Author Archives: alex-tenenbaum

The Monarch



Man vs. Elk.  It’s a battle that consumes the minds of thousands of hunters each year.  To me, elk hunting has become a passion and a lifestyle.  I love the challenge and the places that it takes me.  I don’t have a long history with elk, it’s only my third year chasing the wild beast, but it’s something that has become a part of me.  This year I once again drew a Missouri Breaks tag.  After failing to arrow a bull there last year, I made it a goal to return and get redemption.  After 5 grueling days I was without an elk once again.  At that point, the decision was made to swap the open country for the dark timber of Northwest Montana.  I already had a location picked out as I had done some scouting there this summer.  Trail cameras had shown that some mature bulls were inhabiting the area.

We arrived at the trailhead at 5:30AM.  This would be the first time we’d be camping out of our Long Bows, and we were excited to see how they’d handle the challenge.  The packs loaded nicely, and I can say I could comfortably hunt for … READ MORE >

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The Wolf Days of Winter

MT Wolf 2012 Pack 3
Featuring: NICE Crewcab


Randy Newberg, of On Your Own Adventures, called and asked if I would be a guest hunter on his show for a Montana wolf hunt.  I was excited and thankful that he would call me to join him, especially considering I had zero wolf hunting experience.  Randy and I talked, and we both understood this hunt wasn’t likely to end with much in the way of wolf footage, and even less likely to end with a dead wolf.

But Randy and I both have the same philosophy when it comes to hunting: The odds might be stacked against you, but the odds drop to zero if you don’t at least give it a try.

We spent five straight days hunting for one of Montana’s most elusive creatures.  Our expectations were low, so we were thrilled when we spotted our first two wolves late in the afternoon of the first day. Under normal circumstances, we would have had a shot at them, but the camera guy was unable to locate the animals in his viewfinder, so I had to pass on the shot. I was learning, painfully, that trying to capture the harvest on film adds a significant … READ MORE >

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The Hills


By Peter Moore

“You going to be able to make it to The Hills this year?”

That’s what I asked Sam as soon as my unsuccessful bow season ended. Sam is my hunting partner of six years, but he’s never around these days, busy training for the 2012 Paralympics’ Cycling events, while traveling the country as a motivational speaker.

“The Hills” is our annual hunting trip, and since Sam grew up hunting, he should know that tradition is everything.

He could only squeeze one long weekend out of rifle season, and it was all we needed to pack up the Sprinter and head north. We drove five hours and talked about where we might find some big Mulies, knowing that in late October, the deer hold high, waiting ’til mid November to head down to the wheat fields to rut. We settled on putting our MR packs, and our legs, to the test and hauled up to a high ridge line where we could set up camp.

The weatherman called for 50 degrees and calm and was wrong as usual. What he meant was 30 degrees with 70-mile-an-hour gusts – not necessarily the conditions you want when camping on a … READ MORE >

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Get Powder Blasted!

Who: You

What: The 13th Annual Powder Blast

Where: The Emerson Center for Arts and Culture

When: 6:30 p.m. Friday, October 28

Why: Fabulous Mexican fare, Lone Peak brewskies and live music by The Sierra Padres – all to raise some dough for the Friends of Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center. Why the heck not?

Tickets: Get ‘em at Northern Lights Trading Company, Timber Trails in Livingston, Grizzly Outfitters in Big Sky, or right here.

Cost: $30 per person.

We’re stoked to be a major sponsor of this event. Thanks Friends of the Avalanche Center!… READ MORE >

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‘Solitaire’ in Bozeman

Solitaire Promo

Who: You and your friends from Mystery Ranch.

What: After 2 years of filming, Sweetgrass Productions brings their ski epic, ‘Solitaire,’ to Bozeman.

When: 8 p.m. Tuesday, October 11

Where: Emerson, 111 South Grand Ave.

Why: See for yourself…

How: Tickets. $10 in advance, $12 day of. Available at Northern Lights Trading Company or buy online here.… READ MORE >

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Who do you call?

Mikes Elk 2

By Tom Foss

Mike drew a prime moose tag this season, and he was out scouting some new country. At first light, he saw a fine herd of elk, but his main goal was to find one of the big bull moose he knew hung out in these hills.  Eight hours later, just before dark, he decided to wander a ways over toward the elk – four miles to be exact. A couple of cow calls, and suddenly a satellite bull was in his lap. He released an arrow at 35 yards, the razor-sharp broadhead did its work, and he heard the young bull hit the ground.

It was late and dark with no cell service. He hurriedly gutted his elk in prime grizzly country, and grew rightfully nervous on the hike out. With the smell of blood on his hands, he jumped at every shadow.

He remembered the landowner’s words when he asked for permission: “Have at it son, but watch out. There is an ornery griz in there. He chased us in our quads and almost ran our hired hand through a barb wire fence.”

He’d spilled the guts and the meat was cooling, and as he headed … READ MORE >

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Perfect Moments of Shred

Be there: The VAST GAllery, 410 N. Broadway, Bozeman. Next to the Bozeman Brewery.

When: Thursday, September 19th, 7 to 11 p.m.

Why: Mystery Ranch is proud to sponsor “Perfect Moments of Shred,” a photo fundraiser for the Aaron Robinson Plant a Seed Foundation. The night of snowboarding-inspired photographs will be a celebration of the life of Aaron Robinson, a Montana-based snowboarder who died while snowboarding in Chile this summer.

The show will feature a curated collection of iconic photographs from the snowboard world that have never been available for public purchase, until now. This limited edition series features work by the following internationally respected photographers: Jeff Curtes, Tim Zimmerman, Andy Wright, Mike Yoshida, Jenna Low, Scott Serfas, Oli Gagnon, Liam Gallagher, Colin Wiseman Scott Sullivan, Frode Sandbech, Reid Morth, Matt Georges and Chris Owen.

Proceeds from the event will Benefit the Aaron Robinson Plant a Seed Foundation, a Whitefish Based non-profit started after Aaron’s untimely death, which will help carry out Aaron’s dream of providing underprivileged children the opportunity to experience a passion and love for snowboarding.


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Booty Bag Piratey Shwag Giveaway

Alright mates and scurvy bilge rats, we’re offerin’ ye a farthin’ o’ Mystery Ranch Loot!

To we o’ the Seven Seas, it be all about the booty. Whether ye be collectin’ booty from a boarded ship, or haulin’ a few belayin’ pins to the crow’s nest to keep on the lookout for e’er more booty, ye needs a good sack. To that end, The BOOTY BAG be a fine, seaworthy scabbard o’ good portent. It’s been known t’ ferry prized possessions t’rough the most violent o’ squalls, while keepin’ pilferin’ fingers off yer loot.

If ye wants t’ call this treasure yer own, ye can navigate the digital seas from here, ’round Cape Shopping Cart, and into the Check-Out Lagoon. OR, ye can try yer scurvy luck at this here’s contest.

Five sunsets from this day, we’s openin’ the Mystery Ranch Chest o’ Treasures t’ one lucky urchin.


RUN YER ROT BELOW, in yer best Pirate parlance, with what kind o’ booty ye’d haul in the BOOTY BAG. We’ll scribe yer name on a crab and set it loose in the factory. First crab t’ pinch the staff wins. Or … READ MORE >

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Baker and Tai: from the factory to the flanks of Mt. Rainier


MEET RAY BAKER: The Ranch Boss at our Seattle location, he’s been with the company since 2004. The man is a stud, given a roll of Cordura, a pair of scissors, a needle and thread.

“He’s one of the best pack sewers and designers… ever,” says hunting guru and Mystery Ranch marketing director Mark Seacat.

Ray Baker, rockin’ the mutton chops, is photographing the trip. We’ll post his photos here when he gets back.

MEET BRIAN TAI: He’s an experienced firefighter who started consulting to build fire packs in 2004, and joined the Mystery Team in 2008. These days, he heads up sales development and marketing for our fire line.

Brian Tai does some explaining at the basecamp in Ashford, WA.

But this week, Brian and Ray will need more than superior sewing and selling skills to survive. They’re currently climbing the 14,411-foot Mt. Rainier with wounded veterans Derrick James Ford, Eric Andrew Cowan, and Gilbert “Mag” Magallanes as part of Camp Patriot, the organization that takes disabled vets on outdoor adventures.

Seeing as Ford and Cowan have each had a leg amputated, and Magallanes survived the blast of a 2000-pound bomb with multiple injuries, the folks at … READ MORE >

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