The Hunting Stories Podcast

Ep 087 The Hunting Stories Podcast: Derek Wolfe

February 12, 2024 The Hunting Stories Podcast Episode 87
The Hunting Stories Podcast
Ep 087 The Hunting Stories Podcast: Derek Wolfe
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When the stadium lights dim and the roar of the crowd fades, where does the heart of a champion lead? For Derek Wolfe, Super Bowl hero and former Denver Bronco, the call of the wild was impossible to ignore. Step off the beaten path with us as Derek recounts the transformation from NFL glory to becoming a master of the mountainous hunt. His stories, rich with the anticipation of a mountain lion pursuit and the adrenaline of Western big game hunts, will transport you to the heart of nature's grandeur.

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Speaker 1:

Howdy folks and welcome to the Hunting Stories podcast. I'm your host, michael, and we got another great one for you today. Today we're actually connecting with former Denver Bronco, derek Wolfe. I'm a bit of a fan of his for years and he actually said he'd be on my podcast about a year ago, but shortly after that he killed one of the biggest mountain lands you've ever seen and he's just blown up since then as far as the outworld world beyond just the football stuff. So I want to thank Derek, of course, for coming on the podcast. It was a pleasure getting to meet him and hearing some of his stories from this past year and, of course, the mountain lion story. I don't want to ruin too much else. Well, let's just go ahead and kick this thing off and let Derek play some of his stories. Thank you, alright, derek. Welcome to the Hunting Stories podcast. Brother, how are you?

Speaker 2:

I'm great man. Thanks for having me.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, man, like I said right before we started recording, I'm a huge Broncos fan. I have been in my whole life and I even mentioned to you that, like you, committed to this a long long time ago. And then you went and did something stupid like killing probably the biggest mountain lion ever and like within a week you were on, within a week of committing to my podcast. I think you were on Joe Rogan, I saw you on CNN. So I'm just glad to get a little bit of your time, man, because I know you. You got some cool stories, so I'm excited to have you here.

Speaker 1:

But that being said why don't you, why don't you start this thing off, man? Why don't you introduce yourself? I feel like most people probably know who you are at this point, but yeah, let's get that off.

Speaker 2:

So Derek Wolf, 10 year NFL vet, super Bowl champion, father, husband, girl dad, outdoor man, sportsman I just love everything outdoors. I love to fly fish, I love to hunt, I love to hike, I love to camp, I love to train I'm just all about all that stuff. So I'm retired now. I retired in 2022 and jumped straight. I knew exactly what I wanted to do when I got done and I wanted to hunt again because I had to take a back seat for so long. Yeah, I bet.

Speaker 2:

So obviously the fall. You know, from July to February you're pretty much locked down with football. There's no time to really hunt, except for when I was in Baltimore. The white tail hunting was phenomenal. Oh really, it was COVID, so like we weren't going to meetings, so I was just in the tree stand non-stop.

Speaker 1:

Were you taking meetings in the tree stand? I think I remember somebody doing that. Yeah, it must have been you that mentioned it, maybe on the Rogan podcast or something, but that's pretty funny, man. I think about that all the time with NFL players. A lot of the guys like to hunt and then all they really get to do is like duck hunting. Once the season's over, you just miss the bulk of you know big game.

Speaker 2:

Well, western hunting is out of the picture. Like you're not going to get to do it, you know, unless you go to like private ranch where you just kind of walk up on a bull and then they bring a truck and take it out for you and to each their own. But to me, while I'm young I want to be able to experience going out there and getting after and hiking out there, you know, deep into the back country and chasing big screaming bulls and big mule deer and stuff like that, and that's just, you know, mountain going on a mountain goat hunt here in August up in Baltimore. That's a ten day backpack hunt. So I'm about it, I love it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's great man. I'll say that the hunts that I've been on harvesting is great, but like, really it's just the whole thing. That's really what makes it Western big game hunting special. Just getting out there, struggling, putting in the work, coming home with an animal is great, but it's definitely not required. So we're going to get off track, man.

Speaker 2:

Well, no it's funny because I talked about this with Dan Gates. We were talking about the. You know, the percentage of success with bow hunting in Colorado is like under 8%. And it's like if you told anybody that like, hey, you should get obsessed with this thing, you're only going to be successful 8% of the time. But I was a pass rusher man and that's. You know. I was a defense alignment that got after quarterback and stopped the run and I failed when it came to pass rush and you're going to fail a lot more than you succeed. So I'm kind of used to that feeling. Yeah, leaving a game without. Maybe, you know, maybe I affected the game some way, but I didn't get a sack of this and that like that would eat at you. But it was always about like, oh, did we win? You know what's the amount of that experience? And that leads me into the story that I wanted to tell.

Speaker 2:

Alright, well, kick it off man. Which was a new. It was a new Mexico, which you know. I've been researching the best spots to El Cun for years. Right, like, where are the biggest L? Where is like the best chance to success? This and that and everything kept leading me to the Hila National Forest, yeah, new Mexico. So I was lucky enough to have a company pay for a tag for me. Oh, that's awesome. I can afford it, obviously, but it was, you know. If someone else can pay for it, then great, why not, right? And I was really looking forward to this. It was in unit 16A and it was the second part of archery, which the year before that I went down to unit 34 and had great success. I took me all the way to the fifth day to make it happen. But for being my first experience on like, on Elk, I'd been out over the counter in Colorado and it sucked, but it's tough.

Speaker 2:

I mean, I didn't see an elk here, an elk like it just never in for five days straight. We just got our butts kicked but that's what I'm trying to sign up for, but anyways, so we get down there and I'm expecting, I'm expecting, you know, something similar to what was going on 34, just bigger bulls. We're talking, we're talking, you're not. You're not even thinking about even knocking an arrow at a 333-440 bull down there in this instant.

Speaker 2:

So that's just what I've been told, you know. So I was like this is going to be awesome. So we get out there in the first day we get in. We're out in this like this old burn and it was nothing but cat claw. You know a cat claw is. It looks like cat claws but bright big briar patches. But the elk loved to eat on that stuff, on the leaves that are on that, these green leaves, but you can't see the elk in it. So if they're not talking you can't see them. And my buddy Braxton had glassed up like some absolute dinosaur bulls in there about a week before I got there and he's like there's two or three in here that are just absolute giants Like you can't even fathom. One had like seven on one side. The other one had this big giant. It was seven on one side, six on the other, but it was like I'm talking like that thick on his whale tail coming off that's awesome.

Speaker 1:

Oh my goodness. I ran into a bull this year that like we thought it was a broken antler at first, but it was like a seven point on one side and the other one was like a moose paddle, Just like the whole thing just filled in man. It was the weirdest looking bull. My buddy Jermaine Hodges. He's got some video of it, so I'm hoping we can get a look at that some point, Cause all I've seen is like on a laptop. But it's cool when you see this. Just like monster, crazy bulls.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, I mean he was showing me like cause you know how it is you're seeing videos of these glassing videos, you know right before you head down there.

Speaker 2:

So me and my buddy, lane Walter, headed down there and the first day man, we just like. It was just like why are they being so quiet? He's like, don't worry, it's heating up. It's heating up Like I don't know man. It seems like they're not talking at all Like we'd get.

Speaker 2:

We got one bugle in the morning and then like one right before dark and the rest of the day it was just hiking around and hiking through some miserable. And it was just it was miserable hiking because you couldn't see anything. So you'd be like, okay, maybe if I hike over there or up and over that I'll be able to see down in there. And you would do it and it would take like two hours and then you wouldn't see anything down there. You couldn't see Like and they and it just so. We spent two days back there doing that. The closest we got to a bull was one evening. We called a I was, we were calling at Cal's and this calf came up and it like almost licked my face and it was pretty. That was pretty cool. I was just sitting on a log cause I couldn't move, so I just sat down in this log and this cow was just like staring me in my eyes.

Speaker 2:

He's like you know, just trying to figure out what's going on what is going on.

Speaker 2:

And then it would like leave, and then we'd start calc on again cause there was a cow and a bull down below us. So we're thinking if that cow comes up here, that bull follow. Cow comes up, bull never follows. And then as we're leaving, as we're leaving that area to get out of there, that night and it was like it was one of those hike outs that it was like take 10 steps and stop. Take 10 steps, stop, because it was straight up hill. Yeah, we went down and straight back up to get out of there and it took forever, it was pitch black. But on our way out of there we hear the bull and he's like right there, but he's right there below us, like he just was. He was smart, like these bull, these elk in there must be pressure. It's a small unit with a hundred tags, but I'm assuming that everybody piles into these spots where they think these big ones are, Cause there's two archery seasons, you know what I mean. So the week before that they must have been in there just chasing these bulls everywhere and they weren't ready to rut yet. So they're just calling at them and running them around.

Speaker 2:

And then about the time I got in there, they were all spooked out, so spooked out that we finally moved out of that area. The next cause, the next day, that last day, we were like, dude, let's get, let's go try something else. So, and instead of like these steep, this steep stuff that we were in, we went into this more open country with the big cedar trees and just rocky, rolling hills. And the first morning we get out there I mean it was like an hour to get back on that, back there on a side by side. So there, well, I didn't think there'd be many people back there, just cause of the, it was a really bumpy and tough ride to get back there.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and we get back there and rip a bugle and like three or four bulls just right away, boom, boom, boom, and I was like, oh, it's on, let's go. So the chase is on. So then it's like, okay, well, which one do we chase, right? So we wait for the sun to come up and we start glassing and we see this absolute freak of a bull, just a giant. I mean he's 380 inches all day, maybe bigger. I mean it's like he would go back. He was like scratching his butt with his, with his, with his, with his back time, just gosh, and he was just so much bigger than everything else that was out there and he had like 50 cows with him. And then he had two other. There was two other satellite bulls kind of hanging around and they were both like 330, 340 bulls.

Speaker 2:

So to me I'm like you know what? It's day three. I wasn't going to push it on, I was still like, okay, I want that herd bull, that's the one I want, right? Yeah, the one I'm going to put my time in. And oh, we chased him around all day that day, just for about eight miles. We followed him and we get up and on him tight and I got embedded at 150 yards and it was a rut fest in there, cause it was, it was him and it was his two satellites that he had with him.

Speaker 2:

And then two other herd bulls came in there, but none of them were as big as him and there was like they were just screaming and yelling and cow I mean there's at least 150 cows in there. No shit, it's unbelievable. They were everywhere and we get this bull to bed down, facing away from us, wind blowing in our face, at 150 yards, and there was two cows up above us and this is where we saw this crazy freak bull that had seven on one side, just like a club hanging off of this side, and I was like dude. I was like I got to go now and he's like no, we got to wait, cause these two cows that were like kind of feeding and working their way they're going to get them, they're going to start working away from us and at this point I'm like let's not call at him. There's enough going on in there that like if we call, we might just like they might get up and be like you know what I'm out of here.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, 150 sets of eyes look in your direction if you start calling right.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so I was like just not drawing attention to ourselves. Let's just play a safe wait for these bull, these two cows, to kind of move their way up. It was two cows and a spike, and it was spikes are the ones that get you. They bark at you and it's over. And I was like, okay, well, let's just wait for them to move. And I only needed them to go like another 20 yards and just feed on the other side of this tree, and they were kind of they were doing it right.

Speaker 2:

Well then I hear I hear some antlers cracking. I mean, they're ripping trees up over there, like it was. It was like they were getting after it over there. It was really cool. It was something that, like I bet, most people don't ever get to experience, because it was a true rut fest, like they were it was, and it went on for about an hour, yeah, and they'd take a little break and then they'd get it after it. And then they, but this same, this big herd bull, sat there the whole time facing away from us, and he had the wind blowing in his face and blowing in our faces too. So finally they stopped. I hear horns cracking. I said I said, dude, I got to go now and he's like no, no, no, hold on, just wait, he's not moved, he hasn't even gotten up yet.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and this is your buddy Lane. No, no Lane, was like we should go. But my buddy Braxton, who like hunts that area, was like dude, chill. Like don't work, there's nobody else over here. And then I think I hear a side by side right, and I'm like, oh fuck, what is that, you know? But it didn't sound like it was close, right, it just sounded like something off in a distance.

Speaker 2:

And then, about three minutes after, I hear these horns cracking. They all get up and just it's just like a stampede out of there. They get out right, and I'm like what the fuck? I'm like what the fuck happened? I'm so pissed I mean, we wasted all day on this, right and I'm, I'm, I'm. I pull my binos up and look and some guy comes walking in there with a, with an arrow, rock knocked, and the wind is ripping at his back like straight at his back into those elk. I'm like why? What is he doing? I'm like he's done what he's supposed to do, which is come get his wind right. He would have walked right into us and we could have worked together and went in there.

Speaker 1:

I would have no problem. I was working at. Hey, let's go.

Speaker 2:

There's too many bulls in there for us to just for one guy to just go running in there, but he's walking around looking like where's all the elk. Yeah, I mean he's literally standing where that bull was laying. As I'm watching him, he turns back and smirks at me.

Speaker 1:

No shit.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and then keeps going. And I was like I was like I was like I need to go have a talk with this guy. I was getting all pissed off and he was like no, come on, chill out. Like you don't need to go. Like what are you going to do? You know he's like, don't, you're going to get in a fight with this guy. That's not worth it, you know, because he obviously.

Speaker 1:

Are you sure he smirked, or is it like some subconscious thing that you were just fired up?

Speaker 2:

and no, he smirked. I don't know, I could have made it up, who knows?

Speaker 1:

But I think he smirked.

Speaker 2:

It looked like a smirk to me because he was looking back and like smiling, because it else would you be smiling if you just blew all the elk out? I?

Speaker 1:

don't know. Yeah, you think maybe he was just like nope, that's my elk. I'm just going to blow up that stock and get that little another day.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's because apparently we found out that the week before that we ran into this old timer on our way out that day and kind of told him the story. He's like oh yeah, well, that bull's had about seven trucks on him for the last 14 days. I was like serious. He's like oh yeah, there's been seven people after that, but seven like seven groups.

Speaker 2:

So you're talking about, you know, probably 14 to 20 people have been hunting that bull, and then you got guys that are just sitting water and then so the next though, that's day three, right, and we're just like all right, well, we know where that he's hanging out. So the next day we come in and we get on him again, we're on him again, then we lose him and then we get on him again and then we get into this position where there's elk all around us and then we have. So we call his buddy, we call one of our buddies hey, can you spot for us and try to like work us into this bull? He's like, yeah, I got you. And because he's like right there in the area, so he comes over and he's spotting for us, he goes. Okay, he's 100 yards below you.

Speaker 1:

How are you communicating?

Speaker 2:

Like walkie talkie.

Speaker 1:

Gotcha.

Speaker 2:

Okay, yeah, so we had, he had. They had walkie talkies. This is through a G3 outfitters, so they had like walkie talkies set out. They were already set up.

Speaker 1:

So like earpieces and stuff so you can be quiet.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so it's quiet, right so, but we're like surrounded by elk. They're everywhere, but I don't see any bulls. And he keeps telling us he's below us and I'm like we don't see him. We can't see him and it's really thick in there. But there's big. There's big cedars right and it's rocky. So you can't move real fast. You're kind of moving slow and trying to be quiet and not make any noise. And next thing, you know, he's like I don't know, I can't find him. Now I turn around and look up he's 150 yards above us.

Speaker 1:

No shit.

Speaker 2:

Just standing there, he doesn't even see us, he just kind of stand like he was. This bull acted. He didn't act pressured, he didn't act like he knew anybody was hunting him. The whole time we were after him he was so confident and just like, so big, that he just was like if the cows left, he'd leave. You know, he just did not care, Like he did not. Nobody challenged him. If bulls got close to him, they'd stop and just stare at him and he would just like, you know not, he wouldn't even act like aggressive, he just was like you could tell he was the, you know, he was the king, you know. So, yeah, that's cool man. So he moves on and I'm like shit.

Speaker 2:

So we kept trying to get on, get in, but by that time it was like he was, he was, he was moving, you know, and it was, he was walking through there and it's them at a walk. I might, I could be the dead sprint, still not keep up, you know, it's just, it's just the way it goes. So that day kind of that day kind of sucked, because later on in the day we found him again and I was trying to put the sneak on him. So I'm belly crawling through this like tall grass and in between I had like a hundred, probably like 50 yards.

Speaker 2:

I had to get where I didn't have any cover and there was these two, these cows was like, oh, there's almost those cows, don't send me, I'm good. So I'm going, I'm going, I'm going, and then I I look over and there's this like 330 bull at like 80 yards just standing there staring at me, no shit. And I'm like, no, and usually they don't care right, they're just like, yeah, whatever, you know, and if it's a cows I'm trying, I'm worried about. So I just stayed there. And then he just he goes and like runs down over the hill and then the cows are like where's he at? You know, they're looking for him. Then they see me and then it's all hell breaks loose.

Speaker 1:

How many cows?

Speaker 2:

There was like I don't know 15, 20 of them in there, God man, but there was like four. There was only four that I had to worry about seeing me, you know, and they didn't see it. They never saw me and I was going to be in position because that other bull is down to my left, right and this bull comes off on my right. I never saw him over there. He just came out of nowhere, Like why would he just walk out in the open like that, Like it's just bad luck, you know? Yeah, oh, and I probably could have. No, I could have.

Speaker 2:

He sat there and stared at me so long I could have knocked an arrow, drew back and probably shot him. It wasn't the one I was after, right, so he was like a probably a 320, 315 inch bull. He was a big bull, Um, you know, in my head he looks so small just because that other one was so big. You know what I mean. He's probably, he was probably a perfect bull to take, you know, but I was after that certain bull and that's what happens you get like hyper focused on something and you miss all the opportunities that present themselves around you.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, plus it's also a dime right. So like that's what I mean.

Speaker 2:

Like, if I paid for that tag. I'm shooting, I'm. I'm. Even on the first day that we had a nice bull that was like getting pretty close, I would have shot him, yeah. But this is like, look, we're trying to make, we're trying to kill a big, giant dinosaur here. You know, we're trying to kill a herd bull, let's go do it, you know, yeah. And uh, they blow out of there. It doesn't work out.

Speaker 2:

And so the day's starting to come to an end and uh, we hear him bugling right before dark, like right where we left him. So we go out there on, uh, on the last day in the morning and we mess around a little bit. Nothing's talking, can't find anything, nothing's going on. So we leave and go back to camp and go. He's like let's go hit this other timber spot, because it's the last day, like I'm leaving that night, right. So we, uh, we get into this big timber spot and I'm just like so discouraged because they just nothing was working. And we're back there, we call, we drive a little bit, call, drive a little bit, call. Then we start walking, call, and then we stop and get out and I hear a bugle. We didn't call to it, I just hear a bugle and it's real close. I mean I'm talking 150 yards close down over this Ridge, right down in this little valley, in this drainage, and I'm like, okay, let's see if he'll like play right. So we call to him nothing, cal, call to him to Turkey's gobble.

Speaker 2:

I'm like what the hell he's not? Why is he not like? Why he's gotta think he's got to be down there with a cow, because we hear her, we hear this cow, he's, you know. So what is going on here? Then a cow moves, an actual moo cow moves Okay, that's not usually a good sign and he and he rips a bugle and I'm like, oh shit. So we get down, we just go, we like work, our wind is blowing like this. So we get down like this, thinking he's moving this way, right. So we're gonna try to intercept him and we almost get. We almost I mean we were like Probably 30 seconds too late get into our spot Because he just just missed him, right, like we just missed him and that's why I mean we were hauling ass, like I was it. I mean I was running as hard as I could. I couldn't run anywhere through there, so miss that opportunity. And then we finally, so we get on him again and we look over and he's over on our ridge the cows over on the other ridge and sees us. She sees us over there because she's like looking for the bull and sees us, she freaks out and takes off and then whoop, there he goes and that was how that Elk hunt ended. That was how that.

Speaker 2:

That was my Hila National Forest Elk hunt. That was unsuccessful but one of the funnest hunts I've been on, just because we are. Just the quality of elk that we were seeing was just an incredibly impressive, especially some of the stuff they were living and I was like how do they survive out here like they just like walk around. These rocks are miserable and they just, they just do it. You know, well, I did leave one part out of that that we did. We made a bonehead mistake one day. It was the day was on the fourth day when I said we, we hiked way back after the, after these elk. You know, we're like let's just try to go find some of these that are way back in there. We go about 10 miles deep, right, and we're back. Then we see a bull and three cows head into this water hole and Something in my head said yeah, we can sprint two miles down to that water and and beat them there.

Speaker 1:

Oh yeah, we hold it.

Speaker 2:

I mean, I'm talking hauling ass down this hill to get there. These elk had came and left by the time we got there and I was like, and there was like some makeshift blind already down there. I was like, man, this is some bullshit. Like there's just people everywhere like you know, we'd be out there. We'd be out there glassing in the middle, like trying to look, and there'd be side-by-side driving right by us. I'm like, dude, this is stupid.

Speaker 1:

Like and there's a hundred tags. Is that right?

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

It is that hundred split up between cuz. I know in New Mexico they got the early season, the late season. Archery is a hundred for both or hundred.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, hundred for both, yeah.

Speaker 1:

That's crazy that you kept running.

Speaker 2:

It's such a small unit. It gets so small, you know, and so you got all these people that are like right in there in there, you know, it was so bad. My buddy Braxton drew the tag that was with me and he had like four more days to hunt and he didn't even hunt no shit, less than 1% chance of drawing that tag. And he was like, dude it's, I can't do it like you can't kill these elk with a bow right now. So so the the muzzle loader youth season started, like right after that, and he was sending me pictures of these hammers that these kids were killing. I was like, well, I'm glad it At least it's better doing it, you know. So that made me happy to see that these kids that mean like big giant, 360, 380 bulls getting hammered, cuz I. There was many times where I could have had that bullkid with a, with an open-sided muzzle loader.

Speaker 1:

But for sure, man. But it's a killer trip though, man. That's a killer tip, especially compared to Colorado over the counter, right? Yeah, all those encounters is is fun as shit.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it was cool. I got skunked on out twice last year Excuse me, because then I went that. Then I went the first week up to Montana with Jason Madsinger. Okay, we got skunked up there, the only we. We had a couple opportunities, but nothing like no, there was only one that was like maybe reasonable I could have got a shot off, but it was like 90 yards through the trees. Yeah, right, yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, now I got my first archery bowl this year. I was pretty, pretty fired up. I was out with Jermaine Hodges, a world outgown champ, and I got lucky. But again, it's it's. He was like a three, I think. He measured out to three, thirteen and he just looked like a monster because until that point we were like playing with two forties and stuff, and so it's funny how you know, just it's what you're around, is what you're willing to shoot. So but man, it's a fun adventure for sure. At one point, jermaine again he's world champ, right, he was calling on the very first morning that he shows up and we'd hunted a couple of days before. And he calls in like four bowls, like from every direction to within ten yards.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And like I'm standing there next to him, he's like pull your bow back. And I'm like there's a bowl behind you, like 10 feet behind you, like I can't move, otherwise everything's gone. It was absolutely crazy. So it's all about those just awesome experiences, man, and that's that's why we all cut, not necessarily just to put something down when you're in on it.

Speaker 2:

When you're in on the Zalkman, like in Europe, tight on them and they're just like there's the coolest animal, like they're so cool yeah they're amazing.

Speaker 1:

I can't wait to get my mount back. Like it's funny to do something, work so hard and then do it and then send it off to taxidermists. My wife, my kids have no idea what I'm talking about, like they've never seen this animal and I just want to get it home and like share this memories and these experiences with them.

Speaker 2:

I know I'm just waiting on the taxidermy.

Speaker 1:

It's also funny.

Speaker 2:

My wife's like you're not allowed to do full heads, just Euro, and I was like I'm doing a full head, like we'll, we'll cross it's when it arrives on your first healthy have to right Like yeah, I made that last year, so my first, that 2023 or 2022, I killed my first bull, two mule deer, a bear, all with my bow, and I had mounted. I didn't do the body mount on the bear, but I did a big mount on the bear. I have a mule deer sitting here, but this big fork buck, I killed everything. I did full mounts on them just because they were like my first, yeah. And then after that I'm like okay, I'm doing Euro mounts from now on because I don't have space for all of them.

Speaker 1:

That's awesome, man. Does your wife like the full mounts or is she like? No, my wife just doesn't like the eyes.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, she doesn't like the eyes. That's the, that's what it is. They freak her out.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, same.

Speaker 2:

Especially if they're not up high, like when they're up high, she doesn't mind it, but when they're down, like eye level with you, you like come and walk around a corner and there's like a deer staring you in the eyes, that's awesome, oh yeah.

Speaker 1:

My what's funny is my father in law. Well, this is partisan funny. But my father in law he passed away this past year and I got a big horn cheat from him and my wife's like put that thing away and I just have it like eye level in our living room. She hates it, hates her dads.

Speaker 2:

So it's a big horn is like. I want one. So bad yeah. They're so cool, they're such a cool animal man Like those she. They say that sheet bug is like once it bites you, it's over.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah, that's all you want to do once you get there. And also, I mean, I've never killed a mule deer working on it. But I've also heard that some people patent patterning mule deer and going after those 200 plus inch bucks is just like something, something's about it and people just go crazy for those two things.

Speaker 2:

Let's, how does the whitetail man? I don't know if you whitetail hunt at all, but I've very limited.

Speaker 1:

I've gotten one Texas buck and that's it with a shotgun.

Speaker 2:

Well, that's different, that's like different kind of whitetail hunting, but these are like Midwest whitetail hunting. When you get catching them on like on a pattern and bow hunting them, it is like it's a game of chess, like it is a this game of chess that you play with them, and if they smell you one time, they're gone for weeks You'll never again so you get like one opportunity, you know, and it's just it's fun to try to pattern them and people.

Speaker 2:

That's why people are spending all his money on cameras and they got these deer that they know when they're showing up, they know that and they still can't get them killed. So that just shows you how smart they are, you know, and people like it's addicting, it really is.

Speaker 1:

I'm going to have my first go at that this year. Actually, one of my buddies went to high school with him. He's got like 400 acres in Kansas and he's got 200 inch deer there and he's like come on down whenever you want. Last year you have to draw. So last year I didn't draw, but this year I have enough points.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I'll be in Kansas this year too, down in the south.

Speaker 1:

Same, same, same. I don't know, I don't know when, but maybe, maybe we can get you on the ranch if if you're not having any luck where you are.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think we'll be. I get to go to Illinois this year too. I got a buddy that's got a big, big farm out in Illinois, so it's always fun when you're hunting. I hunted public land Oklahoma this year with my buddy, Levi and dude. We didn't see any other hunters, but it is like those deer just walk around looking up in the tree Like they just look trees.

Speaker 1:

It was just ready for you.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, they're just like looking around. I'm like these. I was like these things have been shot at so many times Like that's what we like that way.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's cool man. Wait, I know, Do you have any more stories for us?

Speaker 2:

I mean I could hear and tell stories for hours. I mean I got to tell me man you tell me.

Speaker 1:

I do want to say you don't have to tell your cougar story, but people need to go hear it, especially the part where, like the cougars, looking in the guys like he's, it's like living under the dude's patio and looking in his windows trying to kill him and his dog, like that's terrifying.

Speaker 2:

Where would you?

Speaker 1:

recommend people listen to that story, cause I want people to check it out.

Speaker 2:

Oh, I told it on you can listen to it on Meteor. I told it on Cam Hanses, joe Rogan. Okay, you know, I could tell I could tell that story real quick. It's, it's pretty good, it's so. So we were just cutting tracks. Um, it was a. It was in January last year. Um, it was a fresh snow, like two feet of snow. It was still snowing, get out there early and we cut tracks. We find some smaller tracks and sub adult males, a couple of females and some cubs, and then finally we see these big tracks and we're like dude, this thing is huge. Um, and he's like he's going from this porch to this under this tree. And so we go over and look under this tree and there's a full grown four by four mule deer under there, dead, oh, shit.

Speaker 2:

And he's going back and forth, right, and cause there's a plow truck that's going up and down that road and so he'd like plow truck comes and he goes back under the porch and, um, you know, he goes back. So, um, we were trying to like see if we could see him up there and we didn't see him under there. And so we go up and knock on the door and nobody answers. I didn't want to. It was like six in the morning, I don't want to knock loud, you know. So then we just call people and then next thing you know, we're driving back down there and there's guys out there like kind of, you know, waving at us and he's like, was that you guys knocking on my door? And we're like, yeah, he's like, oh, I thought it was that line.

Speaker 2:

You see those tracks normally, yeah, and he's like that thing's been, he's like that things were like, yeah, man, he's uh, dent up under your porch. He's like, I know, he's like, yeah, so we use, we're like you care if we go get him? He's like, please go get him. So, which I mean if you live in an area like that and a lion is comfortable enough to be like under your porch and you have small animals, or you have dogs or cats or livestock. You want that thing out of there.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I just if you don't have those things, just being a human, I don't want to be walking over a lion man, I don't want to be dealing with it.

Speaker 2:

And then people in the area told us stories about. There's a woman in the area told stories about, you know, in the last couple years have been dogs being killed and missing, that Then you go watch the news and hear stories of kids getting. You know, just down the road from there, kid getting taken off his damn Trampoline, and it's like, okay, there's obviously enough lines up here for us to go ahead and take one. So we this is a big Tom, let's go after him, get the dogs out, go after him, go up. We go straight up and I knew it was gonna suck from the second. I took a step on that incline because I'm slipping and falling and I was like, oh, this is gonna suck.

Speaker 2:

And and the guy I was with had like some scarpas on that were just like mountaineering boots and I had like these Kenneth tracks that were just like all worn out from the season before and they're just slide. I was sliding all. I couldn't even walk like I take like two or three steps and fall, one step fall. And I just was like, alright, fine, I'm crawling. So I crawled up and I look he's already like slide. He's like sliding down the other side down under this drainage, because the dog he's stay with dogs, you know. So I'd say my sled down there. And then then it was like waist deep, chest deep snow, yeah, no thanks. It was just like crawl. I crawled through it and Then he, then he was like alright, when you see, I just he was like stay on my tracks. I was like alright. So I just did on his tracks and followed his tracks and he went up and down. He's like where, where he called me, he's like we had service back there. Hey, when you go, when it looks like I went up and back down, he's like just keep going up. And I was like, okay, so I go up and then finally I get.

Speaker 2:

That took me forever to get back up. When I get up there and he calls, he's like where you at, we're gonna lose this lion. And I was like, dude, I'm coming, like I'm back. He's like try to find my tracks at the top of that mountain. So I follow him and find the tracks. He calls me again, says come straight to this pin. I'm about to drop you, drop me a pin, I go straight to it. I'm on the road now and getting down to that pin, dude, I was sliding and falling and I ripped my pants all up like I was all cut up and and I'm on the road and he's like right, I couldn't even hardly hear the hounds. I could hear him, but I couldn't hardly hear him and he's like dude, you got to come back up and I was like no way. I was like, alright, I'm coming.

Speaker 1:

He's like we're gonna lose body just like a freak, because you're a professional athlete, right Like you, you're just this is what he does.

Speaker 2:

He does this train for it. Yeah, he's just like built for any. Anyways, a hundred pounds less than me.

Speaker 1:

That'll do it.

Speaker 2:

So pretty quick, yeah, so he just like built, he's like used to it. So I client, I had to hand it on my hands and knees crawled all the way back up there. It was only, it was like 900 yards I had to go, but it took forever to get up. I mean at least an hour and a half for me to get up there. At one point I lay down and turn around and look up and he's like you're almost here, and I look up and that lion is right above me, just there. And so I crawled like another 10 yards to get up, stood up, pulled my bow back and shot him and he was dead before he hit the ground and then we had to pack him out of there. And so we got it. We, I picked him up.

Speaker 2:

I didn't want to take a picture. That picture, you see, I didn't want to take it. Yeah, no, we've got to take a picture. He's huge and I was like whatever and I went to pick him up. I was like dude, he's like 200 pounds and he was like yeah, well, I don't know about that 200 pound.

Speaker 2:

You know, he knows the lion's right. He's like I don't know about 200 pound lion. He's like he might be like 180 and I was like, whatever, I don't care, he's huge. So I go and I pick him up and it's his big old pumpkin head like rolls back under my, into my face. I like knock his head sideways. I'm like take the fucking picture. So he takes a picture and his hands were all like wet, so it like he wasn't working at first. So he's like, ah, you know, and he finally gets it to work.

Speaker 2:

And we got him out and put him in my pack long ways, or yeah, like parallel, you know, to me, and he's like hanging out the sides, touching the ground. So I got on my hands and knees and crawled down backwards. I Strap my boat on my back and crawled on backwards and it took forever and got finally got to the truck and I was just like so exhausted I was cramping up the whole time. It was miserable, man, but I love it was like that, that it was like the misery that you love. You know, like it sucks, love it, you know and To to come out of there and I had no idea that they how big. That was my first lion hunt ever. It was like my first time being up class. I didn't even know how big he really was.

Speaker 1:

You just a lion to you not to say, yeah, he's just a lion.

Speaker 2:

I was like, oh, they must just be big, like when you find a big Tom, they just must all look like this. But oh man, the guy was about to exaggerates a lot, anyways, you know what I mean. He's always like he's freaking huge, you know. And I was like, I don't know, man, it's just a lion, I guess, you know. And he's like, no, you don't understand, he's huge. And then, and then that was that man. The hunt was over and I came back down. I actually showed up to the to do my radio job, like two hours late, because way longer than I thought, but like once I was already committed to this lion. It was like I wasn't, like I was committed to him. It didn't matter what, what, what was going on, you know. So I showed up to work still wearing the same stuff, the stuff you saw me in that picture wearing. That's what I showed up to the, to the studio in.

Speaker 2:

That's too funny, man, I think you're smelling like a mountain lion.

Speaker 1:

I remember. I remember when it happened, man Cause the first, I was on the news, like I was living here in Colorado at the time Actually, no, I might've just been in Texas, just moved to Texas, but when my parents go did you see that? And it's something hunting related I'm like, oh, this is a big deal, like something, something big is going on. And then, man, I show that photo to people all the time, so like, what's the big deal? And I'm like, think about this. I'm a big guy, derek, but I'm not as big as you. I'm six, three and a half right. And I'm like, think about someone three inches taller and then look at that fricking cat. Like it is massive, like that that picture is. It's intimidating. If, if, if, you thought all cats looked like that, like I'd never gone mountains again if they were all that big.

Speaker 2:

Well, I did. I just was like oh, they must all be eight and a half feet long. It was eight and a half feet from nose to tail.

Speaker 1:

Did you get him full body mount or?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, he's still at the taxidermist. Who knows when that's going to be done.

Speaker 1:

But those take four, they're like two years.

Speaker 2:

Two year wait for those, you know, but I can't wait to see him.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, how's it been like, obviously, I think you're, you're, you move to. What is this like? The outdoor industry, right? Was that like the catalyst? Did it just go crazy from there, cause like it seems like all of a sudden you were everywhere. Cnn you know you were.

Speaker 2:

I was on Fox. I didn't do CNN, it was Fox.

Speaker 1:

Okay, okay, that's what I was. I knew it was one of the big major.

Speaker 2:

I did Tucker Carlson but yeah, man, it was, it was cool, it kind of it kind of catapulted. What I was trying to do here, anyways, and and you know that's the great part about the position I'm in is that I don't have to do this. I'm doing this for fun, you know, but I'm sharing, I like to share it with people and you know I take it opened up a door for me to where I can now bring attention to, like the issues that are going on and and be a voice for hunters and sportsmen and sportswomen. I can be the voice, cause a lot of people can't say what they want to say because they have especially that work in the industry. Because they have, they work for these companies that have to be kind of PC about things right, and I don't have to be that way because I don't rely on this industry for my income. So I can say and be that voice to bring awareness, especially in Colorado where they're trying to, they're trying to attack.

Speaker 2:

These anti's are attacking our way of life Like it's not. It's not, they don't want us to kill mountain lines, it's not that they want wolves in, they want to bring wolves in so that they kill all the deer and elk. They want to stop mountain lion hunting, so they kill more deer and elk. That way there are less hunters, cause if there's no game to hunt, then no one will hunt and they'd wipe the culture and then they have a long-term plan. So I encourage everybody that's listening right now Dan Gates at savethehuntcoloradocom go donate your money. 100% of those proceeds, 100% goes to lobbying and fighting these guys and make sure that you bring awareness and educate people around you that maybe aren't anti hunters but aren't real hunters, but they think lions are cool and I think wolves are cool. Yeah, I think they're cool too and I want them, I would like to have them around, but there's got to be a management plan for all of them.

Speaker 1:

Yeah 100%.

Speaker 2:

If you get too many of them, not only are they going to eat, they're going to eat all of the deer. Now I kill them all. They will decimate it and the science proves it. Go look at Yellowstone. Go look at the Lolo. Absolutely, yeah, go look, there's science to prove it. So I'm not just talking out of my ass here. Go look at that. And you don't have to be a Colorado hunter to feel this way. If you ever think that you want to come to Colorado and hunt, then you should probably be aware of this and donate. So donate a little bit of money. You know every little bit helps. You know, put your money where your mouth is. We got to all come together on this one and shut it down, because if we show that we're a united front, because they see us, what they see is they see us all divided. They see bow hunters arguing with traditional compound hunters arguing with traditional hunters.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and muzzle loaders rifle hunters arguing with bow hunters, and it's just like Eastern hunters.

Speaker 1:

Western hunters.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, all you do is sit in a tree, stand and like, no, we're all outdoorsmen. And if you think that they're not coming for your state next, you're wrong, because look what they've done to Wisconsin and Minnesota and Michigan. Like it's been, they're destroyed. The wolves have destroyed it up there, and that's how they're using the wolves to destroy our culture.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I get asked about the wolf thing all the time and you know I tried to, especially from non-hunters. I try and stay away from the hunting aspect of it and go with like hey, why is your neighbor deciding whether or not there should be wolves? Like that doesn't make any sense, right, let's leave it in the hands of the biologists. The Colorado Parks and Wildlife has people. They pay 300 plus.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, they pay their salaries to study this and make sure that the ecosystem is perfect. Why would we? Why are we letting anyone vote on this Like it doesn't make sense to?

Speaker 2:

vote for why we have to Tell me why the governor would put gag orders on them.

Speaker 1:

No, his husband. That's why.

Speaker 2:

Exactly. This is his husband, who is an animal rights extremist, Not an activist an extremist.

Speaker 2:

Yep, so like anybody who has a spouse knows when your spouse wants something done, you're going to do it. So, poor, poor governor Polis is like dude, I don't care about wolves and I got other. I got immigrants moving rolling into the city all nonstop. I got to worry about that. Meanwhile his spouse is like hey, bud, yeah, I want wolves and I don't want people hunting, and I want this and I want that. And it's like what do you think he's going to do? He's going to do whatever. You just to get like leave me alone so I can get a job. You know he's going to do what his spouse wants.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely 100% man, 100%. Well, derek man, this was fun. I appreciate you taking the time. We got off track at the end, but that's fine. That happens all the time. But why don't we tell the people where they can find you? I know you mentioned a couple of things at the beginning, but you know you're. I know you have a podcast. It's great. It's not always about hunting. I listen to it, and then your YouTube, carbon TV, whatever you want to share.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you can check. You can find my videos on YouTube, wolf Untamed. You can listen to me on all streaming sites I'm from my podcast Spotify, apple, google, amazon. That's also Wolf Untamed and you can check out WolfUntamedcom, and we got some cool stuff coming up. I'm getting ready to partner up with a really cool group to really revamp this podcast and make it something special, because it's fun to get to know people and it's not just hunting, it's more than that, it's like a lifestyle podcast. I'm bringing on all different walks of life veterans and hockey players and snowboarders and hunters, and manual sand or Donnie Dusk and a bunch of good guys.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's a fun lesson.

Speaker 2:

It's just me and whoever like I can get to come talk to me. You know I got this guy called Dom the hypnotist. He's going to be coming on here real soon. He's a real hypnotist Like he does. It's really cool. So I like I just think it's interesting stuff. You know, that's awesome.

Speaker 1:

Check it out Like you said earlier, man, you aren't doing it for any other reason other than it's what you want to do, and so you're a little bit probably more honest than most, so I appreciate that. So, yeah, everybody, make sure you check out what Derek's got going on. I'll put every notes to everything, or, excuse me, links to everything in the show notes. And man, thanks again, I really appreciate it and go Broncos.

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah, man.

Speaker 1:

All right, guys. That's it. Another couple of stories in the books. I want to thank Derek, of course, for coming on the podcast. Some of my favorite stories I definitely have heard the Mountain Lion one before, but man, it is crazy. If you want to hear a longer tail version of that episode or that story in particular, check out Joe Rogan Cam Haynes. Anywhere that Derek's basically been on, people ask him about that crazy mountain line. Thank you again, Derek. Thank you to the listeners, of course, for tuning in. Do appreciate you, guys. Make sure you give us a follow on Instagram, Give Derek a follow. Make sure you follow Wolf Untamed. All the links to everything you need are in the show notes. But that's it, guys. Thanks again. Now get out there and make some stories of your own.

Hunting Stories Podcast With Derek Wolfe
Elk Hunting Frustrations
Unsuccessful but Memorable Elk Hunt
Tracking a Lion in the Snow
Mountain Lion Hunt and Conservation Awareness