Waking up to a snowy world! 11 degrees and 7″ of powdery new elk finding snow. It took us an hour and 10 minutes to make the 45 minute drive, due to snowy/ blowy conditions. We were pretty much the only truck on the road. At 6:40 we started hiking up our secret ridge off FR182. 7″ of snow, 11 degrees and sun just coming up.
The sun came up and our mountain became a world of pristine white covering the earth and trees, and a deep blue sky surrounding two orange clad guys.
After walking over a mile, we saw no tracks or animals, so we turned our tracks for home. Within a few minutes, while puzzling over some phantom tracks, there were genuine elk tracks with elk standing in them! First, a very dark colored cow appeard on the trail ahead. She had neither seen, smelled or heard us, so made her unhurried way down the side of the ravine. The boys quietly scrambled to bring their rifles to bear. Next another cow passed by, then a spike (illegal- too young) bull and finally another cow. We waited in vain for the Bull-of-Our-Dreams to show up, but he never did……
After lunch the wind came up and created a ground blizzard of blowing snow. Ben and I tried to drive to the school section on Bull Mountain, but the visibility was so poor and snow became so deep (on the uphill section of Mountain Ridge Rd), that David decided to turn back rather than potentially getting stuck and asking Sally to risk the poor roads after dark. So, we spent a quiet night at home, hoping for better weather in the morning.