We lose wild places every day, some in small swaths, and others in such grand scale that it makes me wonder what will be left in 100 years. And yet I think there is hope. The elk still holds a spot of mysticism in the American ethos of the West and their larger than life reputation lends itself to a fanaticism I believe and hope will end up saving them. So many individuals, groups, and even industry businesses are taking a lead in the conservation of our wild places and the wildlife that inhabit them. It takes a small dedicated outspoken few to keep this movement going, imagine how that would change if rather than “The few”, we had “The many”.
While diverse in appearance, size and table fare (depending on who you ask), all five commonly recognized species of salmon exhibit native life histories that take them on journeys from their home in the freshwater to the ocean and back. Depending on the preparation, all five species are tableworthy before they are “colored-up” and prepped for the spawn. With that said, there are few people that will turn down a properly prepared smoked salmon dip...
Hands wrap around the base of my horns and give a slight tug. Being pulled from the ground is like a birth of sorts. Parts of me are stark white than have been buried and protected- but I can feel the green moss that blankets my horns dislodge with the movement. Abruptly I feel the grips of the earth loosen and I am free. I sit in a lap of crisscrossed knees and stare into a face tinged with awe and joy. I was a Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep ram.
When you hear about a deer camp in Montana, what comes to mind? You probably think about tents, cold weather, hiking many miles looking for deer, hunting hard during the day, skinning, quartering and packing out harvested deer, camp food, stories told around the tent at night and the hard work that goes into it all. You can picture it all in your mind because you have either been there, or you’ve heard stories. Now picture that same scenario, but picture this deer camp full of women, and only women.
At 64-years old, Dave Born never thought it would actually come to this; to have to hike a couple of miles and crawl his way through 100 yards of prairie just to conceal himself behind some abandoned farm equipment in the hopes of sending a 150-grain bullet into one of the 60 pronghorn feeding in the field below. Behind him, his sons smiled. He had made the hike, as they knew he would. Despite his bad knees, he also covered the 100-yards to the old thresher. Once he brought the rifle to his shoulder, there was never a doubt that he wouldn’t make the shot. The boys just needed to get him there.