Arizona Public Land Javelina Hunt
Last day. Last chance. Mentally and physically exhausted. Not seeing a blessed thing all morning. Yet, still managing to get it done with the help of good friends. I’m sensing a pattern with my recent Arizona hunting trips.
In a last-ditch effort to find a stink-pig, I bombed way out, a good two hours through deep mud and washed-out terrain, with my buddy, Jeremy Samuelson, on the final morning of my trip thanks to a location tip from a friend, Shannon Del Curto. Jeremy hadn’t slept after working an overnight shift, and I was dealing with a swollen ankle I was struggling to walk on. Suffice to say, our hopes were a bit low, but we were going to give it hell anyway. Unfortunately, other than an incredible herd of antelope, we saw absolutely nothing but tons and tons of pig-shaped rocks and brush on our entire drive out. On our way back out of the area, we spotted a nice covey of quail and grabbed the shotguns from the back. Jeremy tagged one, along with a nice jackrabbit.
As we went to flush more, he suddenly spotted a lone javelina a good 200 yards out. Between the wind, cover and the direction he was moving, I couldn’t have asked for more perfect stalking conditions. I had to make some aggressive moves to catch up with him, and managed to get to 35 yards as he popped out from the brush. I had ranged the bush behind him, not realizing that he was a good five (or so) yards in front of it. My shot was a bit higher and further back than I would’ve liked, and as he ran back up into the brush, I was convinced that I had missed or just clipped him.
As I went to look for blood and my arrow, I was kicking myself and reviewing everything I could’ve done better, all the while thinking that my last chance at harvesting a javelina this year was long gone. After some thorough searching, we managed to find some tracks and blood which lead us to him, laying down in the bushes only about 20-25 yards away from where I’d shot him. He was still alive, so, to make sure he met his end as quickly and ethically as possible, I put another arrow through him, and he expired almost immediately after.
I tagged him, and Jeremy grabbed a few photos before we got him gutted and in the back of the truck for the long ride back to the trailer, where I got him skinned, quartered, bagged and on ice for the long drive back to Northern California. I couldn’t have asked for a better finale to this trip, and I’m excited to add some new meat to the freezer.