Jeff Simpson is known throughout the outdoor industry as a man of many talents. As a Sitka Gear athlete, entrepreneur, Midwest Sales Manager for Sitka Gear accomplished photographer, father and family man, his roster is packed with noteworthy accomplishments.
Not only is he predominately known for his passionate pursuit of trophy Whitetail, but Jeff is widely recognized as the owner/operator of Fencepost Films. Under Jeff’s leadership Fencepost Films has introduced it’s revolutionary approach to the world of hunting media. With unparalleled style, Fencepost Films brings the viewer on an unforgettable outdoor experience. The cliche ‘seen one – seen them all‘ will not be attached to any production that makes it out of F2’s editing room.
It was a real privilege to spend some time talking to Jeff about his latest production, [The Short Season] – 111° West. Set in the heart of the Rocky Mountains this film encapsulates Jeff’s own adventure as he pursues Montana’s allusive Elk. Documenting his daily quest for a trophy bull, this film is another example of Jeff’s vast array of abilities. We are excited to bring to you this interview and trust you will visit Fencepost Films for more info.
365: Hi Jeff… hows it going? It’s a real privilege to finally get to meet you.
JS: Great meeting you as well.
365: I would like to congratulate you and your wife. The ‘little guy’ definitely looks like a keeper.
JS: Thanks, he has been awesome. Now we just have to let him know that sleeping in later than 4am is perfectly acceptable.
365: (Laugh) You have a beautiful family. I am sure they are a great inspiration for your work.
JS: For sure! They are the reason I work as hard as I do.
JS: Oh, I have no idea… It took a full year to shoot. I basically rigged up a tripod and camera in the back of my truck. My older son, Brady, was not happy with it. I more less kicked him out of the truck for a year. I was scared he would kick the tripod and move it, so we used my wife’s vehicle… but he’s like me and prefers being in the truck.
365: Having lived in the West for the last several years, our family really enjoyed the 111° West kickoff. It so encapsulates the entire experience of hunting in the Rocky Mountains. So tell me what inspired you to produce The Short Season 111° West?
JS: First, Thanks. The inspiration for 111° West was really just another step in this journey I have going on filming hunts. The Short Season (TS2) is really the project that I’ve wanted to execute on for years now. The project is taking a HUGE step forward this season for a couple different reasons. First, I’ve added some ridiculous talent here at F2 and am excited to show what we are capturing this year… its plain sick! And Second, we have identified some really great outdoorsmen/athletes to follow this year. Its going to be a lot of fun introducing the world to them and telling their stories.
365: What is the one thing that you enjoy most about Elk hunting?
JS: Eating elk. (laugh) I really want Sage and Brady to be raised primarily on elk meat, so thats a big motivation… but I’m sure you are asking about hunting them as well. In the field, I love the majestic nature of a huge bull. With mature whitetails being number one… mature bull elk are a close second for me.
365: What have you come to believe is the key element for being a successful Elk hunter?
JS: Physical fitness, understanding the wind and the ability to effectively bivy in and stay out in the wilderness are all key.
365: Whether in philosophy or practice – what is the one thing you brought back with you from this Montana experience?
JS: As I said in the film, it was just another chapter. This time we dealt with elk that had more predator pressure than any herd I’ve ever hunted, so I learned a lot. I feel like I could go in that same spot and do MUCH better this year. Its just learning all the different things that influence the elk’s behavior and piecing the puzzle together on each hunt. History is a great source of knowledge.
365: Where is your next Elk hunt planned?
JS: Southern Colorado here in a couple weeks… cant wait for this hunt!!!!
365: We can’t tell all the secrets, but you have some exciting new venues to shoot. Do you care to elaborate?
JS: We will have cameras in Utah, CO, Canada, KS, SD, OR, MO, NE and Argentina/Chile this year. Big year!
365: We can’t wait to see what you will produce from this season. Thanks so much Jeff for taking the time for the interview. It was great to get to spend this time together and we look forward to seeing you again soon. Any parting words for the aspiring Elk hunter?
JS: Thank you! Parting words… one foot in front of the other and respect/enjoy the beauty and nature you are in while out there! Safe and Happy hunting!
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