Recently, Gearfire’s own Adan McLain experienced his first ever antelope rifle hunt. It took a bit of work and good luck, but his hunt was successful. Hear all about it in his own words below. And be sure to check out Adam’s hunting adventures around the globe on his YouTube channel.
Two Days In Colorado – by Adam McLain
I’ve been applying to draw an Antelope/Pronghorn Tag in Arizona for the last 17 years with no luck. Thankfully,I have a good friend in Colorado who helped me apply for an antelope hunt there. My first time applying, I drew a tag! The state of Colorado gave me two days to hunt, so I was on my way.
After flying to Colorado, I got to the area I would be hunting. Before heading out, I wanted to make sure my rifle was still sighted in after the flight. I took a couple shots at 200 yards and everything was good to go. I was ready to start my first rifle antelope hunt.
The next morning we woke up at 4am, loaded our gear in the truck and headed out to find the speed goats. Sunday morning (my first day of hunting) we saw over 15 bucks with only 1 buck that was a “shooter”.
This antelope was everything I was looking for in a trophy; something I would be proud of. He was a wall-mounter for the office at Gearfire for sure!
But this antelope was big for a reason. He didn’t get this big by being dumb. He was smart (way smarter than I). I spent the good part of Sunday trying to put a stalk on this big guy, but I could never get within range of him. The closest I was able to get was 1275 yards. Being an ethical hunter, I didn’t want to take the chance at a bad shot that only wounded him. I let him walk out of sight Sunday evening, hoping to get back on him Monday morning.
After hunting from sun up to sun down opening day with no breaks I was beat and in bed by 7pm. I was up very early the next morning for my last day to hunt. My Friend Jesse and I spent most of Monday morning looking for this big guy but had no luck turning him up. With only the last half of the day to hunt and high winds starting to pick up, I started to panic that I would be going home with my tag in my pocket. We decided to change our strategy.
There was one buck I saw from a distance earlier in the day that I wanted a better look at. We went back to that spot, and luckily he was sill in the same area, but over 2000 yards out. We came up with a quick game plan to get into shooting distance.
During this time of the year, the antelope are rutting and the bucks are in search of females (doe). We stalked him with a doe antelope decoy. we got within 1000 yards of him and sat there hoping to decoy him in the rest of the way. After a long stare down, he committed on coming in.
Within a few seconds, he came from 1000 yards to 450 yards! I dialed my turret to 450 and sent 140 grain bullet down range at him. One shot and down, he dropped in his tracks.
Later that night, we had back straps on the grill. He wasn’t the biggest Antelope out there, but he sure did taste good!