Longwalker's Four-Year Rule
Pacific Northwest Field Editor Longwalker says, "It is nearly time to Whack'em and Stack'em, Track'em and Pack'em."

Your humble writer has once again been blessed with opportunity in our western states by sticking to the FOUR-YEAR RULE! To date I have received hard-to-get premium big game tags in three states. Beating the odds of less than one-half of one percent, I am the pleased and proud holder of one of five antelope tags awarded in my home state in Idaho's first-ever Supertag lottery! (Our editor isn't the ONLY goat hunter in the field this year.) This tag will allow me to hunt in any unit in any type of antelope season, statewide!

This great news was followed with a tag awarded in Idaho's "regular" controlled hunt drawing for an early rifle "bugle" hunt for elk in one of Idaho's "bestest" bull units in the entire state. Incredibly, me, my son and two good hunting companions drew the Montana nonresident deer/elk combo. This is the second year in a row that I have had the opportunity to hunt Montana big game and in fact have had the pleasure of prowling around that great land with a tag in my pocket (and punching them) for four out of the last six years.

Bonus points really do work, IF you keep on applying. If our luck in drawing in Montana does not convince you to keep on keepin' on and gathering those bonus points, read on. It only took SEVEN years but with my accumulated points for Nevada deer I drew one of only five nonresident archery deer tags in our old stomping grounds where my dad bowhunted, beginning back in the 1950s. This is a very early opening date, mid-August, so I best get going to the range and get my Matthews tuned up and on target.

In the meantime, if you were not in the "bonus point game" this year, be sure to get yourself into the arena next year. If you stay consistent and keep after it, in about four years of chalking up points, you will begin to knock down some of those favorite and hard-to-obtain tags on a regular basis. And in states like Montana and California, whose point systems are in their infancy, you should be able to get a deer tag in a "good" unit in two years or less. So start applying. If you do not, your chance of drawing those tags for the better areas will be ZERO forever!

Shoot straight and remember, TAKE A KID HUNTING!

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