It all started when Jess Buss was at home, ready for a relaxing night watching movies. Those relaxing days were few and far between for Jess since she was notified that she drew a moose tag in a coveted area of Montana–in a hunting district practically in her back yard! She was one of three people to have drawn this particular tag, and she knew how important it was to fill it and had spent countless hours since September searching for her bull. October 19, 2020 is a day she will remember for the rest of her life!
Her neighbor called her and said there was a nice moose they were eyeballing, and the next thing you know, we got a phone call…
- [RING RING]
- Us: Hey, what’s up?
- Jess: Oh, nothing…just watching a moose die..
- Us: [PROCESSING FOR A SPLIT SECOND] Oh, sh#%!! No way, are you kidding?
- Jess: No, I’m not kidding.
And that is how the evening started. We hurried home to throw on some clothes to help her gut this bad boy, and my husband Jason Maxwell, Jess and Dan Ruiz, a friend of all of ours, trekked on down to where the bull was shot that night, equipped with headlamps, flashlights and hunting packs. After two hours, the moose was gutted, and we were headed back to vehicles. The real work was going to be the next day, but at least they had access to four wheelers, and one with a trailer, thanks to Jess’s generous neighbor.
A friend of ours from Frenchtown had this tag last year, and he had put in for it for 30 years before drawing it, so the fact that Jess is the second person we know who has drawn this, after just three years of putting in for it, is pretty incredible. It was just such an awesome experience to be a part of and to be so excited for somebody who tagged their very first moose–and yes, there will be a shoulder mount!
Way to go, Jess! Congratulations from all of us at the Montana Outdoor Radio Show for filling your tag, freezer and your wall with this beautiful bull!