Maybe things are getting better.
After taking care of the necessities around the house and the office, I headed out for a few stands. Strictly business, you know. Product testing is top priority around here! ;) The first stand was for bobcats. No one home. Second set was in a large basin where V2 killed a nice male a few weeks ago.
I set up and started the Fury with Jack Rabbit Distress. I began ranging a few landmarks with my Leicas and as I swung to the second landmark, I saw a coyote coming to the call already! Couldn't have been much more than a minute. It was pretty cautious--moving slow and stopping often. It took her almost two and a half more minutes to make it 100 yards into the first opening in the sage. I let her come a little further but I knew she was inside 220 yards and when she stopped again, I let the 35 grain Berger loose. She spun a couple of times and went down. Sweet!
I let the call play decreasing the volumn as the stand went along. At 20 minutes, I threw in a couple of Domain Howls and switched to Baby Cottontail. A few minutes later I caught another coyote swinging around the call several hundred yards out. It worked its way to 369 yards and I felt it was going to keep coming in but it just turned and started moving away. It was 500 yards out by the time I switched to The Kiss of Death and it came back a few yards but never got back into range again. There was a fence line that it moved off to that I suspect was it's territorial boundary. Oh well.
Here's the first coyote.
She turned out to be in heat. Looks rubbed so it seems the season is changing.
The next stand had two or three coyotes light up just a few hundred yards away but I think they busted me on my way to the stand. Great location though. I'll be back.
It was thawing out and getting muddy so I left that ranch and headed north. I found a piece of State ground that accessed some BLM and walked in a little less than a half mile. I saw some tracks that were big enough for a mountain lion. They may have just melted into the snow but it looked like lion country so I started with Fawn Distress.
Well, the lion didn't show up but at 30 minutes a nice big male coyote came towards the call then turned to circle downwind. I was afraid he might get into a shallow drainage and get out of sight but he stayed up where I could see him. He stopped where he was downwind of the caller but he hadn't reached my wind yet. My Bipod fell into the thawing snow three times (I guess it needs snow shoes) before I could find a spot to maintain my hold on the coyote. I finally made a 193 yard shot. Nothing like the sound of a 35 grain Berger meeting coyote flesh.
He was one of the biggest coyotes I've killed this year. Love those old blocky headed coyotes! I had left my Yote Tote on the first coyote so I had to make my TBO e-caller sling do double duty as a drag. Actually worked out pretty well. It was a lot easier to carry the Fury than that coyote!
Here's the male.
He looked a lot prettier before I drug him to the truck. I may have him tanned. Nice long guard hairs.
I stopped to visit an old rancher who was probably one of the earliest coyote callers in the county. He's 86 years old now and his legs are getting bad so he doesn't get out calling much any more. But, he still goes out and helps feed 500 head of cows every day. He had to come out and look the coyotes over. He obviously still loves the coyote hunt. Wish I could talk him into letting me get him out. I told him I could do a drop-and drive for him but he wouldn't take me up on it. I wish he would. I'd like to honor one of the pioneers of our area.
Anyway, was a nice day and it looks like the January Blues may be lessening around here. Hope they keep coming to the call!