In this episode of the Epic Outdoors Podcast we talk Coues deer with Kevin Michael. Kevin has been guiding Coues deer for many years and has been involved in talking some very significant bucks over the past decade. The Coues, is a subspecies of the white-tailed deer. The Coues deer is much smaller than most of its eastern cousins. Bucks stand just over 30 inches at the shoulder and rarely weigh over 100 pounds. Does average 65 pounds. Coues deer are a very unique and interesting species. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: this podcast has been transcribed from the original audio and likely contains errors. This transcription does not reflect the views and opinions of Epic Outdoors LLC. Please consult the original audio with any concerns.

00:17:14:13 –> 00:17:18:04
You can always turn up a decent block in, you know, any unit. It could do a little bit of homework.

00:17:18:15 –> 00:17:23:10
We’re turning up here just like you’re saying, 1112. I mean, just sit there and grind it.

00:17:23:25 –> 00:17:25:27
Close the distance. Three to 400 more yards.

00:17:26:16 –> 00:17:27:25
Anything to do with Western big Games.

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00:17:31:19 –> 00:17:34:24
To the Epic Outdoors Podcast, powered by Under Armour.

00:17:35:23 –> 00:18:13:02
Hey everybody, Jason Carter and Adam Bronson here with the Epic Outdoors Podcast. Just got a cool guest on with us today. Kevin Michael. I know him fairly well, hunted with him, been in camp with him. Super excited to dive into this podcast with him. Before we do, we want to thank Under Armour for the sponsorship. You know, it’s because of them that we’ve been able to bring so many of these podcasts to you. Of course, got good equipment and good people to help us out and anyway, in large part because of them and their sponsorship and support of Epic Outdoors. So anyway, just a shout out to them. Appreciate them and hey, yawn here with us, Kevin.

00:18:13:27 –> 00:18:15:09
I am. How you guys doing? Good,

00:18:15:19 –> 00:18:31:24
Doing good. Awesome. Doing good. So just, I guess what, kind of, just before we get started, we want to visit with you about just kind of, you know, where you live and how you got started hunting and kind of your background, you know, when you were a kid, and of course how that leads up to being a, a co freak.

00:18:32:23 –> 00:19:14:26
Okay. Well I’m actually, I’m in Arizona. I was pretty much born and raised in Gilbert, which is, you know, about 30 miles east of Phoenix if people aren’t aware of that. But, you know, I just, now I reside here with my, with my wife and my three little girls and actually raising my family about a mile from where I grew up. So it’s kind of cool. But basically raising in a hunting family, you know, was blessed to have a dad that was a, was a hunting junkie and was dragging me out there when I was five, six years old as old enough I could be to get out there. And I remember hunting the Carlos and the reservation with him chasing turkeys as a young age to hunting deer in Monticello, Utah. Man is freezing, freezing my butt off, you know, really

00:19:15:10 –> 00:19:16:19
Up in Adams country. Wow.

00:19:17:00 –> 00:19:19:02
Yeah, I have to talk a little bit about that man.

00:19:19:21 –> 00:20:05:19
Yeah, so we’ve kind, we’ve kind of been all over the place with him hunting, you know, and I remember the second I was old enough to hunt, man, I was super excited. I actually drew a, a Chiba tag at 10 years old and shot my first buck. And, you know, it’s been, I haven’t looked back since and still get out with my dad a lot. Hunting and brother and family. And it’s just been, been kind of one of those things that we’ve, we’ve carried on throughout the family and I’ve carried on to, into my family. And my daughter just turned 10 this year and, and killed her first box. So it’s been been pretty cool, man. I’ll tell you. I mean, as, as you know, Jason, and it’s like, man, your kid kills that first animal or it’s, it’s just a different feeling, man. Hunting’s came to a new level, you know, thing things, the things that mattered before, you know, and getting out and hunting for yourself, it don’t matter Now it’s like, I gotta get her another tag and get it back out in the woods with her, you know? So

00:20:05:26 –> 00:20:19:02
It’s funny how life changes like that. I know Adam’s boys same way. And of course he’s got some daughters too. And just, you get ’em out there and they kill their first animal, second, third, I don’t know, I, they can’t kill enough as far as I’m concerned. I love it. So,

00:20:19:10 –> 00:21:05:19
No, it’s crazy. You know, obviously as you guys know, you know, deers and stuff for right now, and I’m just like, my daughter’s like, dad, can I get a couse this year? ’cause we put her in for a mul deer tag, you know? So I’m like, yeah, babe, we’ll get you, we’ll get you on a co deer this year. So, you know, it’s, it’s pretty cool, man. It’s, it’s, it’s fun to be able to sit down and, you know, get ’em a true understanding of what hunting’s about and being out there and just ra getting those memories, man. ’cause you know, growing up it was, you know, all, all my best memories have been in hunting, you know, being the filth of my dad or brother, good friends, cousins, family, whatever it may be. It’s, it’s, it’s a pretty cool experience. So, you know, and then it’s basically, it kind of ventured into, you know, as I got older and, and you know, back in the day when we draw a tag and it was pretty easy to draw tags, you know, you’d almost get a deer tag every year and maybe, maybe an elk tag every couple years.

00:21:05:20 –> 00:21:16:01
And, and granted we were just doing late tags. I didn’t grow up to be a quote unquote trophy hunter. Yeah. It was more of you go out and you stare at that thing hoping it grows nub so you can shoot it, you know,

00:21:16:27 –> 00:21:19:06
It’s button, button. But

00:21:19:18 –> 00:22:03:18
Yeah, it, it’s, it’s just, that’s how I was raised, man. You don’t, you don’t, you take what you’re giving and if, you know, you just, so we got a, we got a wall full of, you know, bucks, you know, not, not necessarily trophies, but, and on my, on my eyes, they are, you know, and it’s just, it’s growing up and that’s, that’s the way we were raised. And as I got older, I started realizing, man, I don’t, I don’t gotta shoot those small bucks. You know, I, I started, got my license and started going out by myself drawing tags and leaving dad at home and going up and, you know, maybe I’m not gonna shoot that little three point, you know, and, and it kind of ventured into that, into, you know, really working hard to try to find mature bucks. And, and I would say about 2008, nine ish, you know, I really started hammering down on the coups and, and, and wanting to try, try to find giants.

00:22:03:20 –> 00:22:56:15
So there’s, there’s, fortunately, I live in an area where within 30 minutes I can be looking for giant deer. And so it just went from learning how to glass to, you know, just pounding the hills, putting the boots, boots to the ground. And, and sure enough, man, after many years of being out there, we started turning up some big deer and realizing, you know, hey, you know, I can put some of these on the ground. So that’s kind of what got me into guiding. Well, the problem was, is I was never home, so a wife was like, Hey, you know, you gotta, you gotta relax on the, on the hunt. And I literally go to work and two o’clock, man, I’m like, I got, look at the clock. I got three hours, man, I’m gone. Yeah. And we, we’d go up, check trail cameras or just get the glass in. And that’s kind of what got me into guide. Like, all right, well now I can keep the wife happy and say, Hey, look, I made some money actually doing it. So it was just kind of a, a cop out to, to really just get out in the woods. So,

00:22:56:16 –> 00:23:04:19
So you say your wife’s happy. That’s, that’s, you know, not many, many hunter can say that. Not many hunters can say that, but

00:23:05:09 –> 00:23:39:13
Yeah, exactly. So I mean, that’s what kind of ventured me into the guide side of it. And, and you know, it’s, it’s, I’ve been fortunate to meet some really cool people just guiding hunts and, and being out and it’s turned into, you know, it’s, it’s, I do it more for, you know, and I got to the point to where I got so addicted to it, man, that I actually moved my family to, to pacing, which is, you know, an hour north of, of where, where I live now. And I literally hunted full time. That’s what I did. I guided it. I was, you know, three and a half, four years up there and every single day, that’s what I did. I mean, from

00:23:39:13 –> 00:23:41:18
What timeframe? Like from what year? What are we talking

00:23:42:05 –> 00:23:46:25
About? 2010 to about two, mid 2013. Oh

00:23:46:25 –> 00:23:48:23
Wow. It’s recent. Yeah. Yeah. Full-time.

00:23:48:23 –> 00:24:22:16
Yeah. Recent. Yep. Full-time. Man, I’ve thought I, you know, I back up a little bit. I mean, I’ve been in the landscape industry for 15, going on 16 years. And so that’s kind of what I’ve done to pay the bills. And, you know, when, when the housing crisis and all that stuff hit Arizona, you know, obviously I felt that. So start thinking, oh, do you want to keep doing this? Let’s try something else. And you know, I knew I wasn’t gonna knock a home run being an outfitter, but hey, if I can go up and enjoy the, enjoy the pines and cleaner air and make a little bit of money, let’s do it. I tried something new and that’s wife was on board and, you know, I was happy as can be ’cause I was gonna get to live in the woods. But, you know, it, it, it was a cool experience for me.

00:24:22:16 –> 00:25:08:19
It’s pretty humbling because with the being a guide full-time, it’s a little different, a little different ballgame. And not only that is it, it was more personal for me ’cause it was, I was losing, I felt like I was losing what hunting was about to me trying to create a business out of it. And, and it, it was fun. I loved being out there. But after, you know, three and a half, four years, and granted I’ve had my guide license since I’ve been guiding for 10 plus years, but full time, you know, where I just booked as many hunts as I could and was gone nonstop and guiding scouting full time. I did that, you know, for about four and a half, five years. But, you know, it’s just, I’ve kind of scaled it back a little bit and I still take some hunts and do my thing and, but you know, not as, not as much as I did in the past.

00:25:08:27 –> 00:25:47:13
But, you know, I did for, you know, since I’ve pounded Coose country for a long time, man, I’ve, I’ve walked and walked and walked and, and just put the boots to the ground because with COOs deer, man, it’s, it’s, it’s a different ball game than, than a lot of other animals that people, most people are used to hunting. And you know, I just, I got addicted to ’em, man. It’s a coo cra and there’s a lot of people here being in Arizona that were pretty unique state that, you know, hold cos deer and in Mexico and you know, and in, in my opinion, Arizona’s probably the best, if not the best place to hon cruise there in the world. And, and not only that, an hour from where I live.

00:25:47:27 –> 00:26:03:18
Well, yeah, and you got a lot of, lot of country that’s just, you know, crazy broken up, desert, you know, hard to access country and then some country that’s easier and big old coups will live in all of it. I mean, they’ll live right off the paved road, you know, and I know you guys have, you guys, can you guys know that better than anybody?

00:26:03:29 –> 00:26:41:24
I love being out there, man. And we’ve just been fortunate enough to, you know, do a little bit of homework and hunt with some of the best guys in the industry and have some pretty awesome friends and, and family that’s been out to help me do all this. And, and we’ve, we’ve turned up some giants, man. And, and we’ve killed some giants and it’s just, once you kill one big one, it’s like, you know, you start getting addicted, man, you know, passing up bucks that most people would love to, would love to put on the ground. But you know, as you get older, you can’t kill the giants if you’re shooting the big one. So, you know, and then, then again, it’s, it’s, it’s gotten to be a very, very competitive, you know, accuse have gotten to be super competitive here in Arizona. Man, it’s crazy. Oh,

00:26:41:24 –> 00:27:30:07
It’s, yeah. You know, Jason and I are, we’re, we’re a little bit more immersed in the mule deer world up here and it’s very, very competitive. But, but you’re right, Arizona, diehard coo deer hunters are intense. They’re, they’re prepared, they’re secretive. It’s quiet. It’s quiet. Keep stuff you don’t keep, you know, 1, 1 21 30 bucks or, you know, unspoken. And tell us maybe about the first, first big buck. You either killed yourself or maybe it was not your first yourself, but maybe you guided the first client to what you’d call a really big buck. And like you said, how that changed you, how these little deer changed you in terms of, all right, I’m, I’m ready to turn it up a notch and get serious about trophy deer instead of just hunting COOs deer.

00:27:31:10 –> 00:28:11:08
All right. Well act actually my, one of my favorite bucks, man. I actually, when I first started getting addicted to these little things, man, realizing like, you know, getting a rutt hunting, it’s gonna be important and stuff like that. So I started putting in for, you know, some of these December tags, well, let alone in units that quote unquote aren’t made to hold big deer. Just ’cause I wanted to tag and I wanted the opportunity and I knew a little bit of time, you can always turn up a decent buck and, you know, any unit, if you do a little bit of homework, well, long story short, I drew a December tag, you know, in 24 B, which is, which is, it’s a great unit and you can do a little homework. It’s over haunted, in my opinion. It’s been pounded. I mean, it, it, it’s, you can find big deer there and people do every year.

00:28:11:10 –> 00:29:00:13
But I drew that December tag and I killed a, I killed a really nice block, just broke into the hundreds. And I was the first buck I killed that, that got over that a hundred mark. And to this day, I look at that buck on the wall and I mean, I, I, you know, I’ve got a one 14 on the wall too, and that, that basically, I’d rather rather look at that buck, you know, just the, the memories behind. That’s what really turned the tables for me of really digging in. Like, ’cause I’ve always, you know, just killed the first little bucks. You’ve seen little fores, little three points of it to hold a mature buck in your hand. You’re like, wow, man, they can get this big. And, and anyways, since then, I, I started, I ventured out of those units and went into, you know, some of the central Arizona units 2322, and taken that same focus onto those units where there is better quality deer less tags.

00:29:01:13 –> 00:29:44:13
And we started turning up Big buck. I finally drew a, I drew a general tag. It was the last last deer tag I had here. It was an October 22 tag, drew that tag and was on a mission to, to, you know, a hundred inches or better. Wasn’t gonna shoot anything less. And we did a lot of scouting, man. We did a lot of scouting. We turned up some really good bucks, you know, fuzzy antler and, and thinking, Hey man, they’re gonna be right here. When they, when they stripped granted, we’re still kind of learning this game and learning over this curve of killing big deer. And we hunted and we hunted and we glassed and we glass and we turned up bucks, but nothing I thought would go over a hundred inches. And so I was going a hundred inches or I was going home.

00:29:45:05 –> 00:30:21:18
And we got down to the last day of the hunt completely. You know, my cousin Ronnie was actually on the hunt with me helping me most of the time. And we, we were, we were beat man. We were done, we were, we were going deep and finally got to the point where like, Hey man, let’s just go back to our stomping grounds and, and you know, where we spent a lot of time over the last years and let’s see if we can turn something up. And it was, it was blowing, man. It was, the wind was blowing a hundred miles an hour with glass, got the wind in our face. And I looked at him and I’m like, you done man? And he’s like, yeah, man, I’m, I’m beat. So we started hiking back to the truck and you know, granted there’s a buck that we we’ve been looking for in there, and he, he was big.

00:30:22:06 –> 00:31:32:05
So we start hiking back the truck, look at, I’m like, you know what, man, I’m gonna go ride over this knob one more time and see if I can turn him up. And he’s like, all right, let’s go man. So we hike over the knob and end of story simple as that. I mean, it, it was literally just that one last extra effort. And believe it or not, I shot the bucket less than a hundred yards. Wow. And the buck was moving from, from, you know, the wind, the wind picked up was blowing crazy. So I think he, you know, picked up and just moving to a separate bedding ground, but we were glassing the wrong where we’ve seen him in the past, we were glassing the complete opposite direction. And I mean, we were bouncing around trying to pick him up and coming back the truck, you know, I shot him a quarter mile from the truck and, and shot him at less than a hundred yards head down, cruising into his bedding grounds. And it was just one of those things you’re just like really crazy. You know, you, you do all this leg work, you do all this glass and hours and hours and hours behind the glass, and you pick him up and shoot him at a hundred yards. You know, and it’s just that, that that experience, you know, to me was probably one of the most memorable and, and well deserving hunts, you know, granted we’ve killed bigger bucks with clients and stuff like that. But personally how big,

00:31:32:16 –> 00:31:33:29
How big was he? Like what, what,

00:31:34:04 –> 00:31:37:17
He just went right over one 14. Yeah. Great dear

00:31:38:11 –> 00:31:38:18

00:31:38:19 –> 00:31:55:29
He’s typ typ typical, which to me is, is just, and he was a young buck, you know, tax generals had him at four and a half years, four and a half, five years. And, you know, he’s, he’s just, he was a potential giant, but, you know, super wide tall, everything you dream of in a big typical buck

00:31:56:09 –> 00:32:32:09
After you killed this deer and then you started maybe guiding full-time somewhat, you know, shortly after that. Tell us about some of the favorite, favorite units she got. You mentioned a couple of ’em, the 2220 threes, where have you killed some of the better deer with your clients and, and or family members, things like that. Then maybe we’ll get into a little bit about, you know, COO’s deer. Jason and I have hunted ’em just a little bit and they’re fun little buggers to hunt, but yeah, they’re, you know, maybe just after you tell us about some of the units and some of the big deer, we’ll talk about that then we’ll get into about these little deer and what makes ’em so intriguing.

00:32:33:07 –> 00:32:49:08
Okay. Pers personally, it’s just preference. I, I personally, like, like I said, the central units, I like 22 and 23, not that it’s any better than some of the southern units that do hold some big bucks too, but in my opinion, some of the more quality deer come out of those units. Well, I think

00:32:49:08 –> 00:32:52:20
You spent some time even in 27 or you know, in some of that country.

00:32:53:12 –> 00:34:00:02
Yep. Yeah, I have. So it’s, it’s just, it’s, it’s all good. If you spend enough time there, you’re gonna turn up bucks. But over the years, there’s the, the quality deer, the, the level of, of maturity, the stuff that comes out of 22 and 23 more on 22, in my opinion, year after year, you’re gonna turn up good deer Now, as, as it, it’s came down quite a bit, I believe, over the years in quality. You know, it, it, I think it’s technology’s improved so much, or these rifles that are thousand yard rifles that people are knocking these things down and so more deer are getting killed, you know, and it’s crazy actually. I was, I was reading a article not too long ago and, you know, Arizona, the game fish put out, I guess there’s, you know, it’s almost 45% of the deer harvest now, you know, last year is K deer. Yeah. And, you know, back in the day, I think it was, you know, in the seventies and eighties, it was the 10% range. So I, people are loving, man, loving, loving k deer, and they’re getting addicted to it. But 22 and 23, I think, in my opinion, are, you know, to get a general tag, an October tag or even a November tag with a little bit of homework, you can, you can shoot a nice buck.

00:34:00:09 –> 00:34:55:09
But it’s hard to imagine, like, for us, like they’re given 400 tags on each of those seasons. You know what I mean? And so for us, we’re like, we’re thinking, I mean, we’re used to dealing in 100 type tags and twenties and forties, fifties and 20 fives. Yeah. And I mean, we are hearing, okay, there’s, there’s 400 guys October 27th, November 2nd, there’s 400 guys, November 10th to the 16th. Those are short seasons, meaning guys are gonna hunt those days, not just hunt weekends, you know, on like, they would maybe on a longer season. Well, that’s hard to imagine for us. Maybe they’re just road hunters and, and things like that. But I mean, they’re obviously a prolific little critter and probably, you know, there’s gotta be thousands of ’em out there. It’s just, it’s just, but it just, these tag numbers, I mean, that I could see why 45% of the kill or take each year in the state comes from COOs deer. I mean, it’s not, those tag numbers aren’t unique to those units. There’s many units with tag numbers like that, you know what I mean? Yeah.

00:34:55:09 –> 00:35:53:02
There, there, there is. And it’s crazy that how many people, like you just said a minute ago road, it blows my mind. I can’t tell you how many, how many years. I mean, hunts, we’ve pulled up to an area that we normally glass and I’m with the client, right? And we pull up and they’re like, Hey, there’s hunters here. I’m like, don’t, don’t, don’t let that bother you. They’re, they’ll be here for 30 minutes. I, there’s deer on this hill, I promise you. And, and they’ll sit there and glass and glass and no glass and no glass and not see a deer. We’ll pull out the tripods and there you go. Here’s a buck, here’s a buck, here’s a buck. You know? And, and it’s just, it’s, it’s outsmarting ’em, you know? Yes, you’re gonna see hunters. It’s just, there’s no way around it. Even in some of the back country we hunt, you’re gonna run into hunters. But some of the biggest bucks we’ve killed, you know, I mean, we killed a buck. I think you’ve seen a picture of him, but a buck we called Oscar. I mean, he, he almost broke one 30 running 1 29 and seven eights official. He’s a sick

00:35:53:02 –> 00:35:54:00
Deer. He’s a sick, it,

00:35:54:11 –> 00:36:00:23
It is the most impressive buck I’ve ever put my hands on. Yeah. It, it’s seriously unbelievable the frame on this buck.

00:36:00:26 –> 00:36:03:18
Yeah. 150 type impressive, you know, in your hands.

00:36:04:04 –> 00:36:30:18
Yeah. If he had any kind of time length Yeah. He would’ve been in the fifties. He’s just short timed everywhere. But his frame is so impressive. It’s incredible. We watched that there for six years. Yeah. And it’s basically that Buck was killed on a general tag, general October tag. I mean, in, in an area that people drive by every day. I mean, and that, but grew up, grew up in a, a small little area, man, he grew up in a a mile radius area for six years.

00:36:31:00 –> 00:36:47:15
Yeah. And that’s, that’s somewhat common about these little deer. But over those six years, were you hunting him or trying to kill him every year? Or did you not have tags every year? You know, November some year, December some year. I mean, did you just, did it just get lucky and finally figure him out enough in October? Why did

00:36:47:15 –> 00:36:54:01
You, why did you let the deer live? That’s what I wanna know. Give us a little history, give us a little history.

00:36:54:07 –> 00:37:33:04
W when we first seen this buck, it, it was an area that, an area that’ve been wanting to get to for a long time. When I moved to Payson, you know, we started bouncing around, putting the boots to the ground, finally just threw some, threw a, we threw a camera up in there, got a picture of a, you know, nice little buck. And then it went from seeing a bunch of tracks in there and picking up a few sheds that got us venturing, this’s, just kind of some flat country, not a lot of places of glass. So we’re just kind of venturing around in there. Started seeing more tracks, you know, set up a couple other cameras and, and sure enough, here’s this buck shows up with, with three other bucks. And we threw it at the time. We’re like, oh, let’s try to tree stand hunt him, you know?

00:37:33:07 –> 00:38:17:06
And we threw, threw a tree stand up. I actually shot at him with my bow, can’t recall the exact year, but it was, I think it was 2012 ish, maybe shot at him with my bow when he was about a 95 inch buck. And I missed him outta my tree stand. I left my rangefinder at, at my cabin and, and stopped by on the way home, sat the tree stand. And sure enough, he came through and I missed him. Thank, thank, thank goodness I did. ’cause look what he turned into next year. He just blew up, blew up, blew up, blew up, blew up, blew up and got big. Now it was one of those things where like, look, we let this deer grow. We’d never seen any other hunters in there, super safe area. And so we did try to hunt him a little bit here and there, you know, popping up on a weekend hammer to run up, run up and sit Oscar, you know,

00:38:17:07 –> 00:38:19:18
Archery most of the time. Archery. Then just over the counter

00:38:19:18 –> 00:39:00:04
Stuff most of the time. Archery. Yes. The reason why, where this buck was kind of flat area, really not a lot of places to glass, unless he moved one way or the other, there’s no way to glass him up. Well, it was a couple years ago, we killed this buck two years ago. My cousin was up there just kind of, you know, steel hunting, walking around, and he kicked him up out of his bed. And I remember him calling me like, Hey man, I just hit kicked Oscar up. And, and it was kinda one of those things I’m like, really? You know, over there. All right, cool man, let’s see if we can figure out how to get on him. Well, went up and tried to figure out how to glass. Well, we found one rock pile of glass from that would give us a little tiny window of the vicinity of where this buck was at.

00:39:00:29 –> 00:39:47:18
And long story short, we picked him up in that area, like, you know, month. This was in August before the hunt started. Yeah, well, I had a family friend that actually put in for the tag, drew it, and was willing to make the hunt worthwhile for us if he killed the block. So long story short, we went up, we went in, figured out where he was at, picked him up on the glass, knew he was, he’s killable now after all these years. And once you realize where he is at, you’re like, you’re talking, you know, start going through your head, like, really? Like, why, why didn’t we think of that? You know? And it’s just like you constantly learn. Yeah. But it’s like, we never thought to go that direction. We’ve never seen him go that direction. And he was always hitting the camera. Well, he turned pretty nocturnal, you know, as he got mature.

00:39:47:21 –> 00:40:37:12
Yeah. We didn’t skip very many pictures of him during the day. It was all night pictures and, you know, when he kicked him up and it was, it was, it was, we killed him opening morning at nine 30 and, you know, walking up to a buck of that caliber and having, having history with the deer like that, it’s, it’s a pretty cool experience. But, you know, like I said, the buck, it was the biggest bodied buck I’ve ever put my hands on. I mean, the thing was gigantic. I mean, typically a a giant, you know, a mature buck, it’s gonna weigh a hundred, 110 pounds. You know, they stand 30, 32 inches at the shoulder. So this, this thing, dwarfed man, dwarfed the other, any other cruises there I’ve ever put my hands on? But, you know, he, he’s a giant, but you know what’s crazy is there’s other big Deere in there and, and it’s just nothing of that caliber.

00:40:37:15 –> 00:41:05:00
And I don’t know if there’ll ever be anything of that caliber in there. I’ve never, we’ve never really had a track record of if we find a giant one 20 plus buck in the area, there’s gonna be a lot of ’em. You know? And a lot of people say, oh, you got genetics, you got genetics, you got genetics. But I haven’t really been able to pattern that in one giant buck the next, you know, we’ll find a big buck here that’s hanging with some smaller bucks and a big buck here and a big buck there. It’s very seldom do you find three or four giant deer running together. Yeah.

00:41:05:06 –> 00:41:51:27
Well, we’ll see. We’ll see. You know, mule deer will tend to, you know, generally when we find one, we find one or two, you know, maybe two, you know, but, but I’ve also got a little dot on a map. I put a little red dot on everywhere we’ve killed a, you know, a 200 inch and it’s all over. It’s not like one area produces And that, I think that’s kind of what you’re getting to on these s steers. Like maybe where our river Oscar lived, you know, you might have one other one come up. And even though though it’s a renewable resource, there’s still like, there could be, you know, 140 inch, giant 30 miles from there, not just where Oscar lived. And, and Oscar may be one of a kind for that little, you know, five square miles for, you know, 10, 15, 20 years. You might not find another buck like Oscar, even though they’re a renewable resource, you know? Yeah. Just

00:41:51:27 –> 00:42:05:06
Not, not every deer is probably like mule deer, not everybody. Yeah. Every deer’s capable of even getting one 90, let alone 200 plus. And I don’t know, I don’t know K’s deer well enough to know, but I suspect that’s the same thing. You’re not just letting ’em grow up doesn’t mean they’re gonna be one 20.

00:42:05:18 –> 00:42:24:21
That’s true, man. We, we watched a buck that was, you know, a two by three man, and, and he came a giant frame, but he never, he never grew anything extra. He was just always a, you know, from a five-year-old deer to eight or nine, he didn’t never gained an inch. Yeah. You know, he was just always that 100 to 1 0 5 inch frame, two by three.

00:42:24:25 –> 00:42:36:27
How are you, how are you seeing drought? Like, do you see drought, big effects on the drought? You know, conditions versus what conditions down there? I mean, do you, did you watch Oscar, you know, up and down, up and down? Or was he just always solid?

00:42:37:25 –> 00:43:35:13
You know, he was very consistent on, on, on gain inch. You know, he, he never really lost. He never really, you know, he was always, he always got bigger and, and like, I, you know, I think drought, drought’s a big thing. But with, with where these coups deer live, there’s a lot of lakes close by. There’s a, they, they’ll move, man. Like these people say, you know, you hear a lot, oh, they’re not gonna move more than a few miles. But I, I don’t believe that. I mean, I’ve seen certain, certain, like Oscar for example, where he lived, no matter drought situation, he had water. So it was one of those things that he, he wasn’t ever gonna leave. But, you know, it gets dry, it gets drought, they have to have water, they’re gonna move where the water is. But it’s basically with, I haven’t seen a huge regression with him personally as buck with, with, you know, drought. With drought. Obviously he had water close by, but, you know, I, I haven’t seen anything that I can a hundred percent say, oh yeah, that deer lost five or eight inches, you know, ’cause of, of, of a a drought year. It’s been pretty consistent.

00:43:35:26 –> 00:44:20:05
So on these, on these deer, you’re saying like, they do, you know, you feel like they move, but I think I, I mean, is it safe to say like within a year span, they’re, they live in a tight area, but maybe, you know, the following year he could move three or four miles or something if he needed water? Correct. Because it feels like, I mean, and I, I don’t, Adam and I, like I said, scratch the very, very top surface layer of, of COOs deer. But the one thing you, you learn right off the bat from anybody that’s, you know, hunted them for quite some time is that they will, you know, you know, summer shed rutt and everything within a tight area. And, and is that true? I mean, is that what you find in as well? It’s just if they do need water, they will move?

00:44:21:22 –> 00:45:06:26
Yes. In in, in essence, they basically, some of the, some of, like for example, if you’re hunting deer, if you’re hunting, like people wanna say, Hey, I want to kill a big deer. What are my best chances of killing a big deer? Honestly, I’ll tell ’em to put an put it in for an October tag, because is the point December’s so unpredictable on where these bucks are gonna go to and from, you can’t, if you pattern, for example, we gotta, we got a big buck that we’ve been watching for years. We can’t find ’em in October. We can’t find ’em in August. We’ve ran cameras everywhere, but come January this bucks in the same pocket chasing these same dose. Oh wow. And so it, it, who knows where he comes from, who knows. Yeah. How, who knows how far he is coming from. But that’s a prime example of, of that. But typically hunt the

00:45:06:26 –> 00:45:10:10
Season that’s closest to wherever you scouted him whenever you saw him. Yeah,

00:45:10:17 –> 00:45:11:14
Yeah, exactly. See him

00:45:11:15 –> 00:45:13:27
In January, hunt January. You see him in October

00:45:13:27 –> 00:45:52:15
Hunt. Exactly. October. He, so a buck like that, you know, you could get, throw your bow on your back, hike in here and, and probably chase this bow this buck around for a few days and maybe get a shot at ’em. They’re hard to spot stock. And, and the, the, the thing about it, like in August, you know, when they start growing, they’re pretty predictable. You know, you, you can almost go to the same hillside at the same time every single day and see the same bucks. When they’re fuzzy antler, they’re, they’re gonna be there. As soon as they start stripping, they, they’re gonna move a little bit. It may be mile two miles, three miles, who knows? But three miles in our country’s a long ways. Yeah. And, and so when people say, ah, they’re predictable, they’re there, they’re there. Well, if you’ve got ’em there, hard horned in October.

00:45:52:18 –> 00:46:29:13
Like if you pick up bucks in October, hard horned, there’s a good chance 50% chance they’re gonna be on that same hill or close by when the hunt comes around. But the hunting pressure right now is crazy. Like last year I decided not to, I only took on two clients last year, and we had a bunch of family and friend tags, and we went seven for eight tags. But we weren’t, like I said, we weren’t quote unquote trophy haring. We were killing 90 inch deer, you know, and, you know, some of, some first timers, you know, 10 year olds that didn’t have tags in the family got their first bucks, you know, and stuff like that. But it was, it was, so some of these bucks that we did prior to scouting in August, where we’ve had piles of bucks nowhere to be found come October.

00:46:29:21 –> 00:47:16:12
Yeah. I mean, we pound ’em. We got the best optics in the business, man. And, and you know, I believe I’m pretty decent Glasser and I’ve got a bunch of guys that with me are just incredible Glasser and we pound the hills and it’s just, who knows? I mean, I’m still trying to figure these little things out on what exactly they do do. Now I do know this. They will be back that next summer. You will find ’em in the same areas. Yeah. They are in the vicinity. They are in that area. It’s just a matter, it’s not like they’re moving like an elk 10 or 15, 20 miles, you know, once they start stripping velvet, it’s, it’s, they’re gonna be close by. Yes. Yeah. But I don’t think, you know, they live in lot guys say, how did that one mile, two mile radius now, Oscar, that was an exception that Buck did not leave within a mile radius his entire life. I mean, he was there year round. Wow. That’s

00:47:16:12 –> 00:47:50:18
Crazy. Might’ve just been his, the area that he was in. But I hear, you know, like guys that hunt that January archery, I mean, it’s a bla I, I mean I’ve, I’ve heard it’s just a freaking blast. Like those bucks are rutting, but they rut hard and aggressive and they’re running everywhere. And you know, I think that would be tough if you were a trophy hunter looking for one particular deer. Like, what, what’s the chances he’s gonna come run him by you, or you go to make a stock on him and he is moved and moved, you know, and you’re having to move with him. And I just think it’d be, it’d be hard. It’d probably be fun, but I think it’d be hard as a trophy hunter, you know, versus it’s

00:47:50:18 –> 00:47:51:18
Extremely hard versus

00:47:51:18 –> 00:48:01:20
That versus that August. I mean, that August seems like, you know, if you’re doing your work, you’re willing to a 110 degrees Yeah. And you pattern a buck. Yeah. Just like we do milder. Yep. You know?

00:48:01:22 –> 00:48:59:07
Yeah. And in August, they’re almost like clockwork. You can almost, so, I mean, I was looking the other night, it’s crazy. I have over 50,000 pictures of just COOs deer and basically all organized on every buck named when, when they hit water. I mean, we got to the point where we were, we were really trying to figure out these deer. And most mature bucks, when I say mature bucks, you know, 80 inch plus deer are hitting that water between 11 and two and midday in the summers. And sometimes they’ll, you know, they’ll hit ’em a couple times depending on how hot the days are. But they’re, they’re pretty predictable. So if you can sit and, and, and, you know, take on that heat, it’s miserable. And people call and they wanna hunt. I mean, you can, if you get into the higher country, you can sit some tree stands and do some of the pines and stuff like that. Yeah. You know, it’s a little bit, it’s a, it’s a little nicer, but it’s still, man, with some of these ground blinds, you gotta sit on these waterholes, they just, they’ll just kill you. So is

00:48:59:07 –> 00:49:01:23
That what you’re doing? Is that the most effective way to in August?

00:49:02:13 –> 00:50:10:11
Yeah, in August, you spot and stock ’em too. But obviously you can do that anytime of the year. But yeah, sit in water, man, they gotta get water. So just sit, man. You gotta sit and, and make sure situation’s right. But it’s just, here’s the issue. And it’s, it’s been every single year for whatever reason it may be, but it seems like you, you got ’em figured out, man. You’re like, all right, we’re gonna knock this buck down. Like we had a big buck eight, I can’t remember what year it was, but I’d say, you know, was when I was living in Payson, probably 11, 12, that we had three different bucks that were pushed in pushing the one 30 mark. It was just one of those years, it was like, wow, man, we got giant buck after giant buck. And we were putting a game plan together, like, all right, you’re gonna hunt this buck, you’re gonna hunt this buck. I’m gonna hunt this buck. And literally come two days before the season opens, they stop coming. And it’s funny, you talk to anybody in Arizona that they’ll tell you the same story for whatever reason it may be, but it, they, it they’ll come. But it’s not like clockwork. I mean, we had a buck that we called lobster that unfortunately got killed on terms that we didn’t wish. But

00:50:10:17 –> 00:50:13:02
He, he’s an amazing, that was an amazing deer.

00:50:13:21 –> 00:50:49:08
Yeah. That buck was like, I would say the first buck that we could say was over one 30 that we were, I mean, it’s sad you watched a video of like, the night before. Like, my cousin was gonna be the shooter the first day. So I’m like, all right man, we’re gonna, and the way we worked was just, we’re happy for each other. It didn’t matter who killed the buck, man. It was a huge team effort on all this stuff. You know, there’s a lot of, we had, I had an awesome team, man. We really put the boots to work and, and really turned up, figured out these, and turned up these giant deer. And we finally like, dude, we got a giant, this thing is just gigantic. So we’ve do, we literally, I would put the camera up, you know, or go check the film.

00:50:49:14 –> 00:51:54:05
I’d go home. I couldn’t last two days and I gotta go check it. I gotta go check it. You know, we’d check the camera. All right. He’s back, he’s back. And we had him figured out like he’s gonna come in. He was some hitting some mornings around nine. And, and, and then he’d come in couple, you know, between that 11 and two ish every single day. So we’re like, oh, you’re gonna kill a giant tomorrow. We went in like a week before set up, brushed in the ground, blind, everything good to go. Opening morning, sitting there, nah, never showed up, never showed up, never showed up, never showed up. It was just a bummer, man. And then we sat there for four days, man. Like, what did we do wrong? We yanked the tree stand, went or drank the ground, blind went to tree stands, and you know, anyways, that butt got away from us. And then, you know, we turned up some other big ones, and it’s kind of in the same area and all in August. And they’re, they’re typically pretty easy to find in August. Soon as they drop what they’re doing right now, they’re, they’re gonna start wanting salt man. They’re gonna pound salt. And once they get to the, you know, that last, last 10, 12 days of horn growth, they literally are a pound of salt. They kid salt spots three or four or five, 10 times a day. Wow. You know, so if those typically,

00:51:54:18 –> 00:52:20:23
And it’s legal to use, it’s legal to use salt. I know, right? I mean, I mean they salt of course you guys, I mean, not you guys, but I mean, hunters in general, you know, back when it was legal to, to bait worked with corn heavily just like you kinda would a white tail back east. And those guys, you, you know, they still, you know, baiting a lot of the states back east and whatnot. And it seemed like that was, you know, kind of a big factor, you know, for success on some of these big deer too.

00:52:21:18 –> 00:52:40:17
Yeah. And I was actually a big fan of, of the, of the, the bait banning and yeah, I mean, it was, it, was it, Jason, it got so bad. Like, I’m not kidding you, man. You would, you couldn’t go to any feed store, any like, Walmart, anything, anywhere near any country where there’s cruise deer and buy a bag of corn. Oh yeah.

00:52:40:18 –> 00:52:46:00
People were taking corn off the tables off their kids’ plate to take it out and feed deer probably a hundred

00:52:46:00 –> 00:53:05:21
Percent man. And, and, and you would go and you would go and, I mean, granted we used it, why not? You know, it, everybody used it, but it was like, it got to the point where you couldn’t even, oh, walk you, you’d sit on your spot for, you know, three or four days and then wonder why nothing’s coming in. You just do a little loop around your spot and find

00:53:05:22 –> 00:53:10:12
Pipe, an electric corn feeders, you know, every time the lec the little motor went on, the deer come running.

00:53:11:09 –> 00:53:34:16
Yeah. It was like, I mean, it, it, it got bad. So, but yeah, like I said, man, it, it’s technically, if I go back to all the years of doing this stuff, getting k deer on the grounds, all in the glass, man, it’s doing, gets glassing. Yeah. It’s glassing, man. I mean, I, you get, if we get a buck, we physically see a deer on the hill, you know, it’s a good chance that deer’s gonna die.

00:53:34:21 –> 00:54:10:05
So I went, when I hunted with you guys, I know we, you know, you guys, I mean, we were turning up deer just like you’re saying 11, 12. I mean, just sit there and grind it, you know, all day. Yeah. And of course that was an October season, and which I know you said was, you know, an awesome timeframe. Of course, I got my butt handed to me. But anyway, we won’t talk about that too much other than that particular year. I know Ty kind of blamed, it felt like you kind of blamed it at, you know, on the, on the crop of pine nuts and whatnot. I mean, what’s your theory on that? Like where they just keeps ’em in that thick tree, all those thick trees and stuff?

00:54:10:18 –> 00:55:08:06
No, yeah, there’s a, there’s a lot of truth to that. And I think we were kind of fighting the moon phase two there, where, you know, they’re, they’re feeding all night. So you throw that and you, and you throw the pine nuts into the mix of it, man, it can turn into be a turning to be a rough h and that was, it’s kind of what happened to me in on my haunt man in 2010 when I killed my big buck. It was the same thing, man. I kind of fought that same kind of stuff where moon phase was, was not in my favor, and there’s no movement. And it was just tough, man. And, and we’ve ended up, you know, except picking my buck up, just kind of cruising through and going from point A to point B to glass and jumped him up. But yeah, that’s, that’s, that’s huge, man. Like, it’s, it’s one of those things as like, you know, a guide or a hunter man, you, you can’t predict that kind of stuff. And you gotta try to, you know, let alone we were, we were hunting some particular bucks with you hoping we could turn ’em up, you know? Yeah. And, and you know, it’s just, yeah. It’s, it’s, there’s a lot of truth to that. And you get that and, and throw a moon phase into it and, you know, anyhow, it can turn, turn rough for sure.

00:55:08:29 –> 00:55:29:08
When you, when you guys are after these deer, you know what I mean? You talked about Oscar going after him for six years. I don’t know if you cross sections his tooth or whatever when he was killed to know how old he was. But what is your general thoughts on where, where a buck needs to be in most cases to reach, reach, what he’s capable of really being?

00:55:30:19 –> 00:55:47:18
So basically Oscar was nine and a half years old. Wow. That’s Yeah. Crazy. He, he was one of the oldest buck that, that, you know, one of the, the tax terms there that we deal with says he’s ever taken it. And, but typically I would say six to seven years old. Yeah.

00:55:47:27 –> 00:55:50:09
So not a whole lot different than mul there really, then I’m

00:55:50:09 –> 00:56:03:27
Saying. Yeah. You know, they’re, they’re gonna risk the maturity to eight. Sweet. Yeah. Yeah. You know, that’s, that’s where I would guess. But yeah, Oscar was an old dear man. He was just a, you know, he lived his, he lived a good life for sure, you know? Yeah.

00:56:04:23 –> 00:56:25:20
So what other, I mean, we’ve talked a lot about coups, which I know I can tell, you know, you’re pretty passionate about. Do you, do you, do you get much after anything else down there? You’re saying you want a big meal there and you’re, you’re 10 years into the weight or eight years or whatever, but do you, what else do you get after down there in Arizona? Do you chase elk a little bit or?

00:56:26:03 –> 00:56:37:26
I do, man, I got a, I got a pretty deep passion for elk too, and that’s actually, you know, I addicted to that before I got into cruise there, and I’m still addicted to elk hunting. But yeah, I’m a little different man than most guys. I don’t, I I don’t the name, you

00:56:37:26 –> 00:56:39:14
Got addictive. You got an addictive personality.

00:56:42:13 –> 00:56:43:21
Yeah, I do, man. You’re

00:56:43:29 –> 00:56:56:29
Addicted to everything. Yeah. So, yeah, we’ll dive into some of that. You’re in those same units, course 23, you know, especially so well known for giant bulls. I mean, you’ve got some big bulls found. Are you still spending time and

00:56:57:18 –> 00:58:05:13
Yeah, I haven’t dabbed much in 23 over the last couple years. Like I said, I’ve really, honestly, the last few years I’ve really been focusing on, on business, man, I’m, I’m just trying to get the business back up and rolling where it needs to be so I can get out in the woods and play a little bit more. But I’ve, you know, I haven’t been in 23 much in the last couple years. But that being said, I, in my eyes, I still put in for that hunt every single year. I put in for 23 archery, 15 tags, probably not gonna drop for the next 10 or 15 years, but hey, you know, you do it. And I, I finally bit the bullet and, and, and drew a, drew a tag this year I did point guard it, so I may be giving it back. I don’t know yet, but I, I just off of one big bullet I found, and so hopefully, hopefully that’ll pan out for me this year. But I, I do, I do like to guide Elk, man. I love hunting elk. I, I like to turn up giants in units. They’re quote unquote not known for having giants in ’em. And, and you know, I don’t spend much time in like nine and 10 in those kind of units as much as, as much as most outfitters do, do I know ’em, yeah. We’ve killed Big Bulls there, of course. But, you know, I like to, I like to stick with the Central Arizona units on Elk as well, you know, 22, 23. It’s hard,

00:58:05:13 –> 00:58:24:11
Hard to fight those, you know, all the people on water holes up there now in some of that country. It’s just tough, you know, dealing with that or you guys are kind of down there g glassing and, and working hard and, you know what I mean, you’re not so, you know, you know, competing per se on, on water holes and whatnot.

00:58:25:00 –> 00:58:59:18
Yeah. And it, it’s, it’s, it’s wild man. ’cause I, you, I dunno if you’ve ever hunted nine or been in that country during an archery hunt, man, you’ll roll up on a, every water hole, every trick tank, every seat. It’s got 10 or 15 cameras on it. Yeah. You know, and it’s like really, I mean, it gets to the point where it’s like, you know, it’s some, sometimes it’s, I mean, not, not that it’s an issue, it’s just I would rather go and stay in, stay in the, the country where I can go and hunt my own bulls and say own bulls. I’m sure the people know about ’em too, but every bull’s got a name. It’s like on the strip, man, every buck’s got a name. Everybody knows the big bucks on the strip. Most people know the big Bulls in nine and 10. There’s not very many secrets.

00:58:59:22 –> 00:59:11:24
Yeah. And, but yeah, you’re wanting to, you’re wanting to have, have them carry your name and maybe only you know about him, you know? Yeah. Instead of just some name that a random outfitter, you know, named and everybody knows him. So,

00:59:12:01 –> 00:59:21:26
Yeah. So I mean, I always dab in, you know, in the areas that, you know, like this, you know, for example, this bull that I, I, I found a, this actually hunting co deer. I found him. Yeah. And

00:59:22:07 –> 00:59:25:19
I was wondering if you’re gonna bring him up, you’re not gonna tell everybody where he is at, are you?

00:59:26:06 –> 00:59:26:19

00:59:26:19 –> 00:59:28:21
That? We’re on the air. You can’t tell everybody where he is at.

00:59:29:28 –> 00:59:53:11
No, that’s all right. I’m not worried about it, man. But, but yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s good stuff, man. And I, I’ve, I’ve, I burned my el points on that tag, you know, this year. And, and I think, I think it’ll pan out for me, man. But it’s just one of those things. It’s, it’s, I like to, I, I’ve always been known for digging up stuff in units that quote unquote aren’t known for giant, giant bulls or bucks or whatever that may be.

00:59:53:13 –> 01:00:40:15
Well, and I think in large part, you know, that’s probably why you’re finding some of those giants is, you know, is and we’re doing that, so to speak on some of our, I know Adam’s got a few big deer that he probably doesn’t want people to know about on some general stuff. And, and Yeah. Okay. And, and I’ve got the same, you know, I’ve killed one of, one of my biggest deer in period, one of my biggest all time deer was on a general unit and killed his buddy too. And he was over two 20. And so, you know, I think what’s happened, and I, I’ve thought about it a lot and I think what’s happened, we got big genetics, we’re not necessarily managing for it, but because we’re not managing for it, you don’t have, you know, multiple outfitters with big teams and spinning the real time and resources on, on general areas are, are easier to draw areas.

01:00:40:20 –> 01:01:09:18
And so you end up, you get a, you get a few deer that may get through and end up in that six to nine year old category and, and you get a tag every year pretty much for Yeah. And you can, stuff like that can hunt on back to back years, which sometimes you, you know, like you’re, you’re hunting Oscar, what, six years? I means, you know, and I don’t know, you know, as far as lobster or how many years you hunted him, but, you know, some of these bucks and bulls and rams and whatever, take multiple, multiple years to get ’em down on the ground.

01:01:09:26 –> 01:01:48:27
Yeah, it does, man. And it’s, it’s, it’s pretty rewarding when you, you know, you do the legwork and bust your butt trying to find ’em, and you do get one on the ground, man. It’s just that much more rewarding. But it’s, like I said, it’s, you don’t want to, I don’t wanna go up and compete with, you know, you know, certain deer and certain bucks and let, I’ll do it if I need to or if I have to draw that tag. But to me it’s just kind of ruined hunting a little bit. Man. I like to name my own deer myself, just so when I’m talking, you know, me and my hunting partners and buddies, you know, Hey, remember, remember that deer. But it’s easier just to say a name, but, you know, and it, so we do our own thing. And, and honestly in a nutshell, really, we really don’t run into too many people where we hunt, to be honest. Even with

01:01:49:02 –> 01:01:50:15
400 tags, I mean, you’re just,

01:01:50:18 –> 01:02:30:02
Even with 400 tags, man, I re you’re gonna see ’em. But if we’re going to an area looking for a particular buck, you know, there’re gonna be hunters glassing along the way. There’s gonna be people looking, but it just, when you experience, man, it blows your mind. How many people just look past stuff, man, and don’t glass a little bit harder because I mean it, for example, I mean, it, there was a buck that I sent a buddy on that, you know, he was looking for a buck last year and one, a nice buck. And he is an area that, you know, I couldn’t get the kids into, or even my client didn’t want to go, didn’t wanna make the hike. And so I, I’d sent, sent him in there. I said, Hey dude, we’ve seen a good deer in here in August. I said, he’s gonna be in here somewhere.

01:02:30:03 –> 01:03:12:15
Just, just keep pounding it, bounce around in here. And he ended up, he ended up killing the buck. But it was, he glassed for seven days straight, literally seven days. The entire hunt killed him on the last day, and the buck popped up right where we seen him in August. Yeah. So, you know, it’s just, he wasn’t happening to be there at the time. And he kept glass and maybe he wasn’t picking him up, but it’s just, you know, a lot of these deers, especially COOs deer, you know, they may be in, they may be in maybe in a particular spot in August, but come, come October, November, they’ll still be around, but maybe not on the same hill or just over, over the ridge a little bit. And you know that there’s another buck that we, we had watched for years that we, we should have on the wall or should have killed with the client.

01:03:12:16 –> 01:03:49:06
And we didn’t, it was just us not thinking out, thinking a little bit deeper. But it was, you know, it was another auction buck that was killed that pushed into the one forties. Geez. And, and I got, we got trail camp pictures of that buck when he was a hundred inch deer. Another thing, he was an an nocturnal buck. We couldn’t figure him out. He, he’d come to the days just kind of hit and miss and was, ended up killing with, killed with an, with an auction hunter, which was literally the way the birds would fly. Probably less than a thousand yards from where our spot was. And yeah, he broke into the forties and we got picture after picture of that buck. So, you know, it’s just

01:03:49:18 –> 01:04:00:11
Speaking of pi, speaking of pictures, you know, what’s the deal with this trail cam law? I mean, have you been, you know, is it, is it, would it affect you guys if, if anything like that passed or went through?

01:04:01:28 –> 01:04:21:02
No, I’m, I’m not for it to be honest. But, but you know, what happens happens. And, and we will adapt. But honestly, there the most of the big deer we’ve killed, I mean, Oscar, granted we had trail cam pictures of him and the reason why we knew him was in there was ’cause of trail cameras. ’cause it’s flat country, but a lot

01:04:21:02 –> 01:04:24:13
Of these, but salt, salt or whatever, maybe, maybe you’re not on water as much.

01:04:25:03 –> 01:05:17:19
Yeah, exactly. And, and basically it, it’s a lot of these, I mean, with the, with the whole trail cam issue, I don’t think it’s really gonna affect, you know, our success just because most of these deer we’re killing, we are glassing them up. Yeah. You know, and, and I’ve really, really turned away from a lot of cameras. I used to run a ton of cameras, man, I may run, I may run 10, 15 cameras a year now compared to 30 or 40 or 50. So it, it’s, and we’re still, it’s not like the qualities came down, the success rates that came down, we’re still killing good Deere. It’s just favorite cameras. I like the, yeah. I mean, I like the glass man. And, and honestly, I mean you, especially like in, you know, when you get closer to these hunts, some of these areas that do continue to hold mature bucks, you, you even got some spots in 22 and 23 where you’ll show up and there’ll be five or six cameras on ’em. But that’s that many more people going in there, walking around the water hole, checking their checking Deer’s

01:05:17:19 –> 01:05:22:13
Gonna live. Yeah. The deer’s gonna live. The more people are in there, the the tougher it is to kill ’em.

01:05:23:03 –> 01:05:52:26
No, and then that’s, and that’s, I think that’s kind of what they’re, what they’re trying to push. But I, I think it’s super important for some marriage, you know, I don’t know if, I think they just need to figure out a, you know, a happy median somewhere and, and instead of banning them completely, if they’re gonna do it, maybe do a season on ’em or, or what they may decide to do. Yeah. But I’m not really stressing it, man. I don’t think it’s really gonna be a big issue on on, because real, the reality of it is the trail cam stuff was, is was just, it, it was fun, man. It was like Christmas years, you, Christmas morning, man.

01:05:52:26 –> 01:05:53:19
It’s, it’s unbelievable

01:05:53:26 –> 01:06:04:26
When you’re, when you’re going in checking cameras, you’re like, all right, all right, what’s on this one? What’s on this one? Yeah. Then you go through and you’re, then you got the camera and you’re not letting your buddy look. And you’re standing over here going through the, through the film. You’re like, I wait till you see this dude. I

01:06:05:02 –> 01:06:10:08
Show it to me. Yeah. You know? Oh yeah. Literally, you know, he’s got, he had a key to your cameras already checked the cart.

01:06:11:03 –> 01:06:11:18

01:06:12:22 –> 01:06:32:06
No, that’s good. Well, what about long range rifles? I know you brought up that you guys have long range, A few of ’em, which is natural. Most, most guys are doing. But it feels like to me for COOs deer hunting long range has made a huge difference. You know, ’cause those little COOs, deer, I mean, they live in thick country and, and they, they don’t even hardly crest the top of a sagebrush

01:06:32:06 –> 01:06:40:00
Short. You don’t have time to close the distance three to 400 more yards or else they’re gonna be back in the brush. You gotta take care of business now. Yeah.

01:06:40:08 –> 01:07:30:18
Yeah. And that, and that’s what’s crazy. What I, what I’ve noticed when with, with Ks deer is like, especially in December, like we were talking about December a little while ago. And another reason do, they’re on the prowl nonstop. You pick up bucks in December, man, unless they’re betted, as soon as they stand up, they don’t stop. They’re walking. Like they, they’re just cruising, winging, and winding everywhere up on the hill. So trying to get a hunter on something that’s moving in 5, 6, 7, 800 yards, it’s tough. Yeah. And when people call to hunt with me, the first thing I say is, what kinda rifle you got? I mean, are, are you good past 500? ’cause realistically most shots are around that range. Yeah. You know, I very seldom we killed a buck under, you know, rather than mine. You kill under 300 yards. I mean, yes, it can happen, but you know, typically you glass of a buck this country where glass’s big and you’ll find a buck and you’ll glass ’em up in the cows or something that, you know, mile away and you’re like, all right, we need to get closer.

01:07:30:29 –> 01:08:03:17
You know, and then you spend half the day getting up in there and then, all right, it’s the closer we’re gonna get. It’s 500 yards, it’s 800 yards and they gotta be able to make it count Long range long. I think that’s why, you know, the caliber of bucks have been getting killed and quality has came up a little bit. You’re seeing bigger bucks hit the dirt. It’s the technology man, technology just came a long ways. And having a long range rifle for cos deer hunting is a necessity. Oh yeah. You know, I mean, you don’t have to have a rifle that’s gonna shoot a thousand yards, but you got something you can dial up to 6, 7, 800 yards and pull the trigger, you know, it’s dumping over. It’s, it’s, you know, that was a big thing with, with the Oscar and the guy that killed him.

01:08:03:19 –> 01:08:36:19
I told him, I said, man, you better, you better get to shoot. And this is gonna be a 750 yard shot. And you, you, the, the window’s small with this man, the window is small. If he crest where he, he should crest, you’re gonna have a few seconds to make a shot before he drops back into this cut. And he was literally living on this nasty, nasty hillside and would just come over and keep crest in one opening. And that’s where he was gonna get his shot. But he made it count. But yeah, it’s a, it’s a necessity. I mean, Jason, you’ve seen some of the stuff we’re looking at 23. I mean, you as bucks you wanted to shoot, they would’ve been 800 plus yards away. Oh

01:08:36:19 –> 01:08:59:02
Yeah. I had the gun set up while we were glass. We hadn’t even glassed him up yet, you know. Yeah. But you gotta have it like, you don’t have time to, you know, so basically just get it where you feel like it’s, he comes in that a hundred yard area or two or 300 yard area, I can easily get behind the gun and kill him in six or eight seconds. And that’s just, that’s just crazy. It’s a crazy country. It’s like that you gotta be ready, you gotta be good with your gun.

01:08:59:28 –> 01:09:45:12
Yeah, it is. It’s super important man. And you, you get this, a lot of these people like, yeah, yeah, I gotta just bought a gun or I just had a gun built. And, you know, and you know, you always tell ’em, well that’s, you know, if you practice with it. Yeah. ’cause man, any gun can shoot that range, but you gotta know your gun man. You gotta know the capabilities of it. You gotta adjust to, you know, your windage and your situations because you know a lot of guys, man, well man, they said it. Shoot, I’ve had guys miss, I mean, Jason, some of the, I’m sure you’ve dealt with the two of your, when you’re guiding stuff, it’s some of the biggest bucks I’ve personally, physically seen with my own eyes. I’ve walked walk over the hill with a client because they’ve shot seven or eight or 10 times and missed them. Yeah. You know, after busting your butt to get up the side of this huge mountain or getting into this area. And it’s just, it’s sickening, you know, and it, it happens. It’s hunting. It’s just, it is what it is. But

01:09:45:12 –> 01:09:58:01
Oh yeah. When that happens, you want to just go and pale yourself on a green tepo somewhere because it’s just, you work all year, you’re working on a specific buck and, and you end up watching him walk over the hill. It is just, ah, such a downer. But

01:09:58:01 –> 01:10:08:11
Yeah, and I, I, I mean, it, it happened pretty recent, you know, where we had, I had two bucks and, and one of ’em should probably kill me for saying it, but one of ’em, my wife actually missed. Oh. Oh,

01:10:08:15 –> 01:10:11:27
Well, good luck. You know, you did have a happy wife. You did have a happy wife.

01:10:12:00 –> 01:10:14:09
It was, it was the same year that we killed Oscar.

01:10:14:09 –> 01:10:16:06
Let’s dive into all the mistakes she made.

01:10:17:01 –> 01:10:18:02
Let’s do it, let’s do it.

01:10:18:24 –> 01:10:19:01

01:10:19:15 –> 01:10:57:05
But, but no, it was the same year. She, she, we had killed Oscar and she actually had a tag and we, we put Oscar on the ground. I called her. I’m like, Hey, come. We actually had two clients that year. It was my, the guy that killed Oscar and his friend actually drew a tag too, but he wasn’t after anything big and he ended up killing a really nice buck too. But we, I asked, you know, it was a family friend. I’m like, Hey, your wife’s got a day to hunt. You mind if I take her out? You know, cousin can still take, take the other dude out. Yeah, no problem. So she comes up and there’s one buck that I wanted her to hunt. And my brother bet she’s been up there hunting with his, with his son. And they’ve been looking and he said, man, we’ve been in that area, man, there’s a ton of hunters in there and hunter on every point glass in.

01:10:57:05 –> 01:11:46:26
And I’m like, he’s in there. I, you know, long story short, we go in there with my brother and, and, and my wife and his little boy. And, and sure enough, man, I mean, same knob. We were walking up the glass, people were coming down, you know? Yeah. Like, what’s up guys, how you doing? We get up there right at, right at, I mean, right at dark. I mean, just 10 minutes left of shooting light, A buck comes out right from below us, starts feeding up the hillside. So anyways, it, it wasn’t her fault. Went back to the gun problem. We, we just had a gun worked on and Yeah. And it just didn’t get dialed Right, man. And it was just, she just air balled a couple times, man, and watched a, you know, a giant walk away. But that buck’s still alive and he’s, he’s still out there and you know, people miss him, man. It’s, it’s just people don’t find him. They sit there in glass all day, they don’t see anything and they leave or it’s glass for a couple hours. They don’t see anything. They leave.

01:11:47:05 –> 01:11:53:03
Has she killed one? I mean, she got a specific goal. Is she just shoot what you tell her to, or what?

01:11:53:09 –> 01:11:55:07
Yeah, pretty much. Shoot what I tell her to

01:11:56:02 –> 01:11:57:21
That’s a good wife doing what you say.

01:11:58:10 –> 01:12:25:07
Yeah. She, she pretty much will shoot what I tell her to. So, but no, she’s killed some bucks. She, she wants to kill, she wants to kill a, a big one. So the problem is, is like, and that’s, this was back to, I was telling you earlier, it was just to the point where I was guiding so much, I couldn’t spend that time on personal tags or tags with my wife. Yeah. She would draw a tag and co tag almost every single year and then not even get to go because Yeah, you’re too busy. I was guiding aunts. Yeah. You know, so we’ve been there, done

01:12:25:07 –> 01:12:52:24
That. Now you got kids and little girls, three little girls and life gets busy, new business or at least, you know, you know, reviving, cranking on the old one. And speaking of that, like you, you, you’re talking about, you know, kind of giving up COOs deer for a mul deer, but this one you’re going for one tag. You, I mean, you know, you’re gonna have to kind of quit your job and basically hunt state to state. If you get on this mul deer kick, like one one Northern Arizona deer tag’s not gonna cut it.

01:12:53:23 –> 01:13:27:13
I know. That’s what I’m, that’s what I’m worried about, man. Like I said, I I, I love COOs deer and I’ll kill ’em, but man, I’m, I mean, I’ve been on the strip, I’ve helped guided hunts on the strip. We’ve killed big deer. I mean, I’ve held 230, 240 inch deer. But, you know, it’s, it’s, I’ve never killed one person in myself. You know, I’ve, you know, my, my biggest buck I killed on the, on the, when I was 13 years old, I drew the late ki of 12 AEs tag not knowing what I had. Yeah. You know, I killed 165 inch four by four and thought I killed the biggest buck in the woods, you know? Yeah, yeah. And, and not knowing what I had, me and my dad and brother all have the tag. But yeah, I was young and it was, it was awesome.

01:13:27:13 –> 01:13:57:24
That’s the last meal deer I ever killed. Last meal, deer tag I ever had. Wow. I’ve chased some big mul deer, you know, up around my cabin, which is, you know, up in the happy Jack area and, and you know, some giant, I’ve sent you some pictures of some of ’em, Jason. Yeah. I mean, those bucks are 200 inches plus. And, and I’ve, I’ve tried to chase ’em around with my boat, tried to figure them out, man, they’re impossible. I mean, I just can’t figure those things out. It’s crazy. And you know, you, you’ll sit and sit and sit. Maybe they come through, they may not yet. So I mean I’ve, like I said, I’ve dabbed a little bit in it, but I’m on a mission

01:13:57:27 –> 01:14:23:29
To get it. Well, you’ll do it. You’ll you’ll do it. You’re just gonna have to spend the kind of time you did a few years ago on these s deer. They just, it’s like anything. And like I’ve thought about, you know, I want to kill some giant bulls. I mean, I got a few goals that are pretty much unattainable, but you know, to work on ’em, you’ve gotta give up. You can’t have three or four addictions. You’ve gotta, you know, to really kill the very, very top end unless you just flat get lucky, which does happen a fair occasion. But does

01:14:24:01 –> 01:14:26:18
Gotta tell people all the time, I’ll take luck over skill any day, man.

01:14:26:27 –> 01:14:40:20
That’s right. And so, yeah, you still Turkey hunt a little bit. I know you mentioned the San Carlos. I hunt San Carlos for turkeys Clear back when I was a little tiny kid. Killed the biggest gall boy I’ve ever killed down there. But, but anyway. You still hunt turkeys or are you done with that?

01:14:41:15 –> 01:15:07:14
No, I do. I mean, I, I hunt anything I can get a tag for, but actually my wife and I actually have Turkey tags right now, so we got, we got spring tags up at the cabin, so, you know, we, we may dab into that a little bit, you know, here the next, next week and it goes for like three weeks. But, but yeah, no, we, we, we spend, we, we spend as much time as we can. I mean, that’s not something I have like a huge passion to go hunt Turkey, but I put in for it every year and if I draw tags, we go and we get it done. But you know, it’s just kind of one of those one those things.

01:15:07:22 –> 01:15:34:14
It’s awesome. Well, sure appreciate you man. Wish you the best of luck in all you’re doing, you and the girls. It’s awesome. I’ve, I’ve got a lot of respect for you. Of course. Spent a little time with you in camp, learned a lot from you. So anyway, I could tell your passion. I know you’ve dealt with a lot of the different auction tags over the course of time and as far as those cos deer, I know you’re super passionate and got a, a healthy respect for those cos deer. So anyway, thanks for taking time with us and we’ll go from there

01:15:35:08 –> 01:15:37:18
All Jason. Thanks man. See you later Adam. See you later.

01:15:37:18 –> 01:15:38:11
Thanks. Alright, bye.