Imagine wounding a mature bull elk while afield but no matter how hard and how many times you scoured the mountain to look, you just couldn’t find it. That is exactly what happened to Steve Smith. He shot a bull in 2012 in southern Utah but the arrow hit a branch and hit the animal high.
“Had he survived? Did someone see him on the winter range? Did he wander around for weeks, getting sicker and sicker and finally succumbing to a terrible infection? said Smith. “I just wanted closure, if anything. In the years that followed, I thought about this bull on a regular basis, always wondering, feeling guilty, and blaming nobody but myself.”
The memory of that hunt haunted Smith until he received a phone call six years later. It turns out a woman on a hike found the animal in a thick forest stand.
Watch the video above and go here for more photos.
(Video Source: Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)