Day 1- Drove up the haul road with a plan but based on what we saw we decided on Plan B.
Day 2- Hiked in a long ways…. .... Pitched tent.
Day 3- Opening day. Glassed, saw some ewes, hiked further and higher. Found a good spot to perch. Went back and got tent, etc. Set up high Sheep Camp 2012.
Day 3- Spent the day glassing and getting the lay of the land. Saw some ewes/lambs but in the evening saw some sheep with head gear on a distant mtn a couple drainages away
Day 4- Spotted the head gear sheep first thing in the morning. Headed for a closer/better vantage point. Watched, studied 12 rams all day. One was maybe but not quite full curl. Chose not to try to get closer because of the chance of getting busted based on the nature of the terrain, and all the eyes over there. Maybe there was a bigger one somewhere and we didn't want to shag him out of the country. We still had time.
Headed back towards our drainage and a ram came over the ridge we were on, stopped, turned and trotted a bit. We hit the deck. He stopped turned and came back a bit. We saw a decent curl, I dropped my pack, grabbed my rifle and belly crawled a bit, ranged him at 322, studied him for a few with binos and decided he was full curl, not a whopper but legal! I scooted up to a rock rise and nailed him at about 300yds.
Found a winter kill horn in the valley heading back to the tent. Weathered but should be okay when cut up. Just what I wanted for some grips for a custom revolver I'm having built. Got back up to our high camp ridge at 1am. What a great day. We still have time to get another.
Day 5- Slept in a little. My partner went up our ridge to look over another area while I finished caping my ram, turned lips and ears. Kept the skull/horns for a euro mount. I'll sell the cape. Went up and met my partner. Nothing up there but we saw rams on the far mtn again.
Day 6- up at 5am and headed out to scope out the far mtn. Spotted 6 or 8 sub legals, can't remember for sure. Then spotted a couple in a further drainage up a waterfall/steep creek drainage. Got to a better vantage point and the one had moved closer, sub legal. But the bigger one was still there. Watched him moving around and decided he was worth trying to get to to get a closer look and maybe a shot. On the way I spotted two others. Got out the spotter, one was prolly 7/8 the other looked like he could go full curl but it was uphill about 1000 yds. But, light was right, light horns, dark rings, we could see he was at least 5 with 6 inches or more of horn left. Andy wasn't sure, the farther ram was calling him but we still did'nt know for sure if he was a shooter… "what do think Schneider?…" he says. I say… "if it were me I'd be climbing that hill to get a closer look and maybe a shot. He looks like a good ram". He climbed up and shot him while I watched, too cool. F&G says he BARRREELLLYYY makes full curl and he's 9.
Long hump back to high camp. Got back at 3 am in the rain, dropped the meat in our valley below high camp totally spent.
Day 7- Got up at 11 or 12. Went down and humped Andys ram up to high camp, got my ram. We each packed our rams including capes and skull/horns down ** miles. Dropped em, went back and got gear.
Day 8- Each packed out our rams including capes and skull/horns to the rig. Heavy loads... Humped it back to the tent. Crashed at 11. Long day. Rams are out!
Day 9- Packed gear out to the rig and made it to Coldfoot for dinner! Home at 1 am!
What an awesome hunt this was. My ram was just at full curl, aged at 7. I shot him as full curl but aged him at 8 after caping. F&G said the one hairline ring was false. Small ram, short horns, 31", 12 3/8 bases. Andys is 34 inches, 13 and 13.5 bases. Barely full curl on one side, 9 years old. Not much growth his second year.
I'm a hunter that has always shot the first legal one of whatever it is I'm hunting for. Next year I'll be more picky for two reasons. I want a beefy ram for a head mount and I don't want to shoot one that could be a "gotcha" ram. This one could have been, I cut it close.
Andy is 51 and today I turned 52! We worked our butts off on this hunt and it panned out. Hiked a LOT of miles with a lot of elevation loss and gain. Good thing we're in good shape and still holding together! We're 103 between the 2 of us!!