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I was lucky and got a nice bull on Monday evening! Copied and pasted the story from my Facebook - Feel free to skip if you are not a story person and go right to the pics!

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July 6th will be a day I never forget. After 6 years of applying for a Michigan bull tag, I was one of lucky ones to get drawn. To put this into perspective, there were a total of 38,000 people who applied for bull tags with a weighted draw 248,000 application. My 6 points got me selected out of the 248,000.

I drew the second hunting season, units I and X, with hunting dates of December 12th - 20th. As soon as this was confirmed I immediately knew which guide to contact, Scott Connell, as I have been following him for years online guiding Michigan Elk hunters and knew he was one of the best out there. I wasnt going to chance being one of the roughly 30% that goes unsuccessful on these hunts and I wanted an opportunity at a mature bull. I knew without heavy pre-season scouting, and not having the time to scout, I doubted I could do it alone. I contacted Scott and I was set to be his first bull Elk hunter.

Friday the 11th my brother, my dad, and myself arrived and checked into a hotel in Gaylord Michigan. 6:30am of the 12th we arrived at Scott's house and set out shortly after to chase some Elk. It was near blizzard conditions and we were set to get a foot of snow in most areas. After checking out some private land and then moving onto some state land, we cut some tracks that Scott knew were fresh and from a good sized bull. I was able to track for a few hundred yards before we reached the border of my unit. At this point the second bull elk hunter with us, who had this as his unit, was able to take of the track. A few hundred yards later he sealed the deal of a beautiful 7x7 bull. We cut some more trails walking thousands of yards in heavy snow, through clear cuts and rolling hills, gave chase, but ended the night with no more shots. We did get onto a block where there were some cows and young bulls that got pushed, and after seeing 3 bulls charge within 75 yards of me I yelled BIG BULL! I'm not a seasoned elk hunter, so every bull looked huge to me. These bulls turned out to be rather young ones, and Scott joked "you're not able to hunt by yourself" after that one.

Sunday the 13th we were back at Scott's at 6:30am and headed back to state land. We cut some fresh tracks of a group of cows and at daylight began the chase. Within a few hundred yards we were able to get up to a group of cows. The first cow hunter Andy was up to the plate and able to seal the deal on a young cow! When you are in the middle of northern michigan, with a foot of fresh snow pulling everything down, it sure makes for some close opportunities and Andy was able to seal the deal!

Next we picked up Mike, the next cow hunter up to the plate. Shortly after picking him up on some private property we were able to locate some cows in a clear cut and started the stalk. We bumped them when we first saw them but Scott knew right where they were going. We got ready and began the stalk and a short time later had cut them off. A group of 20+ cows stepped out and Mike laid the hammer down. Shortly after I noticed some movement and whistled to Scott that a group of bulls was coming. This was one of the most surreal moments of my life, when 8 or so young bulls charged by at 50 yards to keep up with the cows. I can only hope to experience something that amazing again in my lifetime. We then picked up the tracked for a few hundred yards but backed out. After coming back an hour later and gaining permission to track into private property they were able to locate Mike's big cow! DNR showed up (as they always do for Elk hunts, all shots even suspected misses must be inspected as this is a very managed hunt) as well as the Wardens TV show to check it out.

A few hours later we were on the tracks of "@sshole" as he is called, and in a short time I see why he lived up to his nickname. This is a GIANT 6x6 mature bull who always seems to evade everyone. Never slowing down, busting every hunter, and checking in and out between state land and private property where he cant be touched. A real seasoned and mature bull. We gave it a solid group guide effort but no one was able to get a hunter on him for a shot. At the end of the hunt another guide in Scott's group was able to get a hunter on a nice bull but in the end the bull escaped with just a flesh wound. Sunday was excitement through and through and I couldn't wait for Monday!

Monday morning rolled around, 6:30am, and now it's just Scott and myself. My brother, who had been filming the entire time for Droptine Ridge had to head back to work. We first checked some private land corn fields with no luck. We then moved back out to some state land and were able to pick up "assholes" tracks again and gave chase. We worked a few hundred yards through a clear cut following his fresh sign, a giant bed, then the telltale sign we got busted, tracks of him running and kicking up dirt. He pushed into private and the chase was over for now.

We hopped over to another state land and we picked up a solid track and again gave chase. A few hundred yards later and again found the sign we were busted, this time by the group of bulls that this bull worked into. Scott did his best to sort the tracks and we continued for hundreds of yards more before we caught up and saw that we took the trail of a group of young bulls. It was awesome to see, but we backed out after this.

We moved onto another area, found some old bull sign that turned to fresh bull sign, and chased a bull thousands of yards to find that it was a broken horned spike bull. All this effort, and here stands at 70 yards. Scott and I couldn't help but laugh.

With just over an hour of hunting time left, I asked Scott the game plan. He said were going to shoot south and glass some farm fields. Just a short time into the drive we were notified that there was a big bull working through. We arrived there shortly after 5pm and immediately sprinted to the back birms where we could get a glance at the bulls. Scott immediately said it was a mature shooter bull along with a second bull who was nice but needed another year or two. We quickly closed to distance to 250 yards, Scott set up the sticks, and I let my 300 Winchester Magnum bark! The bull lurched hard, walked about 15 yards where I let the 300 bark again and he dropped in his tracks.

The hunt was over! The last 3 days were full of excitement, very physically demanding, far more than I even imaged, and it was all over. After passing on roughly 25 young bulls, we were able to get on one that completed my dreams. I had a monster 6x6 bull down weighing probably close to 700lbs live weight.

We walked many many miles through the deep snow, thick back woods, clear cuts, highs and lows, and it was finally over. Many more hours were spent chasing elk, but I tried to get all the highlights in. This is a hunt that will forever be in my memory, and one I wish everyone who loves hunting and the outdoors could experience. Huge props to my guide Scott, a top notch person, phenomenal guide, and worked his butt off to get everyone on Elk!

Anyone who likes hunting should definitely check out my brothers page Droptine Ridge listed above, although he wont have my hunt, he will have lots of awesome footage coming out of the hunt.
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Congrats!
What a beast! thanks for sharing your hunt of a lifetime with us.
 

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It was awesome having you as a hunter, Kyle! You did everything I asked and without slowing down or complaining or second guessing. We decided to drive from Indian River to Johannesburg for the last 30 minutes of daylight and it worked out.

Truly enjoyed having you and your brother around for a few days. Congratulations again on a fantastic bull!
 
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