Montana Outdoors

November 4, 2007

But we were hunting for elk!

Filed under: Animals, Bighorn sheep, Cabinet Mountains, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures — Tags: — montucky @ 3:18 pm

Sure, if we were hunting for sheep, we would have been up to our elbows in elk!

Bighorn sheep

Bighorn lamb

Bighorn lamb

Isn’t the little guy cute though?


  1. Never fails Terry, I would hunt for deer and see nothing but turkeys and then in the spring I would turkey hunt and get run over by deer. These are great shots , the little guy is cute.


    Comment by Bernie Kasper — November 4, 2007 @ 6:51 pm

  2. I’m glad you’ve encountered it too, Bernie. I was afraid it was only a Montana thing.


    Comment by montucky — November 4, 2007 @ 7:13 pm

  3. Hi Montucky – where were you that you saw these beautiful animals? And what elevation was it? Are they coming down in elevation for food now? What size lens did you use? Sorry about all the questions.


    Comment by Mary Carlson — November 4, 2007 @ 7:41 pm

  4. Hi Mary,

    These were not far off the highway in a steep, rocky area and only about 5 miles from my home. The country from where I live, on west about 20 miles and east about 15 miles is excellent sheep country, and some are often down near the highway. I’ve run into them anywhere from about 2,500 feet in elevation (where these were) up to 5,000 feet.

    They share habitat around here with mule deer and sometimes with elk. In fact, one of the areas near here where I like to hunt for Mulies and elk was thinned out about 5 years ago by FW&P to produce better sheep habitat. The sheep do go in there, but the real effect of that effort was to create a Mule deer heaven with open area of grass on a steep southern slope. Usually I will see Mulies and sheep, but earlier in this week I visited there and saw 4 White-tails, 8 Mulies and 10 elk; no sheep.

    The camera I use is a Kodal Z712IS. It’s a 7 megapixel with a 1X to 12X zoom . These photos were taken from pretty close for big game animals, 20 to 30 yards. (The sheep were pretty patient with me, but I doubt if I could have gotten much closer.)


    Comment by montucky — November 4, 2007 @ 9:37 pm

  5. The same thing happened to me, yesterday. I went to the store to buy bananas and all I could find were apples…Okay, so it’s not exactly the same, but you catch my drift.

    Great Sheep Shots.


    Comment by Pinhole — November 5, 2007 @ 9:20 am

  6. I guess it happens no matter where you shop.


    Comment by montucky — November 5, 2007 @ 9:47 am

  7. Awww, the 2nd photo is so cute! Lucky you to run into these, even if you returned elk-less.

    On a related elk note, I saw ~75 nice fat Thule Elk, including a 14-point buck (I think – you count the total # of points, not just one side, right?), yesterday. Of course, they were in a Thule Elk reserve, and unavailable for eating 😉


    Comment by Adam R. Paul — November 5, 2007 @ 11:02 am

  8. Yes, I’m glad I was able to get close enough to photograph the little guy. In my book, that also makes a successful hunt.

    In the west, we count just one side, so he would be called a 7 point (or a 7X7). A 7X7 is a big bull. They are awesome, aren’t they? One day last week I spent an hour stalking a gang of elk (there were 10) and finally found there wasn’t a bull with them. Despite my being most of the time within 100 yards of them they never did know I was there. I probably enjoyed that more than if I had shot one! (Some hunter, huh?)


    Comment by montucky — November 5, 2007 @ 11:12 am

  9. These look wild enough that they haven’t discovered the unfortunate career of begging for food along highways with cars of tourists.



    Comment by knightofswords — November 7, 2007 @ 9:32 pm

  10. No, they haven’t learned that, and won’t around here. That’s one of the unfortunate things about the parks though.

    One of the big problems here is, during the winter the road crews use chlorides to combat ice on the highways and the sheep like the salty taste so they will spend time right on the highways licking the salt. There are a whole series of lighted warning signs just west of here that help, but many bighorns are still killed by traffic.


    Comment by montucky — November 7, 2007 @ 11:20 pm

  11. aww ….ain’t that a fact! p.s. I prefer shopping in the forest myself. (we get our apples at the local orchard tho… banana’s are scarce I’ll fess up and admit that…) 😉

    Those are some handsome photos Terry nice hard work on your part.


    Comment by aullori — November 8, 2007 @ 12:31 am

  12. That lamb was so cute that I would have spent the rest of the day if necessary to get a good shot of him. He is a classic bighorn. I feel good about the thought that he will rule that mountain some day!


    Comment by montucky — November 8, 2007 @ 1:07 am

  13. that is a sight I’ll never see down here!


    Comment by silken — November 10, 2007 @ 9:13 pm

  14. Nope. I wish you could though. They are a real treat to watch!


    Comment by montucky — November 11, 2007 @ 12:26 am

  15. Hi!


    Comment by Anonymous — November 11, 2007 @ 3:31 pm

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