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Ryan and Josie Muirhead, Roseau, Minn., display the massive rack of a bull elk Tuesday in East Grand Forks. Ryan Muirhead was hunting deer with a muzzleloader in Kittson County on Dec. 12 when he and a couple of buddies came across the bull lying on its back with its antlers mired in the mud after tripping while crossing a fence. Muirhead and seven others managed to free the elk, but it died two days later. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources retrieved the elk for testing but later granted the ...

Nature takes its course for trophy bull elk in Kittson County

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Ryan Muirhead and a couple of deer hunting buddies were driving the back roads of Kittson County on Dec. 12 -- the last morning of Minnesota's muzzleloader deer season -- when they came across a spectacle of nature they'll never forget.

There in the snow, just a few yards off the road, was a bull elk lying on its back, its massive antlers mired 8 to 10 inches into muddy ground that still wasn't frozen, despite an air temperature of 25 below zero.

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