View Full Version : Really need to save up for a tipi...

09-10-2003, 01:51 PM
During this weekend's hunt my buddy and I agreed that a tipi with stove would really have been the thing to have. Getting wet with no way to dry is not good! Also learned not to trust other's info without verifying first hand (see notes on water and trail)!

Day 1: Drive to trail head. Due to pouring rain and hail, wait in truck for over an hour before packing in. Didn't find trail immediately. Bushwhacked and turned a 90 minute hike into a three hour one while carrying heavy load. Lots of very fresh bear tracks. Barely got our tents set up before pouring rain. Rained so hard couldn't hunt that evening. Went to bed at seven. Friend's snores are of high volume and frequent in nature. Initially sounded like bear growling.

Day 2: After rain let up, hiked and hunted without success. Did enjoy another massive deluge which drenched us. While hunting, notice friend's knife is loose in sheath and warn him that he could lose it. He pushes it back in and it goes through sheath and slices his finger. Very nice knife with good steel and sharp blade. Lots of blood. Duct tape good. Discovered that camp was set up 15 feet from salt lick and the main hangout for the local cattle herd. When rain paused, flies came out. Cattle resented our intrusion. Only spring we could find was two inches deep over mud and festooned with cow pies so I had to hike back out, get more water and hike back in. Shot grouse on hike back in for nice dinner. Foolishly failed to test new stove before trip. Almost self-immolated while trying to get it going, so chewed on jerky and went to bed to the sound of rain pounding on my tent. Friend still snores. Unidentified rodent tries to burrow under my tent in the vicinity of my head. Cattle low. Brought friend diet Coke on return trip, half of which he spilled in his tent. Not worried about bears, just screams disturbing my sleep.

Day 3: Everything soaked. Boots really do leak. One pair of socks only dry clothes. Boots so wet, socks join remainder of clothing as wearable sponges. Decide to pack it in and dry out. Leave tents and sleeping bags but pack out all wet clothing that now weighs exponentially more than when packed in. Sun comes out to make hike back very warm. Go to McDonald's for epic breakfast. Four hour drive home. Do much laundry. Sleep in bed. No bears. No rodents. No cows. Friend is in basement. No snoring either.

Day 4: Buy $24 ponchos at REI as expensive Gore-Tex is not cutting the mustard. Drive back, wait for pause in storm to hike in -- again. Fresh elk tracks on trail going opposite direction from us. Dramatic storm. Try to take pictures of rainbow over camp. Can see both ends but no gold. Hear elk bugle on top of opposite mountain. Decide to run over and up there to try to call him in before dark. Lightning storm of epic proportions. Beautiful view to northeast of mountain range lit by setting sun and spider webs of lightning. Price of view is downpour and nearby lighting strikes. Survive to hike back to camp in dark through oak brush. Not worried about bears. They're too smart to be out in the rain. Ponchos great when standing in rain. Not so great hiking through scrub oak in the dark. Rains all night. Too loud to hear cows, snores, rodents, growls or screams.

Day 5: Hunting partner discovers he doesn't have hunting or driver's licenses. Thinks they're back at car, so I tell him not to worry as we'll get it once he gets an elk. Leave camp and discover later that he doesn't have his release. He returns to camp to search for it. After some time he returns unable to find it. Lost somewhere in the woods the night before. He is now hiking and not hunting. Good news is he doesn't have to lug bow through brush like me. We are starting late. Go back to opposite hill to chase bugling bull. Call and call with no response. Go higher and higher. See bull 150 yards away. That is about 120 yards too far for bow. Time to go home. Hike back to camp to pack up. Sun shines brightly. Tents are nicely dry for packing. Hot hike out. Fresh elk tracks on path out going opposite direction from us. Friend finds $450 hunting license for future framing. Go to McDonald's for light lunch. Long drive home due to construction and mud slide near Glenwood Springs. Start planning next hunt...

09-10-2003, 05:01 PM
That was funny. Soggy bowhunter that I have been this year, I just got a set of Frogg Toggs today. They're a little noisier than I remember, but 11.5 oz for a jacket and pants looks good. This boy is tired of being soggy even in the watertight parts.

09-10-2003, 07:18 PM

Your calmness, and humor, in the face of all those tribulations is admirable. Do plan that next hunt. Gotta be an improvement over this one, ya know!?

Nevada Dan
09-10-2003, 10:45 PM
Chris, Its trips like this you'll still be talking about when your huddled up in the rocking chair, too old to hunt. Thanks for sharing the "humerous" side. "Tuition" always has a price (I've paid and am still paying... /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/frown.gif ) May your next trip be all elk!

09-11-2003, 07:42 AM
I'm headed back out alone in two weeks and will hunt the weekend after that as well. I'm actually hoping for colder weather and will be carrying a bivy sack and tarp rather than a tent so I can keep my camp with me and go a bit lighter.

Hopefully I can regale you with a traditional "hook and bullet" glossy mag type story upon my return detailing my successful hunt complete with pics of my trophy bull. That or an epic saga of snow! I have since learned that the springs are farther up the draw so water should not be a problem.

I had Frogg Toggs but after handling them I returned them before trying them out. Just didn't think they would hold up to hunting. Let me know how they work out for you. Can't say enough good about gaiters and the poncho. Left the knees a bit exposed in really thick brush but I was able to walk through the very wet woods without sweating while keeping my lower legs dry. When the rain started up (it was not a drizzle, but a down pour), we threw on the ponchos and made like mushrooms. We were able to quickly cover our gear and ourselves without removing packs.

Patrick, I've seen postings before about a possible Kifaru poncho and you have my vote. I can't think of anything better for my type of hunting than something I could wear and sleep under, particularly if it could be used with a stove. The REI poncho is good but a bit short in front for someone 6' tall. I have the "backpacker style" that unsnaps in the back to provide extra length to fit over a pack. If you could whip one up before the 19th, I'd be much obliged! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

09-11-2003, 08:48 AM

Uh, the 19th of what?

I note your comments re the poncho we're working on. It's meant to connect to the front of our Paratarp. The combo will still be stunningly lightweight. The intent is to wear the poncho till ready to combine the two, then attach the poncho as you climb into what has become a "tent" rather than an open faced tarp. Get the idea? Works too, as I've done it.

09-11-2003, 09:23 AM
September. If you need any final field tests, I'd be more than happy to volunteer!