Just A Step Behind  

nightis 53M
247 posts
4/8/2006 6:32 am

Last Read:
4/8/2006 6:34 am

Just A Step Behind

I work in a protected National Monument. I have a varied number of roles and one of the most prominent during the off season is that of lone law enforcement officer. It is a very restrictive environment full of dont's! A major no-no is collecting natural resources and one of the most prized objects on the ground this time of year, are the shedded horns off of the bull elk within the monument. Given the largest herd in Washington State resides in our valley, elk shed hunting is just short of organized crime.

I am playing chess with seasoned veterans. Twice this week, I have had one pair nailed to the alders only to have them slip away. I listened to their "R" rated chatter on the 49MHZ radio scanner; I even knew how many antlers they had collected. What a great photo that would be! After staking out their vehicle for an hour and a half yesterday afternoon, they slipped out of the canyon within 30 minutes of my departure. I know who they are and where they live, but I have not been able to fashion an open and shut case.

Last week luck was on our side when one of my partners was in the neighborhood. We nailed three other guys for about $700 in fines each and confiscated a number of antlers that valued over $1000. Word in the local woods community has it, they were going to be right back out this week!

No matter what the triumphs and frustrations may be, it beats the hell out of somebody's 9 to 5 job in a windowless office somewhere!

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