Ron generally hunts public lands with traditional archery equipment. On rare occasions, he gets to hunt on private land. That was to be the case when he put in for the 426-20 Bull Elk Tag in the famed Missouri River Breaks. He used all of the Bonus Points he’d accumulated over the past decade or two and was finally successful in getting his “tag of a lifetime.”
Ron’s hunting buddy’s son-in law’s father ranches on thousands of acres in this gorgeous area in north central Montana. Before putting in for the tags, in mid-March, it was confirmed they could hunt on this man’s property the second week of September. So plans were made and vacations scheduled with work. In late August, Ron and his buddy made the six-plus hour drive to the ranch – not only to do some scouting, but to thank the land owner with some high-octane whiskey and ten hours of ranch-hand work.
Each evening they sat with the rancher on his porch, sipping whiskey and describing to him what they’d seen and where. They told lively stories of strong, mature bull elk carousing in the draws and big herds of cow elk languishing in early fall meadows. A couple of times, they saw a bi-plane fly overhead.
Sunday came, and the guys loaded up and went to bid the rancher ado. Ron’s hunting buddy said, “So we’ll see you on September 12th!” The rancher answered back casually, “Oh no, I’ve got a movie star gal coming in here with a film crew. I can’t have you guys messin’ that up. I’ve already got their check for $12,000.”
Ron is now scrambling to find a place he can access and hunt in HD426. He’s holding the tag of his lifetime.