My son’s baseball game ended at 1:30pm. As soon as we got into the car, I clicked the link to watch names being read for the 2021 Maine moose lottery. I had 21 points going into the lottery. I watched Nate Webb, Director of Wildlife, read my brother in laws’s name. I recognized more names of people that I knew. Then, just a few pages into Deputy Commissioner Tim Peabody’s list of names, I saw mine. At the bottom of the page and before he read it, I saw my name. I was headed to Zone 2 in September to find a bull moose!
It’s not time to celebrate
Celebratory text messages and social media messages started flooding in. I wasn’t celebrating though, I went into planning mode. We needed an outfitter. The last time that Dad and I went moose hunting was when he had been drawn. We had friends bail on us and spent most of the week hiking clear cuts and driving roads. The only thing we heard was another hunter that we called in. That isn’t going to happen this time…and I started thinking about going for my grand slam; a moose, turkey, deer and bear, all in the same year.
Targeting Each Species
I didn’t turkey hunt much this spring so I will need to get out and plan my fall hunt. The season starts on September 20th – a week before my moose hunt. Bear season starts in August and Staci has offered to help me trap one. As you know, I am also partial to hound hunts, which starts September 13th. I have a couple of calls into folks but have not heard back yet. Hopefully, I can find an outfitter than either has an opening or would be willing to fit me in after others have tagged out. Theoretically, I could have both my turkey and bear checked off my list before my moose hunt.
The trail cameras have been showing a very healthy deer herd. If I get a doe tag, I will have a decision to make; shoot any deer to get my grand slam (assuming I have taken a turkey, moose and bear) or wait for a nice buck… maybe that illusive 8-pointer that I hope for every year. If it comes down to needing a deer, I may take ‘working remotely’ to a new level and camp out in the Sky Condo until I am lucky enough to punch that tag. That would give me a 2021 Grand Slam.
The next three months
Exactly three months from today, we will be hunting. I have started to think about what I need to pack as well as making sure I am in shape to carry around my 7.5lb rifle and a backpack. My friend Jeremy at Fit to Hunt is helping me with a workout plan to make sure I can handle those hikes through choppins and lugging all of the additional weight.
My aunt is letting us borrow massive coolers that she uses when bringing pigs and cows back from the butcher. I am looking for a big chest freezer (not to jinx myself though because I can easy fill that with beef, chicken, pork, deer, etc.)
Let me know if you have any tips or tricks that have worked for you or others. Assuming this could be my one and only moose permit, I want to ensure I do everything possible to tip the odds in my favor!
The countdown is on…