October 16, 2014
Hayward Ranch Outfitters
Collbran, Colorado 81625
I wanted to share with you how grateful that I am for the "bucket list" adventure that you and your
team provided during my recent elk hunt. My adventure started in March 2013 with my reservation to
participate in the 2014 "first season" hunt at your ranch. The reservation was placed based on the
recommendation from Dr. Jim Hinson who highly touted you and your operation. To say that this elk
hunt was the greatest hunting experience of my life would be an understatement! Under your team's
tremendous expertise, I was able to see bull elk too numerous to count. Many of these bulls were
within legal shooting range for able-bodied hunters, but I no longer fit into that category. In simple
terms, I face the challenges presented from multiple sclerosis, which significantly limits my ability to
walk and to hold a gun in a shooting position. Through the unbelievable patience and tremendous
ingenuity displayed by your guides (Guy and Mike), I was able to successfully hunt a bull elk. On the
fourth morning, my dream became reality with the successful shot (342 yards) of a three-point, bull elk.
I cannot adequately express how thrilled and just how truly blessed that I felt at the time I heard the
"whoop" from Guy and the "arms up" signs from both Guy and Dr. Hinson when they found my bull.
During the experience that you and your team provided, I was able to throw off my disability and feel
the excitement of the hunt without limits! With you allowing my wife to stay at the cabin and then
bringing her to the field, we were able to enjoy the event together. I do not know who cried more tears
of joy - her or me, but I do know that we will treasure this experience the rest of our lives. Thank you
for making my "bucket list" experience greater than I could have imagined!
In closing, I also want to note how truly breath-taking the scenery and the views were during the five,
great days that my wife and I shared at the Hayward Ranch. The meals created by Joe were amazing!
Not only does Joe make excellent food, but he helps create a positive atmosphere at the cabin. To all
the rest of your team who processed the elk and worked behind the scenes to make our hunting
experience so fulfilling, please send my appreciation. Finally, thanks go to you for fostering the
wonderful experience that you have created through your vision for hunting provided by the Hayward
With Best Regards,
November 11th, 2011
To Tor Hayward and everybody at Hayward Ranch Outfitters,
I wanted to thank everybody at the ranch for my recent Elk and Mule deer hunt. I waited 43 years
to experience this. Thanks to your very professional organization for making my very first outfitter
sponsored hunt a memory to last a lifetime.
From opening day with the harvest of my 6x5 elk at 653 yards with Tor's Weatherby 30-338 to the
last day with the harvest of my first mule deer with my Remington 700 SPS in 300 WSM at 247
yards, this experience is something every outdoorsman should endeavor upon. The amount of
game seen on a daily basis was something to behold. I had herds of elk nearly run me over and
mule deer constantly walking by. This is all due to the dedication and attention of your staff to their
hunters and knowing the lay of the land so well.
I was overjoyed with getting to know all the guides and staff supporting this organization. I want to
personally thank Guy, Jed, Joe, Jeff, and Josh. These guides never give up; they are constantly
glassing for animals and planning where to look next for that opportunity of a lifetime. I know for
many these types of hunts are yearly, but for many of us, these are something you save up for and
schedule for years to be able to do. Hayward Ranch Outfitters made every dime I spent worth it and
The accommodations were fantastic; the cabin, rooms, transportation and especially the food. Joe
does an outstanding job of making every meal unique, delicious and plentiful. I was never hungry
and enjoyed it all; most of the time I had to push some away so that I could continue to go out
Tor, what you have created there at your ranch is something we all can envy. I know the outfitter
business is not a job people get rich by and most of the time you just break even, but rather it's a job
full of passion and dedication, for which you have. Your efforts are much appreciated. I am
personally looking forward to scheduling another trip out there as soon as possible.
If you or anybody at Hayward Ranch ever needs anything or are passing through Las Vegas, please
let me know. I would be honored to buy you guys some drinks.
MSG, USA (RET)
Whitehorse Consulting, LLC
7494 Mustang 5t, Las Vegas, NV 89131
P; (910) 528-2360 F; (702) 485-5127
November 21st, 2011
Dear Mr. Hayward:
I was compelled to write this thank you letter to express my most sincere gratitude for a superb hunting experience with the Hayward Ranch Outfitters. It was truly a complete, turnkey, guided hunting package as advertised, but your execution and style were much more fun than expected! I can't say enough about your staff: Joe and Shep in the kitchen, the guides - Guy Ryan, Jeff and Mike Bricker, yourself and Ben . . . what a team! Everyone worked together so well to deliver over the top hospitality, friendly service, and a well coordinated hunting experience that was second to none.
Your facility on the top of the hill is a very special place. What a cool man cave, somewhere between a Museum of Natural History and a sports bar with fine dining. I felt right at home every night at the Hayward Ranch House (I couldn't figure out how to use the TV remotes at your place either). Sunnyside is another special place. I thoroughly enjoyed the expanse of landscape, diversity of terrain and tremendous habitat, but the abundant game population was especially impressive. I saw more deer in 3 days than I have seen anywhere, including TV! Mostly thanks to Mike Bricker, he can sure find 'em. I don't think I would have seen half as many on my own.
So I am hooked, job well done! Same time, same place, next year! Sign me up. The 11:11, 11-11-11 buck was nice, but 11-11-12 is looking even better.
Thank you all, and have a Happy Thanksgiving!!
P.S. I know the others all enjoyed the Hayward Ranch experience equally as well!
Stephanie’s Story (pic below)
It was 5:30 am. I rolled over and heard my name being called softly. “Stephanie, honey it’s time to get up. Were leaving in 15 minutes!” My dad left the room and I stumbled to the bag that held my warm clothes and once I was dressed, I went up the stairs and into the kitchen where hot coffee was brewing on the counter. I put my boots on, and poured myself a cup of coffee. I said my good mornings to the people that were also staying at the cabin. Tor Hayward, the owner, Ryar Hayward, his brother, and the Brown family.
We all got bundled up, and headed outside into the cold and got in the Polaris Ranger Crew. We had myself, my father David Moreno, Tor Hayward, Ryar Hayward, and Diane Brown. It was about a 20 minute ride to the spot where my dad had shot his the day before. His was from 654 yards away, and when I got to camp he thought he had a big story to tell. Everyone was telling me what an amazing shot my dad had. I was ready to kill a bigger bull than him. This was my year for a bull! I could feel it. This was going through my head for the duration of the ride up to our spot.
When we got there everyone got out to go glass, but it was still dark so I wanted to stay warm where I was. When it was getting to be about shooting light, Tor spotted some elk on the ridge across from where we were. Everyone got very excited. I just sat there cause I was like. There is no way anyone is gonna make that shot! So when they told me they were gonna set me up for it, I panicked and my heart started racing. I got out of the ranger and went to go see if I could see the elk they were setting me up for. I couldn’t see anything from that far away. I told them, there is no way I’m ever going to make that shot. Tor turned to me and said, “Do you want Diane to shoot your bull?” There was no way I was going to let her shoot my elk!
I got down after they set it up for me so the elk would be visible. I was looking down the barrel of a Mark Thompson 30.-378. I’d never seen or heard of this gun before, much less shot with it. I was anxious. I was so excited that I couldn’t control my breathing. I was shaking and was afraid of missing my opportunity for a bull. This was my year. I tried not to think about it as I searched the scope for my bull. I could see little dots, so I asked which one the bull was. My dad magnified to scope and I could immediately see which one was mine. I got all excited. I took my right glove off in anticipation. I put a shell in, and waited for him to go broadside. I told my dad, “cover my ears!” I hated the noise of loud guns. I had to wait about ten minutes to get my first shot off. My hand was so cold! I kept saying “I’m going to get frostbite.” So Ryar ran over and gave me his hand warmer which I could barely hold because my hand was shaking so bad. I aimed straight for the chest, I pulled the trigger gently and shot. I’m not sure if I hit in the right place or not. So I loaded another shell in anticipation. He didn’t seem to be hit, so the first chance I had to get another shot off, I took it! I was so afraid that from that far away I’d never hit it. So I jacked another shell into the chamber and waited. I was almost positive I’d at least hit him once, but I couldn’t be sure. So as I waited for him to go broadside again, I pulled myself up over the stock of the gun and stuck my face right in the scope to get a better view. As soon as he turned broadside, I pulled the trigger without repositioning the gun in my shoulder because I was so excited and didn’t want to waste an opportunity for a great shot! So with my head still close to the scope, I shot… I regret not repositioning the gun, because now I’ll always have a lovely scar on my forehead from scoping myself.
The bull disappeared behind some brush. We watched to see if he would come out on the other side. He never appeared. So we figured it was time to go look for him. We got in the Polaris, leaving Ryar at the top to scout for us, to make sure we were going in the right direction. On the ride down all I could do was pray that we would find my elk. I thought it was unlikely since we were in a bunch of really thick brush. We couldn’t drive the whole way, so we parked about 300 yards away and walked the rest of the way, up hill. We were walking through all the trees and brush, and it really smelled like elk. We could see where they had bedded down the night before. We kept going. Tor was walking in front of me. My dad was behind me. I was having a nervous breakdown because I was afraid that I wasn’t going to find my elk. Up ahead Tor started giggling. I was wondering how anything could be funny at a time like this. Then he started whistling and my dad started hollering. Could it be? We had ended up walking right up to it.
I started getting all teary eyed, cause I was so excited. I couldn’t stand it. So since it was so far in, we decided to quarter it, it took us about three hours to get that done. Packing it out, knowing that it was mine, that I’d finally killed my bull filled me with pure joy and happiness. At 952 yards it was more than a shot. It was everything I had worked for.
Stephanie was 15 when she wrote this. This was her first Bull Elk.