Sunday, March 25, 2012

BowAmerica- DIY Pronghorn Antelope

DIY Pronghorn Antelope

Read it here in the magazine itself.

  We all have been caught day dreaming at work of far off places in which we fullfil our childhood dreams of taking a trophy animal on a species not native our our normal hunting grounds. Wildebeest on the African plains, a 7x7 Rocky Mountain Elk in Montana, Dall Sheep in Alaska or a Big Mature Whitetail in South Texas.  For me it is the fastest land mammal in North America, the North American Pronghorn or Speed Goats as I'd like to call them.
  I have spent countless hours scouring videos, articles, blogs, BLM maps, Google Earth and hunting stories of others taking their trophies on the plains of North American.  A lot of people take them with a rifle and sit 200+ yards away while the goat stares at them, but my dreams are a little closer than that.  I want to be able to see my reflection in their eyes as I lift my range finder up to verify the yardage of my then equal.  Game and hunter facing each other at and 30 paces, lime old west gun slingers, me the drifter and he the salty country folk locked in a battle of wits and wills.  The drawing of his last breath and the exhale of mine, a symphony of power and grace, that results in a well placed arrow just behind his shoulder at the intersection of white and brown. A short yet vigorous run from the goat that results in the most monumental event in my hunting career up to this point, my first Speed Goat.  The crowd stands in applause the curtain falls and I win an Emmy for my film on hunting in Idaho. Well at least that is how it plays out within my mind, or something like that.
  Fast forward a few years and insert an opportunity hunt public land in the great state of Idaho and more specifically South East Idaho.  Top that off with a friend who is a local who has endless connections and the ability to give much needed support on the ground and I am poised to embark an adventure that will for me at least be forever remembered.
  So now that I have the pie in the sky plans laid out in front of me where do I go from here?  To start, my hunt is all public land and though from what I have heard from others and what I have seen from pictures there are big goats out there, it is really still just hear say and promises.  But, I do believe I can do a lot of scouting from my office in California of the land and topography in South East Idaho.  Here is a basic rundown of my normal routine.

·         A simple Google search can do wonders for providing information on an area. Articles, a guides notes, and details from past hunters on a general area. You will find restaurants, archery shops, motels and endless information and possible contacts on an area that you have never even see. It is a daunting task at this point, but you need to start somewhere.
·         Click during the search click on the Images tab and start the endless hours of looking at pictures that have been posted by people and websites.  It is amazing what pride will do to a hunter, with all the advancements in technology our bar room boasting has only moved to the computer for everyone to see.  People tend to give way to much information on who, what, when, where and why's of the hunt, especially when the harvest something. Also take not of key geographical features in the back ground to help you get your bearings when in the field.
·         In my case with Pronghorn, water during the August and September is the best way to hunt them. Find water on public land and you most likely find antelope smacking their lips for a refreshing drink. So I looked up pictures of windmills, watering holes, hay fields and photo blogs.  Photographers may not pursue game in the sense that you or I, but they hunt game with a lens and share it freely.  You'd be amazed of the quality of information you can get from hikers, geocachers and wildlife photographers.
Now that the basic information has been found it is time to get specific and look at maps and more specifically aerial photographs of watering holes and hopefully game trails.  Last year I hunted and new area and by only searching Google Earth and my other best friend Cabelas Recon I set myself up on a spot that had a 250lb+ pig trotting right at me within 15 minutes of being in on being set up.  
  Look for programs and information on the web to help you set up what you can from your home. Lastly don’t be afraid to call up shops for information on the area you are targeting, search content and ask questions on regionally specific forums.  The worst they can say is nothing or no, at the least they may give you some info and maybe just maybe they will invite you over for a drink and tell you to bring your map when you get to town.

Pease be the journey,

The Bearded Boar


  1. It’s hard to find knowledgeable people on this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks for sharing this with others.

  2. Atta boy Tony, Let me know when you get here and how you do... I may run into you out there chasing them speed goats!