Ensuring the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving from RMEF

RMEF Family,

American poet and writer William Arthur Ward once penned the words, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”

Those words ring true. Feeling and expressing gratitude are things we should do and share with those around us all year long. If you’re not proficient at this, or even if you are, join me and make Thanksgiving the perfect time to start.

Take a look around and count your blessings and then let others know how you feel. We certainly are a blessed people and it benefits all of us to reflect a bit and fully recognize that.

I am grateful for my wife, my boys, my parents and other relatives, my friends, my freedoms provided by living in this great nation and my ever-growing Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation family of volunteers, members, conservation partners and other supporters. It is a joy and an honor to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with you as we move this grand conservation effort forward that makes such an impactful difference for elk and elk country. Together, we are leaving a legacy for the majestic animal we love and an enduring hunting lifestyle tradition for our kids and grandkids.

As you gather with loved ones this Thanksgiving season, take a moment, look around and count your many blessings. Let it all sink in, give thanks and express sincere gratitude to loved ones and our Maker for the many blessings we all enjoy.


M. David Allen
RMEF President & CEO

Friday, November 20, 2015

Call to Action: Urge the Senate to Pass the Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act

RMEF Members,

Urge your Senators to Support the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act!

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee just passed the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act of 2015 (S.556)—a comprehensive bill addressing a variety of important issues for hunters, anglers and recreational shooters. The bill also seeks to maintain open access to public lands for hunting, fishing and other recreation. It received only one dissenting vote.

RMEF has been a staunch supporter of this bill since its introduction and has worked diligently with the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus and Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation to assure its passage.

Advancing the bill out of the committee is a good first step but we need the full Senate to follow suit. Please reach out to your senators online or by calling (202) 224-3121 to urge them to support this important sportsmen legislation without delay.

We appreciate your ongoing support.


M. David Allen
RMEF President & CEO

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What Does $1 Billion Look Like?

[bil-yuh n] 

noun, plural billions (as after a numeral) billion.

1. A cardinal number represented in the U.S. by 1 followed by 9 zeros, and in Great Britain by 1 followed by 12 zeros.

2. A very large number:
I've told you so billions of times.

3. Equal in number to a billion.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation recently topped $1 billion in total value of its lifetime efforts. That work includes land protection and access, habitat enhancement, wildlife management including elk restoration, research, and hunting heritage and conservation outreach projects. The land work itself permanently protected or enhanced more than 6.7 million acres of vital elk habitat.

But how do you fully realize and appreciate $1 billion when it is such a large amount? In other words, what does $1 billion look like? Let’s break it down through some staggering statistics.
  • If you stacked 1,000,000,000 one dollar bills, they would reach 358,510 feet in height or nearly 68 miles.
  • If you laid 1,000,000,000 one dollar bills end-to-end, they would extend 96,900 miles which would wrap around the earth almost four times. 
  • The area covered by 1,000,000,000 one dollar bills measures four square miles or approximately 1,936 football fields.
  • If you lived to be 80 years of age and you wanted to have $1 billion, you would have to save $34,000 each day of your life.
  • A shopper spending $20 per second would need 1,585 years to spend $1 billion.
Okay, now let’s apply what we have learned to RMEF.

One billion seconds is equal to 31.6888 years. If you do the math and turn the calendar pages back to the day RMEF officially began on May 14, 1984, you realize the organization is approximately that same age at 31-plus years. That means the RMEF accumulates roughly $1 of value per every second of our existence! 

RMEF: $1 Billion By the Numbers
One second = $1 of accumulated value
One minute = $60
One hour = $3,600
One day = $86,400
One week = $604,800
One month (31 days) = $2,678,400
One year = $31,536,000
One decade = $315,360,000

The $1 billion total is derived by the dollar amount contributed by RMEF plus the partner dollars leveraged by RMEF for its various projects since the organization’s founding. RMEF reached the milestone by carrying out 9,738 projects with a multitude –although not quite a billion– partners. Among them is the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, state wildlife agencies from across the nation, private landowners, universities and many other governmental, tribal, civic, wildlife and sportsmen groups. 

We cannot thank our partners enough. Successful working partnerships are both vital and mandatory in bringing about significant on-the-ground conservation success. We are also grateful for the long-time and continuing support of our members, volunteers and sponsors who believe in our mission to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage. To all our RMEF supporters, we are thankful a billion times over!”

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

RMEF Grants Help Grandma Mildred’s 4-H Shooters

Eighty-year-old Mildred Spencer has a passion for hunting and shooting (see video below). Her grandchildren are among her biggest benefactors. But her zeal for the shooting sports expands far beyond her own bloodlines. Grandma Mildred is a matriarch of sorts for scores of young shooters who make up the 4-H Summit Shooting Sports in Summit County, Ohio.

“That’s all we do is shoot, one thing or the other. We shoot rifles, pistols, shotguns, muzzleloaders—you name it. Young people enjoy shooting. They enjoy learning about shooting. We found they need to know safety and that’s the biggest thing that we teach them,” said Spencer.

Spencer has several advisors that assist her. Together they focus on making the shooting experience safe, educational and enjoyable for all.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation remains a long-time supporter of hunting heritage programs for youth and adults across the nation. RMEF contributed more than $4,600 to the 4-H Summit Shooting Sports group over the last decade alone. That latest grant funding went toward a couple of different outings for the group including funds to purchase ammunition for a trip to the Ramrod Gun Club in Canal Fulton. Shooters learned about the early history and various types of muzzleloaders. The hands-on outing also provided skills and direction about reloading, caring for the gun, being aware of safety considerations and having fun.

RMEF also provided funds for air rifles, air revolvers and both camper and instructor training scholarships for a public community event in Akron where the 4-H Summit Shooters took on the role of mentor. 

“Our archery group was excited that we were requested for the second year to set up an archery range open to the public at the annual River Day celebration at Munroe Falls on May 30. Our more experienced club members along with a couple of advisors actually taught important safety rules to individuals of all ages as they attempted their first time at shooting an arrow. We had about 100 participants. It was a very exciting day!” added Spencer.

Kudos to Grandma Mildred and her 4-H Summit Shooters for helping spread a love of shooting, hunting, safety and ethics to the next generation!

Grandma Mildred talks about her hunt and her 4-H shooting group

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Giving Honor, Respect to Our Veterans

Dear RMEF Family,

Veterans Day is a special day. But I believe it to be more than that—even a sacred day.

Veterans Day always falls on November 11 for a specific reason. It was historically established to observe the end of World War I which formally ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 when the armistice with Germany took effect.

On October 12, 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed an executive order declaring the first Veterans Day Proclamation. It stated, in part:

“I also direct the appropriate officials of the Government to arrange for the display of the flag of the United States on all public buildings on Veterans Day. In order to insure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all veterans, all veterans' organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in the common purpose.”
Veterans Day recognizes and honors America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.

There is no group of Americans more special among us than our veterans. Their sacrifices are many. They spend time away from their loved ones and often put their lives on the line to defend and protect the freedoms we enjoy. To all of them and all of you, including many who are family members, friends, RMEF volunteers, staffers and members, we say a humble and sincere “thank you” for your dedication and service on behalf of our great nation.


David Allen
RMEF President and CEO

Monday, November 9, 2015

Washington Rendezvous: Growing the RMEF Family

They gathered a mere 25 miles from Mount Rainier’s towering 14,409-foot peak. Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation volunteers from across the state came together in the heart of southcentral Washington’s elk country to roll up their sleeves in the Oak Creek Wildlife Area.

The goal? Remove fencing that restricts the movement of elk and other wildlife and remove tree tubes from young saplings that will provide future forage and cover. And that’s exactly what they did. When all was said and done, they posed for a victorious team photo with a stack of old poles, fencing and barb wire. It was a great way to kick off the annual Washington State Rendezvous.

The first evening’s highlight was a bring-your-favorite-dish pot luck dinner. As you can imagine, the selection was wide and tasty. Folks received awards for favorite dessert and dinner dishes. The winners had their entries “immortalized” by being placed in the ever-growing Rendezvous Recipe Book. Two-time World Elk Calling Champion Joel Turner provided the post-dinner entertainment by sharing calling strategies.

Saturday morning began a day chalk full of hands-on fun and learning. Activities included geocaching with a twist, archery shooting, a 3-D shooting competition, Dutch oven cooking techniques, gun raffles, award presentations, games, silent and live auctions, and even an after-dinner sing-a-long. RMEF co-founders Charlie Decker and Bob Munson were on hand which, of course, always lead to some unexpected shenanigans.

Sunday morning included updates on RMEF news and successes before everyone broke camp and headed for home.

“In the last three years we have really changed the goal and outlook of this event. It has gone from a ‘workshop’ format where seminars and presentations were the primary activities to a RMEF family camping trip full of activities where folks get to participate and learn as they go. Our new focus is on fun and teambuilding,” said Brian Anderson, RMEF regional director for western Washington. 

Mission accomplished! It was a great weekend for the 82 RMEF family members of all ages in attendance.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Having a Blast in Alaska

Adam Trujillo hat toss
They lined up by the dozens, raised their shotguns and waited for the fateful moment. A baseball cap flew into the air and the guns boomed. The hat, now riddled with tiny holes, floated back to the earth below as the shooters flashed smiles of satisfaction.

“This is considered quite an honor, and most athletes will hang up their ‘trophy hat,’ which is now blasted to smithereens!’ said Lindy Moss of the Alaska Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP).

The cap belonged to Adam Trujillo of Soldotna who took top honors in the men’s and women’s trap division at the Alaska SCTP-Youth Education in Shooting Sports (YESS) 2015 State Tournament. Trujillo shot his first ever 100-straight in trap. He had never shot 25-straight before—an accomplishment alone that qualified him, and several others, for the honorary hat toss. 

Adam Trujillo
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation contributed $3,500 in grant funding which allowed every athlete and team to receive ammunition at a substantial cost reduction.

“The ability to provide ammo at a discount for all athletes ensures that everyone is able to take advantage of more targets, more practices, more events, more training and experience. This was especially important for our long distance teams who not only saved several hundred dollars on ammo for their athletes, but also saved the hassle of having to spend time shopping for ammo supplies instead of participating in training, practice and fun events at state,” added Moss.

The 11th annual Alaska SCTP-YESS State Championship was the largest yet with 97 athletes representing 15 teams. The theme was “Going for the Gold in the Greatland.” And that’s exactly what participants did. More families also attended the event than ever before. The gathering also included drawings for guns, knives, shooting accessories and other door prizes.

Go here to read more about the tournament.