Deer Hunt in the Black Range

When:

November 11th Ė 14th

Where:

Hunt Unit 21 in the Black Range on the eastern side of the Gila National Forest, New Mexico.We hunted south of Hermosa.

Attendees:

Bruce, Chuck (Me), Joe, and Eric

About the trip:

 

My friend Bruce organized a hunt in Unit 21.This was an over-the-counter rifle deer hunt.Bruce arrived on Thursday evening and hunted Friday morning by himself and bagged a nice 10-point mule deer.He also had a good look at another large buck, but nobody was there yet to take it.By the time the rest of us arrived late on Friday, Bruce had already dressed and skinned his deer.He only hiked out the head and front quarters and waited for help to arrive to get the rest of the deer.Joe, Bruce, and I picked up the rest of the deer using my truck late Friday night.We hunted for an hour before dark, but didnít see anything.Friday night, Bruce cooked up some of the tenderloin from his fresh kill.It was delicious!

 

On Saturday morning we woke at 4am to see 6 inches of snow on the ground!A big winter storm had moved in during the night.We left camp at 5am and hiked a mile east to begin our hunt.Joe and I worked the ridges to the east of camp and Bruce and Eric worked the ridges south of us.Besides a few tracks, Joe and I didnít see anything and Eric and Bruce only saw a few does.The snow had really slowed down the activity.We all hunted until after lunch and returned to camp cold and weary.I climbed into my sleeping bag and napped for a few hours.That evening it was cold as ever and still snowing.We built a roaring fire and cooked some elk burritos and drank some beer.We were all in bed by 8pm, exhausted.

 

On Sunday morning we woke again at 4am and it was again snowing.It was also bone-chilling cold!Bruceís wall tent doesnít have a stove, so it got cold.We left camp around 5:15am and again headed east.Eric was coming down with a nasty cold and opted to not hunt this morning.Joe, Bruce, and I split up to try and flush some deer from one of the canyons.Same as Saturday, the visibility was horrible and glassing the opposite sides of the canyons was impossible.I headed back to camp around 9am.Joe and Bruce jumped a buck that was bedded down under a tree, but Joe wasnít able to get a shot off.Bruce had a good look, but wasn't carrying a gun since he used his tag already.They made it back to camp around 10 and we started to break camp.Poor Bruce, his wall tent was a mess from the mud and snow.He will have to set it up at home to clean and dry out.The last thing we did was cut up Bruceís deer for easier transport.It hung for a couple days in temps in the mid-30s.Perfect temps to hang a deer!Bruce gave me half a backstrap, canít wait to try it out! The road out was real mucky and slick, but nothing four Toyotas couldnít handle.

 

The hunt was real challenging because of the nasty weather.The hikes were only 3-4 miles, not bad, but in the deep snow it what made it difficult.The snow sure was beautiful though.The cold is what really got me. I need to get some better gear for next year.I need to get a gun too so I donít have to borrow Bruceís 270 again.

 

Here are a few of the pictures I took.The rest are in an album.All the pictures are sized down, but original resolution images can be provided if anyone wants one.

 

 
























Bruce's ten-point buck.





The blue sky broke through the storm temporarily.




 



















 

Bruce cooks up some fresh tenderloin!



 

Went and picked up the dressed out deer.





 




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joe working the opposite slope from me.



 

 

The fresh snow was beautiful.

 

 

 




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Toyota hunt camp! Two late model Tacomas, one 1991 4x4 truck, and one Tundra.

Here is me, just back from Sunday's hunt, cold as hell!!!!!!!

 


 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Me getting ready to take the tent down Sunday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eric on Saturday.

 


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