The morning of the sixth-day dad and I worked together for the morning hunt. It was while we were walking out towards our area we ran into a few cows on the trail and possibly a bull. We heard one small bugle our in front of us yet our cow calls did not bring him into range. We got over towards a piece of geography we call the funnel. It is a small stripe of timber connecting the bottom drainage and all its water and cooler air with the bedding area towards to top of the hill. The thermals are always in their face while in this piece of timber. We could hear the brush breaking below us, like less than 60 yards. We and bumped a spike bull but the big bull bugled again right below us. I could see his antlers and thought for sure he was coming up to investigate our calling. He went downhill. Our attempt at a stalk was miscalculated and we ended up much farther away from the bull then we had intended.
Early in the afternoon, I got back in the slot and immediately heard animals below me. I hustled to try and get the thermals right, which was already dropping in the dark timber. There were three bugles, one back towards dad to my south, one to the south-west and then when I bugled the bull I had stalked the day before and his now herd of 25 cows ran out in front of me from across the drainage 300 yards away. This was the most unencumbered look I’d had of the bull and knew he was pushing his cows out of the area.
I dropped through the creek AGAIN and proceeded to follow his herd through the hell of log jams deep in the creek bottom At two points I was within 100 yards of him, trying to get the wind right. His bugles got loud when he knew he was safe in the bottom. I ended up seeing a small 6 point satellite bull and bumped another bull I couldn’t ID. I snuck to within 18 yards of a giant cow that was on the outskirts of the herd.