Hunter Reviews A Free-Range Elk Hunt In West Texas


Published: September - 2011

We don't often hear about elk hunting in West Texas. The last time, in fact, was in a 2009 report (Article ID: 2310 in our Email Extra database) by Lew Miller, who reminded us that elk in the Lone Star State aren't even considered a game animal! They can be hunted any time, including, as Italian subscriber Mario Nobili tells us here, on either side of the big hunting conventions. "I booked this hunt after a few e-mail contacts with Malcolm Calaway, the owner of the Boot Ranch (www.westxranchrealty.com/Hunt.html), located about 25 miles north of Alpine. I admit I didn't ask too many questions (like references) before I booked, as I immediately liked and trusted this man. He told me that his 18,000-acre ranch held a population of free-range elk that had never been hunted in the past. I would be the first to have the possibility of taking an elk on his property. "After many follow-up contacts during the year, my wife, Caterina, and I finally reached Alpine the morning of January 3, 2011, after a long trip from Milan via London, Denver and Midland. The accommodations Malcolm has on his ranch are quite good. He calls it a cabin, but it is more comfortable than many lodges. However, having my wife with me, I booked a very nice room in the historic Holland Hotel (http://thehollandhoteltexas.com/) in town. This is an archetypal "Western" hotel, built in 1912, and looks like it belongs in a John Wayne movie. In fact, the entire town of Alpine evokes the atmosphere of the golden era of the West that we Europeans have seen only in movies. "Malcolm, too, is straight out of the Old West with his cowboy hat, boots and Wrangler jeans, a big smile on his face and a great heart. He reminded me of John Wayne's character "Chisum" in the beautiful 1970 movie of that name. But Malcolm is also a real gentlemen, who hosted us better than any of my many other hunting trips around the world. In fact, he and his family welcomed us as friends, worrying not only the success of my........(continued)
 
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