What a first day! The crew ended up taking it fairly easy for the rest of the afternoon and soaked in the sun. The clear weather was a welcome sight, but made for some pretty frosty nights. One night, the baby woke from her pack and play that we hauled 10 miles from the road and said “COAT ON, COAT ON!” Its hard to keep a kid under covers sometimes, let alone in a sleeping bag! We cranked up the buddy heater…lights out…
Late on the second day my Dad was able to connect with another fine bull. All three of these caribou were big bodied with lots of meat.
We rolled back into camp right at dusk and were able to see our three racks silhouetted against the sky while we sat around the campfire eating fresh tenderloin cooked over the open flames.
On the last day of our hunt on the way out, my father-in-law, Eric, and Jeremy made a good mile and a half push to get a stalk opportunity on this bull to round off the four tags. Although we didn’t get all four ladies in camp a bull, this was his first as well, so it was still a sweet experience!
We wrapped up this hunt and had a few long days of ‘mud and blood’ ahead of us as the pod hunt cleanup job was to begin, but here are a few things I learned on this trip:
-Primos trigger sticks are indispensable. Its a truly ‘must have’ item
-A buddy heater can definitely heat up a tent enough to get babies back to sleep
-TAG bags are definitely worth it
-You can have gear coming out your nose with a 1, 3, and 4 year old camping along with 8 other adults!!
-There is nothing quite like a Cabelas guide model tent
-I’d take sustained 25 mph winds over rain any day of the week
-Having a wife who can wrangle 3 kids in a camp that far from the road, drive her own wheeler, shoot a bull like that and get back to camp to cook meals is one I’m planning on chaining to myself!
-Seeing your baby girl delicately pick blueberries with her small fingers while hunting in of your favorite spots that you often hunted while growing up is worth the price of admission alone.
I’m unsure if I’ve worked harder on a hunt to make it happen but I don’t think I could’ve asked for a better family to hunt with, better weather, and better animals for harvesting. The word “epic” gets thrown around pretty loosely these days, but this trip has TRULY been an epic hunting trip. This was one of the highlights of my adult life as of now.
Its a bundle of work doing multi-day camping like this with a 1 year old, but the rewards of having your entire family out on a trip like this can be extremely rewarding.
The final result: 613 pounds of caribou waiting for the freezer!