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Maine Moose Hunt 2007


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mooselying.jpg

15pt, 44" spread, 760 pound Maine bull moose-as he lay.

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Happy Maine Moose hunter.

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Hunter with master caller.

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My hunting buddies, Scott and Ethan.

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Dick getting up close and personal.

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Getting him out.

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Chevy's rule-I guess.

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He be a big boy!

The story. Me, my subpermittee Scott, his son Ethan and my guide friend Dick scouted all day on Sunday. We drove for hours and hours, miles and miles through moose country looking for sign. We were looking mostly for broken tree branches along the edges of logging roads and old twitch trails where rutting bulls rake their antlers and break off branches, with the higher the “breakage” the bigger the bull. But this year was strange and we found little if any new “breakage” so concentrated on prints in the dirt roads. We located a few good looking spots for the following morning and headed back to camp.

I was like a kid the night before his first deer hunt and didn’t sleep a wink but sat up until 4:00AM when we all got packed up into the truck and headed into the woods. We stashed a flat bed trailer off the side on the way in and made it to our first spot by 6:00 or so. Legal light was 6:10AM+-, but it was overcast and sprinkling as we trooped up high on some logging roads to a spot where Dick wanted to call with his home made birch bark cone call. He felt very confident that he could call in a bull and after hearing his plaintive and drawn out cow in heat moans I was beginning to believe. Scott who has been on more moose hunts than me but also has never drawn a permit has mega hearing (he always hears gobblers before me) thought he heard the distant “Hmmph” of a bull. I couldn’t hear a thing. It sounds like a distant muffled gunshot according to these more seasoned moose hunters and callers. We relocated a couple of times and Scott and Ethan still thought they heard some bull grunts but Dick who has worse hearing than me wasn’t sure. Still Scott insisted a bull was on its way.

We heard 3 gunshots a ways off and a truck pull up somewhere within earshot so figured we were buggered up at this spot and began walking back in the direction of the truck with Dick and Scott about 15 yards in front of me and Ethan. As we came over a high rise in the road Dick and Scott suddenly hit the ground and hissed “He’s right THERE!”. I scrambled up and could see about a foot of moose paddles above the rise in the road. I instinctively headed to the side to a huge pile of tree length logs that had been stacked by the loggers in the area. I cat crawled along the edge and popped up where I could get a solid rest and there he was 85 yards away just to the side of this wide logging road facing directly at me and looking rather spooky. I settled the cross hairs just above the chest and at that instant he started to wheel and head to the woods. “BOOM! The Savage .300 spoke and I didn’t see the reaction as I worked the lever for another round. Dick barked “Hit him again” and I tried to find him in the scope as he lurched into the woods to the side. By this time Scott was beside me with his back up rifle and we could make out his huge black body about 20 yards in the woods and he looked like he was lying down but again Dick said “I think he is standing give it to him.” I had agreed with Scott that we wouldn’t let this Moose get too far into the woods and wanted him dropped as close to the road as we could. Scott has never drawn a moose permit since they began the lottery in 1980 and has helped me drag bucks off mountains and is my best turkey and big game hunting buddy. Its legal for a subpermittee to shoot along with the permit holder so I gave him the nod and we both fired at the same time and he dropped hard at the shots. After some hugs and handshakes but no kisses we made our way over and he was still alive and struggling. After the appropriate amount of time we decided to end it for him and I placed a finishing shot just behind the elbow and he was done.

Whew! What a magnificent beast, made all the more special to be hunting with an old 1930’s Maine rifle, good friends and to have him called in with a handmade birch bark call.

After the field dressing, which Dick insisted on doing most of since I was too slow for his liking, we were able to clear a trail right to the moose and Scott backed his truck in and dragged him to the roads edge. The trailer was retrieved and after some quick work with a chainsaw winch we were off to the checking/weigh-in station and then the butcher. It was still an all day ordeal as we watched him get registered and weighed and then skinned at butcher. I drove home with the head and hide in case I want to have a shoulder mount done. I cant fit one in my house, and they are pricey, so may have a skull mount done by friend with the flesh eating beetles.

The meat will be ready by the end of the week and I plan to split it between me, Scott and Dick. I just made a call to my deer butcher and he's gonna let me store the head and hide in his walk-in cooler until the taxidermists I want to use get back from various moose hunts.

A quick yet awesome hunt! I feel privileged.

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  • Brad Eden

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Briarscratch

You ole Ridgerunna!   I knew you'd get it done.  Good work to you and all your buddies. I wish I could hear that call.

Here's my favorite shot

moosebrad2.jpg

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Brad,

Very nice.

Is this your first moose? Congradulations!

Yes, and likely my last. I have been applying for a permit since 1982 and finally was drawn this year. The prep and work and cost is rather robust as well!

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Greg Hartman

Wow!  Congrats!

That is sure one BIG critter!  I don't know a thing about moose hunting.  Is he a big one as moose go?

Now I understand the old joke:  "Where do you hit a moose?  Right by the truck."  Ta-dum!

Especailly cool to take him with the old rifle.

Congrats again (and I hope you like moose meat - you are gonna be working on that for a good while).

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You ole ridgerunna!

It aint easy with almost 2000 "members" looking over your shoulder. I gots a rep to upkeep. :<img src=:'>  :D

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grousehunter 61
Sounds like a great hunt, we are happy for you and envious at the same time. Looks like you have a great crew to hunt with.
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Looks like the freezer will be well stocked this winter. Congratulations. Job well done.
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