Pulled or Sausage?
Got out to the property the Friday morning of the quota and setup camp. Spent the afternoon and evening in the woods. Checked the sign I found the past Sunday but it had not been freshened up. Checked some of the areas I marked, however sundown came up on me quick.
Started Saturday morning at 6am where I left off in the woods. Hiked a fire break through the dense fog out to a section of the river. Rested for a few and caught my breath along the river. I start making my way back up the fire break and I noticed some fresh hog tracks in the tilled road that were not there 20 minutes prior.
I follow the tracks to a narrow game trail and proceeded on for a couple hundred yards. The trail opens into a larger area full of juvenile pines and general scrub. I can hear snorting but I cannot see any hogs at this point. I freeze in place as I now see 3 black hogs to my right, around 35 yards out. Two are obscured slightly by a tree they are rooting and one is facing me directly.
As the hog facing me drops its head, I drop down to one knee and flip open my objective lens cap. The hogs close the distance slightly to 25-30 yards as the move to another tree. As the hogs turn, I placed my crosshairs on the shoulder of the leading hog and dropped the hammer. The hog hits the ground kicking and I drop a second into her neck ceasing all function.
170 lbs pregnant sow @ 25 yards with 165 Grain Hornady SST in .308 Win
That was only half the story though. I was a full 3 miles from my truck with just a drag line and only 10 lbs heavier than my harvest. I ended up dragging her to a creek crossing, gutting her, and then I sunk her in the creek for almost 20 minutes.
I let the cold water flow over and through her while I rested. Then on the way out I luckily ran into an unsuspecting hiker who I convinced to help me drag her the remaining 2 miles out. I cannot thank Mike from Lakeland enough. I tried to repay him but he was just happy to take a picture with the hog. I did get the name of his business so I will be sending him some sort of corporate gift.
Got her checked in and all butchered up nicely. Everyone I spoke to agreed that my saving grace was cooling her down in the creek crossing. Currently she is on ice in my garage. Draining and adding more ice for the next week. Then it's to the kitchen we go.
This is my first public land harvest and I'm mighty proud of myself all things considered. My guest hunter, who ended up backing out last minute, is really kicking himself.