As the summer concludes, my favorite time of year begins. Fall in Wyoming is the most colorful time of year. Temperatures are perfect for long hikes and outdoor adventures in the Bighorns. Whether you are hunting with a camera or want to bring home a trophy, the long cooler days are a perfect for some time outdoors.
This past weekend, my son Gus, our Golden Retriever Charlie and my lifelong friend had a chance to enjoy a day in the Bighorns. First, stopping at a local store to make sure all my licenses are in order and purchasing gas, we all headed for the Bighorns. The drive alone was enjoyable and an opportunity to escape out of town on Labor Day. While trekking our way through the switchbacks and up the Dayton Cane we observed new campers and utility vehicles on the road. It was impressive to see hundreds of people moving in a caravan up the mountain to enjoy nature’s parks and recreation. As soon as we arrived at our camp, Grouse hunters could be heard in the distance, with occasional volleys of gunshots. Archery hunters were out earlier in the day and were retreating back to their camps or headed off the mountain on their way home. All the hunters seemed to have big grins on their faces whether their hunt was a success or not.
After a great dinner, we all relaxed around a campfire enjoying the cool mountain air and talk of the next day’s plans. Maybe we will fish or hunt or let’s sleep in and enjoy a day off. (Such hard choices to make) So we decided to go hunting, no surprise, really. Gus, Charlie and I set out for our usual Grouse hunting area. We had the opportunity to walk several miles without seeing anyone (or any Grouse); however, we did manage to stumble on a Rag Horn Bull Elk napping on the edge of a meadow. Poor Charlie spooked the elk or maybe the elk spooked Charlie, we cannot be sure. The Rag Horn was long gone but we did have another great story to share as we headed down the road. The trip was enjoyable and a chance to get a great workout in God’s country. Maybe our luck will be better next time. Yet, having the opportunity to get a change of view and spend time with my son was well worth the time and effort. It is these types of moments I will always cherish, and hopefully my son will too. As for Charlie, he is just happy being with his family. Go out and enjoy the best time of the year!
Remember to always tell someone where you are headed while hunting and when you will be back. Have a safe adventure.
Richard Wright is the executive director of the Sheridan Recreation District.