A CHALLENGING APPROACH TO ANTELOPE HUNTING
Hunting in our family has always been about memories and quality time spent together in the mountains. This hunt was no different as we set out to fill my sister-in-law’s, Kristen Richardson, Limited Entry Antelope tag here in our home state of Utah.
Given Kristen’s health, being a whopping 9 months pregnant, we knew that our approach to this hunt would be very different. I openly joked with Kristen that she wasn’t going to “waddle down” an antelope so we had to base our stalks based on pure opportunity, knowing that if we went after a particular buck, we’d have a very good chance at a shot opportunity.
Limited to short walks, we were very fortunate that the unit provided a great deal of road access, allowing us let our optics do the walking to glass over the dozens of bucks that were running and rutting.
Some of us were working harder than others. My cute wife never passes up a chance to snuggle our niece McKenna.
After sizing up a few of our options, knowing that we had limited time on the hunt, we watched a great buck feed up over the top with his does into a small rocky canyon. As soon as he was out of sight, we checked the wind and circled wide to see if he was really “the one.”
After sneaking around a pile of rocks, we took one last look and told Kristen it was her tag. She got down on the shooting sticks, settled the crosshairs and delivered a text book shot.
While we weren’t able to see where he ran after the shot, we knew it was a solid hit. Upon climbing out of the canyon we quickly spotted the expired antelope. High-fives, hugs and a celebratory smooch between Kristen and her Husband Orrie followed.
Within minutes of the shot and photos, Orrie and I quickly broke down the antelope to ensure this beautiful meat would be enjoyed for many meals to come.
Post celebration puddle jumping with my cute niece. For me, this hunt was as successful as any hunt could be. Family, memories, meat and photos that’ll help preserve these moments forever.
Photos and story by Matt Davis