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Thread: Sheep Hunts Gone SOUR.......Tell Your story.

  1. #1

    Default Sheep Hunts Gone SOUR.......Tell Your story.

    Have you had a sheep hunt go sour, for any reason.......?

    In 1980 Alaska Fish & Game sent military helicopters in to extract sheep hunters. I was on the Robinson Glacier and got 4' of snow in one night. One year in the late 80's or early 90's I and my hunter were extracted from "Rip' Snorter" back to Clark Engle's camp in the Alaska Range because of heavy snow fall.

    We lost 7 complete camps, totally lost everything including new Bomb shelters, and 3 full curl sheep shot and abandoned. When they say leave everything and get in the aircraft, they mean leave everything. I took off with "Gator" and as we lifted off the entire camp was taken out in a snow slide.

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    Wow, I would love to hear more details of these rescues. How did you call for help in the days before sat phone?

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by tyrex13 View Post
    Wow, I would love to hear more details of these rescues. How did you call for help in the days before sat phone?

    We did not call for help. The first rescue electric gismo I have ever owned is the PLB I got last Thursday, and that is because I am 65 years old & mostly hike alone.
    I have never owned a cell-phone. If we needed to communicate with the pilot that we need help, it was done with a space blanket, foil side up.

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    Premium Member denalihunter's Avatar
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    The best and worst of sheep hunts. 1st day we could hunt, my buddy shoots a nice sheep. Second evening, I shoot mine..... Problem is, no more sheep hunting.... But I wasn't about to pass up the first legal sheep I saw considering it was my life-long dream.
    Experience Real Alaska! www.alpinecreeklodge.com

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    Do you remember the dates when such a heavy snowfall fell on your camp? Was it in August still or a late season hunt?

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    Red face

    Well, in 2000 or so we had two feet fall on us in the second week of the season in the Wrangells. We had no luck hunting after that as we couldnt keep our footing on the rocks and were unable to spot sheep in all the snow. We were plenty safe in our North face 4 season VE 25s. The pilot came over up planning to drop a note telling us to hike out but decided to land due to some melting and our efforts rolling snowballs and trampling snow to make the strip useable. We managed to lift off with all our gear. Laying there in the tent was freaky, it just keeps getting quieter and quieter as you are slowly buried by all the snow.....
    I come home with an honestly earned feeling that something good has taken place. It makes no difference whether I got anything, it has to do with how the day was spent. Fred Bear

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by tyrex13 View Post
    Do you remember the dates when such a heavy snowfall fell on your camp? Was it in August still or a late season hunt?
    I don't remember the dates on the Robertson in 1980 but most likely guess is Aug. 15'th or 20'th (Just a guess). The Rip'Snorter in the Alaska Range was Aug. 20'something, as it was the second round of sheep hunters, and most of those hunts were booked for ten days. I remember we hunted moose in 4 feet of snow right from the lodge after the sheep camps go distroyed.

    It was kind of neat, as my hunter used his sheep tag for a nice moose near the lodge, and as all of the guides and hunters were stuck in the lodge and bored to tears at the lodge; everyone (Maybe 15 or 20 people came out to help. And I just let the young guides get bloody butchering moose. They found two snow machines for hauling the meat. I got a nice tip, and I never got bloody or packed a chunk of moose. I always hated field dressing moose, they always reminded me of a Big Brown Chevy Suburban in a ditch on it side, they are just big.

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    this year on top of the mountain trying to wait for a couple rams to feed up to us ( i was bow hunting ) it started to rain, then 10mins later it was snow, 10 more minutes & it was slush & to top it off the wind turned the whole hill into an ice rink. decided toget off the hill took along time but we made it back to camp.

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    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FullFreezer View Post
    this year on top of the mountain trying to wait for a couple rams to feed up to us ( i was bow hunting ) it started to rain, then 10mins later it was snow, 10 more minutes & it was slush & to top it off the wind turned the whole hill into an ice rink. decided toget off the hill took along time but we made it back to camp.
    Smart move. Glad you guys were safe and sound.

    Slick ice-covered rocks are a sheep and goat hunters worst enemy.
    I've been fortunate to have never had to deal with it!
    Proud to be an American!

  10. #10

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    The past week was probably my roughest weathered sheep hunt. Got in Monday to where we wanted to be at 5800 feet. Started snowing Tuesday at 1:00 PM. 44 hours later we decided to pull the plug and drop elevation. Just not worth being there and was getting borderline dangerous. 10" of snow and visibility of around 40 yards made it a real challenge. We were well prepared and had plenty of food/shelter/water if things got real bad. Luckily we made it out Thursday night after a 14 hour approx. 9 mile walk. Learned a lot of lessons (or relearned rather) navigating in the snow/wind/fog. The best part of the story is after feeling bad about coming out (and spending 1 night in a real bed) we nutted up and headed back in to a different drainage. Our strategy was that the weather would have pushed rams a bit lower into this area. The next day we were fortunate enough to harvest a 37" ram. Shows that 2nd efforts and working hard tend to pay off. Usually in hunting and also in life.

  11. #11
    Member TWB's Avatar
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    AGL,

    Did F&G have anything to say about leaving game behind even though it was an emergency pull?
    We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed

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    Member kahahawai's Avatar
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    You all heard my story last year, "Shanked by the Weather" .............I have yet to get my young son on a Ram, of course it doesn't help that school starts the second week in August here in Alaska........ someday I hope.

  13. #13
    Member Milo's Avatar
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    I went sheep hunting and didn't get one. It rained too.
    Death is like an old whore in a bar--I'll buy her a drink but I won't go upstairs with her.

  14. #14

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    Every sheep hunt i've been has been great but one did get ruined by an old hunting partner. It was my first sheep hunt and the drainage we were hunting in had several legal rams, problem was my partner couldn't shoot for crap. He missed a nice ram at around 200 yards 6 times on opening day. So a few days later it was my turn to shoot, I had located a very nice ram up high with 4 other rams. We climbed up to them but by the time we got there they had bedded in the rocks above us so we waited them out.

    By partner decided to take a nap while I watched the rams and eventually they got up and moved out of site. I woke my partner up and we scrambled up the hill towards the sheep. I peeked over the top and there they were, not 100 yards away and totally unaware of our presence. I put my scope on the large ram that was past full curl, my partner tells me to hold on so he can line up on one of the other rams that was determined to be legal. I was hesitant at first but eventually gave in so on the count of 3 we would both shoot.

    I started the countdown, managed to get to 1 and boom, he shoots and misses. The rams take off and don't stop until they are about 400 yards out. I lined up on the big ram again and shoot, missing him by less than an inch over his back and then they are gone forever. I was completely dumbfounded as to why he shot so quickly, his excuse being that the rams were starting to move, which was not true.

    That was one of the biggest rams I had seen in the mountains and it would have been an easy shot if not for my partner. Needless to say, after that hunt was over I never hunted with him again.

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    My story is sadder then most last 3 years got my ram on the first day and had to come home early.

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    Member Frostbitten's Avatar
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    Years ago, I tried a 5 day solo walk-in sheep hunt, which incidentally was my first ever sheep hunt. I had some intel on the drainage I intended to hunt as far as where I should camp, and where water was available. About 4 miles into my hike, I stopped to glass the area I intended to climb into to set up camp. I took off my pack and started digging into it for something. I pulled out my empty 4 liter water bladder which I planned on filling when I got to my camp site and set it down next to my pack. As I was rummaging around in my pack, I accidentally bumped the water bladder and it rolled down towards the river. I reached for it, but to no avail, it splashed into the fast moving river. I frantically followed it down stream, trying to grab it, or hook it with my walking stick, but it drifted further from shore the farther I went, until it was clear that I wouldn't be able to retrieve it. I was so mad at myself for doing something so stupid. As I walked the couple hundred yards back to my pack, the thought of continuing on with nothing but a single 1 liter gatorade bottle really worried me. I started thinking about all the bad stuff that could happen; getting dehydrated to the point that I can't take care of myself (been there), being by myself and no way to call for help if things go real bad, losing or damaging my gatorade bottle etc. I continued on, but for the duration of the hunt I paid more attention to my water situation than I did to the sheep.

    I made multiple (countless?) rookie mistakes on that hunt, several of which may have cost me a chance at a legal ram. Just getting there was by far the most physically demanding thing I've ever done. While I didn't even come close to killing a sheep, it's a hunt I never want to forget. It was awesome!

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by TWB View Post
    AGL,

    Did F&G have anything to say about leaving game behind even though it was an emergency pull?
    No, was not much that could be done till the next summer. I guess it is not much different than a Goat or Sheep that falls into a crevasse and is not recoverable.

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    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by horse View Post
    My story is sadder then most last 3 years got my ram on the first day and had to come home early.
    Hmmmm,
    Take a second and reread the title of this thread.
    Proud to be an American!

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    Member lab man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fullkurl View Post
    Hmmmm,
    Take a second and reread the title of this thread.
    I'm guessing he's just joking around..

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