Katie and I left our home in Montana early yesterday morning and made the long drive down to the Manti Unit in Utah. We drove to a predetermined spot that I’d hoped would hold elk and sure enough, we heard bugles right out of the gate! We’re focusing our scouting efforts for the first couple days in an area in the northern end of the unit that has some deep canyons that have very limited roads and trails. It’s perfect country to hold elk.


After leaving the truck to hit the trail, we watched our wind and then circled back in toward the bugles we had been hearing. It wasn’t long before we had cows spotted and began a little practice stalk. At 50 yards we held tight and watched as two cows fed towards us. It wasn’t long before a raghorn bull started pushing the cows around in the meadow and right by us! A couple hundred yards away there was a deep bugle coming from the aspens, so we crept toward the bull in some tough wind, getting within 50 yards before we bumped his cows and the gig was up.

We didn’t get a chance to see the bull, but he sure sounded like a big fella. We made our way back to the trailhead in the dark and loaded into the Tundra for another night spent sleeping in the back. This morning we decided to head further north to check for some good glassing vistas. We brought along a Rokon 2 Wheel Drive Trailbreaker motorcycle that our good friends the Racicot’s let us borrow for this hunt. What a way to travel these tough Utah mountain roads. This bike will go anywhere, but we stuck to the Forest Service roads and found some great spots to glass.

We didn’t find any elk (we slept in a little), but we found some great springs and lots of fresh elk sign before making the trip back to our camp spot. Our packs are packed and we’re planning on heading farther down the ridge from the trailhead tonight in search of more elk. The trail is restricted to horse and foot travel only so we’re excited about stretching the legs a bit and checking out some new country.