Seeley Swan Pathfinder -

By John L. Moore
RANGE Magazine 

Sometimes Our Images are Borrowed but This Scene has Its Own Portrait in my Heart 

Snapshots of the Mind


John Moore

John L. Moore is a third-generation rancher in eastern Montana. He recently completed his sixth novel, "Looking for Lynne," which is available at 

It was a scene straight from a Leanin' Tree Christmas card. The five-by-five bull elk was moving uphill on a well-traveled path through lodgepole pine while snowflakes as large as dollars and wetter than kisses pasted his sides. He was so close it seemed I could reach out and tickle his ribs with my gun barrel.

I had a cow tag so the bull was not mine to take, plus I was guiding a trophy hunter from Florida for whitetail, not elk. 

The bull moved on never knowing I was there but years later I still see him and the gentle, wet snowflakes that caressed his hide.

Most hunters travel with came...

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