LANSING - John Martin of Linden and Bruno Brun of Ann Arbor both took bull elk during the early days of Michigan's traditional December elk hunt. The third Pure Michigan Hunt winner, 56-year-old Randy Willis, a registered nurse from Augusta, was the first of the trio to score an elk. Willis took his bull during the second half of the first elk season, back in September.
The Pure Michigan Hunt allows hunters to participate in every limited license hunt in Michigan. The winners, who purchase chances on the hunt ($4 apiece) and are chosen by lottery, can hunt elk, bear, antlerless deer, and turkey, as well as get the first choice for a hunting area at one of the daily drawings at one of the Department of Natural Resources' managed waterfowl areas.
Martin, a 41-year-old stay at home dad, killed his 5 by 5, 450 pound (dressed) bull on the second day of the December season. He was hunting with another when he saw three bull elk walking along a ridge. When they came into an opening, the other hunter squeezed the trigger just a micro second before Martin, did, causing Martin to pull his shot a bit, he said. The elk swapped ends, but didn't spook, and Martin made a successful shot seconds later."
Brun, a 51-year-old plant manager, had an experience similar to Martin's. He passed up one opportunity and had another close call during the early elk season, but scored on the second day of the December hunt with a 5 by 5 bull that field dressed at 660 pounds.
He was hunting in the Gaylord area when his party noticed a group of elk working through the woods. Brun picked out one of the animals and began stalking it.
Brun said the 5 by 5 had a broken tine, but otherwise was a very nice trophy.
-Michigan Department of Natural Resources