Friday, September 28, 2012

18 Years of Waiting for the Hunt of a Lifetime

Hey there everyone, I'm home from a short break in the 2012 Utah muzzleloader hunt!  It's nice to get a shower, and a good night's sleep; a little recharge before getting after it again!  I thought I would take this opportunity to get a post put together.  Before we get to a viewer submitted post, let's talk hunting for a second.

If you haven't taken advantage of the cool weather and moisture that came to us for the first couple days of the hunt, you may regret it.  Temperatures are expected to rebound this week, through the remainder of the hunt as warm and dry conditions re-establish for what looks to be for maybe a couple of weeks.  This could also make the upcoming spike hunt difficult as well!  The deer I have seen have been moving longer in the day, but I did notice yesterday as things are heating up that this trend is changing.  For you muzzleloader elk hunters, the good news is the weather seems to have the elk a lot more vocal and active.  There's still water out there everywhere with all of these storms we've had throughout late summer, and the animals are very scattered.  This is one of those years that it's going to take a lot of boot tracks to find the big ones, I'm afraid.  Maybe we will see winter try to show it's face before the rifle deer hunt.

We have great things to come here on SUH&F over the next few weeks (well, it's beginning to look like months).  The deer and elk stories are filling up the inbox, and as well we have more reviews of awesome Vortex Optics products to come your way.  As we approach the 1 year anniversary of SUH&F, we have big plans for giveaways!  As the hunts wrap up, you won't want to miss the opportunities for these contests.  Keep your trophies coming, we are toying with the idea of our grand prize giveaway in November going to the winner of a photo contest, from your submitted stories, or the bragging board.  I am also in the process of reviewing (and having a TON of fun doing so) a hand crafted "Fall River" bamboo fly rod, complete with a Montana Fly Company reel, and Rio fly line!  We have a big trip planned next week.  I've had one short trip with this amazing rod, and all I can say for now is wow!  The most fun fishing I have ever had!  Stay tuned!

Now, let's get on with the good stuff!  Here is a short story of a 2012 bull elk hunt submitted to us by Tyler Gower.  Tyler has been following us for some time, one of our first and most dedicated followers.  He also happens to be a fellow firefighter that I finally had the privilege of meeting (even if it was briefly) this summer.  Tyler was able to accompany his grandpa on this experience of a lifetime, after waiting 18 years for the tag!  Tyler writes:

" Well it took 18 years for my grandpa draw an elk tag and he was very excited when he drew.  It took him all summer to find some nice bulls and that was a week before the hunt started. We had luck opening morning when we saw a nice 5 point over 1000 yards away and watched him bed. We left the area and said we would come back later that evening and would try an area where we thought he would be when we ran into this nice 6 point that he couldn't pass. it all fell together perfect he made a perfect sneak on it and made the kill shot.  It was a good hunt it worked out perfect it was one of those hunts I will never forget and I am happy i got to spend it with family and my grandpa. the bull ended up scoring 340".

What a thrill it is to have everything come together, just as planned!  It's also hard to explain the feelings you have when you can share that experience with generations throughout your family.  Thanks so much for sharing with us Tyler!  We look forward to seeing more from this young man's outdoor adventures in the future!

On one last note, I have to say I really love this picture.  I know someone may find it offensive, but can you imagine coming across this if you were out walking through the hills?  It makes me chuckle, I keep imagining running onto it myself!  


Monday, September 24, 2012

Rifle Elk Hunt Part 2: Success at Last!

Vergean and I waiting for the elk to come in
Sometimes all the hard work of scouting and planning will just never pay off.  Maybe it's the weather, another hunter getting to your trophy first, or maybe you can never just seem to make it all come together for that short magic moment when it all lines up and you bring that trophy down.  For me, the 2012 Utah limited entry rifle elk hunt went anything but what was planned.  I was actually surprised that I was able to get a good mount of time in scouting for my cousin, Vergean Porter for a good bull for him.  With such great plans in place how could this hunt be hard?  Well, it was anything but easy.  If you missed it, check out the details of the beginning of our hunt in our previous post:

Zach and Spenser glassing near a high country lake
So, I took you through the first few days of the hunt, let me break it down for you on how things ended up for us.  After a short break mid week I hit the hills with good friends Zach and Spenser Owens on Thursday to check a little spot where the Owen's boys have had great success in the past.  It was a great evening, started off with an hour ATV ride into the area.  Conditions were not the best, even though there was little wind, temperatures were quite high for early evening, and the elk were not cooperating with us.  The sign on the wallows told the story that there were a lot of elk in the area, however during our time in the area we were only able to catch a few distant bugles, and one very small bull coming off of the wallow.  Staying until well after dark, the dark night's silence was seldom broken by the sound of elk bugles.  This wasn't going to work, unless you waited all day to chance that they would come in during the heat of day to water.  The drive was considerably far from our camp, and we decided to scrap the idea.  What a great night enjoying the fall colors and crisp air!
What a view!

Friday afternoon Clint and Kevin were able to return, and met up with be back at camp with Vergean.  We quickly loaded up and headed for a new area where fellow hunters (and good friends) had directed us towards.  Keep an eye on the blog in the coming days as we highlight their bulls!

Heading into new territory I was skeptical that we would see anything as the roads seemed well traveled, and we actually saw other hunters in the area.  Coming out of the trees and into a large flat, we spotted a great bull, a little over 100 yards from us with a few cows.  The bull froze, giving us the perfect opportunity.  Unfortunately, looking directly into the sun Vergean was not able to get this awesome bull in his scope, and he made it into thick timber with his cows.

This may have seemed like a blow, but in fact was a great moral booster!  We were seeing more elk now!  Saturday morning brought more bugles, we just couldn't ever work out a good position to get on to them.  However we were seeing elk again, and we remained optimistic that we could get the job done.  The rest of the day was a great, relaxing day!  At camp we kicked back for a while telling stories, tall tales, you know, nothing but the truth!  The day was capped off with a fishing trip to a great high country lake where we were able to hook into a few nice rainbow trout.  Kevin was the lucky one of the day catching most of our fish, and Clint's grandson Jaxon was able to reel a few in for us.  I think we heard more stories from Jaxon throughout the day than Vergean!  Well, we can see where the boy gets his story telling abilities anyway.

The evening found us sitting on water waiting for the bulls to come in to a wallow, however the only thing we could find this night was a bull and a few cows nearly a mile away, across the lake from us.
 I was able to catch some great video of this bull chasing his cows!  My Vortex "Ranger 1000" (review to come!) was unable to range this bull, as he was over 1000 yards!  At my best guess using Google Earth he was at 1500-1600 yards!  This footage was shot using my Vortex Razor HD spotting scope, with my Sony HDR-CX160 Handycam, which I brought all together with my Tines Up camera adapter (  The video is a bit rough, keep in mind there's a lot of magnification at work here, and it becomes extremely tough to film a moving target!

 At this point, I think we were all accepting the fact that the tag would not be filled.  You would think this would be a pretty somber feeling, but everyone was still in very good spirits, and we were all still going on and on about how much fun we had over the week.

The Last Day:  This was it, one last chance to hunt during the morning before we all had to head home.  We decided to head to a spot where we had been onto several bulls over the last few days, but without luck.  This time we would get in there a little bit earlier, and move a bit further north where we suspected the bulls to be.  Things started off slow, as we could not hear a bugle at all before daylight.  Shortly after sunup, the crisp morning air was pierced with the sound of a bugle a short distance away, and others further north.  Working into the closest bull, we were quickly surprised to find the bull less than 50 yards away, with cows closer.  After freezing in position, trying to see the bull, the bull picked up his cows and drove them away.

The crew posing with a hard won trophy!
As we waited to figure out what to do another bull bugled up the ridge.  Working towards the bull, we realized the he was coming right down the hill towards us!  Freezing in the edge of a small opening, the timber crashed above us, and 2 cows bolted out about 30 feet in front of us.  They never saw us, as they were being herded along by a bull screaming on their heels.  As the bull ran into the clearing, Vergean touched the shot off and the bull dropped right in his tracks as he entered the clearing, mid-bugle!  He was down with one shot, and going nowhere.  And the bonus?  A skid trail from a logging road was less than 20 feet away, this one was going to be cake!

L to R: Clint, Jaxon, Kevin, Vergean
What a thrill on the last day of the hunt, a great 6X6 to cap off a week of hard hunting, ups and downs, and great times shared with family!  Three generations (Vergean, Clint/Kevin, and Jaxon) were all present to enjoy the moment together, and I have trouble expressing my feelings of gratitude to be so privileged to share the experience with them.  It has also been a great honor to share our experience with you all here.  Thanks Vergean, Clint, Kevin, Kason, and Jaxon for such a great time.  I hope we can do it again soon!

When it's all said and done, remember that we call it "hunting", not "killing".  Hunting isn't easy.  I think a lot of us see how it all goes down on TV shows, or when we see successful friends, and we tend to think that it is easy.  What if it was?  Would the reward be as great?  I find myself sitting here tonight tired, sore, and just downright exhausted, but I wouldn't have it any other way.  I have so many new memories to cherish, and that much more experience under my belt to use on other hunts down the road.  I've also realized that, at least with the last 2 elk hunts I've been a part of, the last day is the best!  My brother also tagged on the last day of his hunt last year.  Why rush?  Who wants to get back to work earlier than they have to?  That being said, this boy is one tired guy, and I wouldn't feel a bit bad tagging my buck early on in my hunt that begins Wednesday  As the temperature drops, and rain settles in tonight I'm feeling excitement build as I think mother nature has is it in the works of helping the 2012 Utah muzzle loader hunt be a great one! 

I'll be back on the mountain this week, but check back soon as the elk hunt stories have been pouring in, and I'm sure we will also have some great tales to share from the upcoming deer hunts.  Thanks so much to those that continue to submit photos and stories!

Remember you can submit yours to

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Rifle Elk Hunt Part 1: Discouragement!

No doubt if you have been following our blog, you will know I have been pretty spooled up for the 2012 limited entry any-weapon elk hunt for quite some time now.  I have several friends with tags, and find myself privileged to be able to hunt with my 85 year old cousin, Vergean Porter of Escalante.  I wanted to share with you some of our experiences of the last few days, as well as some photography (and video) from the adventures of our hunt. 

As I begin, I want to point out that this hunt has not been what I expected.  I am hesitant to share some of my feelings of the hunt, but I have hopes that maybe other hunters can see that they are not the only ones that find themselves who go through these certain motions, and I also hope to highlight things that have made the entire experience more enjoyable.  I also want to point out that this is not my first big bull elk hunt.  Far from!  However I find myself going through these ups and downs with every hunt.

Let's start off with the pre-season.  I learned my cousin Vergean had this tag back in late June.  I also learned of 2 friends that had tags, and quickly became exited of the thought of hunting elk with someone, or all of them maybe.  Vergean's son Clint talked to me about looking for a bull for his dad, as he lives 2 hours away, and even living in Escalante, at 85, there's not a lot of scouting you can do on your own.  I found myself being pulled into the thrill of scouting for the hunt.  This however was short lived as I roamed the western US from June through early September on wildfire assignments.  When I returned home, I returned to scouting, covering not even half of the areas I wished to look, while trying to find bucks for myself for my upcoming hunts as well.  This is a similar pattern for me each year.  Still, I had high hopes of elk and deer success.  Calling was not working, as everyone was talking about how elk would just turn and run at the sound of any cow call, but I was still sure we could find a bull.

One of my favorite wallows

Two days before the hunt I happened across a great bull, which I judged to score roughly 370-375.  I was sure I had found a good thing, in a little hole where nobody had been, or would likely look.  The day before the hunt the bulls were screaming across the mountain, and we found another good bull with cows.  I had a good streak going, this hunt would surely be a good one!

Day 1:  We the area where I had spotted the first bull well before daylight.  In the dark we only heard 1 faint bugle well up canyon from us.  At daylight, we spooked a couple of lone cows, still no more bugles.  Nothing.  Checking a wallow I did find this crazy looking buck that brightened our spirits anyway.  Check him out on this short video.  Would you shoot it?

During the day we split up to check other areas.  To our surprise, a bull 360 bull had easily been killed in the area of our second bull.  Scouting during the day turned up little, although Clint, Vergean, Kevin, and Kasen Porter did jump a few cows.  Evening returned us to the wallows in the area of the first bull, no bugles, no cows, nothing.  For me, disappointment is starting to set in as my sure thing obviously fizzled.  

A buck taken from my i-phone, less than 20 yards!
Day 2:  The morning started a bit more relaxed as we cruised the high country just trying to hear the sounds of bugles to figure out where we should be.  My spirits lifted as we told stories, especially listening to Clint's jokes and Vergean's stories of the old days.  Of course, there was time to help Kasen get some ribbing in on his dad Clint now and then.  The morning ride yielded nothing, but plans to hit an evening honey hole kept me optimistic.  We lost Kasen and Kevin, who had to return home, and the remaining 3 of us took a side trip into some low country to enjoy a fun ATV ride in one of our favorite areas.  Then it was back to the high country, with a short walk into one of my favorite places for elk.

We sat up for what would be a nearly 4 hour wait for evening.  We were fortunate to have a few deer passing by for water, along with this fairly good 3 point that strolled in for a drink.  As the air cooled off, the elk began to sing in the trees above us, and I was sure tonight was money!  However, the elk would not budge!  The bugles remained in place until nearly dark.  In desperation we called for the last 20 minutes, and nothing came remotely close to us.

Cows that trailed about 30' in front of me
Day 3:  The morning started off great as we heard a bull and worked our way in to where he was.  This was the highlight of the week!  We had no trouble closing the distance to the bull, just a short distance from the screaming giant!  Working in we often had to hold up as cows passed within 30 feet of us.  Soon, we were getting glimpses of the bull and realized he was worth the bullet!  Moving several times to keep up with the feeding bull, we finally found a pocket that offered a shot.  The shot missed it's mark, the bull tore off with his cows to live another day.  The let down was tough for us all, but the experience added thrill to the hunt, and determination to continue.  We returned to ambush the bull that night, but found nothing but the satellite bull.

Day 4: My Breaking Point:  This is about typical for me.  I realize the hunt is halfway down, and we haven't done what many have.  The morning provided very few bugles, and nothing but the small bull again.  I was completely in the dumps and felt like a failure as I felt like with my scouting we should have had a bull by now.  Clint and I had to return to work, so it would be a short break mid week, then back at it for the weekend.  This adds pressure for me, as days not hunting is opportunity missed in my book.  My wife had been hearing my frustrations, and promises that maybe it's time to give up hunting as all I am doing is wasting time and money.  I am so thankful for her reassurance and uplifting words as I struggle so hard to achieve my hunting dreams.  What a woman as she is usually the recipient of my venting.  It was clear I was getting burnt out, just like last year, when I basically gave up for my last few days of deer hunting; something I did not want to repeat again.

I took a short fishing trip to a nearby favorite lake where I was able to clear my head.  I found myself laughing at the memories we had made over a few short days, and realizing that this had been on of the best trips if my life with family that I haven't spent a lot of time with.  I came home with a much better attitude.

Today I didn't make it to work.  I took the day off to be with my family.  We went for a load of wood, and had a great birthday party for my little girl.  Check out these pine hens (Forest Grouse) that my grandpa, Marvin Porter was able to take down on our wood cutting trip!

Marvin, Jackson, and Ashlynn posing with the pine hens.  By the faces I would say grandpa was telling a good story!

The rest was just what I needed.  I find myself again recharged and stoked to get out and finish our hunt on a good note.  We will get a bull, it will work out!  I have to thank great friends that will be helping with scouting tomorrow, Zach and Spenser Owens, as well as Justin Christensen.  Thanks for hearing my frustrations and pleas for help guys.  It's so awesome to see people so willing to help Vergean find a bull.  I can't wait to get back in the hills.

I look back and realize I go through this pattern of frustration with almost every hunt.  If you find yourself in this pattern, I urge you to take a short break, even if but for a few short hours, to gather yourself and reflect on what it's all about.  I will never forget the time spent with such great family and friends, the beautiful county we've been in, and the things I've learned about myself.  Truth is, not every hunt is going to be as easy as the pros make it look.  Most of us don't have that kind of time to scout, or that kind of money and connections to spend on guides and premium tags.  And that's OK!  Look at these pictures, these memories!  What a great time!  Do the best you can, give it your all, and be satisfied in your efforts.  There's always more to learn, but try not to compare yourself to other hunters you know as I often do.  They were all in a learning stage at one time too, and things will get better if you keep at it. 

Stay tuned for part 2, I hope I have success to report to you all next week!  We have been receiving a few emails and messages of some great bulls, and should have more to share from our viewers as well.  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ford Diesel High Pressure Oil Pumps

Well many of our viewers here (including myself) are owners of Ford diesel trucks.  Many of those trucks, such as mine again, are beginning to show their age.  I own a 2000 7.3 Powerstroke, and it has been a great truck.  Now approaching 160,000 miles, I am starting to look for the signs of wear and tear that will eventually come along.  I know one item in particular that will show up down the road is a failing high pressure oil pump.

In my quest to provide useful information and products to our viewers, I came across a site that has some great prices on high pressure oil pumps for Ford 6.0 and 7.3 diesel motors.  Do you know how pricey these pumps can be?  Well, at HPOP you will find great prices on high pressure oil pumps for both 6.0 and 7.3 diesel motors! 

The Ford 6.0 and 7.3 Powerstroke high-pressure oil pump is actually the injection pump. The HEUI fuel injection system uses an oil pump to supply high-pressure oil to the hydraulic electric unit injectors. The 6.0 and 7.3 high-pressure oil pump are primarily made of aluminum. Because of the aluminum structure and the extreme high pressure produced by the pump, external leaking can be a problem as the pump ages.

 The maintenance of the Powerstroke determines the life of the high-pressure oil pump. The 6.0 and 7.3 high-pressure oil pump (injector pump) uses the same oil the engine uses to pump the injectors. This is the reason good clean motor oil is imperative for the system to operate properly. The 6.0 and 7.3 Powerstroke high-pressure oil pump uses an IPR valve and an ICP sensor to maintain the proper oil pressure. Proper oil pressure is required to operate the fuel injectors under different power requirements. The Powerstroke fuel injectors need different pressures to idle, accelerate, and maintain a steady driving speed.

The high pressure oil pump is one of the most vital components to a smooth running engine.  If you happen to find your pump leaking, or showing signs of failure, check out HPOP for great deals on high pressure oil pumps!

Looking for all of our automotive posts on Southern Utah Hunt and Fish?  check out the "tags" in the right sidebar.  We now have a tag for "automotive".

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Fishing Tip: Fly and a Bubble

At the first of the week, I promised to share with you one of my favorite fishing techniques, a fly and a bubble.  For me, this method goes back to when I was about 8 years old, when my grandpa first introduced it to me after learning how to cast with an open faced rod on my own.

Growing up, my grandpa never used a fly rod much, in fact, I don't remember him owning one until I was about 9 or 10 years old (which he used mostly for floating the line while stream fishing).  When it came to fly fishing for trout in the lakes on the Boulder Mountain of southern Utah, we used our spinning rods to get the job done with this set up.  The advantages over a fly rod?  Well, we didn't have float tubes, and seldom fished from a boat, so the weight of the water in the bubble allowed us to cast further.  The shorter rod, and less room for casting meant we could more efficiently cast from the shores of many small lakes that had thick timber, bushes, or tall grasses on those shorelines. 

The setup is very easy!  

First, place your clear bubble on your main line, followed by tying a swivel to the end of the main line.  I prefer to fill the bubble about half full of water.  This is mainly for casting weight, so if you are wanting to get out in the water further, add a bit more.  Too much however can be bad, causing the bubble to pull the fly further under the water.  As far as what type of line, I prefer 8 pound line for everywhere I fish around here.  Some argue 8 pound line is too much for around here, and many prefer 6 or even 4 pound.  I find I get better distance, a smoother cast, and less "rats nests" in my reel with the frequent casting with the 8 pound line.  However, I do use a lighter leader (6 or 4 pound).


 Next comes the leader.  Strip of 18-24" of leader (I prefer the 20-24" range) and tie a loop in the end.  You will hook this loop onto your swivel, securing the clip on the swivel to hold the line.

The last step is to simply tie your fly onto the end of the leader.  I suppose you could use a tipet, or tapered leader much as you would on a fly rod, but I have always just tied the fly to the leader and have had no trouble catching fish!

This of course will not work the best with dry flies, as the leader will tend to sink under the surface, bet with that being said, I have still had great success with my dry flies gliding along just under the surface.  This is a perfect setup for a wet fly, and for added effect you can also clip on a small split shot weight to get a bit more depth.

I love this technique so much I have started to use it in my float tube as well, at times more than my fly rod.  The benefit there is also being able to toss a spinner if they seem to be disinterested in flies for a while.  On a lot of the lakes I fish, as the afternoon breeze comes up the fish stop hitting flies so well.  This is usually when spinners become a plus, and now I can change without having to paddle the tube back to shore to change the fly rod for the spin rod.

As far as success, I can vividly remember trips to Boulder Mountain lakes where, at the end of the day, our flies are little more than ragged looking thread with most feathers missing from catching so many fish!  One particular weekend my Grandpa and I found ourselves on a small lake on the north slope of the Boulder using a fly and a bubble, and man oh man, did we ever pick the right day!  As always, the day turned into a competition to see who could catch the most fish.  The day was short, as the drive was far, but in the end we found ourselves tied at 32 fish a piece!  So, of course we had to try again the next day.  And the results?  another 32 fish day...64 fish in just 2 (short) days!  They were all caught on this setup.

Give this simple setup a try, you will be glad you did!  And be sure to send us some pictures of your outing to let us know how you did!  All you have to do now is figure out what fly the fish want.  Good luck!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Fall in Southern Utah...Nothing Better!

You will find several photos like this on our Facebook page.

Man oh man do I love this time of year!  I have to be honest with you, it's a struggle to find material to write about during the summer months with everyone so busy, no hunts going on, and the fishing quite often slows as well as the heat sets in.  Well, I took off to Pine Lake over the weekend for some much overdue family time, and I came home to an inbox full of hunting and fishing pictures!  As well our Facebook page has become quite a hot site for followers to share their pictures as well!  Be sure to check it out,  We've picked up a lot of new followers on Facebook lately!  Welcome to SUH&F and thanks for the support!

I want to share a few viewer submitted photos with you today.  We should have a little more information about some of these hunts very soon, and we will feature those as soon as that comes to us.  I'm excited to see the great archery elk success folks have been having this year.  Archery deer hasn't fared so well; I hope that's not a bad sign for the later hunts this year.  I have seen some incredible bucks in the high country, in some very thick timber, maybe cool weather will bring those big guys out for us.  Well here you go, enjoy these pictures, and check back for their stories!

Alyssa Warby sent us this picture of her brother-in-law's 2012 archery bull (sorry, we don't have a name, yet).  What an accomplishment, and story or not, I think that smile tells the story itself!  What a great bull, and thanks for sharing Alyssa!  I hope we have many more to come from your family!

Richard Rouleau sends us this photo of his opening day dove hunting success in Washington County this year.  It's good to see someone having this kind of success, doves are in very low numbers right now out in my area.  Richard has sent us several photos this summer of his fishing adventures as well.  Be sure to stop by the Facebook page to check out more.  Thanks Richard!

Brooke Shakespear of Escalante, Utah took down this nice bull last week surrounded by his wife and kids.  Brooke tells me it was an amazing experience having them there to share in this special memory, and he promises to share that story with us.  Be sure to check back for the details and more pictures!

And finally, this is one of my own submissions, which it's about time I've been successful at something to join in the fun on my own site!   At Pine Lake this weekend I was able to get away for a little time on my own in the float tube.  Fishing was slow, I tossed a spinner for quite a while (Castmasters and Little Jakes) with only a few soft bites.  After switching over to a bead head Prince Nymph, I had a solid hit and hooked into this 16" rainbow that was cruising shallow near some reeds.  Not a bad fish for Pine Lake, and it was a great fight!  I was fishing with a spin rod, with a fly and bubble set up.  I'm realizing not a lot of people are familiar with this technique, so check back this week as I plan to share a little "how to" on one of my favorite fly fishing methods that I grew up with.  Be sure to check out Pine Lake as well!  It was another great weekend of fishing, ATV's, and spectacular scenery!

PS:  Ya'll need to get my wife to let me get a Go Pro camera, and then my pictures from the float tube might turn out better!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Our 100th Post! Ryan Dastrup's 2012 Archery Buck

Ryan Dastrup (L) and Zach Owens
When I started Southern Utah Hunt and Fish back in November, I thought it would just be a fun project that would keep me busy in the winter, and had my doubts that it would ever really amount to much!  But here we are, 10 months later with our 100th post!  We now have almost 400 likes on Facebook, and nearly 600 followers on Twitter!  We are so stoked about what this site has become, and it would be nothing without our fans!  In fact, to show our appreciation, in light of our 100th post we will be looking to hold a giveaway on the site very soon!  Please continue to share with your friends.  If you haven't done so, check out our Facebook page where you will often find photos, information, and updates posted that you will not see right here on our site:

I also want to mention our amazing advertisers that you will see located in the right sidebar.  They have been such a great support of SUH&F as well!  Be sure to check them out for great gear and products!  Thank you Vortex Optics. Rusty Lures, Timberline Range Camps, TrackMyTrophies, and Shed Inc.  Our advertisers can also be found on Facebook!  You guys are the best!

Anyway, we will save major celebration until we hit our 1 year mark in November.  We are also looking at some big changes with our growth, as we look to improving the site drastically, and may even add an online

 Let's get back to what you came for!  Check out these pictures sent into me by Ryan Dastrup of his 2012 archery buck.  This buck was taken on public lands, within a general unit, and what a great buck.  I'm trying to get in touch with Ryan to get a few more details about his hunt, and when I do I'll update this with the story, so please check back!  For now, check out these pictures of Ryan's great archery buck.  One detail I do know is that Ryan had to leave the buck overnight and come back the next morning with friends Zach Owens and Mike Marshall.  When they found the buck, coyotes had found it during the night and managed to eat the entire back quarters off of the buck!  I have left a lot of deer overnight for retrieval the next day myself.  I can tell you that I will now rethink that in the future, and I do have to say that makes me feel pretty good about having that $50 bounty on coyotes now. 

Good job Ryan, what an accomplishment, and thanks for sharing with us!  Hopefully we will hear more of the story soon!