So saturday I took the family to the big town to do our grocery shopping and on our way home I decided to take the long way so i could drive through the deer unit I drew this year. on my way there I spotted a herd of about 150 elk in the badlands. in a general area that was to open the next morning for any elk. I stopped and watched them and they hold up in a basin and acted like they might stay there all night. so I decided to get home (an hour away) go buy a tag before the store clowed, grab my gun ammo etc and my plan was to go out and sleep in my truck and get up early walk up the hill and at daylight shoot one down in the hole. Well daylight came and not an elk to be seen. i saw lots of people and heard shots in the distance so decided the heck with it im going home. I was walking back to my pickup and I look across the draw and there are 4 cows and a spike. on a general tag I am not picky its just a meat hunt for me anyway...So I hit the ground and ranged them. there were at 750ish. Now all I had was my tikka 338 win with a leupold 2.5-8x36mm Boone and Crockett Reticle. So my max range I felt was about 500 or a little over. I knew I couldnt make the shot and they were slowly getting further away and there was no way to get closer other than openly walk toward them.. so I decided to quickly enter my load data in my shooter app on my phone and get the clicks I needed. I had never shot the rifle past 425 but was confident with the rifle so re ranged them at 880 I started counting clicks to what the shooter app told me. I got it there re ranged the lead cow..still 880. put the cross hair on her shoulder at the shot she did a 360 and started rolling down the hill then i heard the WHAP. it was a good feeling. Now the problem was the million idiots running around in orange shooting at everything they saw. I decided to walk to the pickup and hang out till the shooting subsided. im at the truck I cant see the elk but im only a half mile from it. as I am waiting a game warden shows up. I told him I had an elk down and I was just waiting for the madness to stop before I went up to get her. he said ok then drove off. 10 mins later he says hey there is someone up there gutting your F'n elk! so I drove up the road a few hundred yards to where I could see her and sure enough there was someone up there. So I ask the warden what I should do. he said "Go get your F'n elk!" so i pocketed my 45 and grabbed my pack and started up the hill. I get there and the guy stand up and looks at me and says "you will never believe this but I never fired a shot" I said "No I believe you cause you are gutting my elk" he said " oh well i just saw her up here so i thought i would come get her" I said "well no she is mine " and he said no problem and we talked for a couple minutes while I tried to recover his hack job of attempted gutting. I just quartered her thinking this guy is standing here and we are parked down the hill just a couple hundred yards apart surely he will offer to help. So I took it one step further and offered him the tenderloins (i dont care for them) he said he would take them. Naturally im thinking I just secured this guys help. I cut the tenderloins out and hand them to him and he says " well ill get out of your hair" and walks off. I am thinking wow what a gem...oh well. I just deboned the front quartered and put them in my pack with the back straps and was going to cut a slit in the hocks and try to carry her out in one trip. just as im putting my pack on and grabbing the rear quarters I hear something coming down the hill at me. its about 15-20 elk. so I crouch down wanting to see how close they will get. they come within about 50 yards and stop. then I started thinking "this is stupid there are a million idiots out here looking for elk and im standing in the middle of an elk herd" so I stand up and the elk just look at me. They were so tired their mouths were open and white foam dripping off their mouths. they wanted to run but just couldnt. so I put my pack down and started trying to herd them (like cattle throwing rocks and sticks at them to get them to move) toward the highway which at this point was just around the hill maybe 400 yards away. the other side of the highway was closed so they would be safe. keep in mind at this point the guy that took my tenderloins without offering to help is a half mile away I can clearly see him at his truck.) im literally herding these elk toward the highway so they can get to safety and not die of exhaustion. finally I see this guy jump on his wheeler and im thinking he is gonna come shoot one of these poor elk, but apparently he never saw them he went the opposite way up the hill to where you could see a bunch of country. and I dont think he ever saw the elk. I got them butted up abainst the fence and they were soo tired they didnt even want to jump. now if you know elk they dont even see a 4 strand barbed wire fence as an obstical. but these ones certainly did. anyway I got them across and to safety then went back and got my elk down the hill to the pickup. brought her home and that was the end of it....weirdest thing I have ever seen, never in my life did I imagine hunters coupld be so thick they could run the elk so ragged that I could have caught them on a 4 wheeler. all in all it was fun because I got to kill an elk and then got to save some elk from dying of exhaustion.