Feb 26, 2008

Is This The Buck?

A reader asked about a buck taken by Eric Gardner with a bow in Arizona scoring 88 2/8. I haven't seen the picture he's looking at, but I believe the photo I took below is the same buck if the Eric Gardner photo is the same field photo I remember seeing (I don't remember the name of the hunter in the photo I saw.)

Feb 23, 2008

Blast from the Past! (Jaksick, '93)

Sam Jaksick Jr. hunted with us and took this buck in Arizona in 1993. We named the buck "Righty" - the official score after the 60 day drying period was 93 2/8 B&C. For the original story of this hunt click here for PART 1 or here for PART 2.

Feb 17, 2008

Bucks That Got Away - Part 3

This buck didn't exactly get away. The photo below was taken in 2002 and we named the buck Crossover. He was one of our Auction Tag candidates that year along with a buck we named DW (see post below) and JoeBoo (see post below.) We decided that JoeBoo was bigger than DW and that Crossover - being in an archery only unit - would be too much of a hassle, though we thought he might be slightly larger. Jason, the rancher, found Crossover's shed in November of 2002 and gave it to us. The horn, if you doubled it, would have scored 95 6/8 B&C. We took JoeBoo that year and he scored 95 B&C. We took DW the next year believing that DW was slightly bigger than the year before and he scored 94 B&C. Then, in 2004, Arizona changed the rules for Auction Tag hunters and allowed us to hunt the archery only area with a rifle. We took Crossover that year and, though we knew he was much smaller, we thought he'd still score over 90. He scored 90 6/8 B&C. One more year and I'm sure Crossover would have been over the hill and not an option for us on the auction tag - he almost got away.

Feb 12, 2008

DW vs JoeBoo

I was going through some old photos and thought this one was amazing! Some of you may have already seen this photo, but I thought it deserved another look. And remember, there was no photo trickery.

For those of you unfamiliar with the photo - the buck on screen left is DW and was taken by Pat Brewer in 2003 on an Arizona draw tag and scores 94 B&C and 97 2/8 SCI and has a broken prong and broken horn tip. The buck on screen right is JoeBoo, the current B&C World Record (tie) taken in 2002 by David Meyer on an Arizona auction tag and scores 95 B&C and 97 SCI.

Feb 7, 2008

Arizona Application Reminder

Antelope and Elk applications are due February 12th! Don't forget.

(I'm posting this more as a reminder to myself - otherwise I'll forget ;)

Feb 3, 2008

Why 90?

What's magical about the number 90? It was created by man and represents, although vaguely at times, how large a pronghorns horns are, but why not 85? Why not 95? Currently, we can say that 90 is significant because it represents roughly the top 33 of 1900 antelope entered into B&C's record book (12th edition). That's the top 1.7%.

Another way to figure it - if close to 3 million pronghorn have been taken by hunters since guns were invented then 90-inches means the top .001% for all-time!

For a method we can more easily grasp let's compare pronghorn with elk and mule deer.

The top 1.7% for antelope is 90-inches or more
The top 1.7% for typical elk is 419-inches or more
The top 1.7% for typical mule deer is 212 inches or more

The top 1.7% for non-typical elk is 450-inches or more
The top 1.7% for non-typical mule deer is 306-inches or more

Remember that these numbers are only relative given that the B&C Club has established their record book minimums on a relative basis across all species. Also note that these numbers are derived directly from B&C's record book, thus eliminating a lot of potentials trophies that were, for one reason or another, not entered.

I guess a more accurate measure would be to take the top 1 or 2 or even 5% of antelope, deer, and elk that have ever been taken.

One other thing to consider: I've mentioned this briefly before...an antelopes score is usually reflective of the horn's actual weight (which I believe should be used to determine absolute size), but sometimes there are bucks that score a lot more than others while the others weigh a lot more. This means that, though the inch measurements do give a good approximation of the bucks size, they are by no means the end all of measuring a bucks horns "true" size.

What does all this mean? It means that, in this world, the more rare something is the more valuable it is. In this case, the larger an animals horns are, the more rare it is and thus the more value it holds.

So...why 90? Because it's rare and rare things are beautiful to behold.

Feb 2, 2008

Arizona's 5 Worst Units That Have Giant Bucks

These are the units I hate to scout even though they've all produced giant bucks in the past and may produce giants in the future. I wouldn't apply for these units if I were you. Unless you like them for some reason - I can't see any reason why someone would like them. ;) In no particular order...

Unit 9: Too many trees. Too few antelope. Dylan Woods buck in 2000 was GIANT!

Unit 7: Too many trees. Way too few antelope. AZG&F seem to think there are a lot of antelope in this unit. I haven't seen them. I guess if you're an elk or deer hunter you might have better luck finding the antelope. The buck we called "Buddha" (2nd column over, 5th row down - hooks forward.) was GIANT!

Unit 8: Too many trees. Too few antelope. There are outfitters who like this unit. In 2004 I found a buck we named "Bigfoot" in this unit. TLH of AZOD fame scouted for this buck several different times and never once saw it. He took the buck on opening day. That just ain't right with antelope - to know a buck is there and never be able to find it. If you like that sort of thing then by all means, go right ahead. Robert Petersen's buck (pic below) in 2000 was GIANT!

Unit 17B: Too many private signs! But...John Gisi's buck in 2006 was GIANT!

Unit 19B: See 17B. But...David Meyer's buck in 2001 was GIANT!

As you can see, though these units may not be the most fun to scout they have all produced many giant bucks throughout the years and will most likely do so again.

Hakuba Tripod HG-503MX

It weighs only 4 lbs., can adjust from 11 inches high to 70 inches high, and can find antelope without even needing your assistance. What more could you want?! A few other reasons we prefer it over other tripods:

1. The twist lock knobs are quick and tight and if you're hiking with it by holding a leg and letting it hang down by your side the leg locks don't get caught on your pant pockets.

2. It comes with a tripod head. Not that it's a very good tripod head, but at least it's something if you can't afford to upgrade.

3. It has screws at the top of the legs that you can tighten just in case the leg pivot joint becomes loose - and it will. Some cheaper tripods don't have this feature.

4. You can get it at B&H for $289.95.

Is it the best tripod in the world. No. But it may very well be the best lightweight tripod in the world for your money. Hey, it's the one my Dad and I both use and we've used them all.