PA elk hunt results

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pamtnman

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So we had six days to fill our elk tags here in the Pennsylvania general elk season, last Monday through today, which is essentially the firearms season for elk. With business and family commitments, I was able to scout last Sunday and hunt until closing hours Thursday.
Three friends joined me, as scouts and potential draggers if we killed an elk.
We camped out on state forest land, on an old log landing in the middle of the 310,000-acre Sproul State Forest.
Sunday night Saul walked around a road corner into five cow elk, which scattered, but it gave us a place to start.
Monday and Tuesday I was repeatedly into elk, with several really close encounters.
Monday I got right into the one herd holed up in the woods, had some running shots that I didn’t take, and called one in very close until the wind shifted and it bolted.
Tuesday around 6:20pm an elk calf came rocketing out of the woods where the herd was hiding, and this cute little thing attacked the grass in front of me. Technically I was permitted to shoot it, but no way. So I waited for mama elk to join calf elk, and as the beasts were beginning to emerge 100 yards away, the wind (which was wildly varying the entire week) switched to my back, and loud crashes erupted as the herd dove back into the woods.
Monday and Tuesday were constant rain, which is a concern with a percussion rifle. I kept the lock covered and never saw water get anywhere near the ignition or muzzle. Perfect confidence that I could and would kill any legal elk that provided a good broadside shot out to 100 yards.
Wednesday rained crazy hard until noon, so I slept in. Did my best the rest of the day.
Thursday was bloody hot, stinkin hot, and although I started out on great private land overlooking a food plot, with a good wind, nothing showed. Ended my hunt Thursday afternoon until 6:34pm in a primo clearcut location with excellent shooting lanes, with a decent wind…and despite calling lightly a couple times, nothing but a coyote showed up.
As of yesterday late, one of the three bull tags for elk zone 13 had been filled, and just one cow tag of six allotted had been filled. It was a real tough place to hunt. Even for the hunters with modern rifles and professional elk guides.
But I got to spend campfire time with good friends, and I carried the .62 percussion rifle the entire time, which I enjoyed greatly, and which apparently brought humor to all the local bow hunters (deer) and elk hunters. What can I say? I’d prefer a real hunt over an assassination any day.
So no elk brought home, but I learned a lot, DIY hunted hard, saw beautiful country, and spent time with good men I care about. Who worked hard scouting for the hunter every day. Thank you George, Saul, and Scott. And thank you to the members here who cheered me on before the hunt. The encouragement was much appreciated.

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pamtnman

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Thank you, gents. Overall I concur with your sentiments, and I appreciate them here. But I will admit there’s a tinge of sadness. Twenty years I put in for the lottery elk tag, finally got one, worked hard on planning and then implementing this hunt from the day the tag was announced until the day I went home, and didn’t come home with the critter. Then I think about the guys who spent $3,000 or more with a guide etc and who also went home empty handed, and I feel better.
 

pamtnman

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Good looking rifle too! Is that a Vincent Ohio trigger guard with the bow spur cut off?
Thank you! That’s a good question about that trigger guard! Mark Wheland made this gun, and the butt plate we had casted from a wooden mock up we did based on the original. The barrel was custom made by Colerain to my specs. The lock and trigger I purchased at Dixon’s at Mark’s direction. That leaves the trigger guard, and it does look like the trigger guard on the original, which I don’t know about. I do recall Mark putting a lot of bend into certain parts of this trigger guard.
 

HighUintas

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I ask because it looks exactly like mine, except mine is steel. I bought a Vincent Ohio guard and cut the spur off haha.

I bet that elk hunting in the woods there is tough! It must have been a great time and experience though. I'm happy you were able to do it and enjoyed it.
 

pamtnman

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I ask because it looks exactly like mine, except mine is steel. I bought a Vincent Ohio guard and cut the spur off haha.

I bet that elk hunting in the woods there is tough! It must have been a great time and experience though. I'm happy you were able to do it and enjoyed it.
What’s interesting here is that both the Hawkens and Folsom (this gun is a copy of a Folsom) used hardware very similar to the Ohio guns made at the same time. So the original might have been a copy of a Vincent, and Wheland may have bought a Vincent from TOW and modified it to match. I do like those steel fittings. What caliber is your gun?
 

HighUintas

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What’s interesting here is that both the Hawkens and Folsom (this gun is a copy of a Folsom) used hardware very similar to the Ohio guns made at the same time. So the original might have been a copy of a Vincent, and Wheland may have bought a Vincent from TOW and modified it to match. I do like those steel fittings. What caliber is your gun?

Is Folsom a STL gunsmith of the same period? I think I may have heard the name before but am not sure.

It is a .58. it is nearly to the point of staining but will likely be a work in progress for awhile. I'll put up a thread with pictures when done.
 
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What’s interesting here is that both the Hawkens and Folsom (this gun is a copy of a Folsom) used hardware very similar to the Ohio guns made at the same time.
Sounds like a great hunt.

Since Sam lived in Ohio before moving to Missouri, perhaps that's part of the connection in hardware. There also seems to be Maryland influences in the Hawken rifle, at least to my untrained eye, which also makes perfect sense.
 
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So we had six days to fill our elk tags here in the Pennsylvania general elk season, last Monday through today, which is essentially the firearms season for elk. With business and family commitments, I was able to scout last Sunday and hunt until closing hours Thursday.
Three friends joined me, as scouts and potential draggers if we killed an elk.
We camped out on state forest land, on an old log landing in the middle of the 310,000-acre Sproul State Forest.
Sunday night Saul walked around a road corner into five cow elk, which scattered, but it gave us a place to start.
Monday and Tuesday I was repeatedly into elk, with several really close encounters.
Monday I got right into the one herd holed up in the woods, had some running shots that I didn’t take, and called one in very close until the wind shifted and it bolted.
Tuesday around 6:20pm an elk calf came rocketing out of the woods where the herd was hiding, and this cute little thing attacked the grass in front of me. Technically I was permitted to shoot it, but no way. So I waited for mama elk to join calf elk, and as the beasts were beginning to emerge 100 yards away, the wind (which was wildly varying the entire week) switched to my back, and loud crashes erupted as the herd dove back into the woods.
Monday and Tuesday were constant rain, which is a concern with a percussion rifle. I kept the lock covered and never saw water get anywhere near the ignition or muzzle. Perfect confidence that I could and would kill any legal elk that provided a good broadside shot out to 100 yards.
Wednesday rained crazy hard until noon, so I slept in. Did my best the rest of the day.
Thursday was bloody hot, stinkin hot, and although I started out on great private land overlooking a food plot, with a good wind, nothing showed. Ended my hunt Thursday afternoon until 6:34pm in a primo clearcut location with excellent shooting lanes, with a decent wind…and despite calling lightly a couple times, nothing but a coyote showed up.
As of yesterday late, one of the three bull tags for elk zone 13 had been filled, and just one cow tag of six allotted had been filled. It was a real tough place to hunt. Even for the hunters with modern rifles and professional elk guides.
But I got to spend campfire time with good friends, and I carried the .62 percussion rifle the entire time, which I enjoyed greatly, and which apparently brought humor to all the local bow hunters (deer) and elk hunters. What can I say? I’d prefer a real hunt over an assassination any day.
So no elk brought home, but I learned a lot, DIY hunted hard, saw beautiful country, and spent time with good men I care about. Who worked hard scouting for the hunter every day. Thank you George, Saul, and Scott. And thank you to the members here who cheered me on before the hunt. The encouragement was much appreciated.

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Good hunt story. I have had many of such hunts. The woods and good friends is what God intended us to enjoy.
 

pamtnman

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Is Folsom a STL gunsmith of the same period? I think I may have heard the name before but am not sure.

It is a .58. it is nearly to the point of staining but will likely be a work in progress for awhile. I'll put up a thread with pictures when done.
Yes, Folsom was a contemporaneous St Louis competitor with Hawken. The few known Folsom rifles that are in museums and that have appeared at auction are all full stocks with a unique butt plate. You will really like the .58, because these big bores release crushing power.
 
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