Braggin’ Rights Fit For a Fourteen Year Old

Last Friday was opening day of elk hunting for rifle hunters in the Black Hills. I was attending the Women in Ag conference all day in Spearfish, but when I pulled in the driveway, I could see our red Doge pickup off in the distance headed up the neighbor’s road. It was easy to tell that the hydraulic bale bed arms were raised but I could barely make out the elk it was hauling. I knew it was my son’s because I’d gotten the word earlier on my voicemail when I was about twenty minutes from home that our son had harvested a 6X7 bull elk early that evening.

As soon as I got my bags in the house, I grabbed my camera and drove to Pringle to meet my boys and see the elk.

When someone from Pringle gets an elk, it’s tradition to stop at the Hitchrail Bar and Restaurant so friends and neighbors can gather around to take a look and discuss the animal and the hunt.

There was at least one other hunter from out of town that had driven through town and had a bull in the back of his pickup but proudly, my son had been the first Pringle boy to get his tag filled opening day.

Originally, our hunter had intended to shoot an open sights 30-30 but when the elk was over 200 yards, he was encouraged to switch guns and use a 243 to make the shot. Once the elk was in sight, he wasn’t willing to take any chances or miss an opportunity to get his elk, so with one clean shot, he filled his elk tag.

As a landowner we receive one elk tag per household due to the damage from large herds of elk on hayfields and fences. This is the second bull elk he’s harvested, which is more than some grown men can say. The only downside to a hunt like this is that it makes for a short hunting season.

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