Tuesday, May 19, 2009

May 18th: Scouting for Montana's Elk Season

This is the time of year that I find my self pouring over maps and spending too much time with Google Earth. And now that I'm done with school for the semester I have managed to find some time to put into preparing for hunting season. I started the weekend shed hunting, attended a 3d shoot on Sunday, and Monday I selected as a day to get out and stretch the legs.

Right out of the car I encountered a hillside overflowing with Heartleaf Arnica.

I have a post about bowhunting for elk in this area that you can read here. I covered about seven miles with about five of them being off trail. Monday was our first real day of warm temps here in Montana. The morning started off rather muggy and temps climbed quickly. Finn and I were not used to the heat, and spent the morning sweating as we gained elevation. Aside from the warm temps the bush-whacking had us covered in ticks. I spent many moments through out the day pulling them off of us.

Here are a couple shots of Highwood peak. On the way to the summit of Mcleod Mountain, I found this hillside covered with Glacier Lilies.

The brown foliage in the bottom of this picture is last years Yarrow bloom. I can only imagine what it looks like in full bloom.

Here are some nice shooting stars. This ridge line is a good example of why I found elk here last year. These south facing slopes can be feed on at night and then it is and easy escape (for an elk) to the safety of steep north facing slopes.

And finally I had to put this in here. Driving around this morning doing some more scouting ( I was foiled by a road that the Subaru couldn't handle) I found these toms with a few hens, two days after the season and of course in a district where turkey hunting is not allowed.

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