Queen Julianne’s Epic Hunt

As a young girl, the only time I spent shooting a bow outside of summer camp and gym class was when my grandpa brought home an older wooden long bow for us kids to play with. I had fun shooting, but it never turned into anything serious. Little did I know just how big bows and arrows were going to be later in my life.

My grandpa was the only hunter in our family. Several rifle seasons I went out with him and loved it. Unfortunately, as I got older, I got busy with college/jobs and he got diagnosed with cancer and eventually passed away. With his passing, I thought my hunting days had also passed – this was, until I met Ryan. Ryan is my fiancé I met about three years ago. Not only did he get me back into (and more involved) with hunting than I ever had been, but as one of our first dates he took me to a local bow shop where I became obsessed – I just had to own a bow of my own!

My first bow was a Diamond Infinite Edge by Bowtech. It got me into 3D shooting and that same year harvested a mature whitetail doe for me. I was so hooked that in February 2015, less than a year of shooting, my Valentines Day gift to myself was Bowtech’s new Eva Shockey Signature Series. I loved my new bow so much that it gave me the confidence to take on new challenges. In August, I competed at my first IBO World Competition. Then, with my 30th birthday quickly approaching in October, I knew I wanted to do something exciting and something I’d never forget. I decided to go on my first spot and stalk European boar hunt.

We were able to find a place with guided hunts fairly close to us. The facility was beautiful and the staff was super friendly. They told me to watch the logs as the hogs liked to bed down by them especially as the day got hotter. After an hour or two of walking I was able to spot the first hogs of the day. Unfortunately for me, they were laying side by side, and when I tried to sneak around for a shot at just one they both ran off.

Many more hours passed and we finally spotted pigs again. I crept up and took the shot at 43 yards; it was on a straight path there until suddenly I saw no arrow and pigs running away. We walked down to where my lighted nock shown just to find out a small branch was what had stood between me and success.  A clean miss is always better than an injured animal though, so we gathered our stuff and went back to the lodge for lunch and a little regrouping for the next trip out.

During our break I spoke with our guide and said I’d noticed some rams off in the distance on our hunt. I told him if the pigs ended up eluding us the rest of the day I wouldn’t mind trying my luck on a ram. Don’t you know, as we set back out on foot, we saw a herd of some beautiful rams over a hilltop. As I crept in range for the shot they spotted us and left. I was a little bummed and started to get discouraged that maybe I took on more than I could handle for a “birthday hunt,” when I happened to look over and saw two rams by themselves. I asked the guide if these were shooters, he radioed back to the lodge and I got the green light!

I nocked an arrow and once again started to sneak up for my shot. The rams noticed me and the smaller of the two started herding the other along with it to the woods. The whole time I followed on foot while the guide and Ryan stayed back as not to spook them farther. I finally got enough of a lead and at about 30-35 yards took my shot – success! I landed the shot but it was a little further back than I’d hoped since the small ram pushed mine to take a step right as I released the arrow. Still, I had made my shot and was not about to lose my animal now.

I kept my distance but followed alone by foot until I made it to the woods, both rams had stopped here and I was able to hide behind trees until I could close the distance between us to about 20 yards. I drew my bow again and delivered the perfect heart shot – the final blow. The sound the arrow made is something I’ll never forget, it was so loud, like a gunshot. It was only when I had him on the ground that I found out just how thick his wool really was that created that sound.

Though it had been a boar hunt that turned into me harvesting a Jacob ram, and had been full of times I doubted both myself and my abilities, I never gave up. My goal, “trophy” or not, was to have the experience of a memorable birthday hunt, and I definitely achieved that! Getting to touch that animal after it was down was beyond amazing, and knowing that every single part of it would be used was the best reward. This was a birthday I certainly will always remember!


Feb 18, 2016 | Category: Blog | Comments: 1

 

One comment on “Queen Julianne’s Epic Hunt

  1. Heather

    Love that you have been able to discover your passion for hunting with Ryan and that you now are able to share it with the world. Great work can’t wait to see more!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.