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Idaho Wolves

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Uploaded on Sep 8, 2009

This video was taken 10 minutes after an ambush by three wolves. I apologize that we were unable to film the actual attack. We asked the wolves to recreate the scene but they were unwilling. For those of that care to read more of the encounter, please continue...

My hunting partner and I set up on an elk trail at 3:00 pm. We waited for elk for til 7:00 pm. We did not bugle or cow call in this area at anytime, nor did we have any elk scent on us. At 7:00 pm the sun set so we decided call it quits. We signaled each other and walked to the ridgeline. With only one pair of binoculars we glassed the opposite hill side and talked about the morning hunt. We were only glassing for a few minutes before my partner heard some breaking twigs. While I was glassing, my partner turned to look at three wolves running at us full bore. One wolf (black) came directly at us while the other two wolves flanked on either side. The direction they approached from would have given us 100 yards to see their advance, but we didnt see them until they were 25 yards away. They were covering some ground. As I was turning to my partners call of WOLVES!, he fired a broad head, missing the wolf's head by only a few inches (he may have had given him a shave). When I turned, I saw the black tail of a wolf trotting away and caught a glimpse of a huge gray wolf lurking in the thicker timber to our left. It was at this point that we both said, hey dumba$$ maybe we shouldnt have left our packs and quivers where we were sitting. With one arrow and no side arm we walked toward the hidden but vocal gray wolf to retrieve my partners pack and quiver. I was walking toward the gray wolf while my partner watched our backs. We were able to get our packs without any more trouble, but the gray wolf was barking and howling the entire time, as heard in the video. Once we had all of our gear we began the video before we headed back to the truck.

According to a IF&G Biologist the wolves charged to invoke a flee response. This is known as "prey testing". The wolves didnt make contact only because we held our ground. Had we of fled like their typical prey the wolves would have been on us from all sides. This one of their primary elk hunting techniques.

The alpha male howling in this video was significantly larger than the other two wolves. The alpha male had flanked to the left while the other wolf attacked.
As we returned to the truck, in fading light and thick cover, the alpha male maintaned his distance close behind us while barking and howling out of sight. There was a point when the alpha stopped howling. This is when the pack, located between us and the truck, began howling. We estimate, by sound, that the pack contained 7 to 8 dogs. As we approached the pack, near the road (1000 yds), the pack eerily went silent. We stopped and also went silient. From the opposite side from teh pack the alpha male let out a loud howl. Feeling surrounded and pressured at this point the we aggressively worked through horribly thick burned timber armed with two useless bows, a machete, and skinning blade. Sooner than we though we made it to the road, 200 yeads from the truck. Once to the road we didn't hear the wolves again.

There was no blood shed on either side. We will be more prepared for wolf encounters in the future. Both of us had wolf tags. Neither of us had a sidearm (left them in the truck), but we will both be carrying them on all future hunts and hikes.

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