LAFOLLETTE, Tenn. -- Cleveland's Jeff Moses has a future stepson to thank for his selection among five hunters participating this week in Tennessee's first elk hunt in more than a century.
Four of the five slots available in the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area were offered to Tennessee hunting license holders through a special drawing. They each paid $10. The fifth hunter, Andy Miller of Franklin, came through an eBay bid of $17,700.
"I wasn't even going to put in for the hunt," Moses said at a camping area set up by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and other elk enthusiasts. "My future stepson (Tim Brown) was putting his name in online and told me I needed to, too. I told him, 'There's no way. That's impossible.'
"He told me, 'Put it in anyway,'" the 46-year-old M&M Mars employee recalled. "He said, 'Give me your information -- license and everything. I'll do it for you.' He put it in. I got drawn for it!
"I can't believe it. He liked to have died when he found out I got drawn and he didn't," Moses added with a laugh. "This is something you dream about but don't think you're ever going to get the opportunity to do."
The five-day hunt begins Monday. Each hunter is allowed one bull elk.
Moses and a friend, Frank Whaley, came earlier to the area to scout for elk. Moses saw one that added to his enthusiasm. He used a Knight & Hale Hoochee Mama call to attract a six-by-six bull.
"That thing was huge," Moses said. "It was the first one I had ever seen live. I had never seen one even in a zoo -- just on TV."
The guide assigned to Moses for the hunt, Tim Ferguson -- owner of the Dead Eye Supply company in Franklin, Ky. -- said he felt Moses had a good chance to kill a bull, especially given the area where he was to hunt.
The three other hunters selected through the drawing were Craig Gardner of Parrottsville, Charles Ray Flynn of Rockford and Ronald Woodard of Oak Ridge.