waiting for a return call to set up a time to go to the site with the officer to investigate it. The animal has been dead a long time and of course there is no salvageable meat, only the antlers and ivories.   If that officer agrees with me we might be able to keep the head.  If not, the animal will become evidence.

Well, we spent about an hour dealing with this and then were on our way.  I apologized to Tracker for “seeing” this and having to deal with it.  An hour lost on our adventure…oh well!

Up the road a ways we came to a cross roads and since neither of us had been on this road, we made the decision to drive it and see where it went.

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That “road” sure looks more like a trail to me!  But we turned to the left and headed up it!  A beautiful drive through the snow that was on the ground.  Our tracks were the only ones on it.  The snow was about 2 inches deep and no problem for the Rhino to traverse it.  Never slipped a tire….well….once we got to here.  We had a time before we got here and at that time I thought we were done driving up this road.  But by unloading about 180 pounds from within the Rhino (Tracker getting out), it climbed right up that slick steep hill!  Thanks Tracker for sacrificing and walking up that hill!

Well, as we proceeded up this road toward what we figured would be Monte Cristo, we found ourselves in a narrowing of the canyon and of course the narrowing of the road.  Someone coined this area “The Switchies”….Switchies or not, I had some Twitchies of my own as we drove along it.

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Whoever made this road knew to keep the cut of the road sloping into the uphill side and I was sure glad as some of this snow had ice under it and I hate sliding off the down hill side of a hill.  There was plenty of brush to stop our rolling decent should that happen, but it would have ruined a perfectly good day.

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Tracker agreed.

By the time we got through the Switchies and up on the ridge line, it was time for some lunch.  I had brought along some hot dogs and fixins and so we found a really cool spot tucked away off the ridge and out of the wind and blowing snow to make a fire.  A wonderful little spot I might add.

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A close look at the scene and you should be able to see we have all the essentials…cold beer, hot dogs, buns, ketchup, mustard, napkins and of course a LONG stick to cook the dogs on.  The fire was warm and the snow about 4 inches deep!

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As we enjoyed our hot dogs it was obvious that a snow storm was coming in.  It began falling as small flakes and soon was blowing and drifting.  Perhaps it was time we turned around and headed to lower country.

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The sign says Private property, but the road went around the gate.  We figure this road is probably a pass through road that people are allowed to travel to get from one side of the private property to the other.  I don’t know for sure, but we turned around because of the snow that was bearing down on us.  The wind was whipping up pretty good too and that made for a very cool ride back down.  I was SO glad I had brought ALL my warm clothes…back to the old saying….better to have it!

Back down and through the Switchies, the weather was much different.  Very little wind, no snow and it was much warmer…still glad I had all my warm stuff on though.  We took a little detour and then a short walk to look over the edge of the steep rock cliffs in search of bucks and bulls, but mostly what we saw was a deer that had pooped on a flat rock!  We didn’t see the deer only the evidence it left.

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One must be constantly aware of his environment.

Back to the bottom of the mountain and the main road we took a drive down the main road to see what was there.  It was getting late in the day and the daylight was fading fast.  We saw some deer and I’ll post up a series of pictures of some of them at the end of this article.  As for now let’s just say we saw some pretty nice bucks.

Back at the cabin the sun was down and it was getting cold…I mean COLD!  So, Tracker went to making a good fire in the cabin fireplace.

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We had a wonderful day out and about and now it was time to relax inside, have a couple drinks and then eat our supper!  Tracker had planned on us to have a nice T-bone steak with Garlic Toast and he did it up right!  It was the best tasting steak I think I have ever had and the toast was perfect…crispy and yummy!

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This cabin of theirs is wonderful!  Warm, dry and all the conveniences of home!  It doesn’t get any better than this.  After supper and clean up, we sat and talked about all that we had seen that day.  And then it was up into the loft to catch some dreaming time in preparation for tomorrows adventure!

Morning came quickly and during the night we had some very strong winds, freezing rain and a bit of snow…of course that was all outside….inside we were comfy, warm and dry!

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I didn’t bother looking at the thermometer this morning but it was COLD!!!!!  The prospective of another great day of wildlife viewing ahead!

The following pictures are not necessarily in the order they were taken, but just to show you that we did indeed see a lot of nice bucks, here you go:

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Does too!


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Nice2Point copy

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PrettyBuck copy

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I love skyline bucks!

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Small3X copy

Small4By copy

Small4Eating copy

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Small4Watching copy

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Two impressive bucks….not the biggest in the world, but pretty neat to see them together.

Well, that isn’t all the pictures I have of bucks and other deer, but that gives you a pretty good idea of what is available to see should you decide to drive up there and take a look for yourself.  OH, but that isn’t all!  During our travels we saw two of these guys too!

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Not the best of pictures as I was holding my camera on full zoom when I took this, but the top bull is a 3X3 while the bottom is a nice 6X6.  They didn’t care if we were there or not, but then they were 500 yards down hill from us at the time!

And what would be a trip like this without seeing some bull moose?

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Hey, there is another!

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And a third one!

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Dang!  Three bull moose all together!

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And if I had a tag, this is the one I would have taken just because he is so unique!


And so, you can see we had a really good time at the cabin.  I think we will be doing that trip again in the future!

Thanks Tracker for allowing me to join you on this trip!  It was a fun trip!

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Bears Butt

November 22, 2015


Well it took a bit of time and several phone calls both from myself and from the DWR, but we finally made a time to meet to investigate the dead bull elk.  Tracker and I made sure we had some extra time before the meeting to be able to stop and view any wildlife we might encounter on our way into the meeting place.  We did manage to see this little guy on our way in.


A very tall 3 point.  We both thought it strange that the number of deer we were seeing just wasn’t what it was last week.  Did they migrate on through?  Were they just not near the road?  Were they just laying in the tall grass and sage?  Whatever the reason the deer just were not as plentiful as we saw last week.  None the less, we did see a couple bucks.


At the meeting place with the DWR Conservation Officers, we went on through the locked gate and drove up to the parking spot where the elk could be seen.  We were quickly told this was an investigation and that we were not allowed to take pictures.  I’m sure they would have rather not had us tagging along with them, but before long I think they became at ease with our presence.

The elk had been dead for at least a week, maybe two and was “quite ripe” but the officers took that in stride and literally dug right in.  Not a pretty sight for my old eyes, but I sure could see they had a method about what they were doing.  Both very professional, talking about what was going on and what they were seeing etc.   Samples were taken from the animal and saved.  Pictures taken as well and pretty soon it was obvious to all of us that this bull had been poached.

I really hate poachers and this one just added my hate for them.  A magnificent 5X6 bull elk, just reaching its prime and there it lay, bloated and wasted in every way.

Tracker and I continued to watch the methodical way the two conservation officers worked and we even helped where we could rolling the carcass over or holding on to it while they cut and carved the parts they needed for evidence.  I have always thought highly of the DWR personnel and the job they do, but this event put them at an even higher level in my mind.  I don’t care what they are paid, after this stinking endeavor, they don’t pay these two enough money!

The very sad thing is what we were told later on, back near the trucks.  They have investigated OVER 25 poaching cases since August on the Cache Unit alone!  25 cases of poaching of deer, elk and moose!  How sad is that?  How many of those poachers will be caught and brought to justice?  And how many of those brought before a judge will only get a slap on the wrist instead of what should be really tagged to them for the wanton disregard for animals that belong to all of us?

I can’t go into detail about what we saw with this investigation as it might be detrimental to the case, but I for one was very “down in the heart” to think it was a poaching case and not a natural selection that caused the big bull to die.  We were enlightened as to poaching in general:

There are those people who are really out there to take trophy racks and make somewhat of a living doing it.  Those types will kill the animal and tie the antlers to a tree and then drive away to come back many months later and retrieve their “trophy”.  My take on these thieves is they have NO regard for right and wrong.  They don’t need licenses and they don’t have any seasons.

The second type of poacher is the accidental type.  Maybe they were shooting at a cow elk and the bullet struck and killed a bull standing near by.  If that hunter does not turn himself/herself in for that accident and lets the animal lay there and waste away, they are poaching in the second worst way (the worst way is the guy who conducts his poaching as a profession).  Perhaps this hunter shot at something he thought was bigger than it turned out to be and then walked away leaving it lay there.  That is the same thing in this case.  A poacher with no regard for the animal shot and no remorse for leaving it rot.

The third type of poacher is the “opportunist”.  Here is a guy with a gun in the truck and suddenly there in his view and shooting capability stands a giant of an animal!  Something we all drop our jaw at first seeing it.  The mentality of this poacher is to shoot the animal because he can.  Not necessarily to get the giant rack, but just to shoot it.  It’s sad to think there are people out carrying weapons that just can’t stay off the trigger.

Investigation done, we headed home.





The most interesting thing happened just about the time we came out of the canyon….High upon the ridge, some 500 yards out stood a very large buck silhouetted against the sky.  I looked through my binoculars and almost in that instant saw an equally big buck coming up from below that buck.  I told Tracker…they are coming together!  And he quickly got out and started to set up his camera on the tripod.  Before he was ready to start his filming, the two bucks were locked in battle.  They pushed and pushed each other and the horn rattling was intense.  Soon they fought over the ridge out of site.  I maintained the binocs on  the ridge and after about 30 seconds here they came pushing each other around in big buck fashion, over and down onto our side of the hill.  The fight went on for over a minute, maybe longer.  I  have never seen such a spectacle in my life.  Sure I’ve seen bucks come together like this, but usually the battle lasts maybe 5 seconds or so and then it’s over…not this time!  Eventually the bigger buck got the best of the smaller (yet still big) opponent and it ran off, big buck still in pursuit!

A great way to end the day!

Bears Butt

November 25, 2015



6 Comments, Written on November 18th, 2015 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt


My game plan for hunting in 2016 is to do it with a bow.  I’ve been hunting with a muzz rifle for a really long time…like over 40 years and it’s time to try my hand at bagging a buck with a bow (it’s on my bucket list you know).  So, now is the time to be practicing for that moment of truth.  If I can get all my form ducks lined up and don’t have to think about them when the moment comes, I just might end up bagging one.

I watched Weasel last year when he got his and he was shaking so bad just before the shot I couldn’t help but think I might not be able to finish the job.  And he had been practicing for months!  I need to do the same.  So, my mind has been on arrow selection, fletching style and mount, broad heads and there are just so many variables I’m really having a time deciding.

Well, with that, I went to the internet and asked the simple question:  “What should my set up be for hunting with my bow”?  A simple question and I expected to see a ton of sites that would offer suggestions.  I even expected to find a “fill in the blank” questionnaire that would spit out all the options available for my particular circumstance.  BUT…nothing is out there.  SO….know it alls, there is an avenue for you to expand on!

Here are some questions I would expect and my answers to those questions:  What bow style are you shooting?  Compound bow, Traditional longbow, Traditional recurve, Crossbow?  What is your draw length?  What is the draw weight of your bow at your draw length?  What is the rated draw weight of the bow you are shooting and what is the draw length listed for that draw weight?  What type of release do you use when shooting your bow?  Do use sights on your bow?  Does your hunting bow have a quiver mounted to it?

Some of these questions may not be pertinent, but you get the idea.  The one about the rated bow weight and draw length is a check on the person answering the two previous questions to see if they are figuring in their less than rated or more than rated draw weight based on their draw length.

So, in answering these questions my answers would be:  Traditional recurve.  26 inches.  47 pounds.  55 pounds at 28 inches.  Three finger tab, three under.  No.  No.

With that someone should be able to say, “Butt, you need 500 spine arrows in the make of your choice, cut to 29 inches, feather fletchings cut in parabolic shape and mounted helical, tip the end with a 125 grain 3 blade broad head.  Whether you choose to glue the broad head on or not is your choice as well.  Good luck hunting and I expect a package of back straps”!

How much more simple could it be….for me?  But there is nothing like that out there and so I have to go digging and asking questions…you hunt with a bow don’t you?  What weight bow do you shoot?  Oh, that’s close to mine.  What arrow do you use?  What about the fletchings?  Broad head of choice and weight?  Have you ever gotten anything?

Well, what do you say?  What arrows?  What broad head?  It’s time for me to start practicing and getting ready for the big hunt that happens in 10 months!

Bears Butt

November 12, 2015


1 Comment, Written on November 12th, 2015 , Archery stuff
By: Bears Butt


The other day I was rumbling through the garage and found an old candle I’d saved for making emergency fire starters.  I also had an 18 egg carton and decided today was the day to melt it down and pour it into the egg carton.  I cut some kerosene wicks down to put them in as wicks for the fire starters even though the egg carton would have been enough by itself.

Today I cut the carton apart and put the fire starters in a plastic bag and placed that in the hunting trailer.  I’ll probably be using the hunting trailer if I ever am in need of an emergency fire.  But then that could happen anywhere in the woods.  You never know.

So, I decided it would be a good idea to know just how long they would burn and with that knowledge you would know just what you had to do in preparation before you lit it.

The picture above is just after I had lit it.

EggCartonFireStarter2Two minutes later this is what it looked like.  I can imagine placing small twigs and such around it and having them start to burn.

EggCartonFireStarter5MinAt the 5 minute mark it was blazing pretty good.  If I had the need to get a fire started this would be more than enough time to dry out wet twigs and get it going, I would think anyway.

And at the 8 minute mark the flame went out.

EggCartonFireStarter8MinEight minutes is a pretty long time to get a fire going and so I think these will work just fine.  Place one in a plastic bag with a half dozen strike anywhere matches and put it in your day pack.  You just never know when you might need it!

Bears Butt

November 8, 2015

1 Comment, Written on November 8th, 2015 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt


Sunday is going to be a very special day here in the USA, or at least in some of the states within the boundaries of the USA….The cancellation of participating in Daylight Savings Time, Utah is one of them.

Way back when Daylight Savings Time (DST) was implemented it was my take on the whole matter, that a bunch of high fellutin politicians wanted to golf after their busy day sitting around making up new laws and they needed an extra bit of daylight in order to accomplish this.  So, they made up this DST business and sold it to enough people to get it voted in.  But not all states chose to participate.  For all these years it has made for some interesting events.  First off, it was my feeling, that when the time was changed in the Spring of the year and the clocks were moved forward an hour, I was very tired and that tired feeling continued for almost a week before my body clock caught up with the time clock.  I also observed, although not scientifically, there were more accidents on the highways because of tired drivers during that same week period.  Conversely, when the clocks were moved back in the Fall of the year, I felt like I had gotten an extra hours sleep, even though that was not really the case, and I liked that time change very much.  It did make for some interesting discussions about when we were to get up to go hunting early in the morning.  You wouldn’t think an hour would make that much difference, but in my mind it did.

Well, whatever the reason was that DST was implemented, it is about to become history!  And we will join the rest of the world in a standard of time we can all live with.  BUT….there is always a BUT (Bears Butt)……I went in search of the “standard time” and what I uncovered was a whole lot of non-standard time stuff.  Let’s begin with scientists.  Those guys have bulbous heads, even if they don’t outwardly show it.  Their minds have to have firm, unchanging and scientifically proven (without a doubt) stuff in their lives.  Stuff they can count on being the same today as it was yesterday and the day before that and will continue to be the same tomorrow and next week and next year.  Time is one of them and I’ll bet they had a very difficult time with DST.  I’d even go out on a limb and say some of them never observed DST even if it was the standard in the state they lived in.  They would have fashioned their theories around the world clock…Atomic time!  Measured out to +/- .09 seconds.  OH YA BABY!  That is the real time!

We all can relate to the Atomic Clock!  It is so accurate, even my scientific clock that hangs in my dining area will automatically adjust itself to whatever the atomic clock says is the real time.  And by the way, I try and regulate the other 10 clocks in my house to that one clock.  My trouble is getting the grandfather clock to continue to be within +/- 10 minutes of it in the 8 day window of its winding.  But I keep trying….a true scientist with the bulbous head would have destroyed that grandfather clock by now.

OK!  So, we are about to change our clocks back to what the rest of the world is on, so what is that called?  Normal time?  Greenwich Meridian Time?  World time?

I’m going to call it Standard World Time and I did see that somewhere on the web.  It makes sense that it should be called “standard” and since the whole world relies on this standard it should be called this.  Am I thinking outside the box or is my bulbous head getting in the way?

So, let’s put this Standard World Time at or near ZERO (0) degrees Longitude.  Digressing a bit:  Longitude is the dissection of the world from top to bottom and moves in East and West direction every 1 degree (or parts of degrees) up to 360 degrees worth.  Latitude is the same dissection around the world from the middle to the North and South directions up to 90 degrees…to make it easier, think of Latitude as “laying down”…..The Equator is zero degrees Latitude.  There is more to this that just this.  As the powers to be at the time (scientists) made a rule that said something like this (my words):  From zero degrees Longitude and going in an Easterly direction we will count the degrees as East X degrees until such time as we reach East 180 degrees.  As is real, at the point of 180 degrees East, we then begin to enter into the West side of the world and so we must stop our East count.  Conversely, if we depart from zero degrees longitude in a Westerly direction we will count the degrees as West X degrees until such time as we reach West 180 degrees.  As is real, at the point of 180 degrees West, we then enter into the East side of the world and so we must stop our West count.

Sort of like answering the question:  How far can you go into the forest?  Answer:  Half way, because the other half is on the way out of the forest.

Latitude is different as it is only graduated to 90 degrees each way from the equator…90 degrees to the North and 90 degrees to the South.  For time purposes we don’t get too concerned about Latitude…the only big deal about that is that when it is winter in the north, it is summer in the south and visa versa.

Back to time:  When the Atomic Time says it is Midnight (or whatever time it says), every 10 degrees you move away from Zero, in either East or West direction you will add or subtract an hour from that time.  West subtracts the time.  For simplicity sake, zero degrees longitude goes through England and Utah time is six hours behind them.

Look it up yourself.

Another thing that might be of interest, each TIME ZONE is divided into 15 degree chunks.  So if you are standing in a spot at say 110 degrees West latitude and take one more step in the Westerly direction you just gained an hour of time!  So, if you are thinking of never losing a day in your life, just keep going West….but wait!  Those tricky scientists figured out that if you did that and everybody did that, so as not to lose a day in their lives, the world could possibly get moving faster and faster (remember the merry go round at school?  The faster the guys went in the middle of it the faster it went around and pretty soon you couldn’t hold on and would fly off of it?) and disrupt the entire universe.  So they introduced “International Date lines”….that is where the East 180 meets the West 180…dang!  Lost the day.  Might as well just enjoy where you are at the time and hang onto a tree in case a bunch of people decide to get the world spinning quicker.

I for one will be glad to get on a standard time and forget about the DST B.S.  I golfed a little in my time, but not enough to lose my precious sleep over in the Spring.  Golf is going out of favor these days and that is probably the real reason the push to get rid of DST.  I know it will make the APFO Contracting section a bit happier, as when they make up the contracts for flying in NON-DST states they can forget about putting in that statement and get back to what’s real with the sun angle.  The whole country needs to drop the DST!

Well folks!  At 2 a.m. on Sunday, November 1, 2015, when it’s 8 a.m. in England….Change your clocks back one hour!  Fall Back/Spring Forward will become a question on some game show in the future!  Count on that!


Bears Butt

October 30, 2015


1 Comment, Written on October 30th, 2015 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt


Well, well, well….a week later my WordPress system will finally let me post the picture I wanted to put up on the last posting….

Today is Conners last day to try and bag his buck with a center fire rifle.  Last year it was the same way and it turned out very good with him bagging a very nice 2X2 buck.  Today?  Well it all remains to be seen.  The bucks have been getting hammered.  Daily I would see friends bagging some fine bucks and I must say a lot of them have been 4X4’s.

When you talk to people about why so many big bucks….They are all patting themselves on the back.  The DWR managers say…It’s our management of the herds that is doing it.  The SFW….It’s because we convinced the DWR to go to the 26 Unit hunting breakdown.   The DWR Biologists….It’s because of the wet spring and mild winter.  The hunters themselves….Well, it’s because I missed him last year because of my hangover and the fact that the sun was in my eyes and my gun was dropped and the scope wasn’t tight on the mounts and my kid was bouncing in the back of the truck and my wife was yelling at me to get her another beer out of the cooler and my buddy sitting next to her was telling me it wasn’t a big enough buck anyway and the game warden in the truck behind us was saying he was going to give me a ticket for not getting off the road and the guys in the other truck were honking for me to move my truck so they could get by and the the guy on the hill next to the buck was yelling that he had already hit it and that he was going to kick my butt if I shot one more time……

I say it is because of the media being what it is, people like to brag and so they can reach out to more of an audience (and they are).  I think it is the same every year and just this year more and more of them are able to post up the pictures of their really nice bucks……even the spikes are nice to me.  But I must say I have seen some very nice “Anderson 30’s” posted up AND I might add, some with inline extra points and kickers out the sides.  You don’t see those all the time.

Call it how you will, management, wet spring, non-profit intervention or just plain last years missed shots….there seems to be a lot of bucks on the mountain this year.  My hope for today is that there is still “ONE MORE” just for Conner to tag.

I have only been able to get my hands dirty cutting up a part of one buck and it was a pleasure to do.  I miss the processing of a whole deer….come on Conner!  Put the big one down!

More to come!  Check back later.

Bears Butt

October 24, 2015

The next day:

We had a great day afield yesterday.  Arrived at our place at the perfect time.  Lots of road warriors out getting to their spots as well.  When the light got just right we were slowly winding our way up the road and deer seemed to be out in almost every direction.  But nothing with antlers!  We traveled up past the riparian area, down the road to Pelican drive, up around Buck mountain and everywhere we went there were deer…but no antlers.  The crowds were much thinner than they were last Saturday, only about 1/3 as many out hunting.  So we occasionally had our choice of ridges and/or saddles we could sit and glass.  Last weekend there were no places like that.  As we made our way down toward the push pockets two deer suddenly appeared in front of us.  We glassed them to see nothing but skin heads and then as quick a a wink, three more deer came up over the rise.  The one in the back was a buck!  Conner unleashed his inner most feelings toward filling the freezer with meat….This buck is goin down!

Well, as he was loading the rifle and flipping off the scope covers (his nemesis from last weekend), I was glassing and calling out the play by play as the buck changed positions within the small herd of 5 deer.  The deer continued to move down the ridge to our left and the buck stayed pretty much to the rear of the line.  I pulled my glasses down to see what Conner was up to and ask myself why he hadn’t put the buck down when I could see he was still trying to get a shell into the chamber.

Not being that familiar with how a suppository rifle works, he thought the chambering of the round was too tight and that he needed to eject that shell and try to get the next one to chamber.  That caused him to have two shells trying to load at the same time.  Needless to say he didn’t get a round chambered and the buck went on down the hill into the trees never to be seen again.

BUT, there was a very unique thing about that buck….It was obviously one that Dry Dog had shot at during the muzz hunt several weeks ago as it only had an antler on one side.  Yes it was a spike, but with only one antler sticking up.  We called it a “Unique  Horn” (Unicorn) buck!

We continued to make our circle and drive the roads according to our plan until it came time to make a decision as to the final route home.  We made a big change and decided to go toward Logan Canyon and drive the Sinks road, a place we have not been in over 10 years.  We drove on some newly made roads and it was obvious why they made the new roads in one stretch alongside Elk Valley…Washed out roads!  It made for a somewhat interesting trip through there.  Then the road turned into its ugly old self as we made our way up past Nebeker Springs,  Government Springs and finally to the Sinks road just off Temple Flat….The road at that point turned into something I would have expected in California but not Utah.  A smooth flat road with only two bumps along the stretch from Temple to Highway 89.  Tons of recreational atv/utv riders to add to our enjoyment and an occasional rider/driver clad in pumpkin orange.   I had high hopes of seeing some of Anderson’s 30 inchers, but we didn’t see any deer until we were almost to the Logan Canyon summit.

By days end, we counted 57 deer with one sporting an antler!

Until next time!  That is pretty much it for the deer hunt(s) this year!  Good luck in the drawing for next years big game hunts!

Bears Butt

October 25, 2015

Leave A Comment, Written on October 24th, 2015 , Hunting Stories
By: Bears Butt


AHHHH!  The opening day of Utahs “any legal weapon” deer season!  Back in the day there was only one opening day for deer season and we would have upwards of 200,000 people combing the hills for that one big buck!  There were no rules on where you could hunt, except for the posted no trespassing areas and hunters all over the state would find their one and only best spot to be sitting come opening morning.  From my perch high up on the hill I could look out and see all the other hunters doing exactly what I was doing….sitting and watching for the movement of “my” buck.  The hills were dotted with blaze orange dots.  Every ridge, every point, every saddle….every where!  Some coined it as a “pumpkin patch”…..

That was opening morning back then.  But when Utah DWR decided we needed to separate the archers and muzzleloader guys from the rest of the pack, they made two additional seasons using those instruments of destruction.  I, along with many others opted to go with the muzzy gun, and then things changed….for the better I might add.  A change that didn’t really effect the deer hurd, but the change in the number of people in the field hunting.  Over time Utahs DWR have made a ton more changes, some good and some bad, depending on who you are talking to.  I have my feelings and thoughts on those changes, but unless I want to get off my butt and go to a bunch of meetings and spend my time and money trying to get things changed to how I feel about “it”, I have to just go along with what is decided and make the best of what is out there….or….I could just quit hunting all together….I ain’t gonna do that.

One of the biggest changes of late, and by late I mean the last 5 years or so…is to break the state up into a bunch of separate units, bounded by key roads, rivers and/or state boundaries and force the hunters to apply for one unit of choice.  Of course the best units are reserved for applying for “limited entry” into those areas for a special treat in hunting experience.  I’ve enjoyed hunting in a couple of those places and it was a treat for sure.  So, unless you get to draw one of those units, you have to apply to hunt with the rest of the “savages” who also like to hunt.  There are a lot of rules to follow and we all do our best to keep within the boundaries of those rules….best we can.

Well, one special rule in place today, is for youth hunters.  If you are a youth hunter in Utah under the age of 18 AND you draw an “any weapon” tag, you can hunt during the archery hunt using a bow and arrow to try and fill your tag.  Should that season end and you still have your tag in your pocket, you are then allowed to hunt during the muzzleloader season, using of course a muzzleloading rifle.  And like the archery season, should the muzz season end and you still have your tag in your pocket, you are then allowed to participate in the “any legal weapon” season and get to play with the remaining hunting savages in the state.  This is that day!

Let’s look at some stats from this year.  I won’t look up the archery tags for the area we are hunting because there are tons of those.  The thought process behind allowing a whole bunch of tags for every area in the state is that the archers can’t hit crap with their arrows and so let them have as many tags as they can muster up to share a camp with.  My thoughts on that are changing the more I get to know archery season and the state of the art equipment some of them are using.  That’s another story.  So, our unit is not one of the coveted units in the state but it does cover a lot of ground.  One of the largest in the state.  For muzzy hunters the state came up with about 1200 (rounded up) tags as the number to try and draw a tag from.  There were also about 2500 people who applied for those tags.  During that season we saw an abundance of hunters.  Like Crock said about his hunt last year….(not an exact quote)…”Ya, the DWR said when asked by hunters, ‘where can I find a place to hunt in this unit that isn’t posted’?   You go out to X place, look for the brown ford with 5 guys in it, park and stay close to where they are and you will surely see deer”!  To say the least it seemed like all the 1200 tag holders for our unit were camped and hunting at or near where we have been hunting for the last 15 years.

Well, Conner hasn’t used his tag yet and today is his next to the last day he can hunt this season.  We hope to repeat last years success, by seeing him use his tag today, but he will have to do it among the 3600 tag holders who drew the any legal weapon tag for this area.  Donned with our blaze orange (I hate blaze orange) vests and hats, we will be there among the pumpkin boys and girls dotting the hills.  Our problem is finding a point or hill top to sit on that isn’t already being sat on by someone else.  Someone who has sat on that spot their entire lives on the opening of Utah’s deer season.


put a picture of a pumpkin patch here when the software will allow….just sayin!

Wish us luck and there will be more to be said later right here on this very post….just look beyond the date and my name below!

Bears Butt

October 17, 2015

After the Day:

We got away promptly at 5 a.m., just like I like it.  Stopped a couple of times and made it to our area right on time.  The daybreak was perfect…partly cloudy skys and rather warm for this time of year.  But we know a storm is on its way.

On the way in we saw a fox run across the road in front of us…a headlight fox…nothing you can do but say…”Hey!  There’s a fox”!!!  And it’s gone.  During the day we saw a Great Horned owl, 5 or 6 moose and 38 deer!  One of which was a very respectable buck!

Conner spotted the buck high on a ridge and it was coming down the hill towards us.  At that point we were not sure it was a buck, but soon I saw horn and told Conner to load up and get ready.  Now here is a 14 year old, soon to be 15, who has only shot muzzleloaders his whole life…yes, he shot a buck last year with this same rifle he had in his hands this morning, but he just hasn’t had enough range time to know the rifle very well.  He had a little bit of a problem getting the bolt to go back far enough to chamber a round.  And then the scope covers were a trial.  Once ready for the shot he couldn’t find the deer through the scope.  The buck stopped broadside on the hill above us at about 200 yards.  Wide open and waited patiently for the shot and the ride home….but…it ran out of patience and trotted off.  How big was it you ask?  Well, we were not into counting points at that time, but I thought it was a smallish 4 point, while Weasel thought it a big 3 point.  Either way it had a spread about the width of the ears and just as high.  A very nice buck in most anyone’s book.  Oh and for you Dry Dog, it was just down the road from the riparian area!


So there you have the nutshell version of the days events….lots of deer…lots of people…pumpkin patch for sure.  A truck on every ridge, a man on every saddle…things have not changed in the 30 some years since I last spent an opener on the mountain.

A very interesting thing happened while we were hunting.  We saw two deer come over a ridge and come our way only to stop before they actually got across the draw between us.  There was a smallish patch of buck brush on that hill and they went into it but didn’t come out.  One was acting very “buckish”, and so we made our way in that direction.  Before we even left the truck, we saw two hunters come over the hill top from the direction those two deer came from and they were hunting their way down toward us.  We decided to just position Conner in a spot he could take a shot if one of the two deer was a buck.

ConnerPreparing to shoot

In the picture, the brush just over Conners head is where the two deer went.  The hunters came down the hill toward the brush and angled slightly to our right.  As they first came into view, one of the deer, a doe, busted out and went up the hill toward the two hunters and then stopped in a very small patch of brush to the side of them.  The hunters continued to decent the hill right past the doe.  She held tight and let the hunters pass…once passed, she booked it up over the top….the hunters had no clue.

As they continued down the hill in their slow decent, looking left and right, up and down, soon they were within 20 yards of the brush where the second deer was still hiding.  We could not see the deer, but we did not see it come out either.  I prepared myself to make the hike up to flush it out if it didn’t come out while the two hunters were there.

The hunters continued in a perfect pattern down and across the top of the brush…not 10 yards from the middle of the brush.  When they were about 10 yards to the right and above the brush the deer came out in one bound and stopped!  We glassed it intently, expecting to see antlers…but it was a fawn!  Dang it!  The hunters continued to move from our left to right and away from the brush.  Again, like the doe above, they had no clue there was a deer anywhere near them, and all the time the fawn stood motionless as they marched past it.  When the fawn felt it was safe, it bounded one time back to where it had been laying and laid back down!

I have heard of stories of big bucks doing that exact same thing, but until today, I had never witnessed it!  Sure it was a fawn, but it could have been mister Charlie Rack!

Shortly after this we were on a ridge above all of the commotion, with trucks parked next to trucks and guys out slamming doors and talking loudly etc. etc. etc.  And I looked down and there stood 5 deer!  Almost exactly in the middle of the may-lay!  Here is my take on it and I’m just as guilty as the next guy!

People are stupid….Deer (animals in general) are smart!

Bears Butt

1 Comment, Written on October 17th, 2015 , Hunting Stories
By: Bears Butt

WhiteRockArea copy

Today is planned to take another item off my bucket list.  Seems like a hundred years ago was the last time I was seriously hiking in the area shown in this picture.  Well, when I was a teenager I hiked the heck out of this place and got to know it pretty well.  I never saw anything but deer, coyotes and an occasional other critter pretty much usual to the area in there but since the DWR started entertaining us with elk, many, many years ago, I can’t help but think there are some elk in this place by now.

So, today, Conner and I will be taking a hike down through there looking around and maybe I can show him some of the things I remember being there.

The last time in here I was about 25 and I took my bride of maybe two years up there and showed here what was left of an old cabin.  At the time it was just some jumbled up boards and an old cook stove (Monarch brand if I recall right).  Whoever took it in there worked their tails off because it isn’t a flat climb or decent.  I marked the picture with about where it is according to my recall recollector.

WhiteRockArea copy


A flat spot just under the pines.  One might say it’s “purdy”.

Another favorite spot where I really think the elk might be hiding holds water, shade, cover, food and everything else a wary old elk would want in its life.  It is a flat zone surrounded by steep slopes above it and a very unforgiving steep hill below.  There is a seep of water against the far hill that feed a small oval pond near the end of the flat.  I’m hoping it holds water today and if it doesn’t I hope to show Conner just where it is for future hunts in his life.



It’s been a long time coming and I’m sure it will be my last time visiting this place, but as long as he is willing to entertain me today, we will visit both spots.

At the same time, he has his bow permit to be able to take a deer and if he waits until we have visited both spots before he shoots one that would suit me just fine.

So, we plan on being above this place just at first light and then make the hike down into it and spend the day.  His dad, Weasel will pick us up at the bottom and hopefully we will be dragging a big old buck!


Bears Butt

October 15, 2o15

Well, we made it back from the top of the mountain but I have to admit, my 66 years has caught up with me.  My feet are killing me, I have a blister on top of my second toe and my hips (both sides) won’t let me straighten up when I try and stand.  Does that tell you something?

But enough about that, let’s get on with the story!

Weasel and Conner were prompt to pick me up at 5:30 a.m. and off we went.  The road up to the basin is in very bad shape.  If you have half a mind to take a car up there you best rethink that idea.  You might get there and you might not but just trying will destroy the car.  We arrived at the basin sign at exactly daylight.  We had time to eat a hard boiled egg and then get our backpacks on before it was light enough to see to shoot.  There was a 4 wheeler parked there as well and it had two guys on it when it passed us half way up the mountain.  We had no idea which direction they may have gone.


We said our goodbys to Weasel and headed down our trail.  Weasel continued on down the main road toward Inspiration Point.  Why not?  He was that close and might as well go have a look around.  As Conner and I walked down the trail we came across the two guys that were on the atv.  They were hunting the same place we were.  When we got to them I said, “What’s the chance that on this whole mountain, two hunters decide to hunt the same area at the same time”?  They said they were just looking around at that point and for us to go on down the trail.  I assured them we would be off the mountain soon as we had plans to go down to White Rock.  A quick wave and off we went.

We hadn’t gone more than 300 yards and here came one of the local guys on his ATV.  He is up there camping and is trying to spot a big buck before the opening day.  He was up early and scouting all day.  We chatted and then off he went down the road to his look out place.  Conner and I continued to trudge along at our pace.  Looking for deer, elk or whatever.  We spotted a Blue Grouse but left it alone as we were not in that mode to kill it.  Soon we found ourselves at the mine at the end of the road.

That mine has been closed for some time and the University of Utah has converted it to a Seismographic station.


It gets its power through a cable running down from a solar collector.

After leaving the mine, we caught back up with the local spotter and stopped to chat a bit with him.  He had a few deer spotted and a cow and calf moose as well (actually Conner spotted the moose).  Nothing he would shoot however.  He is a horn hunter and nothing under a 4X4 will do for him and then it would have to be a BIG one at that.  As we chatted we spotted several deer below us and 3 of them were small bucks.  Luckily for them the terrain in nearly vertical and brushy, so we continued on our way around the mountain.

A bit of a sad story came to light just a few more hundred yards down the trail.  Seems that back in 2003 a young man was driving his truck down this same trail and as he drove the trail became more and more narrow until suddenly his truck rolled off the mountain and killed him.  We found this memorial marker alongside the trail.


A sad thing to come across.  Looking down to where the truck would have come to rest were more pieces of it still down there, even though the main parts have been taken down by helicopters in the recent past.

Well, again we proceeded to head to where we wanted to go when Conner spotted a big bull moose below us.



And later we were within about 50 yards of it.


This big boy had 10 or 11 points on each palm and the width was well over 40 inches.  One very big moose.  But, he was going where we wanted to go!  So we had to alter our plans a bit.  No sense getting gored by a moose.  We stayed high and still managed to get into the area where I remember seeing a cabin 50 some years ago.

We were almost to the flat where the cabin is when I spotted what I thought was a VERY BIG BUCK!  I told Conner, GRAB AN ARROW!  Then I turned to range the distance.  It was a monster of a buck looking right at us.  I could see a bit of its right side but only the tips of a couple of the tines from its left side sticking out from the quakie it was standing behind.  Then I saw it turn its head and the distinct palm of a moose showed itself broadside.  Dang!  Had my heart pumping good.  Conner said he was just about to draw back as he had a very good open lane right to its vitals.  From the close distance it was to us he also saw it was a moose when it turned.

So, this was a different moose than the one we had seen just a few hundred yards further up the hill.  This one had a nice palm on the right side but the left side was two distinct long curving tines that came right from the antler base at his head.  The two points followed the curvature of the palm side perfectly and looking straight on it you would have thought it was a normal every day big bull moose.  But when it turned sideways there was not mistake it was a freak of nature.  I whispered to Conner that where that moose was standing is about where I expected to see the cabin remains.  And so we circled around the moose and I was hoping it would trot off when it winded us….no luck…we almost completely circled it (a good 100 yards away) and it stood right there and turned in a circle watching us.  So we gave up on trying to find any part of the cabin.  We were very close to it but didn’t see anything even through the binocs.  Time to move on…Big boy might get mad.

Well, following the terrain of the hillside, we made our way out of the cabin flat area and started toward the bowl.  I looked to my right and there was something metal!  My words were “The cabin”, while all the time I knew it wasn’t any part of the cabin.  We made our way down to it and found the old remains of a mine near where this thing was.


And the grown over remains of the mine entrance behind Conner.


When we were satisfied at seeing this old treasure, we continued on our way to the upper end of the bowl.  I felt the best view of the bowl would be from near the South end of it and so we continued to traverse the hillside and worked our way over to a look over point.  The oak brush is so thick and tall we didn’t have much of a view, but we needed to take a break and so we just picked this spot and took off our packs for a little kipper break!


I took a 3 picture panoramic view of what we were seeing below us:




The middle picture shows clearly there is a ridge across it as it blocks the view of the valley below.  I was hoping we would find the water that I know is down there and with the water I was also hoping we would find some deer and elk.  Even tracks would be nice.

After our break we dropped into the bowl for a look around and to work our way down and out toward White Rock.  By this time my legs were beginning to hurt.  The hike had been all down hill to this point and going down hill really is hard on my knees.

In the oak trees this was the view.


You can see about 50 yards in every direction and it really makes for an interesting hike.  Slow and easy, hoping we would see some critters.  We did find where the small pond had been back in the day, but it had filled and washed out its natural dike sometime way back when, but the water was still seeping down the hill side.  Not many tracks of critters however and that was surprising to me.  I expected to see an elk wallow and lots and lots of tracks….just a few deer tracks was all we saw.

Well, by now it is hot even in the shade and so we just started hiking out.  I’d seen what I came to see….well not the cabin exactly, but close….As we hiked out we came to a trail made by some 4 wheelers and found this hat stuck in a tree.


Are you missing this hat?  It’s still there!

And as we got closer to White Rock, Conner was surprised at just how big it really is.



At White Rock I called Weasel and told him we were working our way down towards Hogs Back if he had time to pick us up.  By this time all I wanted to do was get on some flat ground.  This down hill hiking was really beating me up bad.  It seemed like forever before we hit the flat ground around Hogs Back and sat down in the shade waiting for our ride.


A very memorable hike and I hope Conner had as much fun as I did.  Too bad we didn’t see anything to shoot, but maybe it was a good thing that didn’t happen.  We did find 4 turkey feathers and heard one clucking off in the distance.  That was one of the things I was hoping we would come across.  Now I know there are turkeys in that area.

So, cross that one off the list!  I’m done!  And I think tonight is going to include some hot tub time!

Bears Butt


4 Comments, Written on October 15th, 2015 , Hunting Stories
By: Bears Butt

This is too much!

1 Comment, Written on October 7th, 2015 , Jokes I like!
By: Bears Butt

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My obsession with one buck started during the bow hunt while accompanying Weasel, Conner and Squirrel.  We saw a very nice 3 point but could not get on it for a shot with the bow and it ran around the bend in the mountain.  Later on we were way across the canyon and took a moment to glass in the direction that 3 point had gone.  I saw it in a hollow filled with buck brush and tall sage but it wasn’t alone!  With it was a very big buck that dwarfed that 3 point.  How many points it had I will never know as my optics are not that good nor powerful.  But I knew it was a very big buck…wide and tall.

Later in the hunt we saw another big buck that in my mind was the same one we had seen days earlier.  It was running with two nice 4 point bucks and the size of its body and massive antlers again dwarfed the other two bucks.  The haunting began in my mind….I will be on that spot come the opening day of the muzz hunt.  My dreams were filled with the vision of that one buck as it crossed the hill ahead of us and lead those other two bucks away.

On a later bow hunt Weasel and I were in town gassing up before heading up to the camp for one last attempt to fill his tag and I spoke to a camo clad young man who was in the store buying his breakfast….How is your hunt going?  Fine.  Where you camped?  Up on Monte.  Are you seeing anything worth taking?  Ya, but nothing like the one we took out of New Canyon a week or so ago.  One of the guys tagged a 31 incher…………..

My heart sank.  That was most likely the buck that has been haunting me in my dreams.  Could there be two such bucks in existence in that canyon?  I sort of doubt it, but I maintained my position that I will be at that spot come opening day of the muzz season.

So, Weasel and I took his trailer up to the camp the Friday before the hunt.  Dry Dog had some issues with his camp trailer and even though he was going to convoy with us that day, he had to delay until later in the day to take his trailer up.  That delay on his part was actually a good thing for us as we had been working on a gag to pull on him for about a year.  Here is the gag:

We saved the skin of Weasels deer from last year, acquired a very badly damaged 3D archery deer target, placed a heavy piece of metal swinging in the kill zone of that target, I cut off the antlers from Edjukateers deer and attached them to the 3D deer to add reality to its appearance and then we put the saved skin over the body and decided we would place it strategically on the hill just outside of camp.  Our thoughts were on road hunters coming and going down the road.  They would spot the fake animal on the hill and then take a shot at it.  Hitting the “gong” would cause it to ring loudly and with us sitting in camp we would jump and yell with joy.  With Dry Dog coming up later, we had time to set the phony deer up.  From our camp below

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the deer really looked “BAD”…and by that I mean it didn’t look real at all, but from a small window between two quaky

trees next to the road it looked somewhat believable.

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This is going to be fun!

Before we left the mountain we laid the fake deer down and left it on the mountain.  We will set it back up on Wednesday (opening day) afternoon and hope Dry Dog sees it and takes a shot.

Tuesday was slow to come and of course my list of things to take on the hunt were not without some concern.  Had I packed that crossed off item in the trailer we took up last Friday?  Always a bit of doubt that I had actually put it in the trailer, and still I had a lot of stuff to take up this day.

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Weasel will have a similar load of stuff to take as well and what about Hot Spark and Squirrel?  They too will have stuff to take.  Will we have room for it all in Weasels truck?

Well we did and we found ourselves at camp about 2 p.m. and I transferred my sleeping stuff from Weasels camper into Dry Dogs…my home away from home for the next 5 days.  The excitement of the hunt is always there much like that found in a child’s eye on Christmas Day.  The camp filled up quickly with other hunters and their rigs, everyone sharing that same excitement.

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I don’t always get around to taking pictures as people arrive and this year was no exception even though I took nearly 200 pictures.  These two ya-hoos always get a picture taken!  Gatlin and his son Gunner!  Two regulars at the hunt and always ready to cook up the first evenings meal…Jambalaya!   This year they had a little help!  Weasel and Squirrel jumped in to assist!

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And as usual the meal was WONDERFUL!  We even had left overs that we ate a couple days later for lunch!  Even better after is sits a day or so!

Well, we hit the rack about 9 that evening and my mind was racing with the chance at that BIG BOY in the morning.  My internal alarm went off about 4 a.m. and I laid there dreaming about that buck until the actual alarm went off at 4:30!  I was up and ready!  Magpie and Dry Dog were not sharing in my excitement but put up with my rumbling and clanking and finally got up about 5.

In the mountains at this time of year it gets light enough to see your sights just before 7 a.m. and I wanted to be at my spot and hiding well before that minute.  I left camp on my atv (toy) at 6 a.m. and travelled the 4 miles in the dark.

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Sitting at my spot waiting for the light, I had lots of time to think about this tradition we call hunting.  About how I was taught to hunt and to utilize the animals taken.  Trophy hunting never has been a big deal in my family, we are all opportunists…if it’s within ethical range…is legal to take…it is in trouble!  This morning will be no different.  The first legal animal that comes within my range, I’ll be shooting (at).

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What a wonderful start to a great day and a great hunt.  No matter what comes or doesn’t come along this scene can not be taken away.  And the beautiful sunrise that followed!

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We could not have asked for a better day to hunt!  Not too warm and absolutely no rain in the forecast!  We can handle that.

One thing that was different this year was the fact that a substantial number of our group had put in for and drawn the LaSal unit down in the Moab area…Wapiti Dung, No Grimace, Edjukateer, Sackless, Baby Boy, Softball, Tracker and Bones…so far from our camp, but in their own doing exactly what we were doing….enjoying the day and the season!

MoabBoys235Miles copyMoab…235 miles South!

But even though they went South and we stayed up North, we still had a bet going as to which group would bag the most points.  This bet was for 30 beers and on Friday morning when Weasel and I took his camp trailer into the mountain we found this sign waiting for us down at the bottom of the road, just out of town.

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Well, as the morning got brighter and brighter my eyes were scanning the area around me for any sign of that big buck that had filled my dreams for all these weeks.  I did manage to see 6 buck deer that morning while I sat there, but none close enough for a shot.  As I sat there I decided that my next morning’s stand would be over to the South of where I was about 500 yards.  I had seen a line of 5 small bucks go up the ridge and even though I tried to get ahead of them by going around the hill behind me, I never saw them again.  About 10 a.m., it was getting pretty warm and I had decided I might as well go on back toward camp.  Most likely the deer were bedded down by now and to continue to sit there would be a total waste of time.  My big buck dream wasn’t going to happen this day, at least not in this spot.  I hiked back to the toy and headed down the road back toward camp.

In my travel I decided to go down a two track road I had never been on before.  Today would be a good day to drive down it and have a look around.  It’s in an area of nothing but tall sage brush and even though in the past we had seen a deer or two in this area from a distance we just didn’t think it looked like it would hold any buck deer.  That is why we never went down that road.  I was spending a lot of time behind my binoculars on this trip because I figured the sage was definitely tall enough to hide a deer laying down and besides, once I’m back at camp there would not be any chance to shoot a buck.  At one point I came upon a lone cedar tree out among the sage and I thought I could see a deer’s neck sticking out from the base of it.  It just didn’t look right to me.

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I thought to myself, You know Butt, you might as well walk over there and take a closer look!  I gathered up my stuff, put a cap on my nipple and started a slow and deliberate quiet walk toward that lone cedar.  About a 200 yard walk through the noisy dry sage.  I did my best to use the cover of the land to keep me somewhat hidden and did my utmost best to be as quiet as I could.  Soon I was within 50 yards of the tree and I hadn’t seen anything move.  I pulled the hammer back to half cock and slowly moved toward the tree.  Now I was without any cover at all, just short sage and yellow grass.  About 40 yards out three deer suddenly appeared out of nowhere….doe…doe…BUCK!  There stood a very nice 4X4 staring right at me!  I cocked the hammer and took aim.  I was going to plunk him right in the head if need be and then he turned and started to run, quartering from my left to my right and climbing up a slight hill.  Two more bounds and he would go over the rise and disappear!  I had my bead on his shoulder and I touched off the round!  BOOM!  I saw the disheartening puff of dust come from the opposite hill behind him….my round went high!  I said a few off colored words at this point and reloaded.  I never saw that buck again!TheLoneTree copy

Meanwhile, back at camp:

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It just wouldn’t be right not to put some kidding on the Dog!  He has a fine “shelf” of a belly that allows him to keep both hands free!  Free for talking and waiving his hands whether telling a story while eating or drinking a cold one!

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THAT is funny stuff right there!

Back to the story:

Well, here I am on the morning of the second day, once again enjoying a very fine morning.  I’m set up just under the ridge awaiting the bucks that went past that way yesterday morning.

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And the view I was watching after the sun came up:

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I hunted this area every day of the hunt, either in the morning or the evening (or both) and only one time did I not see at least one buck.  It’s funny how we have gone some 15 years hunting in this area and NEVER bothered going into there to hunt.  Goes to show you just how little we know (or think we know) about deer hunting!

Another interesting thing I observed on this hunt was the increasing population of moose.  Bulls, cows and calves!  Some of them in my pictures might be the same ones being seen in different areas, but I’m not entirely sure of that.  The bulls look too much different to me.

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This is a very good sign.  Years ago we used to see many moose and then a disease went through the hurd and killed a bunch of them.  The come back is more than welcome in my eyes.

And as with all our hunts the fun we have is why we keep coming back.  Traditions like handing out mementoes to hang off our beaver sharns showing the year of the hunt…silver forks, kill jugs, pennies and the list goes on.  Dry Dog and Half Cocked handed out kill jugs and Cancer awareness mementoes:

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We shared our camp with everyone who wanted to stop by and swap stories and lies.  30 inch bucks seemed to be everywhere over in the Temple Flat area, according to one guy I won’t mention his name!  (input smiley face here)  We saw bucks hanging in nearly every camp around and one very nice impressive buck hung in one camp (still not the buck of my dreams), but impressive none the less.

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We talked to people who were having just as much fun as us, but you know what….Nobody stopped and shot at our fake deer up on the hill.  We won’t do that again, but in Weasel and my minds it should have been a very fun happening for the road hunters.  OH!  Muzzleloader people don’t road hunt….They Spot and Stock!  Bow hunters “Spot and Stalk” because they need to get close.  Muzzy guys “Spot and Stock”….see the buck, jump out and put the stock to your shoulder and fire!

And when someone shot a buck and brought it back to camp, they got to “enjoy” the taste of the kill jug!

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No kill jug for 3 Guns, but I think someone gave him a Spicey V-8!

The kids seemed to have a great time on this hunt as well.  Squirrel was trying to fill his quota of grouse but was unsuccessful.  Grouse are not that easy for a beginning shotgunner!

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But not all of the grouse got away!  Kenzie tagged her first one while we were working our way back toward camp after picking her and Conner up at Hardware Ranch on Friday evening.

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How sweet is that!  And she took care of the dirty work back at camp too!  Great job Kenzie!

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This is a little trick on taking care of grouse taught to us by Hunter several years ago!  And now I’d like to show you all the difference between the size of the breast of Kenzies Blue Grouse and one of Weasels Ruff Grouse:

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But not all the critters that could have been shot were shot, or even shot at!  Here are a couple that were too cute!

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Up on a peak I won’t name because it would spoil it for you if you were Geo-caching, the kids found a geo-cache.  We signed our names in the book and left a few tokens for the next folks who find it.

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And on that same spot we couldn’t help but take a few pictures of the scenery around us.

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Times like these just don’t get much better!  It seems like the more you see the more you want to see!  And see we did!  Deer by the hundreds!  Moose, Antelope, Badgers, Squirrels galore, Grouse, Eagles, Hawks, Elk, and people!  Here is an overhead view of the first evenings road hunters below us!

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It’s hard to see, but there are 5 trucks down there in the road!  And that was just the little section of road I could see from where I was.  Lots of people are out for the muzz hunt these days.  It wasn’t long back we would go hunting and never see a muzzy hunter that wasn’t from our camp.  Times are changing!

Again, some things might be changing, but some things still remain the same!  Good times, Good people and Good food!

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Gatlin and Gunner enjoying a BUNCH of hot sauce on their pork chops and Milo enjoying liver and onions for the first time!  Again no pictures, but Milo got to taste Sweet Breads for his first time too and kept getting back into line until they were all gone!

And so it goes.  You wait and wait 365 days for the hunt to finally get here and it is over before you know it!  You can’t wait to get back home for that long awaited shower and a good nights rest.  It is then you realize just how much you have abused your body for the last 5 days!  But you will be back next year to DO IT AGAIN!

So, the Northern Boys (girl too) had a team of shooters competing against the Southern Boys shooting team.  Northern hunters were:  Crock, Gatlin, Gunner, Jessica and Bears Butt…..between us 5 hunters we killed a total of ZERO bucks and our score of ZERO shows that!

The Southern hunters were:  No Grimace, Wapiti Dung, Edjukateer, Baby Boy and Sackless.  They killed 3 bucks!

No Grimace and his buck: 2X3 (5 points)


Sackless’ Buck:  1X1 (2 points)


Edjukateers Buck:  4X3 (9 points counting eye guards)

Edjukateers 2015 Buck

So, for the North VS South Bet, the South beat the North by 16 big fat points!  Congratulations guys!  WE OWE THEM 30 BEERS!  Name your poison boys!

When you think about it, that bet kept both camps together in a way via social media (it just seemed the “streaming” was coming mostly from the south).  It was fun to see the pictures once we hit an area where we got coverage!  Just another way to have fun and even for the folks back at home!

We had another year of safe hunting, good food and lots of laughs!  I got a chuckle out of seeing this:

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Just one of those things, “You should have been there” to really appreciate it.  Clankity, Bangity, Bongity!  But they made it!

When the main hunt ended about noon on Sunday, Weasel and Dry Dog decided they would leave their trailers in the mountains until the following Wednesday and would come up and get them at that time.  Crock and his gang were going to keep hunting until the hunt ended on Thursday and so we headed down the mountain.  Weasel and I made a plan to come back up before daylight on Wednesday morning and hunt the day, stay that night, hunt Thursday morning and then pull the trailer home.  An extended day trip if you will!

So, Wednesday morning found us in the mountains at the perfect light time of 7 a.m., it didn’t take long to spot a nice little 2 point high on a ridge and I took a short hike to try and close the distance.  I was about to shoot it about 80 yards ahead when it had other things on its mind and took off.  Later on, we saw another buck and it didn’t take but a thousandth of a second to see antlers on it!  High, wide and massive!  I was on it at about 80 yards, as it was moving fast across a sage brush flat seeking heavier cover.  I was on my knee with a good solid rest when I shot and I truly expected the buck to drop.  My sights were solid and pointed at his quartering away rib cage.  Where the ball hit is anyones guess, but I cleanly missed it.  Another very nice 4X4!  We stayed with it for the next hour and had one more chance for a shot.  Again about 80 yards out as it stood broadside on a ridge, but the tops of some quaky trees kept me from shooting.  The last time we saw it, it was standing just inside the tree line about 300 yards away.  We made a move with the vehicle and closed that distance to about 100 yards.  My job was to get out of the truck and sneak to a place for a shot, while Weasel drove the truck down the road.  I stopped my sneak to watch an opening I felt the buck would walk through but never saw it again.

On the last morning of the hunt we counted 46 does and fawns and not one buck could be seen!

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Meanwhile, in Cocks company they were killing bucks!

Chris tagged his first with a muzzy!  Nice 2 point!  I hate to say it Chris, but with that one antler shot off it looks like a close call from one of Dry Dogs bullets that almost got him ahead of you.


And Terry bagged number 2 for himself!  Another fine 2 point!


When you put it all together I’d say we had one heck of a successful hunt!  I can’t help but think about all the 2 points I saw, which was well over 30 and did not get a chance for a shot and yet to run into 2 bucks that were at least 4 points and to get a shot at both of them is amazing.  Edjukateer should be happy about my poor shooting because that second buck would have de-throned him quickly from the biggest buck contest!

Next year!

As a parting story:  Muskrat would put a hat into the pot for the winner of the camp biggest buck contest and so we did it this year too.  We decided we needed everyone who was in camp or came into camp needed to sign it as well.  These are pictures of that hat after it was awarded to Dry Dog for having the biggest buck.

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The funnest signature on it spells : Squrrial  (Squirrel)  Only a 9 year old would figure that one out.

Congrats to all on your fine kills!

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Bears Butt

October 4, 2015







2 Comments, Written on October 4th, 2015 , Hunting Stories | Stories, Ramblings & Random Stuff From an Old Mountain Man is proudly powered by WordPress and the Theme Adventure by Eric Schwarz
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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.