I want to hear everyone’s thoughts on the spider bull. I gotta be honest I was pulling for a hunter that was lucky enough to draw out and had the hunt of his life. Nothing against Mossback they did a fantastic job bringing this bull into the spot light and keeping tabs on it until they could get a shooter on it.

This bull was taken on a governor’s tag. Most states have these they are auctioned off and big outfits will pick them up for large amounts of cash. If you do your job right you then scout out a nice bull make a video and market the hell out of it. If you do your job you will get a nice client that has lots of money looking to purchase their next big hunt. This is what happened with the spider bull. I think it’s great that Denny took this bull, if you watch the Mossback site he takes a record size bull or buck with Mossback every year.

The money raised in the governor’s tag auction goes to wildlife resources. Here is my question. There are a lot of huge animals that are taken every year in states all over with a governor’s tag. But 90% of the hunters that are dedicated and addicted to hunting in that state will never afford that opportunity. Is the governor’s tag worth it? Are you addicted to hunting when you buy your animal? Are guides going to far to provide the next best animal? give us your comments.

Here is a photo of the rack in the truck.

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  1. To me, this is like the issue with “The shot heard round the world.” Those of you not familiar with baseball history – here’s the deal: Brooklyn Dodgers’ pitcher, Ralph Branca gave up a game winning home run to New York Giants’ Bobby Thompson that sent the Giants to the World series. Rumor has it that Thompson was tipped off as to what pitch was going to be thrown, therefor he had an unfair advantage. To which I say is undeniable – yes, he had an unfair advantage. But advantage or not, he still had to hit it – and he had no idea as to the location of the pitch…he not only had to hit it, but hit it out of the park. Impressive no matter.

    Here’s the deal with this bull – Buying the governor’s tag is an advantage. Obviously – there is no denying it. Having the money to pay for a world class guide is an advantage. No denying that, either. However, the guide still has to put the client on the bull – not a given. The client still has to make the shot – not a given. And who are we to say the client isn’t a dedicated hunter? I mean, just because a person is rich doesn’t mean they aren’t passionate about hunting. Granted, if I ever struck it rich, I’d probably not bother changing the way I have hunted for years – although I probably would go on a guided moose hunt in Alaska – well, what’s the difference when a farm boy from MN gets rich and decides his dream is to kill a big bull elk. It just so happens that this year there is a REALLY big bull elk running wild – and he has the money to buy the tag and pay Mossback to guide him. He was still taking the risk that this bull could have been shot during bow season – then he’d have purchased the governor’s tag and the guide fees for a bull that wouldn’t be the one he had in mind. Bottom line – congrats to the guide, congrats to the hunter. I simply can’t sit here and say that Dave Moss (whom I’ve never met, but I understand has many enemies in UT) is not a passionate hunter – for him to profit from his passion is no crime in my book as long as everything is legal. For Mr. Denny Austad to pay the money for a governor’s tag FOR A CHANCE to kill this bull is no crime in my book. Congrats all the way around, and yes, we all would have liked for Joe Normal Guy to shoot this bull, but it didn’t happen that way.

    Oofta – this is a long comment – sorry guys!!! 🙂 Thanks for keeping us passionate elk hunters updated on this story.

  2. Great comment Tom, I don’t follow baseball but totaly see where you going with that. Some very valid points. I’ve had Bulls come in and actually saw my name in the paper and then I totaly missed the shot or didn’t have my gun ready. So there is still a lot of factors to consider.

  3. Smart business men have a place in hunting too, I wish I could make my living off hunting bulls like this!! The funny thing is every time you hear of someone that has actually met Doyle they say he was nice and took time to talk to them about hunting and the area. Don’t know what caused all the uproar but I respect someone that can locate and track down big game year after year, he’s got the time and money and chooses to spend it on the mountain. Congrats, I wish Kody was the luck one but you can’t say Doyle and his team didn’t work hard to create this opportunity for Denny. Hat’s off to him for being a good outfitter and smart business man, if it were not for him I doubt we would be able to see pictures of this amazing bull. I hope that the bull was shot on the up and up and no accusations taint the accomplishment of Denny and the Mossback team.

  4. I agree, guys. My cousin has actually spoken with Doyle on the phone before and said he seems to be a really nice guy – and surprisingly enough, pretty low key and modest. Anyways – this bull is just so intriguing for so many reasons – and bummer that your buddy didn’t knock this guy down, because then I could say “I read the blog of the friend of the guy who…”okay, so that would have been a stretch, but it would have been cool! look forward to further news about this bull – I’ll leave it to King’s Outdoor World to tell us the whole kit and kaboodle with this story.

  5. I live in Monroe, Utah at the base of the mountain and this Spider Bull is weird. Last year the photos of him show that he was about a 350 bull. This bull has been grazing all summer in the meadows on the mountain. Vehicle after vehicle would stop and take pictures. The elk didn’t move more than a couple of miles the whole summer. I for one am glad that that genetic line has been removed. This is not an attractive bull. He’s not tall or wide just a lot of crap and palmation. He was not a big bodied bull either. In the Mossback video on the website the bull next to him is much taller and wider and better looking than him. The spider bull was taken by the hunter with the Governers tag. I think the winning bid was somewhere around $170,000 and the guide service, Mossback, was about $100,000 to $150,000. Doyle Moss is well know in this area for unethical tactics. He has alot of spotters who trail bulls all summer and especially in the fall. When the season is about to start he locates the bull and when it’s basically surrounded by his scouts the hunter is
    called and gets out of bed and goes and shoots the elk. The Fish and Game has concerns with Mossback and the fair chase law. They have been looking at this for a long time. I personally am tired of the record book elk and guide service. Fair chase is fair chase and not a tiger hunt in India with bush beaters. Another problem with the Mossback group is they will block roads into the area with their vehicles and tell other people to stay out. There have been several of their vehicles that have been removed forcefully from the roads. Here in the Richfield, Monroe, area the Mossback name is a joke. There is no respect for their hunting tactics. Let them have a record book elk no one here really cares. The hunter also missed the same bull at 150 yds last week twice. Let’s just chase him until he’s surrounded. The hunter got what he deserves an ugly bull and I guess Mossback got what they wanted publicity.

  6. Regardless of whether or not Moss is good, bad, or otherwise – I’m too far disconnected with his situation to form an educated opinion. I just know what my cousin told me from his phone conversation of about 5 minutes with the guy and that was that he was a passionate hunter who was very curtious to my cousin – a regular joe. So – nevermind Doyle Moss – what I fail to understand is how the hunter got what he deserved. The hunter happens to be wealthy and if I ever get wealthy, I imagine I’d like to go on a guided moose hunt in Alaska. I see nothing wrong with that. This guy wanted a guided elk hunt in Utah. I see nothing wrong with that. To criticize the hunter from my view point is unnecesarry. Of course there are a lot of things I could be in the dark about this hunt, but from the details that are out there, I still congratulate the hunter. I’m no trophy chaser, so I can’t say that it’s my cup of tea, but at the same time, I can see a big bull when I see one and figure he must have been one excited hunter when he brought this bull down – and that is an emotion I can connect with…and I think we can all connect with. I’d have been just as happy to drop a spike this year – but it wasn’t in the cards. But I’d hate to be the guy that tries to put a damper on another hunter’s excitement – I hope he has many a fine steak and a burger or two from this bull…or if not – send the meat my way and I’ll gladly accept! 🙂

  7. I’m sorry if I came across as bad-mouthing the hunter. I’m not. I’m glad he was able to get what he wanted. The problem I have is with the guide services. We get alot of trophy hunters here every year and that’s ok but it needs to be fair chase. If I’m hunting I want to be there for the whole thing. A year or 2 ago a friend of mine was guiding for a man from Texas who had the Governors deer tag. This guy was willing to pay big money. He wanted nothing except a for certain state record buck. My friend found a 40+ inch buck but probably not a state record. This man told my friend to call him when they have a state record located and he would fly up in his plane and they could meet him and take him to shoot it. He never ended up coming to Utah. I’m glad the Fish and Game recieved the money but where in this whole deal was the fair chase aspect. This happens so often. I myself have drawn 2 big bull tags in Utah one on the Monroe and the other in a better unit the Pahvant. I have hunted both archery and worked my butt off to get two nice bulls. My last bull was a beautiful big symetrical 6. He scored about 350 I was told. These were hunts where great memories were made. I really all about fair chase. Don’t herd the animal under any circumstances. Play the game fairly even if you have all the money in the world. I’m just as important as anyone. With the archery hunt on this Spider Bull on the guides tell other hunters that this is their area and to stay out. I’m really against everything like this. This is the way Mossback maintains their reputation.

  8. I’m with you on that one – I don’t want people herding animals and I certainly don’t want people sitting back and waiting for a guide to hog tie and animal and THEN they come up and shoot them…without doing any real work themselves. I’ve never hunted with a guide, so I don’t have any experience to say whether it happens or not – I hope it doesn’t. I don’t have a problem with a guide doing the scouting for the hunter and pointing them in the direction of an animal – and even getting them on an anmial that they figure to be in the area, but to just tell your guide to call you up when they get one hammered down is a little piggish.

    Anyways – congrats on your bulls…I’d sure like to knock down a big one someday! But in the meantime, I’ll keep looking for any one (haven’t killed with my bow, yet, so I’m not picky by any means!) Do you have any more hunts coming up, Bob? I’m headed to the high desert tomorrow in search of a mule deer – it’ll be the first time I’ve picked up a rifle in four years and I’m kinda looking forward to it. I’ve got a spot picked out where I think will make a nice little camp for a few days and I hope to bring home some venison as it’s just been way too dang long! 🙂

    Sorry to get off topic, guys!

  9. I think there are some really good points out there. I agree that the shooter had the money and spent it the way he wanted to. The part that is disturbing is what a guide is willing to do in order to make the big sale. The rumors of what happened to this bull is going nuts. Last night a kid was on the radio talking about how he has last years sheds from this bull and he was only a 350 bull. It is impossible for a bull to grow 150 inches with out some type of enhancement. Secondly I agree with Bob hunting needs to be fair chase. I have spoken to guys this week that had to winch Doyles guys trucks off the road in order to gain access to free land. Coraling and babysitting animals so you can get a client that is willing to pay big money to shoot it is ruining the sport. By the way Tom I want to join you on the Alaska hunt. If I go on a guided hunt I expect to have to work my butt off. I have a friend that paid to go on a pig hunt up in Idaho. When they got there they went into this fenced coral and was told to pick the pig they wanted and shoot it. It was more a slaughter then a hunt. When I bag an animial the pride goes into how much work I put into it.

    It sounds like the Utah fish and game is watching this one closely and we will have to wait and see what happens. It would be a major bummer if the world record gets stripped from this guy because they discover it was farm raised and fed steroids. I wonder if the hunter has a refund policy with Doyal if Mossback is found guilty of tampering.

  10. Interesting. Also – poor fella could have saved himself some money if he’d called me first – I coulda told him there just ain’t no pigs in Idaho running free! That would be ridiculous – hope he didn’t pay much for the pork.

    And, yes, I would want to work for my Alaskan moose, too – and you’re welcome to come along since we are fantasizing about being rich! At least I’m fantasizing…you??? 🙂 I mean if you’re already there, you could float me a loan and I’d make my moose hunt a reality in a hurry!

    I’m hoping the rumors about Doyle aren’t true – simply because I don’t like to think any hunter would act that way. Keep in mind I know no one attached to this story, so I don’t mean to discredit what you all have already told me, but bearing in mind that I don’t know anyone – I can’t say. I just hope they aren’t true. I agree that it seems a little (A LOT!) ridiculous that a bull could grow 150 inches in one year…that is the part that has me stumped. I mean, where was this bull last year – I never heard about it for sure.

  11. I want to weigh in on the Spider Bull. I do not know Doyle, so I am not sure what kind of person he is. The rumors may, or may not be true about him. Until I am able to meet him, and talk to him, I may never know what kind of person he is. As I read the positive comments about him I begin to think that he is just a hard working outfitter that would do anything for his clients. As I read the negative comments about him I can’t imagine someone blocking public roads, and herding the Spider Bull away from everyone else. As you can tell, I really don’t know what to think of Doyle. I am trying to look at it objectively, but there is so much crap being flinged back and forth it is hard to sort out fact from fiction. The negative comments on Austed are uncalled for. He is lucky to have enough money to harvest a bull like that, and he sounds like he worked pretty hard to get the bull. I have been on a guided fishing trip in Alaska, and it was a great experience. The guides knew exactly where to take us, and we caught a ton of fish. Regardless of how the fish were caught, they still tasted great and we had a blast! Am I less of a fisherman because i used a guide to take me somewhere that I had never been and had a lot of success?

    This is a heated debate, and to look at it objectively we need to figure out what the facts are. (I am a Speech Communication major with an emphasis in Argumentation and Decision Making. Needless to say, I love a good debate!)

    I do not think the argument should be centered around Austed. I may be wrong, but he looks like he did nothing wrong. I believe the only reason he is being attacked is because he has a lot more money than a lot of us, and he may have just tagged a World Record Bull Elk.

    This argument is centered around Doyle, and the tactics they used to get this bull. As I have read everything the main thing I question is the accusations that they “herded” the bull to a spot where the guides contained him until Austed could shoot it. If this is true I would like to know what techniques they used to herd this bull and contain it. I just do not think this is possible, but I have been wrong before. If they found the bull, and set up camp close by to keep tabs on it that is another story. Some of the accusers are trying to make it sound like they basically had the bull in a cage. Let me know if I am wrong.

    There is no debating how cool this bull looks. He is huge, and I would love to have a mount of this bull at my house!

    Let me know where I am wrong, and up in the night. I would love to hear all of the accusations, and then try to sort it out. With a debate like this there is so much emotion involved it is easy to get caught up in assumptions and tall tales.

    I want the facts! (I don’t mind hearing assumptions though, they can be entertaining)

  12. I have seen the rack in person and it’s big but only in mass. It is not tall or wide. There are many,many bulls around that are taller and wider but this has alot of mass and crap(extras). Mossback will post people around the bull on all sides approx 20 guys and basically watch this bull until the hunter arrives. They aren’t really herding it they are more like making certain where it is at all times and following it’s every move. They know every where it takes a leak and a crap and how much.

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