Got back from the Hog Hunt!
We all (Tim-29, Heidi-27, Matthew-21, Joshua-18, Rachel-16, and myself-Real Old) went to Oklahoma along with Three other hunting partners (Big John, Little John, and AJ)
We were guests at the: All About U Ranch at Pauls Valley/Stratford, OK . A super operation, set-up on about 9000 acres of prime Deer and Hog land. Owned and operated by James & Mary West . You can see more about the Ranch here:
Our hunt was based on 2.5 days, starting on Fri, and ending about noon on Sunday. We would hunt over feeders every evening, and do Spot & Stalk during the day from about 0830-1430. We stayed in two out of three very nice cabins. Each one having Air-Conditioning and hot showers, TV, DVD Player, and small Fridge! You could sleep 6-8 people in each cabin if you had too! James West came over and gave us our Pig Hunt Briefing. How, when and where to shoot. No running shots, and make sure your pig is clear of other pigs before shooting. He also insisted on Only Head-Shots with Varmint rifles. Tim and I had brought our 17Rem and the 204Rug for just that purpose!
Well, on to the hunt….
The first evening Matthew shot a nice 225lb sow with my 30.06 and 180g bullet over his feeder! He had about 20 pigs in and around his feeder at the time!!
Now the girls were with me at a different feeder, and they were using the Mossberg SSI .243 single shot, loaded with Barnes TSX 85g bullets. I was running the camcorder, and Heidi had the rifle for first shot opportunity. We saw a really nice Boar show up early… It busted us quick and beat feet outa there!!! We saw about 30 pigs at that feeder, Many over 200lbs, and Heidi passed on all of them, cause she was waiting for the big Boar to come back! Well he came back into the pack after it was too dark to shoot…!
My oldest son Tim was hunting from a tree stand in the free range area, and only saw one nice bore come out. He was using his AR-.204, and needed a head shot. Well that big guy never stopped, and that was all for Tim that first evening.
However, Big John was also in the free range area on stand, and shot a real monster Black Boar, at about 2130 under the moon light! Head shot with His 30.06 Apex! Was over 400 lbs!! Now AJ got a nice boar with his 50cal Muzzy with JSG and 348g Powerbelt, under a feeder.
I was very proud of all of them that first evening, for being selective, and waiting for good well placed shots. The guides gutted skinned and quartered all the pigs and put them into our coolers that very same evening. And they finished around 2400=(Midnight to my non-military friends!) And that was the end of the first evening (Friday).
Next morning Saturday, about 0830 the older boys all went out on a Spot and Stalk! Joshua and the girls stayed-asleep in the cabin!!
Well let me tell you, that was the most exciting type of hunting so far!! We methodically worked our way thru vine/cudzoo pickers and oak trees. And we finally snuck up on a pack of hogs! I shot Two hogs, both with my CZ .17Rem, and 30g Berger bullets-About 3750fps—and both were head shots! The first was a 175lb sow. Shot her at about 35 yards in some thick stuff, and just held on an opening and waited for her to come thru! She went about 25yards and keeled over. I was aiming at the ear, and hit a little back and low for a neck shot. My next pig was about 125lbs and this time dropped him like a stone at 40yards, never took a step! Well I was Done shooting, I had only signed up for 2 pigs, and was pigged out!! So I hung with Tim, and he managed a very nice 200lb hog with his 30.06! Little John got his first pig, a good 175lbs, with his 30.06 as well.
We were picked up by the guides, and headed back to the cabins at about 1130. We had a late breakfast of ham and eggs, toast and OJ, then it was the girls turn out on the afternoon Spot& Stalk. I stayed with the girls with the camcorder and Tim went back out with Matthew and Joshua. Well we did’nt get any clear shots that afternoon, so the guides picked us up at about 1430 and we headed back to the cabins for a nap, and a wake-up at 1730!!
We headed back out to the feeders, I was with the girls again with the camcorder, and Rachel was in the shooters chair. Well about 1830 I had to go and relive myself…(drain the main vein), So I instructed the girls not to turn around while Dad was doing his business!! I gave the camcorder to Heidi, and slipped out of my chair and…….you guessed it, the pigs started coming out of the woods and into the feeder!! Talk about AKWARD!! Trying to finish up and get back into my chair and now Heidi had the cam! Well, Rachel finally picked out the hog she wanted and dropped it on the spot with a perfect Heart-Lung! That Barnes TSX 85g struck like a Lightning Bolt of death! Thru and Thru DRT!!! WOW were we ALL impressed, and Excited…High Five’en, WOOPEE!!! Well, we got ahold of ourselves long enough for a gun swap and now Heidi was back in the shooters chair. We let the dead pig just lay there next to the feeder—Just like James West had instructed us—And sure enough, in about 20 min, with plenty of daylight left the pigs came back out for another go at the feeder! They just walked all around and over that dead pig like it wasn’t even there!! Well, any way Heidi finally settles for the boar with the “Fluffy Ears” Yea that’s right, the cute piggy with the fluffy ears…….! OK so when it’s just about too dark to see with the camcorder she blasts that pig with a neck shot and it falls right next to the other dead one, Bang Flop! In and Out!
Well, we were hearing other shots out on the property as well and were hoping Joshua had scored with the 30.06. Well after dark the guide showed up to pick us up and our Two nice hogs! We proceeded to Matthew and Joshua’s feeder and were pleasantly surprised as Joshua HAD indeed shot a nice 180lb hog with a head shot from about 50yards!!
This was the first large game animal Joshua had ever harvested. And later we talked about his experience, and he directly said: “Dad, you said that the head-shot was supposed to be the BEST, but when I shot my pig in the head he wiggled and twitched for about 15 seconds, and I thought he was suffering BAD!” “It made me cry, Dad”
BTW, Real Men Cry!
So the guides did there thing again that night and finished all the pigs first and then cooked us all a late supper-about 2300. Then we slept so good that night!!
Last morning on Sunday, Tim needed one more pig, and Joshua decided to pay for another chance for one more hog, and Mattew needed one more as well. Big John and Little John would also bag one apiece that last morning.
We got onto a pack of pigs late into the morning and Matthew scored first with the 45-70 single shot, with a head shot to a 85 lb pig! We were using 300g Barnes FN TSX...And only one side of the head was left for pictures...if ya know what I mean
Soon after Tim radioed that he had shot a very small cinnamon colored pig and he was finished. So that just left Joshua, and with just 40minutes left on the hunt--the pressure was on! We got on 3 loner pigs that lead us to the Mother-Load! About 25-30 pigs! We heard Little John shoot one from that group . And I got some good video coverage of these porkers racing thru the woods
We found a fresh killed 200 lb pig in the woods, that some Less-Than Ethical shooters had failed to track down! These to shooters were outside our group, and were on their own hunt. So with our time running out, we agreed to Claim this porker for Joshua! The outsiders had already killed their limit. (Plus a few others we found lying around)
And Sadly, I never got the chance to use the 45cal Elite and the kids didn't want to use it either...Oh Well maybe next time
Anyway, The LaneNebraska Team were Blessed with 10 Hogs